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Annual Institute on Employment Law 2011

Speaker(s): Adam T. Klein, Amy L. Bess, Bradford K. Newman, David Jimenez, David S. Fortney, Debra L. Raskin, Ellen E. McLaughlin, Gary E. Phelan, Grace E. Speights, Hon. Celeste F. Bremer, Hon. Karen Klein, James H. McQuade, Jeffrey S. Klein, John W. Hamlin, Kathleen M. McKenna, Laura S. Schnell, Martin L. Schmelkin, Maureen E. O'Neill, Michael A. Curley, Michael G. Cleveland, Peggy R. Mastroianni, Richard J. Gonzalez, Roxane Marenberg, Theodore O. Rogers, Jr., Willis J. Goldsmith, Zachary D. Fasman
Recorded on: Oct. 24, 2011
PLI Program #: 29753

Bradford K. Newman is a partner who serves as chair of the Employment Law Department for Paul Hastings in Silicon Valley, leads the firm's International Employee Mobility and Trade Secret practice, is vice chair of the ABA Employment Litigation Subcommittee, and is founder and Editor of the Employee Mobility, Restrictive Covenants and Trade Secrets Chapter in the ABA Business Law Section's National Annual Review. Mr. Newman is consistently selected by peers and colleagues as a leader in the profession.

In connection with his national practice spanning many industries, Mr. Newman routinely serves as lead trial counsel, and has successfully litigated a broad spectrum of trade secret, employee mobility, whistle-blower, employment, wage and hour and traditional labor law cases in state and federal courts, in arbitration, and before the National Labor Relations Board. He has argued cases before the California Court of Appeal and the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Recent and representative high-profile successes include:

Multiple Trade Secret, Non-Compete and Employee Mobility Successes. Over the past several years, has advised and represented the world’s leading technology, banking, professional services and commerce companies in significant trade secret counseling and litigation (defending and prosecuting) matters and employee mobility disputes. A small survey of the many companies who seek out Mr. Newman for his trade secret and employee mobility expertise in the most challenging circumstances include:

  • a leading global Internet services brand and one of the most trafficked Internet destinations
  • one of the nation's largest insurance brokers
  • national banking and financial services institutions
  • the world’s top semiconductor companies
  • the world's leading manufacturers
  • a leading healthcare management services provider
  • a global consumer computer manufacturer.

Trial Successes. Served as lead counsel at trial, in arbitration and at the summary judgment phase. Notable recent victories include:

Evans v. Cypress Semiconductor Corporation. Lead defense counsel in a case involving a multimillion-dollar stock claim brought by a former employee against Cypress Semiconductor Corporation. At the conclusion of trial, Mr. Newman successfully obtained a defense verdict as to all of the employee's claims.

Rajpal v. Cypress Semiconductor Corporation. Lead defense counsel in a case involving multimillion-dollar fraud and contract claims brought by a former employee against Cypress Semiconductor Corporation. At the conclusion of arbitration, Mr. Newman successfully obtained a defense verdict as to all of the employee’s claims.

Litigating Cases of First Impression
“Company not liable for worker’s web threats”
  • This National Law Journal headline reported about a case of first impression that Mr. Newman litigated through the trial court and appellate phases. As a result of Newman’s efforts, employers across the country now enjoy broad immunity from lawsuits based on employees’ alleged misuse of the employer’s computer systems.
  • In the widely publicized case of Delfino v. Agilent Technologies, Inc., 145 Cal.App.4th 790 (2006), review denied (2007), Mr. Newman convinced a unanimous panel of the Sixth District California Court of Appeal that Agilent Technologies could not be held responsible for threatening messages allegedly sent from its computer network by a one-time employee.
  • Mr. Newman successfully argued that Section 230(c)(1) of the Communications Decency Act provides broad immunity to employers who provide access and facilitate Internet content.
  • No court had ever held the immunity conferred under section 230(c)(1) applied to employers who provide employees Internet access.
Sarbanes-Oxley, Corporate Governance and Whistle-blower Expertise Mr. Newman regularly provides employers, audit committees and boards of directors with advice on complex Sarbanes-Oxley and state-law whistle-blower issues, and with regard to internal corporate investigations involving claims of executive or director misconduct.
  • He also is experienced in litigating SOX 806 retaliation claims before OSHA. For example, he recently obtained a dismissal by OSHA of a charge filed against Washington Mutual Bank.
  • Mr. Newman has served as a legal writing and research instructor at Hastings College of the Law; has published on a wide variety of employment-related topics; is frequently invited to present to employer, business and professional groups around the country; and has testified on behalf of employer associations before the State Assembly and Senate against legislationviewed as adverse to business.


Biographical Data
United States Magistrate Judge, Southern District of Iowa; appointed 1984. Duties include: trials of civil cases; pretrial case management for one-third of the District’s docket; settlement conferences and other ADR procedures; criminal case pretrial matters; and prisoner civil rights case trials and management.

Judicial Conference of the United States, 2008 - present. Appointed by Chief Justice John Roberts to the Space and Facilities Committee, which sets policy and approves designs and budgets for space in U.S. Courthouses; Committee advises Judicial Conference on security, courtroom use, and strategic planning.

Legal practice prior to appointment:
 State and County Prosecutor; Partner in general litigation firm; Corporate Counsel for Economy Forms Corp. and Deere & Co.

