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California Employment Law Update 2013


Speaker(s): Aaron L. Agenbroad, Adam P. KohSweeney, Gillian Lester, Jahan C. Sagafi, Joan C. Williams, John T. Mullan, Lawrence H. Wexler, Michael D. Weil, Mindy M. Morton, Noah Lebowitz, Phyllis W. Cheng, Robert R. Roginson, Roberta L. Steele, Timothy J. Long, Tracey S. Lesetar, Vanessa L. Holton, William R. Tamayo
Recorded on: Sep. 10, 2013
PLI Program #: 42573

Tim Long leads a vibrant labor and employment law practice representing clients throughout California, and beyond, from his offices in Los Angeles and Sacramento.

Mr. Long has significant experience litigating complex employment matters, having acted as lead counsel in numerous class; collective and representative actions and advised on dozens more. He has represented financial institutions, high tech companies, healthcare-related entities, airlines, retailers, transportation and logistics companies, among others.

Mr. Long is one of the few lawyers who tried to verdict an employment class action, obtaining a complete defense verdict on behalf of a major retailer in a matter in which the potential exposure exceeded US$40 million. He went on to protect the verdict on appeal.

In the wage-and-hour area, Mr. Long has litigated exemption, incentive compensation, independent contractor, off-the-clock and pay practice claims. He also has defeated class and collective certification (including at Stage One) in exemption, off-the-clock and pay practice cases.

He has significant experience litigating other complex employment and non-employment matters, including employment discrimination and wrongful termination claims, and matters involving qui tam, trade secret, white collar crime and environmental claims. Finally, Mr. Long counsels clients on a wide variety of employment and related corporate issues. 

Mr. Long frequently represents employers in their dealings with state and federal administrative agencies, including the EEOC, the Internal Revenue Service, the U.S. Department of Labor, the California Department of Fair Employment & Housing, Division of Labor Standards Enforcement, and Employment Development Department.

In the area of trade secret and unfair business practices litigation, Mr. Long has both prosecuted and defended employers. He has obtained broad, multi-jurisdiction injunctions against former employees who have misappropriated client trade secrets. Mr. Long also has successfully resisted competitor efforts to enjoin the lawful practices of his clients

Related Practice Areas

  • Employment Law and Litigation
  • Trade Secrets Litigation
  • Traditional Labor Law

Education

  • J.D., with great distinction, Order of the Coif, University of the Pacific McGeorge School of Law, 1988
  • B.A., International Relations, Stanford University, 1983
  • Certificate, Francais Commercial et Economique, Institut Catholique, Paris, France, 1982

Honors

  • The Recorder's California Labor & Employment Department of the Year (2013-2014)
  • The Recorder's California Litigation Department of the Year (2013-2014)
  • The Recorder Leading Employment Lawyer (2012)


Aaron Agenbroad's practice includes all aspects of labor and employment law, with a focus on representing corporate clients in complex labor and employment disputes. In the employment arena, his practice includes litigation of California wage and hour class actions and FLSA collective actions, California discrimination cases under FEHA and CFRA, and federal discrimination cases, including ADEA, FMLA, ADA, and Title VII claims. Aaron has experience with all phases of litigation and has tried multiple cases to verdict. He also regularly counsels employers in employment matters, including reductions in force, employee terminations, FMLA and CFRA issues, and EEOC and FEHA charges.

In his traditional labor work, Aaron's experience includes representation of management in labor arbitrations in the telecommunications, health care, refining, and manufacturing industries. He also has represented clients in NLRB and PERB unfair labor practice proceedings, led collective bargaining negotiations, and worked in defending union organizing campaigns. His NLRB election experience includes successful results in certification and decertification elections involving retail facilities, newspapers, casinos, and health care institutions.

Recent successes include full defense verdicts as lead counsel in trials on behalf of R.J. Reynolds and the Port of Oakland, the resolution of three statewide wage and hour class actions on behalf of Chevron Stations, and leading successful collective bargaining negotiations in the health care, shipping, and gaming industries.

Representative clients include Alameda Health System, AstraZeneca, IBM, Macy's, McDonald's, R.J. Reynolds, United Airlines, and Verizon Wireless.

Aaron is Partner-in-Charge of the Firm's San Francisco Office.

EXPERIENCE HIGHLIGHTS

Alameda Health System prevails on grievance regarding independent contractor status of anesthesiologists.

