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2020 Annual Meeting

  • 14 Oct 2020
  • 16 Oct 2020
  • The Omni Homestead Resort, 7696 Sam Snead Hwy, Hot Springs, VA 24445


  • Contact Amy Gilbody at agilbody@vada.org for assistance with registration code.
  • Contact Amy Gilbody at agilbody@vada.org for assistance with registration code.

VADA Annual Meeting 2020:
Sharpen your Litigation Focus

October 14-16, 2020
The Omni Homestead Resort

Your Planning Committee has planned an amazing program. 

2020 Annual Meeting Planning Committee!

Chair, Julie Palmer, Harman Claytor Corrigan & Wellman, Richmond
Sam Bernier, Frith Anderson + Peake
Kathryn Bonorchis, Lewis Brisbois Bisgaard & Smith, Northern Virginia
Donna J. Hall, Goodman Allen Donnelly, Norfolk
Abigail Johansen, Bancroft, McGavin, Horvath & Judkins, Fairfax
Macel H. Janoschka, Frith Anderson + Peake, Roanoke
Angela London, Bancroft, McGavin, Horvath & Judkins, Fairfax
Surge Moghaddassi, Harman Claytor Corrigan & Wellman, Richmond
Jessica Swauger, Hancock Daniel, Richmond
Britton Wight, Harman Claytor Corrigan & Wellman, Alexandria
Andrew Willis, Hancock Daniel, Richmond

Safe and Clean

At this time, we plan to meet person in October. The Omni Homestead has made the health and safety of their guests a top priority. In an effort to help keep their guest safe, they have updated their already thorough cleaning guidelines and implemented additional processes and procedures to ensure your health, safety and comfort.

Guests can expect to see many new safety protocols implemented. These protocols will allow The Homestead associates to provide exceptional service in a safe environment. All processes and procedures follow the guidelines set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and local and/or federal mandates. You can find a copy of their “Stay a Part of Safety” plan here.

To ensure a safe environment for all participants, please adhere to the following guidelines.

  • -- Participants are asked to bring their own face covering, as they will be required to wear it at all times except when eating or drinking.
  • -- Our meeting space will be set up to comfortably allow for 6-foot social distancing between all participants.
  • -- The best practice to prevent any illness is to wash your hands frequently using the proper technique: wet-lather-scrub-rinse-dry.
  • -- Use hand sanitizer when soap and water is not available.
  • -- Avoid touching your face, specifically your eyes, nose, and mouth, as this is how germs enter your body. Cough into your elbow, NOT your hand.
  • -- Stay home if you’re feeling sick.


Registration fee of $450 includes all sessions, breakfasts & lunches, networking receptions, late nights, and written materials. New members joining VADA will have their first year membership fee waived for 2021.  First membership bill will be sent January 2022.

Guest registration fee of $125 includes Wednesday and Thursday receptions and. For guest ticket information for Thursday's Awards lunch, please contact Amy Gilbody at agilbody@vada.org. 

Cancellations accepted until 9/25, minus a $25 processing fee.  No refunds after 9/25, but substitutions welcome anytime. Email Amy Gilbody at agilbody@vada.org for further information.

Business attire is recommended for the meeting. Business casual is appropriate for the Thursday reception.

Hotel Information

Use this reservation link to take advantage of the VADA-discounted rate of $180/night.  Book soon, as this rate is guaranteed until September 11 or the room block fills, whichever is first.

Fitness Challenge

Back again this year! Annual Meeting participants are invited to Join our VADA Fitness Challenge and compete for exciting prizes. 

Dine Arounds

Join your colleagues Wednesday night for a fun dinner after the Welcome Reception. Choose from restaurants within walking distance of the hotel for this fun “Dutch treat” event and enjoy networking with colleagues over dinner at your restaurant of choice. 

Optional Free Time Activities

Activity minimum must be met by September 12 to confirm the activity.  You can register for these events through VADA, but once the activity is confirmed after 9/9, the non-refundable activity fee will be charged to your onsite hotel bill.

Thursday, October 15 from 4:00 PM - 6:00




$45 PP

Waterfall Wellness Hike

$23 PP

Trail Ride (one hour)

$105 PP

Red Tail Racer Zipline

$35 PP

Mixology Class

$75 PP

Golf (9 holes)

$75 Cascades Course $50 Old Course 



Skeet Shooting (Wednesday 10/14 at 4:15 PM)


In addition to these VADA group activities, the resort offers many additional activities like the spa, serenity garden, game room, indoor and outdoor pools, fitness center and more.  Fees may apply.  Visit the Homestead webpage for additional information.


We have an excellent CLE program planned, which includes sessions on:

  • Legal Writing
  • Legislative Updates
  • Live Streaming Testimony
  • Motions Craving Oyer
  • Subpoenaing Substance Abuse/Mental Health Records
  • Effective Oral Advocacy
  • The Innosence of Earl Washington
  • Empathy, Sympathy & Kindnesss from a Defense Perspective
  • Ethics and Professionalism in the Heat of Battle
  • Substantive Litigation Sections Breakouts

See the complete agenda here: Printable PDF Agenda


Thank you to our sponsors,



For sponsorship information, please contact Amy Gilbody at agilbody@vada.org.

Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys

1915 Huguenot Road, Ste 301

Richmond, VA, 23235


Executive Director: Sherma Mather

Director of Meetings: Amy Gilbody

Journal of Civil Litigation Managing Editor: Molly Terry

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