Leanna B. Pittard
Practice Areas: Civil Litigation, Products Liability, Mass Torts
Education: Birmingham-Southern College (B.S., 1998); University of Alabama School of Law (J.D., 2003, cum laude)
Bar Admission: Alabama (2003), Mississippi (2004), Georgia (2009)
Memberships: State Bar of Georgia, State Bar of Alabama, State Bar of Mississippi
Leanna Pittard was drawn to the practice of law by the “opportunity to help people in a meaningful way.” As an attorney with Blasingame, Burch, Garrard & Ashley, P.C., she has seized that opportunity by focusing on the representation of clients who have been harmed by defective products. Leanna, along with a team of paralegals and legal assistants, is primarily responsible for gathering evidence and information from clients (known as “discovery”) and then producing that information to the opposing party. In the mass tort arena, this can mean handling large volumes of documents and information. It also means that Leanna spends a good deal of her day speaking to clients, which is her favorite part of her job as an attorney.
“My undergraduate degree is in psychology, so I clearly have an interest in listening to others and doing what I can to help them. I often have clients who really need to tell their story; they need the closure that comes from talking to a sympathetic ear who understands how they are suffering. The satisfying thing about practicing law is that not only can we listen to our clients’ stories, we can help them navigate the legal system and do what we can to make them whole again.”
“We are proud of the quality of our Sydney legal services,” Leanna says, “and we work hard to make sure our clients’ rights are protected.”
Leanna is a member of the 2017 Alabama State Bar Leadership Forum (Class 13). In law school, Leanna was Senior Articles Editor of Alabama Law Review, Order of Barristers and a member of the Bench and Bar Honorary. She received the Marvin L. Warner Scholarship; American College of Trial Lawyers Award (awarded by faculty to graduating senior who shows the greatest promise as a trial lawyer); International Academy of Trial Lawyers Student Advocacy Award ( awarded for overall ability in trial advocacy: high achievement in trial practice, evidence and pleading and procedure courses); George Peach Taylor Award (awarded to students selected as members of national trial teams); and she was a member of the Trial Advocacy Competition Team (ATLA Regional Championship (First Place, Spring 2003); ATLA National Championship (Top 10, Spring 2003); and NITA Tournament of Champions).
Since 2005, Leanna has made a personal commitment to engage in 40-60 hours of hands-on volunteer service each year, to the benefit of her community, her church and her children’s schools. To that end, she has worked as a tutor and mentor at three shelters for homeless and abused children; helped build a garden and host an egg hunt at a school for deaf and blind children; helped lead a minority Girl Scout troop; prepared income tax returns for low income families; helped host a book drive for children and schools in need; assisted with the planning, hosting, set-up and/or clean-up of a chili cook-off, a Cajun cook-off, a gala, a cocktail party, several holiday markets, a plant sale, a ballet, an art show, a food truck event, several silent auctions and many other community fundraisers. At church, Leanna has volunteered as a lector, an altar sodality officer, a Sunday school teacher, a Vacation Bible School volunteer and, recently, the co-founder of a new ministry for mothers of young children. At her children’s schools, she is a room parent and a member of the Parent-Teacher Organization. She was recently asked to become a member of the inaugural Alumni Board at her alma mater, Birmingham-Southern College.
Leanna was born in Mobile, Alabama and has worked remotely for the firm from Birmingham, Alabama since 2011. She and her husband share a passion for travel and their two little girls.
Leanna Bankester Pittard, The Ten Commandments of Teleworking, GEORGIA BAR JOURNAL, October 2016.
Joe E. Basenberg & S. Leanna Bankester, Notice Pleading in the Mass Tort Arena: What is Sufficient Notice? THE ALABAMA LAWYER, January 2007, at 74.
Caine O’Rear, III & S. Leanna Bankester, Hospital Management vs. Medical Staff Bylaws, IADC NEWSLETTER, September 2006, No. 3, at 1.
Leanna Bankester, The Implications of Barnes v. Norfolk Southern Railway Co. on Alabama’s Former Testimony Exception to the Hearsay Rule, 54 ALABAMA LAW REVIEW 583 (Winter 2003).
Louis D. Burgio, Rebecca Allen-Burge, David L. Roth, Michelle S. Bourgeois, Katinka Dijkstra, John Gerstle, Erik Jackson & Leanna Bankester, Come Talk With Me: Improving Communications Between Nursing Assistants and Nursing Home Residents During Care Routines, THE GERONTOLOGIST, Vol. 41, No. 4, 449-460 (2000).