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Leadership

With experience in Am Law 100 firms and Fortune 500 corporations, the American Discovery management team has extensive experience in discovery practices. Our project teams are composed of attorneys with real-world litigation experience in the US district courts, US courts of appeals, US tax courts, US bankruptcy courts, and numerous state courts.

Management Team

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Michael Yeager, President

As a hands-on, operations-oriented financial executive, Michael has over 20 years of experience in various senior management and consulting roles covering a wide range of industries.

Michael is highly skilled in the design and implementation of financial and operating processes and controls. He has an exceptional ability to quickly identify key operational drivers, develop alternatives for performance improvement, and lead the change implementation process.

Michael is also a Partner of De Novo Perspectives, a consulting firm that provides a broad array of management services to companies ranging in size from startups to mature multinational corporations.

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Howard Hoffmann, Executive Director

As executive director, Howard Hoffmann works with the American Discovery team and clients to identify legal and business challenges and craft efficient, cost-effective solutions that deliver enhanced results.

Howard is a senior executive with over 35 years of financial, operational and general management experience in a wide range of industries. He has extensive experience in financial and operational performance improvement, acquisition integration, creditor and government negotiations, litigation management (single plaintiff, class action and government), tax law, leasing, trade financing, cash management and control, inventory management, accounting, production, distribution, IT, product and brand management, the development and implementation of growth strategies, and the fostering of high performing cultures, both domestically and internationally.

His industry experience includes healthcare, transportation, logistics, computer hardware and software products and services, legal, wireless communications, network infrastructure products and services, financial services, retail, consumer products (snack foods and personal-care products), fresh and processed meats, apparel, wholesale beverages, and steel.

Howard S. Hoffmann is the Managing Partner of De Novo Perspectives, a professional services firm that provides advisory and executive management services to its clients. He also serves as the Executive Director of Hickey Smith, a law firm dedicated to reducing the total cost of legal services for its clients while providing superior quality, service and actionable business insight.

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Antonella Commiato, Managing Director, IT and Chief Information Security Officer

As American Discovery’s Managing Director, IT and Chief Information Security Officer, Antonella is responsible for designing and implementing the firm’s IT solutions that promote operational efficiency, facilitate the production of high-quality work product and enable open communications. She has 23 years of related experience across a broad range of industries that include marketing, social expression, transportation and logistics.

Antonella is a take-charge leader in defining IT strategic alignment with enterprise goals. She is PMP-certified and has a proven track record in guiding critical program development and delivery, optimizing processes, managing budgets, building high- performance teams, and implementing strong and effective procedures for change management and communication.

Antonella is also Partner and Chief Information Security Officer of De Novo Perspectives, a consulting firm that provides a broad array of management services to companies ranging in size from startups to mature multinational corporations.

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Mark Snyder, Director, Project Management & Quality Control

Mark brings more than 20 years of legal experience primarily with large law firms prior to joining AD. Over the last eight years with AD, he has designed and implemented a variety of innovative processes that have reduced overall project risks, improved quality outcomes, and reduced the costs associated with document reviews and corporate legal projects. Under his supervision, AD has reviewed more than 500 million documents and counting.

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Foster Gibbons, Client Management and Senior Advisory Counsel

As Client Management and Senior Advisory Counsel, Foster works closely with law firms, corporate legal departments, and compliance and records management professionals in designing, providing, and overseeing efficient and effective eDiscovery and related legal and business services, including early case assessment and technology-assisted document review workflows, contract management, compliance monitoring, and information governance.

Foster is recognized as having mastered an understanding of the design and provision of high-level consultancy services for eDiscovery consumers, in evaluating plans for discovery and litigation support projects, in setting and monitoring efficient budgets for these projects, and in working with partners to continuously improve established project processes, documentation and workflow.

An attorney with significant background experience as a litigator, Foster has served both as a consumer and manager of legal services as in-house counsel at Pfizer, and as a managing lead in providing legal services at national and global LPOs and eDiscovery vendors. At Pfizer, Foster was responsible for coordinating litigation discovery efforts, developing a defensible scope and project plan for each discovery project, and advising Pfizer’s Litigation and Government Investigations and Compliance Departments on information governance policies, including electronic records retention and legal hold practices. He has also consulted on best practices in eDiscovery and document review for U.S. and international organizations.

Ken Smiley

Ken Smiley, Senior Solutions Consultant and Client Manager

As Senior Solutions Consultant and Client Manager, Ken works with American Discovery clients to identify and deliver solutions to the ever-increasing challenges relating to information governance. Ken provides practical advice and assistance in matters such as large-scale discovery requests, compliance reviews, and contract and claims review and management. The end result is enhanced productivity, improved control, and bottom-line cost savings for law firms, corporations, and government entities.

Ken is a versatile technologist and attorney with extensive experience in e-discovery, business and technical systems development, the application of case law, and legal implications of complicated system integrations, data rights, and intellectual property considerations.

