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Member News for April 2022


Kimball joins as associate attorney at Berg Lilly PC


Kasey Kimball joined Berg Lilly, PC as an associate attorney in January 2022. 

A Bozeman native, Kimball graduated from Montana State University with high honors in 2015 before moving to New York City where she enrolled in the Honors Program at New York Law School. While in law school, she authored a case comment published by the Law Review and served as the journal’s managing editor. Kimball graduated cum laude from New York Law School in 2018, receiving the Dean’s Award for Student Leadership and the Faculty Award for Outstanding Service to the Law Review. 

Following graduation, Kimball returned to Montana where she practiced with Browning, Kaleczyc, Berry & Hoven, P.C. prior to joining Berg Lilly.

Kimball is licensed to practice in Montana state and federal courts and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.  As part of the firm’s litigation and defense team, she will be serving clients in the areas of general litigation, insurance defense, and business and commercial transactions. Kasey has extensive experience in contract and tort litigation, coverage determinations, employment actions, and commercial disputes. She looks forward to continuing to build her practice in Bozeman and around the state.

Away from work, Kimball enjoys spending time with her family, staying active outdoors with her dog, reading a variety of literature, and cheering on Bobcat athletics. In addition, she fulfills her passion for humane and ethical treatment of animals by supporting the Heart of the Valley Animal Shelter and the Humane Society of the United States. Since moving back to Montana, Kasey has enjoyed giving back to the community by serving as a CAP Mentor in the Bozeman Public Schools through Thrive, and looks forward to continued volunteer involvement.


Talia returns to Church, Harris, Johnson & Williams in Helena


After an eight-year break for service with the Montana National Guard, Mike Talia hung up his fatigues and returned to Church, Harris, Johnson & Williams, P.C. as a shareholder in the Helena office.  

At the Montana National Guard, Talia’s practice focused on compliance, federal contracting, government relations, and defensive cybersecurity operations.  He was a founding content developer and instructor of the National Guard Bureau’s Cyber Law Course, teaching military lawyers nationwide about the legal aspects of public-private partnerships in incident response.  

Talia resumes a litigation practice focused on commercial, real property, trust, and estate matters, and he will support the firm’s growing personal injury practice.  He will also take Federal Acquisition Regulation-based contract litigation, government relations matters, and cybersecurity breach liability, planning, and incident response matters.  
He can be reached at 406-761-3000. 


VonLangen joins Bilstein, Monson & Small


Bilstein, Monson & Small in Billings has announced that John VonLangen has joined the firm as an associate attorney. 

VonLangen received a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from the State University of New York at Buffalo.  After graduation, he earned his JD, cum laude, from the University of Dayton School of Law.  

VonLangen has practiced law in Billings since December of 2010 as Senior Counsel for GE Capital US Holdings, Inc. handling a wide variety of legal matters including commercial contracts, secured transactions, real estate, business and corporate law matters, employment issues, licensing, data privacy, operations, internal investigations and regulatory and compliance matters.  Prior to joining GE Capital, in private practice he represented large and small lenders and borrowers in finance transactions including real estate based loans and asset based loans together with loan work-outs and restructures.  He also represented individuals, businesses, corporations, real estate developers, landlords, tenants, investors and agribusiness owners handling all of their business, commercial and real estate needs.  

VonLangen is licensed to practice law in Montana, Alaska and Florida.  
On a personal note, John is a father of 3 amazing kids.  He strives to live a healthy and active lifestyle and enjoys a wide variety of fitness related activities in his free time including running, weightlifting, hiking, biking, triathlons, 10K’s, half marathons, marathons, adventure races, snowboarding, kayaking and paddle boarding, to name a few. 

Great Falls firm announces Mitcham as a new partner


Gregg Smith, Steph Oblander, and Matt Meade are extremely pleased to announce that Kaitlyn Mitcham (formerly, Kaitlyn McArthur) has become a shareholder in our firm, which will hereafter be known as Smith Oblander Meade & Mitcham, PC.

Mitcham graduated from the University of Montana School of Law in 2017. She has practiced with the firm since that time, engaging in the general practice of law with an emphasis in personal injury litigation.

The partners say it is especially gratifying to them because Mitcham began her career with the firm as an undergraduate at the University of Providence. “We knew even then she would be a top-notch attorney and if you have ever practiced with or against Kaitlyn, you know we were right!”

In addition to helping people as a lawyer, Kaitlyn also volunteers for Big Brothers Big Sisters, and was the Secretary of the Cascade County Bar Association for several years.


Carestia inducted into national mediation organization

Pax Dispute Resolution Services, PLLC is pleased to announced that Brandy Carestia has been inducted into the National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals (NADN). 

With over two decades of litigation and alternative dispute resolution experience, Carestia specializes in the mediation and arbitration of a broad range of civil and commercial disputes.  She litigated professional liability, product liability, premises liability, subrogation, and appellate cases in the San Francisco office of Hinshaw & Culbertson for several years before returning to her home state of Montana, where she further expanded her areas of expertise through a diverse law practice.  The reason, ingenuity, and tenacity she brings to the mediation process has led to the successful resolution of countless claims since 2003.  Brandy also serves as an arbitrator of various civil claims, including class action claims across the United States against several major auto manufacturers.  She founded Pax Dispute Resolution Services, PLLC to further expand innovative dispute resolution offerings, including the utilization of specifically tailored systems to refine online negotiation, mediation, neutral evaluation, and arbitration.

The National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals is a professional association whose membership consists of ADR professionals distinguished by their hands-on experience in the field of civil and commercial conflict resolution. Membership is by invitation only and all Academy members have been thoroughly reviewed and found to meet stringent practice criteria. Members are amongst the most in-demand neutrals in their respective states, as selected by their peers and approved by local litigators.

“We’re delighted to recognize Brandy Carestia to the Academy’s Montana Chapter in recognition of Excellence in her mediation practice,” commented Darren Lee, Executive Director of NADN.



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