Alice Sacks Johnston is involved in representing clients across a wide range of complex litigation matters within various industries in state and federal courts. Her practice primarily focuses on product liability, defending products ranging from pharmaceuticals and medical devices to automobiles, trucks, buses and heavy equipment.  She also defends mass tort and toxic tort litigation, with an emphasis on the defense of friction products, acting variously as national, local and trial counsel. Additionally, she maintains a practice in restrictive covenant and non-compete actions, with a specific emphasis on technology and industries characterized by high product intensity.

With more than 30 years of experience in complex litigation, Alice has insight and perspective on the management of mass torts, strategic defense of products, and the development and defense of corporate witnesses. 

Alice serves as the office managing shareholder for the firm’s Pittsburgh office and as chair of the firm’s Toxic Tort/Hazardous Substances practice group.


  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America® for Mass Torts Litigation and Class Actions, 2024

Professional & Civic Involvement

  • Allegheny County Bar Association
    • Court Rules Committee, and past sub-committees focused on voir dire and e-filing
  • American Bar Association
  • Defense Research Institute (DRI)
  • Fellow, Litigation Counsel of America
  • Hidden Valley Foundation, Inc., former Board member
  • Venture Outdoors, former volunteer and Board member
  • American Canoe Association, certified instructor
  • Girl Scouts Western Pennsylvania, former volunteer and
    Board member
  • Hello Neighbor, former volunteer

Practice Highlights

Representative Matters

  • Served as trial counsel in defense of auto companies in an asbestos/mesothelioma friction case, resulting in a defense verdict in a California trial court
  • Argued successful global Frye challenges against plaintiffs’ experts in Pennsylvania trial courts in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia
  • Served as Pennsylvania statewide counsel for a major auto manufacturer in the defense of asbestos cases in state and federal courts
  • Successfully defended a truck chassis manufacturer in federal litigation regarding vehicle performance ultimately attributable only to the truck body builder
  • Represented a global packaging provider in connection with restrictive covenant challenges regarding a recently hired executive
  • Defended a water treatment technology company in a restrictive covenant and unfair competition challenge to the hiring of a sales team from a competitor
  • Pro bono representation of adoptive parents in disputed termination of parental rights of a child who had been in the adoptive home from infancy, resulting in successful adoption


Speaking Engagements

  • ABA Conference on Emerging Issues in Motor Vehicle Product Liability Litigation, 2023 (recent developments in asbestos litigation against automotive companies), 2019 (industrial hygiene in automotive asbestos litigation) and 2018 (personal jurisdiction),
  • Defense Research Institute, Asbestos Medicine Seminar, 2022 (the use of dying declarations for product ID), 2017 (Daubert and Frye challenges), 2015 (bankruptcy trust claims), 2014 (mock trial opening)
  • “Product Liability Update,” Pennsylvania Bar Institute CLE, 2018
  • “Ethical Considerations: When an Executive’s Interests are Adverse to the Company’s Interests,” The Association of Corporate Counsel – Western Pennsylvania Chapter, 2016