Today I will have the pleasure of joining my former student Michael Avenatti for an event moderated by Dean Blake D. Morant. The event at 3-4 pm is open to the public (though pre-registration guarantees a spot) at the Jack Morton theater at 805 21st Street, NW, Washington, DC 20052. The event is being co-sponsored by the law school and the School of Media & Public Affairs.
Avenatti came to GW after earning his B.A. in political science from the University of Pennsylvania. He was in my torts class as a first-year law student and then worked with me on national security issues, including constitutional issues relating to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). He graduated Order of the Coif.
Avenatti later established the Michael J. Avenatti Award for Excellence in Pre-Trial and Trial Advocacy, an annual award given to a member of the graduating Juris Doctor class who demonstrates excellence in pre-trial and trial advocacy.
He later joined Greene Broillet & Wheeler, and continued high-profile cases with Paris Hilton. He was counsel in a prior case involving Donald Trump involving the show The Apprentice as well as a $40 million embezzlement lawsuit involving KPMG. He then founded in 2007 Eagan Avenatti, LLP with offices in Newport Beach, Los Angeles and San Francisco, California. He won a $454 million verdict after a jury trial in Federal Court in Los Angeles in a fraud case against Kimberly-Clark and Halyard Health, as well as a $80.5 million class-action settlement against Service Corporation International. He also secured a $41 million jury verdict against KPMG, and a $39 million malicious prosecution settlement. In 2015, Avenatti secured a verdict against the National Football League following a two-week jury trial in Federal District Court in Dallas, Texas after cross-examining Jerry Jones at trial.
Despite his legendary career, his most famous case began in March 2018 when Avenatti filed a lawsuit on behalf of adult film actress Stormy Daniels seeking to invalidate a 2016 “hush” agreement regarding an alleged affair with Donald Trump in 2008.
There will be an opportunity for the audience to ask questions.