Melanie R. Cheairs is a partner at the Houston, Texas ALFA firm of Lorance & Thompson P.C. She is an experienced trial lawyer, representing clients in the Hospitality, Retail and Transportation industries in matters resulting from Dram Shop, Premises and Product Liability claims and includes defending employment and commercial business disputes. Ms. Cheairs currently serves as the Chair of the ALFA International Hospitality Practice Group. She also serves on the Steering Committee of the Transportation and Women’s Initiative Practice Groups. She is a Member of the National Restaurant and Retail Defense Association, and the Claims Litigation Management Alliance, and the National Association of Professional Women. Ms. Cheairs is a frequent author and speaker on matters pertaining to the defense of the Hospitality and Trucking industry. Prior to attending law school, Ms. Cheairs received her B.A. from Texas A&M University, where she was an NCAA All-American Swimmer, and was chosen to the SWC All-Decade Team. She is the Immediate Past President of the Texas A&M Women Former Students’ Network. Ms. Cheairs received her J.D. from South Texas College of Law, and she is a Fellow with the Texas Bar Foundation.