Laura Miele, PhD, CST-2, is a Sport, Fitness, and EducationExpert with over 30 years of experience in various aspects of sport, fitness, and physical activity including the education, training, and supervision of athletes. Dr. Miele is a Nationally Certified Accredited Interscholastic Coach through the National Federation of State High School Association (NFHS) and has 14 years of physical education experience, (Pre-kindergarten-12) within multiple states across the country.
Background Experience - Dr. Miele played Division I basketball at Arizona State; was Tight End for the Arizona Caliente, of the Women’s Professional Football League; and was also a New York Golden Gloves semi-finalist in 2004. She began coaching athletes in 1986 and has been involved as a personal exercise and fitness trainer since 1994. She has traveled extensively throughout the United States and Europe as an athlete and coach and has been involved in consulting, coaching and teaching a wide range of sports including but not limited to; Basketball, Gymnastics, Volleyball, Softball, Baseball, Football, Archery, Bowling, Figure Skating, Hockey, Boxing, Wrestling, Field Sports, Golf, Soccer, Swimming, Track and Field, and Tennis.
Dr. Miele is a level 2 Certified Service Technician for the International Association of Trampoline Parks. She serves on the Sports Equipment, Playing Surfaces, and Facilities Committee and currently serves and assists on the task force that is in the process of creating the standards for Amusement Challenge Areas. She has given numerous presentations on the topics of sport injury prevention as well as supervision and safety in Amusement Challenge Courses / Trampoline Parks Risk Management.
Litigation Support - Dr. Miele is an expert in fitness, sport and recreation with specific expertise in sports psychology, coaching, recreation, personal training, fitness facilities management/operations, and injury prevention. She is an accomplished athlete as well as an experienced trainer, coach and teacher. She provides expert witness services to attorneys for both plaintiff and defendant. Her services include thorough reporting, depositions, and trial testimony as needed.
Dr. Miele has relevant experience in the proper teaching standards required by the National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) for the:
Proper Supervision Before, During, and After School
Skill Progression and Instruction
Proper Use of Safety Equipment
Practices related to the Role and Responsibilities of Teachers and Administrators
Areas of Expertise:
Fitness Facility Operations including Personal Training, Supervision, Risk Management, and Injury Prevention
Physical Education, Sport and Recreation-Risk Management
School / Teacher Supervision
Proper Coaching Training Practices and Procedures in Sports
Gymnastics, Trampoline Parks / Amusement Challenge Courses
Emergency Preparation and Response in Schools, Fitness and Sport Facilities
Fitness facilities provide a number of services to the public. Those services encompass how to train and create an overall healthy being. There are national standards and guidelines that fitness facilities must follow in order to keep their members safe. Some issues that large and small fitness facilities have in common are the lack of knowledge regarding safe practices in the fitness industry
Injury prevention programs have a positive effect on performance and the reduction of risk in most studies and reviews. However, not all teams and coaches utilize them. In order to better understand this, a 19-item survey was conducted to assess high school coaches’ perceptions, attitudes, and current practices regarding knee injury prevention among adolescent athletes
Sport participation has increased substantially in the last decade, and so has the incidence of sport-related injuries. Today, over six million students are involved in competitive high school sports across the United States. Even more students are involved in organized club sports- baseball, softball, soccer, basketball, football, lacrosse, hockey, cheerleading, volleyball, wrestling and more.
An indoor trampoline park contains wall-to-wall trampolines, bordered either by angled trampoline walls or padding. Recently these parks have added features such as ninja courses, hanging nets, trapeze, wipe out, spider walls, foam obstacles and towers, to name few. All of these features require risk analysis to assist in keeping the public safe.
Mr. Nichols specializes in cases involving sexual abuse in schools, churches, camps, mentoring programs, sports organizations, and after-school programs. From 1994 to 2016 he served as the Vice President over child safety and facilities for Boys & Girls Clubs of America (National Headquarters). In that role he shaped the organizational policies and practices that helped protect over 4 million youth at over 4,000 sites in the U.S. and abroad. In 2016, Mr. Nichols entered private practice in two areas: as an expert witness in sex abuse-related cases involving organizations, and as a safety/security consultant for schools and other organizations.
Mr. Nichols has authored, co-authored, or contributed to over 40 publications addressing various aspects of protecting people from harm. Most recently, he was a reviewer and contributor to the Maryland Guidelines and Best Practices for the Design, Assessment and Modification of Physical Facilities and Spaces to Reduce Opportunities for Child Sexual Abuse (2020) by the MD State Council on Child Abuse & Neglect, and co-author of a graduate-level textbook, Extreme Violence: Understanding & Protecting People from Active Assailants, Hate Crimes & Terrorist Attacks (2021) by Cognella Academic Publishing.
Mr. Nichols is a member and past president of the National Coalition for the Prevention of Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation, a board-certified security professional (CPP) through ASIS International and holds a Master of Science in Security Administration.
