The U.S. Navy hosted a ceremony September 20 to mark the retirement of Captain James A. Backstrom Jr., of the Judge Advocate General’s Corps, after 30 years of service.

Among his many positions throughout his career, Backstrom served as commanding officer of Naval Reserve NAVJAG 106, supporting management of the JAG Corps, and commanding officer of Civil Law Support Activity 206, including acting as deputy assistant judge advocate general for general litigation.

Most recently, he served in the National Security Litigation Division in the Office of the Judge Advocate General.

A former U.S. Department of Justice prosecutor, in civilian life, Backstrom defends people and organizations in federal investigations and at trial.


Stephanie K. Rawitt joined Clark Hill Thorp Reed‘s Philadelphia office as senior counsel in the labor and employment practice group.

She provides services and advice to employers on employment and labor matters.

Rawitt represents a variety of clients including hospitals, public entities, nonprofit organizations, private businesses, colleges, universities and corporations.

She works with human resources departments to create, manage and maintain up-to-date employment policies and procedures to ensure that their companies are in compliance with federal, state and local laws.


The Matthew J. Ryan Law and Public Policy Forum is scheduled to present a workshop focused on combating the commercial sexual exploitation of women and children — human trafficking — in Pennsylvania.

Victim advocates, public defenders, prosecutors, law enforcement officers and academics will assess Pennsylvania’s current approach to CSE, consider what has worked in other states and create a plan for the future.

The forum is part of a statewide collaboration between Pennsylvania law schools and the Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence to mark the 20th anniversary of the Violence Against Women Act.

The forum is set from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. October 18 in Room 101 of Villanova University School of Law, 299 N. Spring Mill Road, Villanova, Pa.

To register, visit ryan2013.eventbrite.com.

ELected and Appointed

Kenneth R. Myers, of counsel with High Swartz, was elected to the board of directors of Common Cause of Pennsylvania.

Myers concentrates his practice in real estate, administrative, environmental and public utility law.

Nevena Simidjiyska, an attorney in the Philadelphia office of Fox Rothschild, was appointed to the steering committee of the American Bar Association‘s international trade committee.

In this role, she will be in charge of the committee’s policy initiatives, including those relating to amendments to customs legislation, free-trade agreements and Trans-Pacific partnerships.

At Fox Rothschild, Simidjiyska represents both domestic and international clients in import and export control matters.

She handles issues relating to customs classification requirements; develops and updates internal compliance policies and procedures; and advises on export licensing and other export controls.


The Legal is looking for online-only contributing writers to regularly produce columns focusing on a specific legal practice area for the website.

The columns can be written on a monthly, bimonthly or quarterly basis and should be around 1,000 words.

Potential practice areas include, but are not limited to: energy law, social media, cyberlaw, liquor law, intellectual property, law firm management, ethics and family law.

Examples of such articles can be found under the “Columns” section on The Legal‘s website at www.thelegalintelligencer.com.

Contact Jessica Burghaus at jburghaus@alm.com or Ben Seal at bseal@alm.com for more information.