While attending the Widener University School of Law in the early 1990s, Ken taught himself computer animation as a hobby. It was that hobby, combined with his law degree and a degree in economics from the University of Mary Washington that helped launch his career of entrepreneurship.
In 1995, he founded his first company, A2L Consulting, where he serves as its President/CEO. A2L provides trial support services to all of the nation’s top law firms and their clients around the world. Often called upon when the dollars at stake are high, A2L’s services include helping to predict how judges and juries will react to a case, the creation of sophisticated visual evidence used to persuade judges and juries, and the deployment and use of state-of-the-art technology in the courtroom.
Bestselling business author Dan Pink highlighted A2L in his book, A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule the Future, and Ken has been quoted by many news outlets including the Wall Street Journal, Inc., NBC News, Wired, the Washington Post, and the BBC.
Recently, the readers of LegalTimes voted A2L "best jury consultants" and "best trial consultants," and readers of the National Law Journal voted A2L "Best Demonstrative Evidence provider" in the country. Many other publications have held similar votes and ranked A2L at the top of a key category. The American Bar Association named A2L’s blog, where Ken and his colleagues publish weekly, one of the top 100 blogs in the legal industry and one of the top 10 litigation blogs.
In 2013, Virginia’s Governor appointed Ken to a four-year term on the University of Mary Washington’s Board of Visitors. He has also served on the Dean’s National Advisory Board of Widener University School of Law and a variety of local and business boards and advisory groups.
In spite of an interesting and varied career, Ken still lists his top passion and proudest accomplishment as “father of triplet girls born in 2008.”
J.D., Delaware Law School, 1995
B.A., Economics, University of Mary Washington, 1992
John joined A2L Consulting after trying more than 45 jury trials as lead counsel. Throughout these cases and in his role training younger lawyers in the art of trial advocacy, John has paid particular attention to building effective narratives and persuasive trial presentations. He now shares that experience with A2L's clients as A2L's Managing Director, Litigation Consulting & General Counsel.
Most recently, John was a partner in Goodwin Procter’s Washington, D.C. office (from 2004-2018), and a partner at Shea & Gardner (from 2000- 2004) before the firms’ merger. During his tenure at Goodwin, John was named a Washington, D.C. Superlawyer 7 times (2007, 2013-2018).
John served more than six years as an Assistant United States Attorney for the District of Columbia, where he was responsible for criminal prosecutions in both federal and local District of Columbia courts. During his tenure as a prosecutor, he specialized, among other things, in complex cases involving public corruption and government fraud. He has structured and overseen long-term investigations leading to successful prosecutions involving mail, wire and bank fraud, money laundering, tax offenses, bribery, false statements, obstruction of justice, tampering with evidence, and conspiracy. He has also investigated and successfully tried several homicide cases.
In private practice, John has represented clients in connection with allegations of criminal misconduct involving mail, wire, and securities fraud, conspiracy, tax fraud and evasion, money laundering, economic sanctions, export controls, bribery, kickbacks, gratuities, and espionage, among other things. He has led domestic and cross-border investigations on behalf of major corporations and represented individuals, including senior U.S. and foreign government officials, in government investigations. In addition to criminal trials as a prosecutor and defense lawyer, John has had an active civil litigation practice, representing leading corporations, institutions, and individuals in a wide variety of legal disputes, including insurance, securities regulation, toxic torts, real estate, employment, discrimination, civil rights, shipping, and contracts.
John graduated with honors from both Boston University in 1986 and Cornell Law School in 1989, where he was a Note Editor on the Cornell Law Review. He clerked for Judge Joseph L. Tauro in the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts and for Judge Robert Boochever in the Ninth Circuit.
John has appeared on CBS’s “60 Minutes” weekly news program and a documentary aired on the Discovery Channel in connection with his representation of a client wrongly accused of being “the most damaging spy in U.S. history.” He has appeared on other U.S. news outlets, including, among others, NBC News, the New York Times and the Washington Post. In addition, John has appeared as a commentator on Swiss television in connection with the Justice Department prosecution of Swiss banking giant, Credit Suisse.
Cornell Law School, 1989
Boston University, 1986
Dr. Laurie Kuslansky, expert jury consultant, brings new eyes and insights to veteran litigators. Dr. Kuslansky specializes in jury perspectives, jury selection, identifying vibrant case themes, and instilling durable skills that yield real confidence in witnesses. Laurie brings an authentic commitment to solving client problems and overcoming the most challenging case issues. She won’t stop thinking about those problems and issues until she figures them out, and she always does.
With a doctorate in Cognitive Psychology, having taught on the college and graduate levels, guest lecturing at Columbia Law School, and having supported thousands of cases, Laurie has a quick sense of the likely gaps in comprehension, persuasion and credibility in case presentations and the know-how to “teach” the trier(s) of fact effectively. Working closely with in-house capabilities, and able to bring together the best in breed across disciplines as needed, Laurie zealously supports her treasured clients and knows how to work within a budget. Thanks to 32 years of experience supporting litigation, Laurie can ramp up quickly and offer valuable information. Whether through hourly consulting or expertly designed and implemented social science research, Dr. Kuslansky can anticipate and evaluate juror reactions to case facts, witnesses and trial strategies. She has a knack for getting to the bottom line, a unique instinct for what will backfire, and can often arm trial teams through hourly consulting alone, or with quantitative and qualitative data when focus groups and mock trials are desired.