R. J. Reynolds wins full defense verdict after trial of race discrimination and wrongful termination claims

United Continental Holdings obtains summary judgment in single plaintiff employment dispute

HONORS & DISTINCTIONS

Legal 500 US (2012-2015) — recommended attorney: labor & employment litigation and labor-management relations

EDUCATION

Georgetown University (J.D. 1997); University of Washington (B.A. 1992)

BAR ADMISSIONS

California and U.S. District Courts for the Central, Eastern, Northern, and Southern Districts of California


Adam P. KohSweeney

Adam P. KohSweeney is a partner in O'Melveny's San Francisco office and a member of the Labor and Employment Practice. He has been named as a Northern California "Rising Star" in 2011 and 2012, and a Southern California "Rising Star" in 2006, 2007, and 2008 in an annual survey conducted by Law & Politics Media Inc. Adam works on matters involving an array of labor- and employment-related issues under federal and state law, including: wage and hour class action litigation under the Fair Labor Standards Act as well as state law; litigation and arbitration under the Railway Labor Act; disputes involving employee raiding and misappropriation of confidential information; and arbitration of employment-related disputes pursuant to the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority's Code of Arbitration Procedure. He represents and counsels a wide variety of employers, including companies in the financial services, hospitality, airline, and construction industries.

Adam also regularly advises employers regarding how to preserve, collect, and review electronically stored information (“ESI”). He is the co-author of a recent practice guide which discusses all aspects of the doctrine of spoliation in the context of electronically stored information.

Adam is also active in pro bono matters and often advises small and not-for-profit employers regarding compensation and employment policies and practices. In addition, before transferring to the San Francisco Office, he served as the Coordinating Attorney for the Los Angeles Office’s Trial Advocacy Prosecution Program, through which junior attorneys gain trial experience

Professional Activities

Law Clerk, Honorable Howard H. Kestin, New Jersey Superior Court, Appellate Division

Admitted to Practice
, US District Court, Central and Northern Districts of California; US Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit

Presenter
, "The Brinker Decision: New Guidance on California's Meal Period Requirements TeleBriefing," Law Seminars International (2012); Bridgeport 7th Annual Wage & Hour Litigation Conference (2011); Bridgeport CE’s 2010 Wage & Hour Litigation Conference (2010); ExecSense’s Nuts & Bolts of the FLSA (2010); Practicing Law Institute’s 37th Annual Institute on Employment Law (2008); Employers Group's Workplace and Employment Law Update (2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011)

Co-Author, "Non-Exempt Employee Compensation: Traps For The Unwary," Bloomberg Labor & Employment Reports (December 2011; co-authored with Apalla Chopra); "Strategic Issues Related to Employee Exemption Review," Bloomberg Labor & Employment Reports (August 2011; co-authored with Apalla Chopra); "Courts Split Over Calculating Overtime Damages,” National Law Journal (January 2011; co-authored with Justin Walker); "Spoliation in the Electronic Age,” BNA Books (December 2010; co-authored with Roberta Vespremi and Eric Chan); "Hiring? Laying Off? What You Must Know Now," BusinessWeek (October 2009; co-authored with Framroze Virjee) Honors, Named a Northern California "Rising Star" (2011, 2012) and a Southern California "Rising Star" (2006, 2007, 2008) in a survey conducted by Law & Politics Media Inc.

Professional Focus

Labor and Employment

Education

Rutgers University, J.D.: Editor-in-Chief, Rutgers Law Review
Rutgers University, B.A., English: with honors; Athenaeum Honors Society

Admitted

California; New York


Gillian Lester is Acting Dean and Alexander F. and May T. Morrison Professor of Law at Berkeley Law School.  She teaches Contracts, Employment Law, and a seminar on social insurance. She obtained a B.Sc. from University of British Columbia (1986), LLB. from University of Toronto (1990), and J.S.D. from Stanford (1998).  From 1994 to 2006, she was on the faculty of the UCLA School of Law.  She has been a Visiting Professor at Georgetown, Chicago, and Harvard Law Schools. At Berkeley she has served as Senior Associate Dean (2010 -2013) and Acting Dean (2013).  Her scholarship focuses on workplace issues, particularly intellectual property in the workplace, distributive justice, and the design of social insurance programs. She is the co-author of one of the country’s leading casebooks on Employment Law and an Advisor to the American Law Institute Restatement of Employment Law.  Recent publications include, "Keep Government Out of My Medicare”:  The Elusive Search for Popular Support of Taxes and Social Spending, in Michael Sherraden & Marion Crain (eds.), Working and Living in the Shadow of Economic Fragility (Oxford U. Press, 2013, forthcoming); Can Joe the Plumber Support Redistribution? Law, Social Preferences, and Sustainable Policy Design, 64 TAX LAW REVIEW 201 (2011); Choice of Law and Employee Restrictive Covenants: An American Perspective, 30 COMPARATIVE LABOR LAW & POLICY JOURNAL 389-423 (2010); and A Defense of Paid Family Leave, 28 HARV. J. LAW & GENDER 1 (2005). She is co-author of JUMPING THE QUEUE: AN ENQUIRY INTO THE LEGAL TREATMENT OF STUDENTS WITH LEARNING DISABILITIES (Harvard University Press, 1997) (with Mark Kelman), and Employment Law, EMPLOYMENT LAW: CASES AND MATERIALS, FIFTH ED. (Lexis-Nexis, 2012) (with Willborn, Schwab & Burton).