Admitted to practice: Iowa and California (inactive)

Adjunct Faculty: Drake University School of Education

Ed. D., Drake University, School of Education, 2002
J.D., University of Iowa, College of Law, 1977
B.A., St. Ambrose College, 1974

ABA, Iowa and California Bar Associations; Federal Magistrate Judges Association; American Judicature Society; National   Association of Women Judges; Iowa Association of Women Attorneys; Polk County Bar Association; Polk County Women Attorney's Association; C. Edwin Moore Inn of Court

Grace Speights is a partner in Morgan Lewis’ Labor & Employment Law Practice, Managing Partner of the Washington, D.C. Office, Chair of the Firm’s Complex Employment Litigation Practice Group, co-chair of the Firm’s Diversity Committee, a member of the Firm’s Legal Personnel Committee, and a member of the Firm’s Partner Compensation Committee. Her practice focuses on counseling and defending clients in connection with employment discrimination claims, primarily involving class action litigation, and on counseling clients regarding diversity best practices. She has litigated and mediated numerous employment discrimination class actions around the country. Ms. Speights joined Morgan Lewis in 1984, after having clerked for the late Judge Aubrey E. Robinson, Jr., United States District Court for the District of Columbia.

Ms. Speights has received many accolades as a practicing lawyer, including being named as or listed in: The National Law Journal’s 100 Most Influential Women Lawyers In Washington, D.C. (2010); Who’s Who in Black Washington, D.C., a 2010 Washington Business Journal Minority Business Leader; the Minority Corporate Counsel 2009 Rainmakers; the Washingtonian Magazine’s 100 Most Powerful Women in Washington, D.C. (2009); The Best Lawyers in America 2007-2011; Washington Super Lawyers 2007-2010; Super Lawyers Top 50 Women Lawyers in Washington, D.C. (2007); Human Resource Executive’s Top 100 Most Powerful Employment Attorneys (2009-2011); Human Resource Executive’s Top 50 Defense Employment Attorneys (2008); and The Legal Times leading Labor and Employment Lawyers (2004). Ms. Speights is also a Fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers.

Ms. Speights received her B.A. degree from the University of Pennsylvania, and her J.D. degree with Honors and as a member of the Order of the Coif from the George Washington University National Law Center.

Richard J. Gonzalez is a Clinical Professor at Chicago-Kent College of Law where he teaches Employment Discrimination and Pretrial Litigation. Mr. Gonzalez has represented plaintiffs in employment discrimination and wrongful discharge cases since 1988 after having served as an Administrative Law Judge at the Illinois Human Rights Commission and as a civil rights lawyer with The Legal Assistance Foundation of Chicago. A 1975 graduate of Northwestern University and a 1978 graduate of The Ohio State  University College of Law, Mr. Gonzalez has extensive trial experience and is active in the National Employment Lawyers Association, the ABA, and the CBA. He has published numerous articles on employment law in law reviews and practitioner journals, he is a frequent speaker at continuing legal education seminars, and is co-executive editor of the leading employment law treatise "Employment Discrimination Law by Lindemann & Grossman (BNA).

Roxane Marenberg is the Senior Director of Employment Law in the Law Department at Cisco Systems, Inc. As the head of global employment law for Cisco, she manages the HR related legal issues facing a multinational technology company with approximately 70,000 employees in over 100 countries around the world. She was recently named “Best Labor & Employment Lawyer” for 2010 by the Silicon Valley Business Journal and San Francisco Business Times.

Prior to joining Cisco, Roxane was a partner in the labor and employment practices in two global law firms. Most recently, Roxane was a partner at DLA Piper, where she represented companies on a nationwide basis in state and federal courts and before state and federal regulatory agencies defending complex wage and hour class cases, discrimination lawsuits, unfair competition cases, and ERISA violations. She was also responsible for counseling corporate professionals regarding all aspects of employment law ensuring compliance with local, state and federal laws and regulations.

Roxane was recently quoted in Inside Counsel (February 2010) and Canadian Corporate Counsel Association Magazine (Spring 2010) on alternative fee arrangements. She lectures frequently in the area of Title VII, managing blended workforces that include full-time and contingent workers, managing employees within the law, preventing harassment complaints in the workplace, successful motions practice, and effective jury trial techniques. She conducts training sessions and seminars for managers and employees, and speaks to trade organizations and bar associations on various topics relating to the anti-discrimination laws governing employers. She is a faculty member of the National Institute of Trial Advocacy (NITA)/Georgetown University Law Center, where she teaches jury trial techniques and deposition skills and is an instructor for the ABA Litigation Section. She was co-chair of Georgetown University Law Center’s Continuing Legal Education Program “Litigating and Resolving Employment Disputes: Views from the Bench.”

Roxane has substantial trial experience in state and federal courts in the criminal and civil arena. She was formerly an Assistant United States Attorney for the District of Columbia where she tried to verdict over 50 cases in D.C. Superior and U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. Before taking the oath as an AUSA, Roxane was a Trial Attorney with the U.S. Department of Justice, Criminal Division, Organized Crime and Racketeering Section. In that capacity, she represented the United States in over a dozen federal courts across the country.

Upon graduating Magna Cum Laude from the School of Government and Public Administration at American University in Washington, D.C., Roxane attended the University of Baltimore School of Law. Upon graduation from law school in 1979, she joined the U.S. Department of Justice under the United States Attorney General's Honor Program. In addition to her J.D., Roxane has an LLM in Law and Public Policy with an emphasis in Labor and Employment Law from the Washington College of Law at American University.

ADAM T. KLEIN is a partner of Outten & Golden LLP and is the chair of the firm's class action practice group. His practice is limited to the prosecution of class action and impact litigation of employment discrimination and wage and hour claims.

