STEVEN E. “TIM” RILEY
CLASS OF 1971
A 1971 graduate of Rice Avenue Union High School, Tim Riley became the school’s first state champion when he won the PIAA Class B high jump at Penn State’s Beaver Stadium in May, 1971. He had earlier won the District 10 championship, setting a new D-10 record, and the Erie County championship, earning Most Valuable Field Performer honors, and owned the school records in the high jump and triple jump. Tim was a reserve on the Yellow Jackets 18-1 basketball team coached by Larry Seneta that won the Erie County League title. He was President of the National Honor Society, a Student Council representative, and played trombone in the band. He also participated in the senior class play and community theatre productions, represented his school at GE’s “High Q” TV competition, and was the trainer on the 8-1 football team that also won the county title.
Tim attended the University of Pittsburgh on a track scholarship and was a four year letter winner and co-captain of the team his senior year. When he graduated in 1975, he held the Pitt indoor and outdoor team records, the Fitzgerald Fieldhouse record, the Pitt Stadium record, the Beaver Stadium record and the WVU track stadium record. With his 7 feet, 1/8 inch western roll over the bar at the Pitt Invitational in 1974, Tim became the first 7 foot high jumper in Pitt history and earned a spot on the 1974 World List. While at Pitt he won the Penn Relays, Ohio State Relays, Penn State Invitational (earning Most Valuable Field Performer honors), Pitt Invitational (twice, once earning Most Valuable Field Performer honors) and West Virginia Invitational (three times), as well as the Big Four (Pitt, Penn State, Syracuse and West Virginia) Championships. He participated in the NCAA Track Championships both indoors and outdoors, and was twice named to the All IC4A Team. Inducted into Phi Eta Sigma freshman scholarship honorary and Omicron Delta Kappa national leadership honorary, Tim graduated magna cum laude and attended Pitt’s law school, earning his law degree in 1978.
Since founding his present firm in Erie in 1993, Tim has represented people who have been harmed by others, primarily in medical, vehicle, premises or products liability cases. He is a past president of Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers Association (now Pennsylvania Association for Justice), Western Pennsylvania Trial Lawyers Association, Pennsylvania Bar Foundation and Erie County Bar Association. He currently serves on the boards of the American Association for Justice and Pennsylvania Bar Association and chairs PBA’s Judicial Evaluation Commission, which evaluates and rates candidates for Pennsylvania’s appellate courts. Selected as a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, he has held Martindale Hubbell’s highest Peer Review Rating for lawyers (AV) since 1997, and he and his firm, Conner Riley Friedman & Weichler, hold Tier One ratings from Best Lawyers/US News & World Reports. A frequent author and lecturer at legal education seminars, he’s been named a Super Lawyer annually since 2005.
Tim is a past president and current member of the board of Erie Independence House, and was honored in 2011 for his thirty years of service to the organization. He has previously served on the board and chaired the Fund Distribution Division of United Way of Erie County, on the board of Community Resources for Independence, and as president of the Erie Chapter of the Pitt Golden Panthers. He and his wife, Patty, have three grown sons, all of whom were District 10 Champions in tennis. An avid basketball player whose career is finally waning, Tim enjoys skiing, sailing, fishing, golf and doing whatever Patty asks.