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Employment Discrimination Law & Litigation 2012

Speaker(s): Alan M. Koral, Anne C. Vladeck, Darnley D. Stewart, Debra L. Raskin, Elizabeth Grossman, Gerald T. Hathaway, Hon. Denny Chin, Hon. James C. Francis IV (Ret.), Kathleen M. McKenna, Kathleen Peratis, Kevin B. Leblang, Lisa M. Friel, Louis P. DiLorenzo, Mary Schuette, Ned H. Bassen, Patrick W. Shea, Pearl Zuchlewski, Robert J. Anello, Susan Ritz, Theodore O. Rogers, Jr.
Recorded on: Jun. 21, 2012
PLI Program #: 35061

Alan M. Koral is a Vedder Price P.C. shareholder and heads the firm’s Labor and Employment Practice Area in the New York offi ce. He represents and counsels domestic and international corporations with respect to litigation matters, administrative hearings and investigations, as well as general employment and labor law.

Mr. Koral has written and lectured extensively on labor and employment law matters. He has written numerous articles and is the author of two books, Conducting the Lawful Employment Interview (4th ed. 1992) and Employee Privacy Rights (1988), and has edited Chapter 7 (on religious discrimination) of the second edition of Schlei & Grossman’s Employment Discrimination Law (1983).
In 1985, Mr. Koral was appointed by Governor Mario Cuomo to the New York State Human Rights Advisory Council, and was later appointed by Governor Pataki to the New York Human Rights 50th Anniversary Advisory Committee. He serves on the Advisory Committee for labor and employment programs of the Practising Law Institute and the National Advisory Board of the Hofstra Labor and Employment Law Journal.

Mr. Koral was Chair of the New York State Bar Association’s Labor and Employment Law Section, 2008–2009, and has been a member of the Section’s Executive Committee for many years. He is currently co-chair of the International Employment Law Committee of the International Law Section of the American Bar Association and is also a member of the EEO Committee of the ABA’s Labor and Employment Law Section.

Mr. Koral is a Fellow of the American College of Labor and Employment Law and is a member of the Board of Visitors of the CUNY School of Law and St. John’s University
Law School Labor and Employment Law Board of Advisors. He has been named in New York Super Lawyers in 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010 and is listed in Who’s Who in American Law and Who’s Who.

Labor and Employment

J.D., University of Chicago, Associate Editor, The University of Chicago Law Review

Anne C. Vladeck, a partner at Vladeck, Raskin & Clark, P.C., concentrates on representation of individuals in employment matters, including discrimination, sexual harassment, defamation, and litigation.  She graduated from the University of Pennsylvania (B.A., magna cum laude, 1975) and Columbia Law School (J.D., 1978).  She is an Adjunct Faculty member at Columbia Law School and previously taught at Fordham and Cardozo Law Schools.  She is a trustee of the Federal Bar Foundation (Secretary), on the Executive Committee of the Federal Bar Council Inn of Court (President-Emeritus); Member of Disciplinary Committee, Supreme Court Appellate Division, 1st Department, New York, January 1, 2015 – December 31, 2017, and was formerly a member of the Association of the Bar of the City of New York Professional Discipline Committee.  Anne is a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers. 

Anne has been a speaker for, among others, Practising Law Institute, ALI/ABA, ABA, NYSBA, NYCLA and N.Y.U. Conference on Labor, on employment law and litigation issues.  She received a Woman of Power and Influence Award by NOW-NYC in 2005; Women of Distinction Award by the Labor and Employment Relations Association – New York City Chapter in 2006, and the Equal Opportunity Award by Legal Momentum in 2010.  Named one of top 100 Lawyers in New York and one of top 50 Women Lawyers in New York by New York Super Lawyers 2008, 2009 and 2010; and one of New York Magazine's "Best Lawyers."  Anne has tried several employment cases, including most recently a sexual harassment and retaliation case, Anucha Browne Sanders v. Madison Square Garden, et al.