Mr. Klein presently serves as lead or co-lead plaintiffs' counsel in numerous major class-action lawsuits involving statutory-discrimination claims in the financial services industry and challenges to the use of credit and criminal history records for employment. At present, Mr. Klein is co-lead plaintiffs' counsel in lawsuits challenging employment practices at Goldman Sachs, Bank of America/Merrill Lynch and the federal Census Bureau. The Census Bureau litigation was filed in affiliation with a consortium of civil-rights organizations challenging the use of arrest and criminal history records as a screen for employment for over 700,000 applicants. Mr. Klein also prosecutes wage and hour class/collective actions against numerous major corporations and was counsel in major settlements involving IBM, Whirlpool, JP Morgan Chase, and other Fortune 500 companies. In addition, Mr. Klein serves as co-lead plaintiffs' counsel in nationwide discrimination class action lawsuits against Smith Barney (gender - Amochaev v. Smith Barney) and Morgan Stanley (race - Jaffe v. Morgan Stanley). Both the Amochaev and Jaffe cases are now settled - each settlement provides class members with substantial monetary relief and systematic changes to company practices.* Mr. Klein also served as co-lead plaintiffs' class counsel in "glass ceiling" gender discrimination class action against MetLife, based on discrimination in promotions and compensation. The term of the MetLife settlement agreement has expired.

Mr. Klein has testified before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and Congress on issues relating to employment law. Mr. Klein is a frequent lecturer and has participated in programs relating to employment law sponsored by the American Constitutional Society, the Institute for Judicial Administration, the American Bar Association, Cornell University, Georgetown University Law School, New York University Law School, the Law and Education Institute, the Practicing Law Institute, the National Employment Lawyers Association, the Bar Association of the City of New York, the Impact Fund, the American Conference Institute, and Strafford Publications.

Mr. Klein was selected by his peers in Best Lawyers in America and New York's Super Lawyers - Manhattan Edition 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011. In addition, he was selected as a finalist for Lawdragon 500 Leading Lawyers in America in 2010. Mr. Klein is a member of the National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA), served on the Executive Board of its New York Affiliate (NELA/NY) from 2000 to 2006, and is the former co-chair of the Class Action Committee of NELA. He served on the Executive Board of the Employee Rights Section of the American Trial Lawyers Association. Mr. Klein is a member of the American Bar Association, where he served as the Plaintiffs' Co-Chair of the Committee on Technology and Federal Law Clerks Training Program, and is a member of the Committees on Equal Employment Opportunity and Employee Rights and Responsibilities of the Section of Labor and Employment Law and the Class Action and Derivative Suits Committee of the Section of Litigation. Mr. Klein is the immediate past plaintiffs' co-chair of the largest Committee within the Labor and Employment Section - the Equal Employment Opportunity Committee. Mr. Klein is a Member of the Executive Board of the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, and is also a member of the Federal Bar Council, a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation, a member of the Advisory Board of the Labor and Employment Law Program and Board of Directors of the Alumni Association of the School of Industrial and Labor Relations at Cornell University, and a member of the Advisory Board of the National Wage and Hour Clearinghouse.

Mr. Klein received his undergraduate degree from the School of Industrial and Labor Relations at Cornell University in 1987 and his law degree from Hofstra University in 1990. He was admitted to the New York bar in 1991.

Mr. Klein is admitted in New York and in the federal Second, Ninth, and Eleventh Circuits and the Southern, Eastern, and Western Districts of New York.

DAVID R. JIMENEZ is a Partner in the Hartford, CT office of Jackson Lewis LLP and Co-Chairs the firm's Corporate Governance practice area. He defends employers on general employment law and associated corporate governance matters including Sarbanes Oxley Act whistleblower claims filed with the U.S. Department of Labor and Qui Tam claims asserted under the False Claims Act.  He frequently advises on corporate investigations involving employee misconduct, employee fraud, and related code of conduct matters.  Mr. Jimenez also has handled numerous high-stakes matters including class action claims involving the Fair Labor Standards Act (wage/hour litigation) and independent contractor claims.  He also represents employers in the financial services industry in FINRA arbitration matters. Mr. Jimenez assists clients with preventative measures including development of corporate codes of conduct and related compliance structures including whistleblower hotlines, internal controls and employee awareness programs as mandated by the Sarbanes Oxley Act and the Federal Acquisition Regulations ("FAR").   

Prior to joining Jackson Lewis, Mr. Jimenez was the former vice president, employee relations and associate general counsel of a Fortune 100 financial services company where he was the senior employment counsel for domestic and international employment law and immigration matters. 

Mr. Jimenez is a frequent trainer, speaker and writer on employment and corporate governance topics including Management and Defense of Employee Whistleblower Claims, Association of Corporation Counsel (co-author) September 2009; Compliance & Ethics Requirements for Federal Contractors, Jackson Lewis Special Report, March 2009; Strategic Handling of Employment Law Exposures, Ethisphere, 2007; Corporate Governance Developments, National Assoc. of Stock Plan Professionals, Oct. 2007; Employment Law Compliance Solutions, Practicing Law Institute, October, 2006; Investigating Complaints under Sarbanes-Oxley, Practicing Law Institute, January 2006;  Responding to Employee Complaints, ABA, Labor and Employment Law, November 2001; and Employee Handbooks Can Be Legal Minefields, Boston Business Journal, September 1996.  He has been quoted by major publications including The Wall Street Journal, the Hartford Courant, the Metropolitan Corporate Defense Counsel, The Connecticut Law Tribune and other leading publications.

