When Tom Kline was spearheading negotiations with Penn State in the Jerry Sandusky scandal, Ben Present was reporting on the case for The Legal Intelligencer and, in fact, broke the news of the settlement amount — $60 million.

But after a two-year stint with the nation’s oldest legal newspaper, Mr. Present decided to turn from reporting on the law to practicing it, enrolling at the Beasley School of Law at Temple University, where he became a standout student.

Mr. Present joined Kline & Specter from another Philadelphia law firm, Conrad O’Brien, P.C., which defends Fortune 500 companies as well as government entities and individuals. Mr. Present handled pleadings, discovery, motions, hiring of experts, settlement negotiations and trial preparation in more than 30 civil cases.

He also represented witnesses, managed large-scale document production and represented clients in plea and sentencing hearings and before grand juries. In one case, he was the lead author of a 70-page appellate brief. For his efforts, he was selected as a Pennsylvania Rising Star by Super Lawyers each year from 2019 to 2024. The independent attorney survey group recognizes the top 2.5 percent of attorneys in the state who are 40 or younger or practicing 10 years or less.

Prior to working at the law firm, Mr. Present was a judicial intern in the office of U.S. District Judge Timothy J. Savage of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, where he worked on cases involving constitutional law, civil procedure, contracts and government immunity.

Mr. Present won several awards while with The Legal Intelligencer, including the Pennsylvania Newspaper Association’s Edith Hughes Emerging Journalist Award in 2011 and first place in the William A. Schnader Print Media Awards for weekly beat reporting.

At Temple, he was staff editor at the Temple Law Review and a teaching assistant while maintaining a place on the Dean’s List every semester and receiving top grade honors for Introduction to Intellectual Property. Mr. Present also received honors for distinguished class performance and outstanding oral advocacy in legal research and writing.

Mr. Present earned his undergraduate degree in journalism at the University of Maryland.

He is licensed to practice law in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Mr. Present is a member of the Philadelphia Bar Association.


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