As Chairman and Chief Executive Officer since 1998, W. Russell Welsh has guided the firm through strategic growth that has positioned Polsinelli as a leading business and litigation law firm. During his leadership, the firm increased from 90 attorneys to nearly 800. Polsinelli was named one of the fastest growing law firms in the U.S., and is among the 100 largest firms in the nation. Under Welsh, the firm’s geographic presence has grown to include offices in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Nashville, New York, Phoenix, San Francisco, St. Louis and Washington, D.C.
Mr. Welsh helped direct the expansion of the firm’s national practices in Financial Services, Health Care, Real Estate, Business Law, and Litigation. Polsinelli has been cited as the No. 3 Real Estate law firm in the Midwest. The firm's Health Care Law practice has grown to the fifth largest in the United States. The firm also has gained a national reputation for its work in Financial Services, Mergers & Acquisitions, Business Litigation, Intellectual Property, Life Sciences, Labor & Employment and Health Care law practices.
Mr. Welsh is formerly the chairman of the firm’s Litigation Department. He has extensive trial experience in the areas of products liability, business torts, trade secrets, commercial, and bankruptcy litigation. He has acted as national and regional counsel for a number of Fortune 100 corporations. He has tried cases in 17 states and appeared in court in 33 states and the District of Columbia. Welsh is listed in Chambers USA as a Leading Business Lawyer in General Commercial Litigation.
In addition to leading the firm, Mr. Welsh's civic involvement includes service on the boards of directors of the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, the United Way of Greater Kansas City and the Civic Council. He is past Chairman of the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce, of the Board of Starlight Theatre, and of the Board of Trustees of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, Mid-America Chapter. He also served on the boards of the Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association, the Kansas City Area Development Council, and the Community Blood Center. He is a former chairman of an American Bar Association Products Liability Sub Committee.
Before joining the firm, Mr. Welsh was a trial attorney for the U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Division, in Washington, D.C.