Darnley D. Stewart is a partner at the New York law firm of Giskan Solotaroff Anderson & Stewart LLP. Ms. Stewart has prosecuted class action cases against a number of large companies, including Ford Motor Company, Gerber, Coastal Corporation, First Union Bank, National Car Rental, General Motors, Nissan, Toyota, and Bank of America.  In connection with her work on Coleman, et al. v. General Motors Acceptance Corporation, Ms. Stewart was named as a finalist for "Trial Lawyer of the Year" in 2004 by the Trial Lawyers for Public Justice.  She is a member of the Class and Collective Action Committee of the National Employment Lawyers Association and serves as President of the Executive Board of the New York affiliate (NELA/NY) of that organization. She is also a member of the Technology in the Law and Workplace Committee of the American Bar Association's Labor and Employment Section and serves on the Board of Workplace Fairness. Ms. Stewart lectures regularly on employment class action issues, and has frequently commented in the media, including the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, National Public Radio and the Today show, regarding issues raised in a variety of employment discrimination cases. 


Gerald T. Hathaway is a partner in the Labor & Employment Practice at Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp, resident in the Firm's New York office where he represents domestic and international corporations of all sizes, including Fortune 500 and Global Fortune 500 companies, in major labor and employment matters. Mr. Hathaway regularly advises multinational corporations regarding labor and employment issues that apply to local, national and international corporate transactions and financial restructuring, as well as massive reductions in workforce, including the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN) and Older Workers Benefit Protection Act compliance. He also represents management in collective bargaining, arbitrations and contentious litigation, and counsels management on avoiding employment litigation and grievances. Mr. Hathaway defends employers facing Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and National Labor Relations Board charges and private lawsuits, including discrimination class actions, Fair Labor Standards Act collective actions, and claims related to The Americans with Disabilities Act, The Age Discrimination in Employment Act, The National Labor Relations Act, The Labor Management Relations Act, Section 1981 and Title VII.

Mr. Hathaway has particular experience representing employers in the entertainment - film, television and theatre, banking and finance, healthcare, hospitality, advertising, fashion and luxury goods, newspaper, private equity, and transportation industries. 

A Contributing Editor to The Developing Labor Law, 6th Ed., Chapter 16, "Subjects of Bargaining," ABA Section of Labor and Employment Law, (BNA Books, 2012), Mr. Hathaway obtained his J.D. from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law and his B.A. from La Salle University. He has been named one of the "100 Most Powerful Corporate Employment Lawyers" by Human Resources Executive, included in the "International Who's Who of Management Labour & Employment Lawyers" by Who's Who Legal, and is a Fellow of the College of Labor & Employment Lawyers.  

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

Kevin Leblang heads Kramer Levin’s Employment Law department and concentrates exclusively on representing management on employment law litigation and advisory matters.

Mr. Leblang counsels employers on matters ranging from the adoption and application of employee relations policies to the evaluation and minimization of litigation risks of employment decisions. He also represents management clients in litigations before federal and state courts, administrative agencies and arbitrators. Mr. Leblang has extensive experience litigating claims alleging all forms of discrimination, breach of contract and the myriad of tort claims (e.g. defamation, wrongful discharge, negligent hiring or supervision, etc.) arising out of the employment relationship. He also has extensive experience advising and litigating in the rapidly growing field of employee non-competition law.

Lisa M. Friel  joined T&M Protection Resources in October 2011 as Vice President of the Sexual Misconduct Consulting & Investigations division following a distinguished 28-year career as a Manhattan prosecutor. Since joining T&M, Ms. Friel and her staff have developed policies and procedures, provided training workshops and conducted sensitive investigations into issues of sexual misconduct (both sexual assault and sexual harassment), domestic violence, stalking, harassment, hazing and bullying for primary and secondary schools, colleges and universities, athletic teams and leagues (collegiate and professional), non-profit organizations, corporations and private individuals. She is presently the Special Advisor to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell on issues related to domestic violence and sexual assault.

Ms. Friel began her professional career at the New York County District Attorney’s Office.  Hired by District Attorney Robert M. Morgenthau in 1983, Ms. Friel specialized in sexual assault cases for the majority of her career at the District Attorney’s Office. She was the Chief of the Sex Crimes Prosecution Unit for nearly a decade and its Deputy Chief for 11 years. Supervising more than 40 assistant district attorneys, support staff and investigators, she typically managed 300 cases and investigations at any one time.

Since her first days as a prosecutor in 1983, and continuing in her tenure at T&M, Ms. Friel has directed thousands of investigations into allegations of sexual assault and other misconduct and has trained hundreds of law enforcement personnel throughout the world. Lawmakers in Albany and Washington repeatedly called upon her expertise to toughen laws against sexual predators, combat human trafficking, create DNA databanks and establish laws and protocols to eliminate the backlog of untested rape kits on the shelves of police departments’ evidence rooms around the country. 

