Brian Steller Named President of Brennan Vanderbilt Inn of Court

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Connell Foley LLP is proud to announce that partner Brian Steller, Chair of Connell Foley’s Insurance Defense Group, has been named President of the prestigious Brennan Vanderbilt Inn of Court.

Inspired by the traditional English Inns of Court, the American Inns of Court were conceived in the late 1970s through the efforts of Chief Justice of the United States Warren Burger. According to the AIC website, the Inns are “an association of lawyers, judges and other legal professionals from all levels and backgrounds who share a passion for professional excellence. Through regular meetings, members are able to build and strengthen professional relationships; discuss fundamental concerns about professionalism and pressing legal issues of the day; share experiences and advice; exhort the utmost passion and dedication for the law; provide mentoring opportunities; and advance the highest levels of integrity, ethics and civility.”

The Brennan Inn of Court, formed in 1989, was the first Inn of Court in New Jersey and was named after William J. Brennan Jr., former New Jersey Supreme Court Justice and Justice on the United States Supreme Court. In 2007, the Brennan Inn merged with the Arthur T. Vanderbilt Inn, forming the Brennan Vanderbilt Inn of Court. The Inn seeks to promote legal excellence in civil litigation and the highest standards of professional practice.

Brian was an original member of the Brennan Inn as a Barrister beginning in 1989. He subsequently became a Master of the Inn and was on the executive committee before becoming the fourth President of the Inn. A highly experienced trial attorney, Brian focuses his practice on insurance defense and coverage, professional and product liability, and corporate liability matters. A Certified Civil Trial Attorney, he has tried to verdict well over 80 matters in New Jersey state and federal courts. Viewing the trial courtroom as his office, Brian has also successfully argued before the New Jersey Court of Appeals on more than 30 occasions and before the New Jersey Supreme Court on four occasions.

Connell Foley has long been intimately involved in the Inn and currently has 14 attorneys serving as Pupils, Barristers or Masters. Former Connell Foley Of Counsel, The Honorable Jack Bissell (retired), who was previously the Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey, also served as President of the Brennan Vanderbilt Inn for several years.

The Inn offers its Pupils the guidance of its Masters through monthly presentations on specific areas of practice, supplemented by the opportunity to practice their skills in smaller pupilage groups hosted by some of the pre-eminent firms in the area. Masters and Barristers enjoy the opportunity to discuss issues in the law in an informal setting with their peers as well as members of the Essex County Judiciary.  To learn more about the Brennan Vanderbilt Inn of Court, please visit their website at

The American Inn of Court movement has grown faster than any other organization of legal professionals. Today there are nearly 400 chartered American Inns of Court in 48 states, the District of Columbia, Guam, and Tokyo. There are more than 30,000 active members nationwide encompassing a wide cross-section of the legal community, including federal and state judges, lawyers, law professors and law students. For more information, please visit


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