Willing to Act as Local Counsel
The Axelrod Firm is a four-attorney certified woman-owned law firm of litigators based in Philadelphia and Washington, DC. We advise and represent national and multinational companies in their employment, general and product liability, appellate, commercial, and international litigation matters, and we help parties resolve their disputes through Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR).
The partners in the Firm, Sheryl L. Axelrod and Lisa J. Savitt, both came from Blank Rome LLP, one of the 100 largest law firms in the country. The firm attorneys in our Philadelphia office (Sheryl Axelrod, Vanessa Snyder, and Leah DiMatteo) are licensed to practice law in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, and regularly do so. Ms. Savitt is licensed to practice in Washington, DC, New York, and Pennsylvania, and is Qualified as a Solicitor in England and Wales (although she does not currently practice as a Solicitor in England or Wales.) Ms. Savitt handles domestic and international litigation.
- Sheryl L. Axelrod
Ms. Axelrod, who is licensed to practice law in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, handles in those states employment, general and product liability, appellate, and commercial litigation matters, and serves as a Judge Pro Tempore / Settlement Master. Her employment defense work is so distinguished, she has been selected a Top Rated Lawyer in Labor & Employment by American Lawyer Media and Martindale-Hubbell™.
Ms. Axelrod’s broad-based litigation skills are such that she has been accepted into membership in Litigation Counsel of America, a peer selected honorary society of top trial lawyers. Vigorously vetted for skills, expertise, and service, less than one-half of one percent of American lawyers are accepted into membership in LCA’s by-invitation-only membership. Her David versus Goliath complete trial victory on behalf of her client-Defendant, Carmelo Gaudite, in the matter styled Visiting Nurse Group, Inc. vs. Gaudite, PCCP Docket No. 110601804 (Hon. Albert W. Sheppard, Jr., Jul. 15, 2009), was published in “Pennsylvania Jury Verdict Review and Analysis,” which covers the most significant verdicts in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
She is also among the few women lawyers to have been recognized by her fellow attorneys as one of the Top 100 Super Lawyers in Pennsylvania. Judges have recognized her work as well. Ms. Axelrod is among the less than 125 lawyers in Pennsylvania who have been appointed by the judges of the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas Commerce Court to serve as a Judge Pro Tempore / Settlement Master in commercial litigation matters.
Ms. Axelrod has won many cases on her written submissions without having to go to trial. Her writing is so strong, two of her briefs have been published. The Superior Court of Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania’s primary intermediate appellate court, chose her to appear on television to explain Pennsylvania appellate practice to the public prior to televised oral arguments. Two of her briefs in federal court cases have been published, including a brief she filed in the Supreme Court of the United States. She also presented the Continuing Legal Education course, “Successfully Navigating the Appeals Process,” with former Supreme Court of Pennsylvania Justice Sandra Schultz Newman.
Ms. Axelrod received her Bachelor’s degree Cum Laude in Economics from Brandeis University in 1990. She received her law degree from Temple University in 1993 after having won the 1992 Samuel J. Polsky Moot Court Competition. Upon graduation from Temple Law School, she clerked for the distinguished and award-winning jurist, The Honorable (now retired) Sandra Mazer Moss, before practicing law at Blank Rome.
Ms. Axelrod is a past President of the Temple Law Alumni Association (TLAA), the fourth female to hold the post in the organization’s nearly one hundred-year history. She is a member of the Forum of Executive Women, an organization of the most influential women in the Philadelphia region. She has been appointed by two separate Chancellors of the Philadelphia Bar Association to membership on the Investigative Division of the Commission on Judicial Selection and Retention. On the Investigative Division, Ms. Axelrod has led numerous teams vetting the individuals seeking to be elected judges in Pennsylvania. She has been profiled in Profiles in Diversity Journal; by the American Bar Association, which published a “Spotlight” piece about her; by Ms. JD in its “A Firm of Her Own” series; and by Law360, which featured her in its “Female Powerbrokers” series.
- Lisa J. Savitt
Axelrod Firm Partner, Lisa Savitt, handles international and domestic litigation and alternative dispute resolution, representing foreign and domestic companies in matters involving complex legal, regulatory, and technical issues.
Ms. Savitt is a frequent speaker and writer. She is a former Chair of the over 20,000 members of the American Bar Association (ABA) Section of International Law. Currently, Ms. Savitt serves as the ABA Section of International Law liaison to the ABA Commission on Women in the Profession. Ms. Savitt is also a member of the ABA Rule of Law Initiative Middle East and North Africa Council and the ABA Tort Insurance Practice Section.
Ms. Savitt clerked for Magistrate Shira Scheindlin of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York. She received her J.D. from New York Law School and her Bachelor of Arts in East Asian studies from George Washington University.
Prior to joining The Axelrod Firm as a partner, Ms. Savitt worked at not only Blank Rome, but another global law firm, Crowell & Moring.
- Vanessa M. Snyder
Axelrod Firm Senior Associate, Vanessa M. Snyder, has been practicing law for seven years. Ms. Snyder graduated cum laude from Temple University Beasley School of Law, where she was an editor for the Temple Law Review, President of the Student Bar Association, and recipient of the Captain Miller Knox Award for outstanding contribution to the law school community.
Like the partners with whom she works, Ms. Snyder is an outstanding researcher and writer. Upon graduation from Temple Law School, Ms. Snyder served on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court as a law clerk to the Honorable Justice Thomas G. Saylor, the Court’s current Chief Justice.
Ms. Snyder focuses her practice on representing entities in employment, appellate, personal injury, and commercial litigation matters in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
Ms. Snyder graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in English from Ursinus College, where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and received the Robin Blood Harris ’56 Memorial Prize, an annual award given to one woman in the graduating class who exemplifies excellence in leadership and scholarship.
- Leah A. DiMatteo
Axelrod Firm Associate, Leah A. DiMatteo, has been practicing law for three years. Prior to joining the Firm, she practiced at a Philadelphia-based law firm where she defended large companies in a broad array of litigation matters. Before that, she served as Law Clerk to the Honorable Michael A. Toto of the New Jersey Superior Court, Criminal Division, upon graduation from Rutgers Law School.
During law school, Ms. DiMatteo served as a staff editor for the Rutgers Journal of Law & Public Policy and was selected to participate in the 2013-2014 Eagleton Institute of Politics Graduate Fellowship Program. Ms. DiMatteo earned her Bachelor of Arts in English from Reed College.
1125 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107
215-461-1768 (direct dial)
Person of contact: Sheryl L. Axelrod
5028 Wisconsin Avenue, N.W., Suite 100, Washington, DC 20016
Person of contact: Lisa J. Savitt