An internationally recognized expert on sexual assault, Ms. Friel has investigated and supervised complex cases involving sexual assault and harassment, human trafficking, workplace violence, child pornography, internet predators, unlawful surveillance, theft and fraud. She has gained a reputation for being incredibly thorough, sensitive and creative in her work, a skilled interviewer and investigator, and someone with great intelligence, experience and good judgment. She’s been hailed as a “consummate professional” by many in her field. Among her honors: a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Mt. Sinai Medical Center Sexual Assault Victims’ Intervention Program; Outstanding Prosecutor of the Year Award from the New York City Alliance Against Sexual Assault; awards for Distinguished Leadership and Outstanding Service from St. Luke’s/Roosevelt Hospital Center.

An instructor, educator, lecturer, mother of three college-age children and former Division 1 varsity player and coach, Ms. Friel has connected with diverse audiences ranging from seasoned detectives to school children, doctors to sexual assault advocates, as well as athletes and athletic personnel at all levels. She has headlined legal, sports and education conferences, has provided training to all types of audiences and has participated in numerous interviews addressing sexual harassment and assault, rape and domestic violence.

She was among the Manhattan prosecutors featured in an acclaimed HBO 2011 documentary, Sex Crimes Unit. In 2009, Inside Edition interviewed Ms. Friel for a segment entitled Nightclub Dangers. She also appeared in an Emmy-nominated series of educational videos, Clicking with Caution, produced by the New York City Mayor’s Criminal Justice Coordinator’s Office. Most recently, she was featured in the March 2013 New York Magazine issue as one of New York’s Women Leaders in the Law.

Ms. Friel earned a Bachelor of Arts in history from Dartmouth College, graduating cum laude. At the University of Virginia School of Law, she finished in the top seven percent of her class and was awarded the Order of the Coif upon receiving her Juris Doctor.

Louis has practiced labor and employment law for more than 35 years and is managing member of the firm's New York City office.

Louis represents employers and management in all aspects of labor and employment law. His areas of experience include collective bargaining, workplace investigations, NLRB proceedings, labor audits, supervisory training, wage and hour issues, arbitration, jury trials in both state and federal courts, wage incentive plans, OFCCP audits and proceedings, employment litigation before the EEOC and the Human Rights Division and alternative dispute resolution techniques. Louis also serves several insurance companies as panel counsel (e.g., AIG and Chubb) with respect to employment litigation matters. From 2002-2004, he served as General Counsel and Secretary to Agway, Inc., a Fortune 500 Company.

Louis co-authored the FDCC Quarterly article entitled Employers' Settlement Agreements with Departing Employees Under Attack, Vol. 57, No. 3, Spring 2007. He also co-authored a complete guide for business managers and HR professionals written in plain English entitled, What Every Business Manager and HR Professional Should Know About ... Federal Labor and Employment Laws and a two volume treatise entitled Corporate Counseling (1988) and was a contributing author to Public Sector Labor Law (1988). Louis is also on the editorial board of the two volume treatise entitled New York Civil Practice Before Trial (2001). He has authored and co-authored numerous articles on various labor and employment law topics. Louis' published articles include: "Enforcing Employer-Employee Arbitration Agreements After Circuit City", 18 Fordham University Law Journal 27 (2001); "Forging a Strategy to Combat Sympathy Strikes", 29 Syracuse Law Review 847 (1978); "Mid Term Bargaining Over Unit Work Transfers", 45 CCH Labor Law Journal No. 7 (1994); "The Growing Menace: Violence in the Workplace", 67 New York State Bar Journal  1 (Jan. 1995); "Civility and Professionalism", 68 New York State Bar Journal No. 1 (Jan. 1996); "Workers' Compensation Discrimination in New York: Is It Really LoDolce Vita?", 32 New York State Bar Journal 220 (June 1982); "Employer Liability for Sexual Harassment After Ellerth and Faragher", 6 Duke University of Gender Law & Policy No. 1 (1999); two articles on Title IX and Intercollegiate Athletics, 6 Journal of College and University Law 61 (1980); "Screening Applicants for a Safer Workplace", HR Magazine, p. 55 (March 1995); "After-Acquired Evidence in Employment Discrimination Cases", 19 New York State Bar Association Labor and Employment Law Newsletter No. 2 (1994); and "Employer's Responsibilities Under 1986 Immigration Act and COBRA", The CPA Journal p. 32 (May 1988). In May of 1996 Louis was interviewed extensively in a Forbes Magazine cover story on Sexual Harassment. In their January 2003 issue, the Corporate Legal Times described him as the "Great Negotiator". He was also featured in the United Educator's video entitled "Sexual Harassment in Academia, No Real Winners", and has been quoted in several publications including Business Week.

