Chris grew up in Calhoun County, Alabama. After earning his undergraduate degree from Vanderbilt University, he graduated cum laude from Harvard Law School. Before entering private practice, Chris clerked for Honorable William H. Pryor Jr. of the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. He then worked for a large Birmingham firm where he focused on complex and appellate litigation before joining Hare Wynn in early 2015.
Chris has litigated civil actions in thirteen states and represented both plaintiffs and defendants at the trial and appellate levels. He has briefed and argued multiple appeals in the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals and also regularly briefs key motions in trial courts around the country. While his practice focuses largely on class actions and mass tort actions, Chris has also worked on contract disputes, personal injury and wrongful death cases, commercial disputes, and a shareholder derivative suit.
Beginning in 2015, Chris worked with a team of lawyers from Hare Wynn and other firms in prosecuting claims on behalf of American corn farmers in the federal multi-district litigation proceeding In re Syngenta AG MIR162 Corn Litigation (MDL 2591). The team’s hard work paid off in June 2017 when, after a three-week trial, a Kansas jury awarded a $217.7 million verdict in favor of a class of over 7,000 Kansas corn farmers. This verdict was one of the ten largest jury verdicts in the United States in 2017. A few months later, in March 2018, a $1.51 billion global settlement benefiting American corn farmers was announced.
Chris has published articles in the Alabama Lawyer and Defense Counsel Journal dealing with issues that frequently arise in complex litigation and was a member of the Birmingham Bar Association’s 2016 Future Leaders Forum. He is also on the junior board of the Horizons School of Birmingham and has long been a strong supporter of the Alabama Future Farmers of America, having served as state FFA president and an alumni board member.
Outside of work, Chris enjoys spending time with his family, attending college football games, visiting friends, kayaking, and hiking.
Chris graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Vanderbilt University in 2007, where he received the Founder’s Medal for First Honors in the College of Arts and Science, the Alexander Heard Award for political science, and the Phi Beta Kappa Centennial Award.
Chris graduated cum laude from Harvard Law School in 2010, where he was awarded the Joseph H. Beale Prize for Conflict of Laws. In law school, he was a Dean’s Scholar and submissions editor for the Harvard Journal on Legislation.
Vanderbilt University, B.A. summa cum laude 2007
- Harvard Law School, J.D. cum laude 2010
Chris was part of the team of lawyers from Hare Wynn and other firms that represented corn farmers in litigation against Swiss agribusiness company Syngenta. In this multi-district litigation, Chris had the rare opportunity to serve on the trial team for a class action trial. After a three-week trial in 2017, a jury awarded $217.7 million to a class of over 7,000 Kansas corn farmers. In 2018 a $1.51 billion global settlement benefiting U.S. corn farmers was announced and submitted for court approval.
Chris helped litigate a shareholder derivative suit in the Delaware Court of Chancery that resulted in a $27 million settlement.
Chris litigated a multi-million dollar commercial dispute in related proceedings in Indiana and Tennessee, obtaining summary judgment in favor of his client.
Before he entered private practice, Chris clerked for Honorable William H. Pryor Jr. of the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.
- Alabama, 2010
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
- U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Alabama
- U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama
- U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Alabama
- Super Lawyers Rising Star (2017, 2018)
- B-Metro Top Lawyer (2017, 2018)
- Birmingham Bar Association’s Future Leaders Forum (2016)
- Birmingham Business Journal Rising Star (2018)
Syngenta GMO Corn
Scott Powell and three long-time colleagues are responsible for securing a $217.7 million dollar verdict on behalf of a class of more than 7,000 Kansas farmers. This ...More
Hare Wynn - in conjunction with Prickett, Jones & Elliott" P"A" of Wilmington" Delaware, and the Law Office of Frank DiPrima, P.A. of Morristown, New Jersey - filed ...More
Hare Wynn obtains a $2.86 billion judgment in compensatory damages against Richard M. Scrushy, the largest judgment against an individual in history in any American jurisdiction....More
GMO Rice Contamination
Hare Wynn represents more than 2,500 rice farmers in a historic $750 million settlement against Bayer Cropscience....More
Hare Wynn attorneys Scott Powell and Don McKenna represent one of four whistleblowers who brought False Claims Act suits against Novartis Pharmaceuticals for off-label marketing of Trileptal and paying illegal kickbacks to doctors in ass...More
U.S. ex rel. Johnson v. Shell, resulting in the company’s agreement to pay $410 million to resolve claims that it underpaid royalties due for oil produced on federal leases...More
In 2016, a team of Hare Wynn lawyers, including Scott Powell, John Haley, Bruce McKee, Ralph Cook, Brian Vines, and Tempe Smith secured a $310 million dollar settlement on behalf of a nationwide class of investors who had been defrauded...More
Syngenta GMO Corn
Scott Powell and three long-time colleagues are responsible for securing a $217.7 million dollar verdict on behalf of a class of more than 7,000 Kansas farmers. This was the first of a number of trials against Syngent....More
This was a shareholder derivative suit on behalf of HealthSouth Corporation. It alleged that UBS Securities knew about Richard Scrushy’s accounting frauds at HealthSouth, yet helped Scrushy to continue to make acquisitions and to c...More
Hare Wynn has obtained a $40.25 million jury verdict in Jefferson County, Alabama, in a case involving the death of Derric Rush, a Hoover resident killed on his way home from Wednesday night service at the church where he worked....More
Healthways Inc. will pay $40 million to end a lawsuit alleging the company’s Diabetes Treatment Center of America received kickbacks for paying doctors to send their patients to hospitals that are the unit’s clients....More
Death of a Police Officer
Hare Wynn lawyers, Matt Minner and Jamie Moncus, obtained a large punitive damages verdict from a Madison County jury in a case involving the death of a Huntsville Police Officer. The family of slain Officer, Daniel Golden, bro...More