Mr. Jimenez is licensed to practice law in Connecticut and received his law degree from Hofstra University School of Law.  He received his undergraduate degree from the University of Texas and he completed executive education on strategic Human Resources systems at Cornell University's School of Industrial Relations.

He is a board member and officer of several professional and not-for-profit organizations including: The Hartford County Bar Foundation (board member and president-elect), Charter Oak Cultural Center (board member and vice-president), and Hartford Stage (governing board member). He is a member of the American Bar Association's Labor & Employment Section and currently holds two appointed positions including section liaison to the ABA's Commission on Racial and Ethnic Diversity and co-Chair of the committee on Equal Opportunity in the Legal Profession. In addition, he is a member of the Hispanic National Bar Association and a former member of American Leadership Forum and the Inns of Court.  

Ellen E. McLaughlin is a partner in the firm of Seyfarth Shaw LLP and is former national chair of the Firm's 350 member Labor and Employment Practice Group. She graduated from the University of Notre Dame Law School and received her undergraduate degree in economics from the University of Notre Dame, cum laude. She is engaged in a broad based employment law practice, specializing in federal and state court and administrative agency employment litigation. Ms. McLaughlin also has an extensive advice and counseling practice that focuses on avoiding litigation. She regularly consults with employers to implement nationwide practices and systems which are both legally compliant and which meet an employer's business needs.

Ms. McLaughlin has been a Chambers USA rated attorney since 2005 and is a Fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers.  She is rated as a Leading Lawyer in the State of Illinois and is one of the Top 50 Women Super Lawyers in the State of Illinois. She is a National Employment Law Institute (NELI) Advisory Board Member and on the American Arbitration Association's Employment Law Advisory Board. She is the National Chair of her Firm's Women's Affinity Group, Seyfarth Women's Network, Board Member of the Coalition of Women's Initiatives in Law Firms, and on the Anti-Defamation League's Women of Achievement Committee.

Ms. McLaughlin is a frequent lecturer on a wide variety of employment law topics. She has served as a guest lecturer for such organizations as the ABA, NELI, ALI-ABA, SHRM, Corporate Counsel Institute, American Arbitration Association, Illinois State Chamber of Commerce, and Illinois State Bar Association. In addition, she is on the Editorial Board, Americans with Disabilities Act Compliance Guide, Thompson Publishing, Editorial Board, The Leave & Disability Coordination Handbook, Thompson Publishing. She has written extensively on employment issues and co-authored "A Client's Guide to the ADA, FMLA and Workers' Compensation," The Journal of the American Corporate Counsel Association as well as "Training Becomes Important Step to Avoid Liability," The National Law Journal. She also co authored the "Employee Selection Procedures," "The ADA" and "The FMLA" chapters in Federal Employment Laws and Regulations and Employment Discrimination - How to Comply, both R.A. Apland publications. 

Ms. McLaughlin has been actively involved in the developments of the Americans With Disabilities Act since its passage in July, 1990. In early 1991, she co-authored comments to the EEOC's proposed regulations on behalf of a national employer coalition. Again in 2009, she drafted comments to the proposed regulations under the ADA Amendments Act on behalf of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and SHRM. Ms. McLaughlin also has been closely following the Family and Medical Leave Act since its passage in early 1993. On behalf of national employer groups, she edited and co authored comments to the Department of Labor's interim final rules and final rules, and assisted a national employer coalition group in drafting comments to the DOL's proposed regulations that became effective in 2009.

Ms. McLaughlin has been actively involved in following the developments of the Americans With Disabilities Act ("ADA") since its passage in July, 1990 and regularly advises employers on this law. In early 1991, she co-authored comments to the EEOC's proposed regulations on behalf of a national employer coalition. Ms. McLaughlin has been closely following the Family and Medical Leave Act since its passage in early 1993. On behalf of local and national employer groups, she edited and co-authored comments to the Department of Labor (DOL) prior to the issuance of both the interim final rules and final rules. Most recently in 2008, she assisted a national employer coalition group in drafting comments to the DOL's proposed regulations. Following the passage of the ADA and FMLA, she has provided training to organizations on how to comply with these laws and lectures extensively on these subjects.

In June 2011, she was one of two management attorneys in the country invited by the EEOC to testify at a public hearing on the issue of leave as a reasonable accommodation. She lectures extensively on the ADA and FMLA, and provides advice and training to organizations on how to comply with these laws. She is widely recognized as one of the nation's foremost ADA and FMLA experts.

GARY E. PHELAN serves as special counsel to Cohen and Wolf, where he is a member of the firm's Employment & Litigation Groups. Resident in the firm's Westport office, Mr. Phelan represents both employers and employees in a wide range of matters, including discrimination, wrongful termination, employment contracts and severance negotiations.

Mr. Phelan was previously a partner in Outten and Golden, LLP's New York and Stamford offices. He has been recognized in the 1995-2011 editions of Best Lawyers in America in the area of Labor and Employment Law. He was also designated by Super Lawyers magazine as a Connecticut Super Lawyer, in the category of Employment & Labor Law (2006-2010).  He is admitted to practice in Connecticut and New York.

