Steve believes in creating relationships with clients who see value in positive outcomes for each legal challenge. Steve’s vast trial experience includes over 70 trials, including jury trials in both state and federal courts, bench trials and arbitration hearings. A nationally recognized authority in the construction industry, he represents construction clients in contract disputes, non-payment claims and employee and labor issues. Steve is a frequent speaker and author on construction topics including construction contracts, government contract claims, performance and payment bonds, indemnity agreements, commercial crime policies, punitive damages, change orders and delay claims.
B.S., Geology, University of Missouri
J.D., University of Missouri-Kansas City Law School
Honors & Awards
Selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© in the areas of Construction Law and Litigation-Construction (2011-2016)
Selected for inclusion in Missouri and Kansas Super Lawyers (2005-2016)
Named in the Top 10 Kansas City attorneys – Missouri and Kansas Super Lawyers (2016)
Named in the Top 50 Kansas City attorneys – Missouri and Kansas Super Lawyers (2013-2014, 2016)
Named in the Top 100 Kansas City attorneys – Missouri and Kansas Super Lawyers (2014, 2016)
Best Lawyers Business Edition (2015) – Construction Law Litigation
Named the Best Lawyers® 2015 Construction Law “Lawyer of the Year” in Kansas City, Missouri
Best of the Bar – Kansas City Business Journal (2012-2013)
Named the Best Lawyers® 2012 Litigation – Construction “Lawyer of the Year” in Kansas City, Missouri
Who’s Who Among Executives and Professionals (2010)
Best Lawyers – “Best Law Firms” Rankings – (Tier 1 Ranking) Kansas City, Missouri Construction Law – U.S. News & World Report Best Lawyers (2010)
Best Lawyers in America© – Construction Law -Woodward/White, Inc. (2007-2010)
Best Lawyers in Kansas City – Construction/Surety Law – Ingram’s Magazine (2009-2012)
Continental Who’s Who Registry of National Business Leaders (2007)
Associate Member of the Year – Associated Builders and Contractors, Inc. (2006, 2011)
Outstanding Service by a New Member – Associated Builders and Contractors, Inc. (2005)
Bar Admissions & Professional Associations
U.S. Courts of Appeal – Eighth Circuit
U.S. Courts of Appeal – Fifth Circuit
U.S. Courts of Appeal – Tenth Circuit
U.S. District Court – Kansas
U.S. District Court – Eastern District of Missouri
U.S. District Court – Western District of Missouri
U.S. Supreme Court
American Arbitration Association (Construction Industry Panelist)
American Bar Association (Member, Forum on the Construction Industry; Member, Fidelity and Surety Law Committee)
Associated Builders and Contractors, Inc.
Defense Research Institute (Member, Fidelity and Surety Committee)
International Association of Defense Counsel (Member, Construction Law Committee; Member, Fidelity and Surety Law Committee)
Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association (Member, Construction Law Committee)
National Bond Claims Association
Surety Claims Institute
The Missouri Bar (Member, Construction Law Committee)
Seminars & Publications
Steve is a frequent speaker and author on construction topics including construction contracts, government contract claims, performance and payment bonds, indemnity agreements, commercial crime policies, punitive damages, change orders and delay claims.
International Fidelity Insurance Co. v. U.S. – Steve helped establish the client surety’s lien priority over IRS liens.
USF&G v. Missouri Highway & Transportation Commission – Steve proved the client surety had equitable lien priority over State Department of Transportation’s equitable right of setoff.
City of St. Joseph, Missouri v. Kaw Valley Tunneling, Inc. – Steve prevailed in proving the rights of indemnification on part of client contractor against negligent City.
City of Independence, Missouri v. Kerr Asphalt Paving Company, Inc. – Steve prevailed in proving no surety liability under Missouri Prompt Payment Act for statutory penalties.
FGI Glass Contracting, Inc. v. Walton Construction Co., Inc (AAA Arbitration) – Steve assisted with obtaining a $5,200,000 arbitration award against Walton Construction Co., Inc. on behalf of FGI Glass Contracting, Inc. in connection with the construction of the Kansas City International Airport.