Serving in leadership roles for a variety of e-discovery and information governance solution providers for more than 10 years, Ken is well versed in sales, contract negotiations, market advisory services, client consulting, client support, project management, and legal services and has a wide range of industry knowledge spanning the financial, healthcare, manufacturing, and government sectors.

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Denneen Ford, Managing Director, HR

As American Discovery’s Managing Director, Human Resources, Denneen is responsible for setting the HR strategic agenda that supports the organization’s cultural, growth and operational objectives. She is a senior executive with over 25 years of human resource, operational and management experience in a wide range of industries.

She has extensive experience in the area of design and implementation of best practice human capital development processes and global system implementations, including competency based assessment, strategic and high volume talent infusion, performance management system design, succession planning, and executive development. Her considerable M&A experience has enabled her to lead many transformational business processes and major change agendas aimed at enhancing operational excellence, transforming cultures, and building first in class HR Functions.

Denneen is also a Managing Director of De Novo Perspectives, a consulting firm that provides a broad array of management services to companies ranging in size from startups to mature multinational corporations.

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Katie Allen, Managing Director, Marketing

As American Discovery’s Managing Director, Marketing, Katie is responsible for designing and implementing the organization’s marketing and communication strategy to promote collaboration and thought leadership. She has over 19 years of marketing and communications leadership experience across a broad range of disciplines including branding, content marketing, public relations, events and exhibits, and corporate communications in a variety of industries.

Katie is a results-oriented leader that helps hi-tech and service companies fuel sales pipelines and enhance growth. Katie also has a proven track record in developing and executing in-depth communication plans that inform and engage employees, clients, and prospects.

Katie is a Managing Director of De Novo Perspectives, a consulting firm that provides a broad array of management services to companies ranging in size from startups to mature multinational corporations.

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Meredith Bruorton, Managing Director, Administration

As American Discovery’s Managing Director, Administration, Meredith coordinates the internal operations of the firm’s various departments including finance, IT, human resources and facilities management. Meredith is also occasionally tasked with handling special projects for the firm’s clients. Her approach to these diverse responsibilities is always focused on efficiency, consistency and accuracy.

Meredith has nearly 30 years of operating and management experience working with senior management teams in a variety of corporate settings. Her organizational skills, attention to detail and ability to multi-task are key elements that make her a valuable asset of the firm.

Meredith is also Director of Administration of De Novo Perspectives, a consulting firm that provides a broad array of management services to companies ranging in size from startups to mature multinational corporations.

Advisory Board

David M. Hickey

David Hickey is the Managing Partner of Hickey Smith LLP.

Hickey Smith is a law firm dedicated to reducing the total cost of legal services for its clients while providing superior quality, service and actionable business insight. As Hickey Smith’s Managing Partner, David is responsible for monitoring and evaluating the design and implementation of the Firm’s established processes, procedures, protocols, and workflows to drive continuous Firm improvement. David has leveraged technology to design and implement process-based solutions to create efficiencies and reduce both systematic and asystematic risks.

David has successfully managed complex legal matters in the US, South East Asia, South Asia and the UK for 25 years. Prior to joining Hickey Smith, David was an equity partner with Winston & Strawn, LLP, a litigator with Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP, a prosecutor with the United States Air Force and a Special Assistant United States Attorney. He has first chair trial experience and has advised numerous clients in connection with “bet the company” and other crisis- related situations. He has represented clients across a variety of industries.

David earned a Bachelors of Science degree in finance and economics from Georgetown University and a JD from the Stanford Law School.

Roderico V. Puno

Eric Puno is a Senior Partner with Puno & Puno, one of the leading full-service law firms in the Philippines.

Eric has extensive legal experience in both the US and throughout Asia. Mr. Puno has served as outside co-counsel for Skadden Arps, White and Case, Latham and Watkins, Paul Hastings, and other English and American law firms for almost 20 years. He was admitted as a partner at the Puno & Puno law firm in 1995, where his areas of practice included general corporate law, project finance, energy, and infrastructure. His experience also includes international banking, real estate, utilities regulation, and securities matters. Eric has advised on some of the largest corporate deals in Philippines history.

From 2001 to 2003, Eric served as Vice President-Legal for First Philippine Holdings Corporation, a conglomerate engaged in power generation. He is an authority on Philippine energy laws and has had extensive experience acting as counsel for American and Japanese corporations doing business in the Philippines. He also has had extensive involvement in international arbitration proceedings under ICC and UNCITRAL rules. Eric currently serves on the boards of several multi-national corporations with holdings in the Philippines. He has been cited as a leading business law attorney in the Philippines by UK and Asian publications such as International Financial Law Review, Chambers and Partners, Asia Pacific’s Legal 500, and Asia Law and Business. Eric was selected as one of the Leading Lawyers in the field of Capital Markets & Corporate Finance by Asia Law. He has co-authored an article, “Getting the Deal Through,” for Project Finance, which featured articles written by lawyers of the top law firms in 38 jurisdictions.

Eric earned his Bachelor of Laws from the Ateneo de Manila University College of Law in 1989 and his B.A. from Ateneo de Manila University in 1985. He is admitted to the Integrated Bar of the Philippines.