Mr. Phelan has written extensively on the subject of workplace discrimination, co-authoring Disability Discrimination in the Workplace, one of the leading treatises on disability law.  He has written and lectured on a wide range of employment-related topics and was an adjunct professor for several years at Quinnipiac University School of Law. He was the President of the Connecticut Employment Lawyers Association, was the co-chair of the Disability Rights Committee for the National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA) and served on NELA's Executive Board.  He is presently the Treasurer for the Connecticut Bar Association's Labor and Employment Law Section. He is on the Editorial Advisory Board to Employment Law 360. He is on the Advisory Board for the Center for Work Life Law and the Board of Directors of A Better Balance. Mr. Phelan also serves on the New York Advisory Board to Disability Rights Advocates.

Mr. Phelan received his B.A. from Siena College in 1982 and his J.D. from Albany Law School in 1987.

Maureen O'Neill is Senior Vice President, Employment Law Practice Group, at DiscoverReady. She also serves as the Marketplace Leader for DiscoverReady's Western region. DiscoverReady is a pioneer in offering fixed-fee, process-driven document review, and an e-discovery industry leader in providing high-quality service and work product. In her role at DiscoverReady, Maureen provides operational expertise in managed document review and other e-discovery service offerings, and she leads all aspects of DiscoverReady's marketplace presence in the Western United States.

Prior to joining DiscoverReady, Maureen was a partner at Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker LLP, practicing in the area of employment litigation. She represented Fortune 100 and other multinational companies in a variety of industries such as technology, pharmaceuticals, communications, entertainment, and retail, in employment-related litigation. She led teams of attorneys defending various types of employment claims, with a focus on defending class and collective action litigation. Although she participated in all aspects of litigation, Maureen developed a particular expertise in managing the document discovery process in complex, multi-party litigation. In addition to her employment litigation practice at Paul Hastings, Maureen also co-chaired the Firm's E-Discovery Practice Group. In that role, she counseled clients on various e-discovery issues, such as identifying and inventorying sources of electronic information, drafting legal hold notices, and developing protocols for document collection, storage, and management. She also consulted internally with attorneys at the Firm on e-discovery issues, and helped develop best practices for litigators engaged in e-discovery practice.

Maureen graduated with Honors from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Law, and received her undergraduate degree with honors from the University of Miami. Maureen is admitted to practice in California and Georgia. She participates actively in the Sedona Conference Working Group on Electronic Document Retention and Production.

Michael G. Cleveland has practiced labor and employment law since joining Vedder Price P.C. in 1974. He concentrates his practice in employment litigation and has successfully litigated a wide variety of employment cases in the state and federal courts, including equal employment, ERISA, FLSA and wrongful discharge cases. He has defended employers in all phases of class action litigation, including trials of race discrimination and age discrimination class action cases which resulted in complete  verdicts for the employer defendants.

Mr. Cleveland represents employers in matters before administrative agencies and advises employers on employment issues and policies and on matters relating to employment agreements.

Mr. Cleveland has lectured extensively on employment law issues. He has also authored a number of articles on employmentrelated issues. Mr. Cleveland has served as the Practice Area Leader for the fi rm’s Labor and Employment Law group and as a member of the fi rm’s Management and Executive Committees. He is currently the fi rm’s Professional Responsibility Counsel.

In 2011, Mr. Cleveland was ranked in Chambers USA in the Illinois Labor and Employment category. Mr. Cleveland was selected for inclusion from 2009 to 2011 in Illinois Super Lawyers. In addition, he received an “AV Preeminent” Peer Rating in Martindale-Hubbell.


  • J.D., University of Chicago, 1974
  • B.A., Loyola University of Chicago, 1971

Peggy R. Mastroianni is Legal Counsel at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). She is responsible for developing Commission guidance under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Equal Pay Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (GINA), and for providing legal advice for the Commission on a wide range of substantive issues and administrative matters. Ms. Mastroianni directed the development of EEOC's Enforcement Guidance on the Consideration of Arrest and Conviction Records in Employment Decisions (April 2012), as well as its Final Regulations on Reasonable Factors Other than Age Under the ADEA (March 2012), on the ADA Amendments Act (March 2011), and on Title II of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act (November 2010). Under Ms. Mastroianni's direction, the Office of Legal Counsel has also developed policy documents addressing Religious Discrimination, Unlawful Disparate Treatment of Persons with Caregiving Responsibilities, Race and Color Discrimination, National Origin Discrimination, and a wide range of topics under the ADA. Ms. Mastroianni graduated from Cornell University, Harvard University Graduate School of Education, and the Fordham University Law School. She was elected a fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers in 2003; she received the Mary C. Lawton Award for Outstanding Government Service from the ABA Section of Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice in 2008; and, in 2009, she was named Federal Labor and Employment Attorney of the Year by the ABA's Section of Labor and Employment Law.

Amy L. Bess is the Chair of Vedder Price’s global Labor and Employment practice group and a Member of the Firm’s Board of Directors.  Her employment litigation experience includes the representation of employers before U.S. state and federal courts and administrative agencies, defending against claims of race, sex, disability and age discrimination; sexual harassment; whistleblower retaliation; restrictive-covenant disputes; wrongful termination; and wage and hour violations. She regularly counsels clients in all of these areas, drafts and negotiates employment and severance agreements, conducts on-site workplace investigations, presents training seminars and speaks to employer groups on avoiding workplace problems. Ms. Bess also has experience advising clients regarding their public accommodation obligations under Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act and representing clients in litigation involving related claims.

Ms. Bess has extensive first-chair bench trial, jury trial and arbitration experience. She also is experienced in the defense of complex class action litigation, including wage and hour collective actions and pattern or practice litigation brought by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.  Recently, Ms. Bess has published and spoken extensively and conducted trainings and investigations for employers on sexual harassment issues in connection with the #MeToo movement.