Dr. Kuslansky specializes in the full range of jury research; she has consulted on cases involving insurance coverage; breach of contract and fraud; securities fraud; employment and labor relations; intellectual property; product liability; personal injury; aviation; medical, legal, accounting, and auditing malpractice; toxic tort and environmental matters; criminal conspiracy; murder; and white-collar crimes. In addition to testifying on high-profile cases as an expert witness, Dr. Kuslansky has consulted on over 1,000 civil and criminal jury trials nationwide. Given her 32 years of trial experience and expertise, Dr. Kuslansky is often invited to speak to litigators and experts, both nationally and internationally. She was on the editorial board of the American Lawyer – In The Jury Box, and has provided CLEs to the New York State Bar Association, the New York City Bar Association, The Puerto Rican Bar Association, PLI, DRI and many other professional legal organizations and firms. Dr. Kuslansky also gives back to the community and provides pro bono services as well as serves as a volunteer member of the NYCLA (New York County Lawyers’ Association) Task Force for Unemployed and Transitioning Lawyers.
Dr. Kuslansky holds a Ph.D. in cognitive psychology and an M.A. in linguistics from Columbia University, where she specialized in the development of effective communication skills.
Managing Director, Business Development
Robyn Leenaerts brings over 20 years of business development, branding, and marketing experience to her position at A2L. A highly strategic and creative business person, Robyn combines innovative thinking with brand savvy to create customer experiences that are second to none.
In her career, she's built and run branding teams, she's lead outreach of a major non-profit, she's built sales organizations of startup companies, and she's even developed and run a major music festival.
At A2L, Robyn manages a team of sales and marketing professionals committed to connecting top trial teams with A2L's award winning jury consultants, litigation graphics consultants, and trial technology consultants.
Wendy Kessell, CPA, CGFM, is a serial entrepreneur that knows small business. Kessell graduated with honors from the University of Maryland, University College with a B.S. in Accounting with an Emphasis in Business and Management while working full-time. She passed the Certified Public Accountant exam in 1991 (at first sitting) and became a Certified Government Financial Manager in 2007. Kessell ran her own successful CPA firm from 1999-2009; she sold it to focus on her investment in Altum.
Kessell and her two partners grew Altum, Inc. (grants management) from $300K to $14MM (2014) in revenue and along with her four partners, she grew Mobomo, LLC (cloud, mobile applications and websites) from $700K to a projected $14MM (2016) in revenue. Both companies have been on the Inc 5000 numerous times and have won countless industry awards. Kessell and her five partners are shareholders of Dimora Enterprises, LLC, a small commercial real estate entity.
A year ago, Kessell stepped back from her other ventures to launch CFO ReStart, LLC so she could pursue her passion to help other small and medium sized business owners achieve their financial goals. CFO ReStart, LLC is a CFO service company jumpstarting companies with revenues of $2MM to $25MM to maximum shareholder value and profit. This is accomplished by simplifying accounting operations, instituting best practices and process, incorporating strategy, focus and budgets, and solving complex financial and accounting challenges. The company’s founding principle is to restructure or outsource financial operations to give clients more time to focus on the much more important contribution they make to the world in the product or service they bring to the marketplace. CFO ReStart also helps businesses owners to incorporate strategy and budget to their financials as a way to build growth opportunities and increase shareholder earnings and profits.
Kessell has been recognized as a seasoned professional and been the recipient of many awards including, in 2015, a coveted Executive Management Award; this program recognizes the leadership and accomplishments of the region’s management all-stars — CFOs, CIOs/CTOs and COOs that uphold the highest ethics, lead collaboratively and creatively, and enhance and support the organization’s mission. Kessell was also recognized in 2010, as a winner of SmartCEO Magazine’s Smart CFO Award. Her fellow finalists selected her as the “Valedictorian” Smart CFO, top of her class.
In her free time, Kessell volunteers for the Warriors Ethos and Mentor Method and was the Executive in Charge of Altum’s Manna Food Backpack Program feeding 60 local kids on the weekends for more than five years. She is also single mom to three daughters; they love to travel and experience other cultures around the world.
Columbia University, Doctorate in Cognitive Psychology
Columbia University, M.A. in Linguistics
Volunteer, NYCLA (New York County Lawyers’ Association) Task Force for Unemployed and Transitioning Lawyers
"We made the right decision when we hired you. You are absolutely the best."
"I am very happy with the quality of A2L's work and happy with the graphics. One of the best jury consultants I have worked with."
"If you are in need of highly qualified, creative, diligent and personable providers of trial graphics, I recommend A2L. They were wonderfully helpful and supportive of our team and demonstrated, repeatedly, real skill in creating graphic and demonstrative exhibits that captured the essence of our presentation. Just as important, they did this under extreme time and quality pressure and, always, with a smile."
"Your team did a very nice job on the simulation in the engine case and I will certainly keep and your team in mind for future litigation support needs."
"You guys were great, I’ll definitely use you again."