We Lead From the Front
We Live and Breathe Litigation. We Are First Trial Lawyers, Which We Believe Makes Us Superior Litigators, Creative Problem-Solvers, and Litigation Management Innovators… and We Love to Win.
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Melanie Rose
Partner
  • Oregon

Melanie is a litigator with a diverse civil litigation practice focusing on catastrophic injury, premises liability, automobile liability, dram shop, and commercial litigation. Melanie’s practice takes her all over the state of Oregon and Washington regularly, and occasionally into Idaho as well. She has given a number of presentations on changes in Oregon and Washington law highlighting the Pacific Northwest’s unique legal landscape.

Before joining Smith Freed Eberhard, Melanie handled first-party insurance claims including claims related to PIP, UM/UIM, bad faith, and consumer protection act claims on behalf of insurance carriers. Melanie also has experience handling insurance subrogation matters. This high-volume practice placed a premium on efficiency, diligence, and energy that has carried over into her current practice.

In law school, Melanie won awards for both client advocacy and legal writing. Some of Melanie’s first experiences in the legal community were volunteering for the Washington County Family Law Assistance Program and working at the Low Income Taxpayer Clinic.

Melanie is an Oregon native and grew up in a handful of smaller, Southern Oregon towns. She moved to the big city for law school, fell in love with Portland, and can’t imagine being anywhere else. Away from work, Melanie can usually be found teaching knitting lessons at a local yarn shop, checking out a local brewery, or getting her yearly supply of Vitamin D during the 4 months of the year that it’s dry enough to be outside.

Carleigh McMahon
Associate Attorney
  • Oregon

Carleigh is an associate attorney on Bill Taaffe’s team, and her practice focuses on commercial liability defense and personal lines defense.

Carleigh graduated from Northwestern School of Law at Lewis & Clark in 2020. Prior to that, she attended Albion College where she earned her Bachelor of Science in biology and a minor in psychology. Carleigh is now licensed to practice law in Oregon. During her years in law school, Carleigh was a representative within the Student Bar Association (SBA), participated in Appellate Moot Court, and was a co-founder of Students for Eliminating Environmental Discrimination (SEED). After graduating from law school in 2020, she took a judicial clerkship position with the Honorable Jeffrey S. Jones at Clackamas County Circuit Court. There she learned the intricacies of complex case litigation, civil and criminal procedure, the best strategies to use as a litigator, and developed a deeper understanding regarding the rules of evidence through the tutelage of one of the top evidence experts in Oregon. This position allowed Carleigh to obtain extensive experience in motions practice, Uniform Trial Court Rules (UTCR), and proper procedure for both jury trials and court trials.

Carleigh was born and raised in the Metro-Detroit area of Michigan. She is a first-generation lawyer, with most of her family electing careers in the Arts or STEM fields. Before moving to Portland for law school, Carleigh played the violin for 14 years and was second chair in the Oakland Youth Symphony, was a competitive archer and briefly trained under an Olympic archer, and she volunteered or worked at several local veterinary hospitals in Metro-Detroit. Outside of work, Carleigh can be found kayaking, checking out a local brewery or restaurant, or camping in the high deserts of eastern Oregon.

 

Gabrielle Martinez deCastro
Associate Attorney
  • Oregon

Gabby graduated from Lewis and Clark Law School in 2020 where she worked at OHSU at the Center for Diversity and Inclusion. Before this, she attended the University of Portland where she graduated with a B.A. in environmental ethics and policies in 2016.

Prior to SFE Gabby’s job focused on promoting diversity and inclusion through events, supporting student and employee affinity groups, and creating recruitment documents that highlighted the various diversity missions, activities, and opportunities at OHSU. Additionally, she worked on implementing a process for the Center for Diversity and Inclusion to better connect students and employees with the Affirmative Action & Equal Opportunity office when necessary. Gabby’s favorite aspect of the job was helping with the summer research internships her office hosted for students from underserved communities. Her work helped to connect these students with valuable opportunities, such as working in labs and presenting their research, in order to make them competitive applicants for medical schools.

Gabby is a Portland Native and first-generation lawyer with both of her parents in the medical field. Outside of work Gabby likes to ski, play video games, and spend time with her family. She also likes to sing and play guitar as she was in choirs throughout her childhood and college. Gabby likes to spend a lot of time with Milo, her Chihuahua Pug who accompanies her on hikes and trips and who loves to snuggle.