Jeffrey S. Klein is Head of Weil’s Employment Litigation Practice Group and Co-Head of the Firm’s Complex Commercial Litigation practice, which encompasses 160 attorneys worldwide. Mr. Klein is distinguished as both a first-chair trial lawyer and as a trusted advisor to senior management, General Counsels, and Boards of Directors of global companies on sophisticated human resources issues and employment-related crises.

For nearly four decades, Mr. Klein has exceled in and shaped novel areas of employment law as the workplace has undergone significant changes, including in relation to gender pay gap concerns, reverse discrimination claims, class arbitration issues, sexual harassment/#MeToo, non-competes, and anti-discrimination policies protecting transgender employees. As a result of his mastery of these issues, Mr. Klein has served as counsel to many top global companies such as Andeavor, Belmond Hotels, Godiva Chocolatier, Goldman Sachs, Mastercard, Perella Weinberg Partners, Sterling Jewelers, Tiffany and Co., Union Pacific, and other Fortune 500 companies.

Mr. Klein also offers unparalleled expertise as a sports attorney, and is regularly sought after by some of the most recognizable coaches and players. His most prominent recent matters include: representing former Maryland football head coach DJ Durkin in a highly publicized investigation into the culture of the football program; guiding Jim Harbaugh through his exit from the San Francisco 49ers and contract with the University of Michigan – one of the most high profile college football coaching signings of all time; and advising a number of professional athletes and college football coaches who have been the subject of front-page news articles over the past few years. 

Mr. Klein is a regular speaker at leading industry conferences, including the annual Workshop on Employment Law for Federal Judges, and has authored a bi-monthly column for more than 20 years for the New York Law Journal. He also serves as pro bono outside general counsel to the Public Art Fund and Joe Torre’s Safe At Home Foundation.

Mr. Klein is recognized as one of the nation’s leading employment/management attorneys by Chambers USA, Chambers Global, Legal 500, Human Resources Executive, and Lawdragon, which inducted him into its 2018 Lawdragon Legends class in recognition of his 10th appearance in the Lawdragon 500.

John Hamlin is Chief Counsel, Employment, Benefits and Governance for Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc., one of the world’s leading professional services firms with over 60,000 employees in approximately 90 countries.  The firm’s operating companies include Marsh, Mercer, Guy Carpenter, and Oliver Wyman.  Prior to joining Marsh & McLennan, he was Of Counsel with the law firm of Paul, Hastings Janofsky & Walker LLP.  While in private practice, he represented employers in all aspects of labor and employment law, before various state and federal courts and administrative agencies, and provided advice on an array of personnel-related issues.  Mr. Hamlin served as a Law Clerk to the Honorable B. Avant Edenfield, Judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of Georgia in Savannah.

Mr. Hamlin is a fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers.  He has published various articles on employment law and has presented at numerous seminars on assorted employment-related topics.  In 2014 he was recognized as one of The Legal 500’s GC Powerlist “Corporate Counsel 100: Rising Stars,” which recognizes leading in-house lawyers for innovation, quality and excellence.  He was selected by the International Law Office and the Association of Corporate Counsel as the recipient of the 2015 ILO Global Counsel Award for Employment Counsel of the Year.  He is the recipient of a 2016 First Chair Award for Top Employment Counsel.   

Mr. Hamlin earned a J.D. with honors from the University of Connecticut School of Law, where he was Editor-in-Chief of the Connecticut Journal of International Law

Kathleen M. McKenna is a partner in the Labor & Employment Law Department. With a formidable track record for success in major employment matters, she has extensive experience litigating employment disputes of all types, including defending employers against claims alleging all forms of discrimination, sexual harassment, retaliation, wrongful discharge, wage and hour and breach of contract. Her clients include major multi-national businesses, such as television networks, pharmaceutical companies, international retailers and law firms.

Adept at counseling clients at every turn of the litigation process, Kathleen employs a creative mix of litigation experience and business acumen to determine which cases should be litigated in court, which should be resolved in some alternative forum and which can and should be settled. While she is regularly successful on her clients' behalf through negotiation and dispositive motions, she possesses significant jury trial experience, and is well-versed in all forms of alternate dispute resolution.

Kathleen is regularly called upon to support clients with strategies, counseling and training to help them avoid litigation and government investigations, and provides practical advice on all workplace-related issues to today's top employers. These topics include employee discharge and discipline, reductions in force, employment policies and procedures, and compliance with federal, state and local employment laws.

Kathleen also has significant experience dealing with traditional labor matters. She has litigated the full range of labor proceedings and has served as the chief spokesperson or advisor in numerous collective bargaining negotiations. She also has advised management on National Labor Relations Act issues, including union organizing campaigns and representation elections, strikes, picketing, plant closings and work transfers, and purchase and acquisition issues.

Kathleen is a member of the College of Labor & Employment Lawyers. She is also a sought after lecturer on labor and employment issues.