Louis has been a key speaker at numerous seminars throughout the United States and other countries on a wide variety of Labor and Employment Law topics. In addition, he has lectured to: various university groups, including the College and University Personnel Association; local, state and national SHRM Conferences; and a number of national and regional business association.

Ned Bassen is Chair of the Employment & Unfair Competition department of Hughes Hubbard & Reed LLP.  His work is recognized by such publications as Chambers USA, Euromoney’s Guide to the World’s Leading Experts in Labour and Employment, Best Lawyers in America and Super Lawyers.  He is named Best Lawyers’ 2016 New York City Labor Law-Management “Lawyer of the Year.”  He also is included in Human Resource Executive’s The Nation’s Most Powerful Employment Attorneys Top 100 and in Lawdragon’s The Guide to World-Class Employment Lawyers.  Mr. Bassen has been awarded the Burton Award for Legal Achievement, Distinguished Writing Award In Law.  He has co-authored the U.S. chapter of Global Legal Insights-Employment and Labour Law 4th Edition (2015).

The most recent edition of Chambers USA states that “[h]e is noted for his handling of such matters as employment discrimination and trade secret cases.  Observers describe Bassen as ‘litigation savvy’ and note that he possesses ‘very strong negotiation skills’”.  Past editions have made the following comments:  “Sources say that he is ‘very smart, very tenacious, very loyal to his clients and very protective of them.’”  “Interviewees observe that he is an ‘eloquent and logical speaker – it’s almost impossible to disagree with his conclusions.’”   “Clients praise [Mr. Bassen’s] ‘encyclopedic knowledge’ of employment law and his ‘finely tuned instincts and well-balanced judgment.’  His skill in the courtroom does not go unnoted, with sources reporting: ‘He is able to distill facts to their essence and forcefully and effectively argue his client’s position.’”

Mr. Bassen has had an expansive practice for over 40 years.  It ranges from litigating on behalf of and counseling defense contractors, financial institutions, universities and other nonprofit institutions to individuals accused of wrongdoing in connection with employment, including, for example, representation of the principal targets in the well-publicized collapse of the Dewey & LeBoeuf law firm.

Mr. Bassen graduated from Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations in 1970 and Cornell Law School in 1973, where he was Note and Comment Editor of the Law Review.

Patrick Shea is the Global Chair of the Paul Hastings Employment Law Department, and leads a diverse group of more than 100 lawyers in 14 offices around the world. He is based in the firm’s New York office where he represents companies in a wide range of employment-related litigation, including matters involving employee benefits, employment discrimination, wage and hour claims, and wrongful discharge. His clients include major companies in the financial services, information technology, manufacturing, defense, and high-tech industries.

Recent Representations

Weber v. FujiFilm (D. Conn. 2012) (prevailed in three week federal jury trial brought by a senior executive alleging age and national origin discrimination)

Perkins v. Southern New England Telephone (D. Conn. 2011) (prevailed in three week wage and hour class action jury trial)

Christie v. General Electric (D. Conn. 2010) (prevailed in six-day age discrimination jury trial brought by employee with 20 years of service)

Eldridge v. Provident Life& & Accident Insurance Co., (Mass. Super. Ct. 2001) (defendant’s verdict in three-week jury trial of nationwide class action alleging breach of contract)

Flanagan v. General Electric Co., (2d Cir. 2001) (affirming summary judgment for defendants in ERISA class action challenging transfer of more than $1 billion in pension plan assets)

Prevailed in nine arbitrations before the AAA and FINRA.

