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  • Bio

William J. Lee

Doctor of Law and Scientific Director

William J. Lee leads Kershaw Talley Barlow’s scientific practice group and supports its nationally recognized mass tort and class action practices. William works at the intersection of epidemiology, law, and policy, collaborating with leading experts to develop scientific and medical evidence, and performing epidemiological and biostatistical analyses as an expert himself, in support of federal and state trial, appellate, and Supreme Court litigations. William routinely serves on court-appointed scientific leadership representing hundreds of thousands of patients in national pharmaceutical and medical device complex litigations including Suboxone (Buprenorphine/Naloxone) Film Products Liability Litigation (MDL No. 3092), In re: Oral Phenylephrine Marketing and Sales Practices Litigation (MDL No. 3089), Acetaminophen – ASD/ADHD Products Liability Litigation (MDL No. 3043), Gilead Tenofovir Cases (JCCP No. 5043), and Essure Product Cases (JCCP No. 4887). In each litigation, William has played an integral role in shaping leadership's pre-trial and trial strategies regarding causation, liability, and notice.

In recent years, William has employed well-controlled, frequentist and Bayesian disproportionality methods to analyze post-market adverse events, and developed new lines of causation evidence, that many courts have not previously considered. For his significant and sustained contributions to the field of epidemiology and its application to the law, William has been elected to the prestigious American College of Epidemiology, in which he serves on its Ethics and Policy Committee and its Foundation Board of Directors. William has also been elected to the International Epidemiological Association and named a Leading American Scientist by Marquis Who’s Who in America, which has published biographies of leading professionals since 1898. In 2024, William was recognized among the nation's 40 Under 40 Leaders in Health by the National Minority Quality Forum, the nation's leading health equity research, education, and advocacy organization, for utilizing the legal system to reduce patient risk and advance health equity among minoritized and underserved populations. In the same year, William was also recognized as one of the world's Health Innovators to Watch by the Boston Congress of Public Health for his innovative applications of epidemiology in law and policy to improve the health and well-being of underserved communities and populations.

After nearly a decade working in biomedical research, clinical research, epidemiology, and biostatistics, William attended Emory University School of Law for his legal education where he graduated with honors near the top of his class and was inducted into the Phi Delta Phi International Legal Honor Society. Prior to law school, William received his Master of Science Secundi Honoris Academici in Chronic Disease Epidemiology from Yale University and his Bachelor of Science in Cell and Molecular Biology from Duke University. William has worked at a number of high-profile universities and federal scientific agencies including Vanderbilt University, Dartmouth College, the National Center for Patient Safety, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. William actively publishes his original research and maintains regular speaking engagements in the scientific and legal communities. This includes publishing a national, peer-reviewed study on critical quality of care outcomes from a novel patient safety intervention implemented across the Veterans Health Administration and presenting to the CDC Law and Science Advisory Group on biochemical and pharmacological challenges to regulating synthetic drugs.

In his spare time, William teaches English to schoolchildren in China and volunteers through his church and alumni networks to give back to the community. William currently serves as a Board Member and the Sacramento Chair of the Emory Alumni Association and is a member of the Duke Law Club of Northern California.


  • J.D. with Honors, Phi Delta Phi, Certificate in Transactional Law, Emory University
  • M.S. Secundi Honoris Academici in Chronic Disease Epidemiology, Yale University
  • B.S. in Cell and Molecular Biology, Minor in Chemistry, Duke University

Previous Affiliations

  • Public Health Law Program, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • National Center for Patient Safety, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
  • Survey Research Methods Group, The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice
  • Surgical Health Services Research Group, Vanderbilt University Medical Center

Professional Associations

  • Director, American College of Epidemiology Research and Education Foundation
  • Elected Member, Ethics and Policy Committee, American College of Epidemiology
  • Elected Member, International Epidemiological Association
  • 40 Under 40 Leader in Health, National Minority Quality Forum
  • Health Innovator to Watch, Boston Congress of Public Health
  • Leading American Scientist, Marquis Who’s Who in America
  • Sacramento Chair, Emory SF Bay Area Alumni Network