Related Practices

Employment Litigation & Arbitration

Class & Collective Actions

Labor-Management Relations

Terminations, Reductions in Force & WARN Act

Disability, Accommodations & Leave Management

Strategic Corporate Planning

Higher Education


Boston College Law School, J.D., 1978

St. Peter's College, B.A., 1975
summa cum laude

Admissions & Qualifications

New York

New Jersey

Marty Schmelkin is a Managing Director, Associate General Counsel with Goldman, Sachs & Co. in New York. Marty is a member of the firm’s Employment Law Group, and his practice focuses on employment law counseling, affirmative action & diversity issues, employment discrimination arbitration and litigation. Marty has spent time in the firm’s Hong Kong office, handling employment law matters arising in the firm’s offices throughout Asia (Beijing, Hong Kong, Mumbai, Seoul, Shanghai, Singapore, Taipei, and Tokyo). He also covers matters arising in the firm’s non-U.S. offices in the Americas (Bermuda, Buenos Aires, Calgary, Cayman Islands, Mexico City, Santiago, Sao Paolo, and Toronto). Marty is the Chairperson of the Pro Bono Steering Committee at Goldman Sachs, where he coordinates all of the firm’s pro bono initiatives and programming. He is also a member of the Knowledge Share Committee, which provides Continuing Legal Education (CLE) programming for members of the firm’s Legal Department. Marty is a member of the Board of the Women’s Enterprise Development Center, an organization which provides training programs and support services to women business owners in Westchester County.

Marty received a Bachelor of Science degree from the School of Industrial and Labor Relations (ILR) at Cornell University in 1991, and a Juris Doctor degree from New York University School of Law in 1994. Prior to joining Goldman Sachs in 2000, Marty worked in the Employment Law Departments of Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe and O’Melveny & Myers.

Michael A. Curley is the Managing Partner of Curley, Hurtgen & Johnsrud LLP.  Mr. Curley founded his firm in 2009, and his firm represents employers throughout the country.  Mr. Curley has been recognized by Chambers USA as one of the top labor and employment lawyers in New York (Band One in each of the last several years).  He has also been awarded the Martindale Hubbell AV ranking, and has been recognized by Super Lawyers, Best Lawyers, and numerous other lawyer-recognition services. 

Before founding Curley, Hurtgen & Johnsrud, Mr. Curley was a partner with O’Melveny & Myers (where he started his career and worked for nearly 19 years) and with Morgan, Lewis & Bockius.  Mr. Curley splits his time between New York and Philadelphia, and works out of both cities in addition to traveling nationally to serve his clients’ needs. 

Mr. Curley attended Drexel University, where he graduated with highest honors and played on the Drexel basketball team.  After graduating from Drexel, Mr. Curley attended Villanova Law School, where he was on the Law Review and earned Order of the Coif honors.   

Mr. Curley is a member of the President’s Leadership Council at Drexel University.  He is also a member of the Advisory Board for the Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations.

Mr. Fortney is a co-founder of Fortney & Scott, LLC, a Washington, D.C.-based law firm counseling and advising clients on the full spectrum of work-place related matters, including employment discrimination and labor matters, compliance programs, government contracting, and developing strategies for avoiding or responding to workplace-related crises. Mr. Fortney’s broad-based practice includes equal employment opportunity requirements, wage and hour matters, federal contractor’s affirmative action and non-discrimination obligations, collective bargaining, and workplace health and safety. He brings experience from the public and private sectors, and he represents clients before federal and state agencies, including the U.S. Department of Labor’s agencies, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and the National Labor Relations Board.

Previously, Mr. Fortney served as the chief legal officer and other positions at the U.S. Department of Labor in Washington, D.C. during the term of President George H.W.  Bush.

Mr. Fortney is on the Board of Directors of the American Employment Law Council, a co-founder of the Institute for Workplace Equality, and a Member of the ABA Council for the Labor & Employment Section.  Mr. Fortney has been recognized as one of the leading employment lawyers in Washington, D.C. by the CHAMBERS USA survey of America’s Leading Lawyers for Business in all years from 2005 through present.  He was selected for inclusion in the 2008 through present editions of The Best Lawyers in America, Washington D.C.’s, Washington D.C.’s Best Lawyers, and Super Lawyers.  Mr. Fortney received an AV rating (the highest level) by Martindale-Hubbell.

Zach Fasman is a nationally recognized labor and employment lawyer who has shifted roles—from advocate to neutral. Zach participated in hundreds of mediations as an advocate and has trained as a mediator at the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution at Pepperdine Law School, at the New York City Bar Association, the New York Peace Institute and the National Employment Law Institute. He mediates disputes in this field as well as commercial and community disputes.

Zach brings to the neutral role extensive experience and knowledge of labor and employment law gained through a lengthy career in this field. He began his career as a traditional labor lawyer at Seyfarth Shaw in Chicago, negotiating labor contracts and trying arbitration cases. He has extensive experience in labor arbitration, having tried hundreds of arbitrations and handled scores of arbitration related cases in the courts, including the issue of class action procedures in labor arbitration. He also has extensive experience before the National Labor Relations Board and has litigated many complex labor cases in the courts on issues including federal preemption, successorship, civil RICO and labor-antitrust law. His career included two successful arguments before the United States Supreme Court, Golden State Transit Corp. v City of Los Angeles, 475 U.S. 608 (1986) and Golden State Transit Corp. v City of Los Angeles, 493 U.S. 103 (1989). He also has written numerous amicus curiae briefs to the Supreme Court on labor and employment law issues.

Zach has extensive experience in employment discrimination law, having served as national Co-Chair of the employment discrimination law practice while at Paul Hastings, where he was a partner for many years. Zach has litigated hundreds of employment law cases ranging from nationwide class actions to jury trials of individual discrimination claims. He has testified on many occasions before the U.S. Congress and the EEOC on labor and employment law issues and worked extensively with Congress and the White House on the Americans with Disabilities and the Civil Rights Act of 1991.

