Gary R. Cunningham

Gary Cunningham has more than 35 years of experience in product liability and personal injury litigation. He has successfully defended some of the nation’s top companies in more than 100 jury trials cases involving personal injury, product liability wrongful death, and trucking and automobile liability. He has considerable experience in the automobile component manufacturing industry.

Mr. Cunningham is a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, one of the premier legal associations in America and composed of the best of the trial bar from the United States, Canada and England.

Recent experience includes:

  • Successfully defended a coal-fired power plant permit that began in 2001-2002. The case went to the opinion of the Supreme Court.
  • Successfully settled a case involving a seat-back failure with alleged paraplegia.
  • Received summary judgment for a table saw manufacturer in a personal injury products liability case. Challenged one of the plaintiff’s experts under a Daubert motion. Following the hearing, the court found the expert unreliable and issued the summary judgment.
  • Received a total defense verdict in a jury trial involving a heat exchanger for an ethanol plant. Plaintiff claimed damages were due to the malfunctioning heat exchanger. Proved the exchanger had been misinstalled and had been damaged by fire.

Mr. Cunningham co-founded Cunningham, Harpool & Cordonnier, L.L.C., which merged with Lathrop Gage in 2002.

Court Memberships

  • Missouri


  • Named Client Service MVP by BTI Consulting Group, 2012
  • Named Client Service All-Star by BTI Consulting Group, 2011 
  • Selected as 2010 Product Liability Lawyer of the Year for Springfield, Missouri by The Best Lawyers in America®
  • Selected among The Best Lawyers in America®, 2005-2016
  • Selected as “Leading Lawyer” by Chambers USA, 2007-2012
  • Selected for Missouri/Kansas Super Lawyers, 2006-2015
  • Selected for Best Attorneys Network Directory, 2005
  • Terex Corporation “Outstanding Product Liability Counsel Award” in recognition of his 2003 achievements in representing Terex at the Terex Counsel Conference, February 2004
  • Fellow, American College of Trial Lawyers
  • Martindale-Hubbell® “AV” Rating
  • Order of the Coif
  • Former Faculty Member, Missouri Judicial College
  • Appointed Member, Missouri Supreme Court Approved Jury Instruction (M.A.I.) Committee - Civil Member
  • Missouri Law Review, 1974-1975

Professional Affiliations

  • Springfield Metropolitan Bar Association, President, 2000
  • Member, Board of Governors, 1997-1980; 1993-1996
  • The Missouri Bar
  • Products Liability Advisory Council


  • Author, Due Process - The Requirement of Notice in Probate Proceedings, 40 Missouri Law Review 552, 1975
  • Author, Collateral Estoppel: The Changing Role of the Rule of Mutuality, 41 Missouri Law Review 521
Photo of Gary R. Cunningham
  • Springfield

    910 East St. Louis Street
    Suite 100
    Springfield, MO 65806-2523
F: 417.886.9126


Charis Lippert


University of Missouri-Columbia School of Law, J.D., cum laude, 1975

Baylor University, B.A., cum laude, 1971