Accolades and Recognitions

Chambers USA ranked in Band 1 among the top labor and employment lawyers in New York

Legal 500 notes “Patrick Shea ‘seems to win whatever he touches’”

Named in The Best Lawyers in America

Fellow, College of Labor and Employment Lawyers

Named one of “America’s Top 100 Employment Law Attorneys” by Lawdragon

Rated "AV Preeminent" by Martindale-Hubbell®


Speaking Engagements and Publications

Frequent speaker on topics in the employment law area


Professional and Community Involvement

Appointed by the Chairman of the EEOC to serve on a Negotiated Rulemaking Committee that developed regulations governing age discrimination releases under Title II of the Older Workers Benefit Protection Act

Member of the New York, Connecticut, and the District of Columbia Bar Associations

Admitted to a number of federal district and circuit courts

After graduating from law school, he served as law clerk to the honorable Raymond J. Pettine, Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court for the District of Rhode Island



Yale Law School, J.D., 1981 – where he was a member of the Board of Editors of the Yale Law Journal

University of Scranton, B.A., 1978

Pearl Zuchlewski is a partner in Kraus & Zuchlewski LLP where she primarily represents individual employees.

She is a former Chair of the New York State Bar Association (“NYSBA”) Labor and Employment Law Section and presently serves on the Section’s Executive Committee.  She also is a Section representative to the NYSBA House of Delegates.  In addition, Ms. Zuchlewski is a member of the American Bar Association (“ABA”) Labor and Employment Law Section’s Employee Rights and Responsibilities Committee, the National Employment Lawyers Association and the Association of the Bar in the City of New York (“ABCNY”). 

She has served on the FINRA task force which drafted the FINRA Code of Arbitration provisions for statutory discrimination claims and is former Chair of the FINR’s National Arbitration and Mediation Committee.  Ms. Zuchlewski most recently served as Chair of a FINRA employment task force which reviewed and consolidated the former NASD and NYSE Codes of Arbitration Procedure.

Ms. Zuchlewski has been recognized for several years as among the Best Lawyers in New York and in Superlawyers.  She is a Fellow in the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers and a member of the College’s Board of Governors.  She also is a member of the advisory boards of the New York University Law School Center for Labor and Employment, the Hofstra Law School, CPR Employment Disputes Committee and the New York City Chapter of the Labor and Employment Relations Association; her other professional activities include membership in the Public Investors Arbitration Bar Association.

Ms. Zuchlewski is a frequent speaker on alternative dispute resolution, sexual harassment and other employment related issues at various organizations including the ABA, NYSBA, ABCNY, Practicing Law Institute and New York University Judicial Conferences.  Her articles have appeared in the New York Law Journal, various proceedings of the New York University’s Annual Conferences on Labor, ABA, NYSBA and other publications.

The Honorable James C. Francis IV (Ret.) is a Mediator, Arbitrator, and Special Master affiliated with JAMS. From 1985-2017, he served as a United States Magistrate Judge in the Southern District of New York, including a two-year term as chief magistrate judge. During his tenure, Judge Francis was responsible for conducting pretrial proceedings, mediating settlements, and presiding over trial in thousands of cases. The matters he handled include financial markets claims, employment discrimination class actions, wage and hour collective actions, multidistrict product liability litigation, civil rights class actions, mass torts, securities class actions, admiralty cases, copyright and trademark claims, patent infringement cases, and a wide array of complex commercial litigation. Judge Francis is nationally recognized as an expert in electronic discovery.

After stepping down from the bench in 2017, Judge Francis served as distinguished lecturer at the CUNY School of Law, where he taught Civil Procedure, Evidence, Electronic Discovery, Constitutional Torts, and Federal Courts.  Judge Francis has been an active member of several bar groups and currently serves on the Labor and Employment Committee of the New York City Bar Association.

Judge Francis graduated summa cum laude from Yale College, where he was a member of Phi Beta Kappa.  He received his juris doctor degree from the Yale Law School and a masters degree in public policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.  Following graduation from law school, Judge Francis clerked for the Honorable Robert L. Carter in the Southern District of New York.  After his clerkship, Judge Francis served an attorney with the impact litigation unit of the Legal Aid Society of New York. There, he litigated class actions and test cases in the areas of housing and education. He also established the Disability Rights Unit to provide legal services for persons with physical and mental disabilities. 

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 Practicing Law Institute, among other groups. 