Zach devoted his practice exclusively to labor and employment law. He has been recognized as a leading practitioner for many years. He has repeatedly earned a "Band One" ranking in Chambers USA and Chambers Global (recently became a “Senior Statesman”) and is a long-time Fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers. He continues to teach employment law to members of the federal judiciary through the Federal Judicial Center and New York University Law School and has been a guest lecturer at various law schools on topics including appellate advocacy, employment discrimination, labor law, and legal ethics. He has published many articles in the New York Law Journal and has written three books on labor and employment law.

For more than 40 years, Willis Goldsmith has represented management before state and federal trial and appellate courts in matters arising under the NLRA, Section 301 of Taft-Hartley, ERISA, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, and OSHA, as well as in injunction, breach of contract, and employment cases. He also regularly represents management in collective bargaining and in labor contract administration.

Among his noteworthy matters is Chamber of Commerce v. Brown, which Willis argued before the U.S. Supreme Court. The Court, reversing an en banc decision of the Ninth Circuit, held that a California statute that prevented employers from using state funds to lawfully deter union organizing was preempted by the NLRA, noting federal labor policy favoring employer speech regarding union organizing.

Willis was Partner-in-Charge in New York from 2008 through 2012, when he was required to step down from that position pursuant to the terms of the Partnership Agreement; from 1991 to 2006, he chaired the Firm's Labor & Employment Practice. He is a Fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers; a Member of the Labor Law Advisory Committee of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce; an Advisor, American Law Institute Restatement of the Law Third Employment Law; a Member of the Advisory Board of the NYU School of Law Center for Labor and Employment Law, the Association of the Bar of the City of New York, and the Labor and Employment Law sections of the New York State Bar Association (Section Secretary, 2013-2014) and of the ABA. He is a Director of the Corporation of Yaddo, the upstate New York artists' retreat, and a Member of the Board of New York Appleseed.

Debra L. Raskin graduated from Radcliffe College magna cum laude in 1973 and received her law degree from Yale in 1977.  She worked at the Legal Assistance Foundation of Chicago from 1977 to 1981, serving in 1981 as Supervisor of Employment Litigation for that organization.  She served as law clerk to Hon. Lee P. Gagliardi of the United States District Court, Southern District of New York from 1982 to 1984.  From 1984 to 1986, she served as an Assistant Attorney General of the State of New York in the Civil Rights Bureau.  She joined the Vladeck firm in 1986, and became a partner of the firm in October 1988.  From 2014 to 2016 Ms. Raskin served as the President of the New York City Bar Association.  She is a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, has taught at Columbia and Fordham Law Schools and has lectured and written on employment law matters for the New York State Bar Association and the Practising Law Institute, among other groups. 

Laura S. Schnell, a member of the firm of Eisenberg & Schnell LLP, has practiced employment law in New York City on behalf of employees for over thirty years.  She is a 1980 graduate of Dartmouth College and a 1983 graduate of the University of Chicago Law School and served as a law clerk for the Honorable Jack B. Weinstein in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York from 1983 to 1984.  Ms. Schnell represents employees in all aspects of employment law and has extensive employment discrimination, non-compete and employment contract litigation experience as well as financial industry arbitration experience.  She has served on numerous bar committees and is a frequent speaker on issues involving employment litigation, arbitration and mediation.  She has been a Best Lawyers and Super Lawyers recognized attorney since 2006 and was named the New York Best Lawyer of the Year, Employment Law-Individual for 2012 and again for 2017.

Mr. Rogers, the managing partner of Sullivan & Cromwell’s Labor and Employment Law Group, is a graduate of Harvard College (magna cum laude, 1976) and Harvard Law School (cum laude, 1979).  He joined Sullivan & Cromwell LLP in 1979, and has been a partner of the Firm since 1987.  He has been named the New York City “Employment Law - Management Lawyer of the Year” for 2017 as well as for 2014 and the 2012 “New York City Labor Law – Management Lawyer of the Year” by The Best Lawyers in America,  and is one of 33 lawyers in the United States named in “Best of the Best USA 2015” as leading labor and employment lawyers.  In 2017 and for each of the prior nine years, he has been named one of the 100 leading management attorneys in the United States by the publication Human Resource Executive in conjunction with Lawdragon; he is also ranked in the top tier in New York among defendant-side employment lawyers in the Chambers USA Guide to America’s Leading Lawyers for Business (available at He is a contributing author to BNA’s Workplace Harassment Law (2012), is a co-author of West Publishing Co.’s Employment Litigation in New York (1996) and Employment Law Deskbook for Human Resources Professionals (2001), and serves as a lecturer on employment law topics to many groups, including the Practising Law Institute's annual Employment Law Institute and the Federal Judicial Center’s annual Workshop on Employment Law for Federal Judges.  He is a Fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers, a member of the American Law Institute and of the Executive Committee of the New York State Bar Association’s Labor and Employment Law Section, and has served on the Labor and Employment Law Committee of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York.

Judge Karen Klein has served as a U.S. Magistrate Judge for the District of North Dakota since 1985 and in 2005 she was named Chief Magistrate Judge of the district.  Her primary duties involve civil case management, mediation, civil trials and preliminary criminal proceedings.  Judge Klein has served on the Board of the Federal Judicial Center and as Chair of the Federal Judicial Center Advisory Committee on Magistrate Judge Education. She has taught programs on ethics, mediation, and faculty development for judges and lawyers in the Middle East, Asia and Eastern Europe. Judge Klein currently serves on the U.S. Judicial Conference Committee on Information and Technology and is a former member of the Conference's Committee on the Administration of the Magistrate Judges System. She is a past President of the Federal Magistrate Judges Association.