Mr. Nichols has been retained or served as a fact witness in over 30 cases, involving sexual abuse and other harm within organizations. Examples include:
A contract school bus driver molests a student on the bus
A school music instructor grooms and molests his teen student
A organization’s screening process misses obvious red flags
A college ministry fails to provide oversight to prevent an accidental death
A disabled child is molested by another child while being transported on a bus
A sports organization fails to audit its child protection program
A church volunteer systematically grooms and molests young boys
Two teens rape a female, special needs student between classes
A child is injured on a roof during an afterschool program
An organization fails to provide effective sex abuse prevention resources to its affiliate
A young boy is molested by other boys at a church retreat
Douglas Baumgarten, M.S., offers consulting and expert witness services related to Fitness, Health Clubs, Exercise Equipment, Personal Training and Sports. Mr. Baumgarten is a graduate of Harvard University and California University of Penna. (M.S. Exercise Science). He is a certified Health/Fitness Director (Amer. Coll. of Sports Medicine), Performance Enhancement Specialist, Medical Exercise Specialist, Bike Fitter, cycling coach, and baseball/softball official.
Mr. Baumgarten has over 40 years in the fitness industry, as personal trainer, manager, consultant, equipment dealer, President of a large fitness company, and owner of SportFit Consulting. He has contributed to Fitness Management magazine, Boardroom magazine, Club Management magazine, and other publications.
Litigation Support - Mr. Baumgarten has over 15 years of experience as a legal expert, on cases from equipment accidents to health club employee conduct. He works with both plaintiffs and defendants, and has testified in civil and criminal courts. Douglas Baumgarten has the experience and expertise to assist in cases involving:
Every club struggles with safety and liability issues. In addition to OSHA, state, and local regulations governing employee safety, clubs must take every reasonable precaution to protect their members from harm – while still offering a satisfying service experience
The Rehberg Konin Group provides Litigation Support services in the area of Sport Safety and Reduction of Risk associated with accidents, illnesses and injuries using the most current evidence available. Their cutting edge practice and evidence-based approach ensures that their opinions are grounded in the latest scientific and professional evidence. A full-service consulting firm, The Rehberg Konin Group provides a wide range of services to the legal and insurance industries, including investigation, research and analysis, expert testimony at trial and depositions, expert reports, site inspections, document review, and on-site consulting during trial and depositions. They offer powerful and unbiased opinions and testimony for both plaintiff and defense cases. Their evidence-based approach means services grounded in the latest published research.
Areas of Expertise Include:
Standard of Care Issues
Adherence or Deviation from Industry Guidelines
Supervision of Athletes and Participants
Falls and Injuries
Post-Surgical Rehabilitation Procedures
Policies and Procedures
Injury Prevention Programs
Hazard Analysis and Mitigation
Venue Safety and Protection
Youth Sports Participation
Club / Gym Participation
High School, Collegiate, and Professional Sports Participation
Sports and Recreation
Dr. Robb S. Rehberg, PhD, ATC, CSCS, NREMT has extensive experience as an educator and clinician. He has spent over 20 years working with athletes of all levels, from high school to Olympic competitors. His teaching experience is just as comprehensive with 18 years as an instructor in a variety of courses. Prior to his current role as Associate Professor and Coordinator of Athletic Training Clinical Education, he was the Chief Athletic Trainer for the prestigious Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation. In addition, he spent 13 years overseeing the sports medicine needs of 39 interscholastic athletic teams.
Dr. Jeff G. Konin, PhD, ATC, PT, FACSM, FNATA Dr. Jeff Konin is currently the Director of Athletics at Eastern Connecticut State University, in Willimantic, Connecticut. Prior to this role, he was an Associate Professor and the Vice Chair of Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine at the University of South Florida, in Tampa, FL, where he also served as the Executive Director of the Sports Medicine and Athletic Related Trauma (SMART) Institute and the Director of the Graduate Athletic Training Program. Dr. Konin has an extensive background as a clinician, educator, administrator, author, and public speaker. www.experts.com
Professor Heraghty currently serves as Chairperson of Health, Physical Education and Sport Management at the State University of New York (SUNY) college at Suffolk. Prior to this role, he served as the Fitness & Aquatics Director and Men's Head Lacrosse Coach at SUNY Suffolk. He is a Certified Playground Safety Inspector (CPSI) credentialed by the National Recreation and Park Association and is also certified by the National Program for Playground Safety. He currently serves on the Sports Equipment, Playing Services, and Facilities committee with the American Society for Testing and Materials International (ASTM).
Litigation Support - Professor Heraghty specializes in Risk Management Programs for various types of sports, recreation and fitness activities as well as the preparation of expert opinions for both plaintiff and defendants, in conjunction with Recreation and Sport Personal Injury cases.