Susan Ritz has practiced employment law since 1985.  She is a partner in the Manhattan law firm of Ritz Clark & Ben-Asher LLP.  Ms. Ritz handles all forms of employment-related matters, including advising employees and partners regarding their rights, duties and entitlement to benefits; handling contract, severance agreement and partnership dispute negotiations; and representing employees and partners in negotiations, mediations, administrative proceedings, arbitrations and lawsuits encompassing a full panoply of employment-related issues, with special emphasis on claims of unlawful harassment, retaliation and employment discrimination on the basis of race, sex, gender, national origin, age, disability, religion, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity and other protected classes.  

Ms. Ritz provides neutral mediation services, and conducts impartial internal investigations on behalf of employers into alleged discriminatory conduct.  She also advises non-profits and small employers on employment-related issues, reviews and revises Staff Manuals for employers, and represents employers in contract and severance negotiations.  She offers harassment and discrimination prevention training to management and employees, as well.

Ms. Ritz is listed in The Best Lawyers in America (20+ years), Super Lawyers (12 years) and Law Dragon 500 Leading Plaintiff Employment Lawyers. She is rated AV by Martindale Hubbell and was selected for its 2011 Inaugural Edition of the Bar Register of Preeminent Women Lawyers.  AVVO gives her a rating of 10 out of 10.  She is also a fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers and a member of the Litigation Counsel of America. Ms. Ritz has published articles and lectured widely, including for the National Employment Lawyers Association/NY, ALI-CLE, American Bar Association, Practising Law Institute, New York State Bar Association, New York City Bar Association, the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers, and at CUNY School of Law.  She serves as a pro bono mediator for the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. 

Denny Chin is a United States Circuit Judge for the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.  He was sworn in on April 26, 2010.  Judge Chin graduated from Princeton University magna cum laude and received his law degree from Fordham Law School.  After clerking for the Honorable Henry F. Werker, United States District Judge for the Southern District of New York, he was associated with the law firm Davis Polk & Wardwell.  He then served as an Assistant United States Attorney in the Southern District of New York, and thereafter he and two of his colleagues from the U.S. Attorney=s Office started a law firm, Campbell, Patrick & Chin.  In 1990, he joined Vladeck, Waldman, Elias & Engelhard, P.C., where he specialized in labor and employment law.  From September 13, 1994, through April 23, 2010, Judge Chin served as a United States District Judge for the Southern District of New York.  He presided over both civil and criminal cases, including cases involving Megan’s Law, the Million Youth March, Al Franken’s use of the phrase “Fair and Balanced” in the title of a book, the Naked Cowboy, the Google Books project, and the United Nations Oil for Food Program.  He also presided over the trial of an Afghan warlord charged with conspiring to import heroin and the guilty plea and sentencing of financier Bernard L. Madoff.  Judge Chin was born in Hong Kong.  He was the first Asian American appointed a United States District Judge outside the Ninth Circuit.

Elizabeth Grossman is Disability Rights New York’s Director of its Protection and Advocacy for Individual Rights (PAIR) and Protection and Advocacy for Beneficiaries of Social Security (PABSS) Programs.  Prior to joining Disability Rights New York, Elizabeth served as Regional Attorney for the New York District Office of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, where she managed the litigation program.  Previously, she practiced plaintiff’s employment law at Schneyer & Shen, and worked as an attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union Women’s Rights Project and the Center for Reproductive Law and Policy.  Elizabeth is a certified volunteer community mediator in New York State.  Elizabeth graduated from the University of Michigan Law School and the University of Michigan.  Elizabeth received the Federal Executive Board Distinguished Government Service Award in 2002, was profiled in the New York Times “Public Lives” column in 2004, was named as one of 50 “Women to Watch” by the Wall Street Journal in 2005, received a Service to America Medal from the Partnership for Public Service in 2005, and was given the Distinguished Alumna Award by Cranbrook School in 2015.

Mary Schuette recently retired as Vice President, Legal Services, responsible for the Labor Relations, Benefits, Workers’ Compensation and General Litigation and Claims areas of the Law Department of the Consolidated Edison Company of New York.   She is currently working as a consultant; she also serves on the board of the Fund for Modern Courts.  She is a graduate of Yale College and the Columbia University School of Law and is admitted to the bar of the State of New York.  She has been admitted to practice in the Supreme Court, the United States Courts of Appeals for the Second, Fifth, Seventh, and Ninth Circuits, and the United States District Courts for the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York.  Prior to joining Con Edison’s Law Department she worked for the National Labor Relations Board.

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.