Anthony N. Upshaw - McDermott Will & Emery


Anthony (Tony) Upshaw represents clients on product defense, class action, mass tort and complex civil litigation. Over the course of his career, Tony has tried more than 30 civil jury trials to verdict.

Tony is a Fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers. Often asked by clients and colleagues to “step into the breach” as trial counsel, he has been recognized nationally for his ability to relate to juries around the country. Tony frequently speaks at various legal association functions, particularly on issues surrounding voir dire, trial technique and diversity in the courtroom. He was a featured speaker at the Union Internationale des Avocats (UIA) Congress in Paris, France, presented the “Hot Topics in Product Liability Litigation” at the DRI Conference in New Orleans, and testified at the hearings for the American Bar Association (ABA) Presidential Diversity Summit in Boston.

In 2017, he was appointed as the Firm’s Global Head of Diversity & Inclusion. Tony is also a member of both the Firm’s Management and Executive Committees.


  • Serves as national trial counsel for Monsanto in polychlorinated biphenyls (PCB) litigation
  • Serves as a member of the McDermott team that serves as national coordinating counsel for Honeywell International’s Bendix asbestos docket
  • Served as lead counsel for R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company in the individual follow-up cases to the national flight attendant class action lawsuit against the tobacco industry

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  • The Best Lawyers in America, Product Liability Litigation – Defendants, 2023-2024
  • Legal 500 US, 2020-2024
  • Lawyers of Color, Power list, 2023
  • Chambers USA, Dispute Resolution: Product liability, 2021 and 2023-2024
  • Benchmark Litigation 2016-2020

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  • American Bar Association, former member of the Board of Governors, Racial and Ethnic Diversity Commission and Co-Chair of the Litigation Section Haiti Project
  • Florida Bar
  • Miami-Dade County Bar Association, chair of the 2015 Inclusion Initiative, and former president of the Young Lawyers Section
  • 11th Circuit Court Committee on Professionalism


University of Miami School of Law, JD, 1990
United States Coast Guard Academy, BS, 1982

District of Columbia

Courts / Agencies
US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
US District Court for the Middle District of Florida

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