The Kentucky Workers’ Compensation Hall of Fame was established to honor those who have made significant contributions to Kentucky’s Workers’ Compensation system during their distinguished careers.

The 2024 Inductees to the Hall of Fame are:
Tamara Todd Cotton, Fran Davis, James Jones, Maria G. Klyza, Timothy P. O’Mara, and Joshua E. Santana



April 18, 2024

Dinner And Recognition of the Class of 2024
Honoring Those Who Have Made a Difference


5:30-6:30   Reception

6:30   Welcome: Tim Wilson

Introduction of Head Table:   Michael Alvey,  Chairman, Kentucky Workers’ Compensation Board

Invocation:   Larry Clevinger 2019 Hall of Fame Inductee

Dinner and Fellowship

Remarks from the Department of Workers’ Claims: Commissioner Scott Wilhoit

Recognition of 2024 Inductees:   Robert Swisher and Bonnie Hoskins

Closing Remarks:   Denise Davidson


Special Thanks to Our Sponsors

Denise M. Davidson & Associates PSC
Doug U’Sellis on behalf of U’Sellis Mayer and Associates
Hoskins Law Offices, PLLC
J. Landon Overfield
Kevin Weaver of Sturgill, Turner, Barker, & Moloney, PLLC
McKinnley Morgan of Morgan, Collins, Yeast, and Salyer
Tim Wilson on behalf of Wilson and McQueen

All net proceeds received from the Hall of Fame Dinner are donated to Kid’s Chance of Kentucky and are tax deductible. Kid’s Chance was founded by a group of workers’ compensation professionals and is devoted to providing scholarships to children of Kentucky workers who have been killed or suffered catastrophic injuries in work-related accidents. Your continued support of this charity is appreciated.

Class of 2025
Now accepting nominations at Please e mail the name of the workers’ compensation professional who should be considered and a brief statement of the contributions they have made. All recommendations will remain anonymous.

2024 Inductees

Tamara Todd Cotton Kraft

Ms. Cotton became a Registered Nurse in 1972 and joined the US Army Reserve, Army Nurse Corp in 1973, ultimately earning the rank of Colonel. She was awarded the Meritorious Service Award in 1993. Ms. Cotton graduated from the U of L School of Law in 1980 and started her own firm in 1996. She has presented extensively on medical-legal issues to health care professionals nationwide. In Kentucky, she is a regular speaker on legal issues to labor, management, and attorneys. Ms. Cotton is a past-president of the American Association of Nurse Attorneys. She has been recognized in Best Lawyers in Louisville, and as a “Super Lawyer” in Workers’ Compensation in Kentucky. Ms. Cotton and her Firm were selected in The Top Tier in Best Lawyers in Worker’s Compensation by the US News and World Report for America.

Maria Klyza

Ms. Klyza is a native of Buffalo, New York. She received a Bachelor of Science degree from Cornell University in 1968, and worked for two years as an Administrative Aide to the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. After teaching for many years in New York, Alabama, and Kentucky, she enrolled in the University of Kentucky College of Law from which she graduated in 1988. She served for two years thereafter as law clerk for the Hon. William M. Gant of the Supreme Court of Kentucky. Following the decision in Vessels v. Brown-Forman in 1990, she became Staff Counsel to the Court and worked primarily in the area of workers’ compensation until she retired in 2012.

Fran Davis

Fran Davis is a Senior Business Analyst whose 14 years with the Kentucky Department of Workers’ Claims ushered in the most sweeping technological advances since the creation of the DWC. She served as project manager for Kentucky’s Litigation Management System (LMS) and Division Director of Information and Research for seven years with a primary focus on data extraction and analysis. Ms. Davis served four years on the International Association of Industrial Accident Boards and Commissions (IAIABC) Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) Council, held the position of the Claims Committee Vice-Chair, and served on the Implementation Team, which is responsible for the migration of data among EDI releases.

Timothy P. O’Mara

Tim O’Mara graduated from the U of L School of Law in 1973 and began working with the Kentucky Department of Labor Special Fund as Assistant General Counsel in October 1973. He was appointed as Deputy General Counsel in 1976 and became the first settlement attorney for the Special Fund in 1978. Mr. O’Mara entered private practice in 1979 and joined the law firm of Middleton, Reutlinger & Baird in Louisville. He headed the firm’s Workers’ Compensation and OSHA departments until his retirement in December 2022. He is currently Of Counsel with U’Sellis Mayer & Associates in Louisville. Mr. O’Mara was the Chairman of the KBA Workers’ Compensation Section in 2002. He has been listed in Best Lawyers in America for several years.

James Jones

James Jones graduated from Morehead State University cum laude in 1985 with a double major in Broadcasting and English Literature. He worked as a broadcaster before embarking on a distinguished 35-year career in Insurance. Mr. Jones first worked as an investigator then as a Claims Professional for Wausau Insurance Company/Liberty Mutual, Inc. beginning in April 1986. During his tenure, he was instrumental in mentoring younger adjustors. Mr. Jones was appointed by the Commission of the DWC to serve on advisory committees and special task forces. He currently serves as an Officer and Board Member with the Kentucky Workers’ Compensation Education Association. He is a regular presenter at workers’ compensation seminars statewide.

Joshua Santana

Joshua Santana was born in Puerto Rico and grew up in Spanish Harlem and The South Bronx areas of New York City. Upon graduation from Transylvania University, he served in the Navy as a Surface Warfare Officer. He returned to Kentucky to attend UK College of Law, earning his JD in December of 1975. Mr. Santana has served as chair of the Lexington Hispanic Association. He was a member of the statewide Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence, and the Lexington ‘One Community One Voice’ Task Force. In 2004 he envisioned and was a driving force in the founding of the Central Music Academy (CMA)Mr. Santana’s practice of workers’ compensation law extended over forty years with a focus on the Hispanic community.