JAHAN C. SAGAFI is the partner in charge of the Outten & Golden San Francisco office, where he represents employees in class actions asserting wage and hour, discrimination, and other claims.  Mr. Sagafi is active in the legal community, having served on the boards of Alliance for Justice, the San Francisco American Constitution Society (ACS) chapter, the ACLU of Northern California, and Public Advocates.  He has also served as a member of the Board of Advisors of the San Francisco ACS chapter and a member of the Bar Association of San Francisco’s Judicial Evaluations Committee. He is a frequent speaker and writer regarding employment litigation, class action jurisprudence, and other issues.

Prior to joining Outten & Golden, he was a partner at Lieff, Cabraser, Heimann & Bernstein, and clerked for the Honorable William W Schwarzer of the Northern District of California.  Mr. Sagafi graduated from Harvard College and Harvard Law School.


Joan C. Williams has played a central role in reshaping the debates over women's advancement for the past quarter-century. Described as having "something approaching rock star status" by The New York Times, Williams was awarded the American Bar Foundation's Outstanding Scholar Award (2012), the Elizabeth Hurlock Beckman Award (2012) and the ABA's Margaret Brent Award for Women Lawyers of Achievement (2006). In recognition of her interdisciplinary work, Williams gave the 2008 Massey Lectures in American Civilization at Harvard University, delivered in prior years by (among others) Eudora Welty, Gore Vidal and Toni Morrison.

Williams, who is Distinguished Professor of Law and Hastings Foundation Chair at University of California, Hastings College of the Law, has authored or co-authored six books. She has written over seventy law review articles, including one listed in 1996 as one of the most cited law review articles ever written. Her work has been excerpted in casebooks on six different topics.

As Founding Director of the Center for WorkLife Law, Williams has played a leading role in documenting workplace bias against mothers, leading to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's 2007 Guidance on Caregiver Discrimination.  Williams has organized social scientists to document workplace bias against mothers, notably in a 2004 special issue of the Journal of Social Issues titled "The Maternal Wall" (co-edited with Monica Biernat and Faye Crosby), which received the Distinguished Publication Award of the Association for Women in Psychology.

Williams also has played a central role in documenting how work-family conflict affects working-class families, through reports such as "One Sick Child Away From Being Fired" (2006), "Three Faces of Work-Family Conflict" (2010) (co-authored by Heather Boushey of the Center for American Progress), and "Improving Work-Life Fit in Hourly Jobs" (2011). Williams' current research focuses on how work-family conflict differs at different class locations; on the "culture wars" as class conflict; on how gender bias differs by race; and on the role of gender pressures on men in creating work-family conflict and gender inequality. Follow her work on her Huffington Post blog.  


John T. Mullan is a partner at Rudy, Exelrod, Zieff & Lowe LLP, long recognized as one of California and the country’s leading law firms specializing in the representation of individuals and classes in employment disputes. 

Since joining the firm in 2002, Mr. Mullan has worked extensively on the firm's wage and hour class action litigation in state and federal courts, as well as the litigation and negotiation of individual employment law claims, including claims for wrongful termination, harassment, discrimination, and retaliation.

Mr. Mullan has been a contributing author on several amicus briefs pertaining to employment matters filed on behalf of the National Employment Lawyers Association, the National Employment Law Project, and the AFL-CIO. In addition, he is a Supervising Attorney for the Workers' Rights Clinic of the San Francisco Legal Aid Society-Employment Law Center, and has spoken on employment law issues for the Employment Law Center and the Labor and Employment Section of the State Bar of California. Since August 2010, Mr. Mullan has been a contributor to the Fair Labor Standards Act treatise published by the American Bar Association Section of Labor and Employment Law, and, beginning in 2011, he is a Chapter Editor for The Rutter Group’s Employment Litigation California Practice Guide.  He is co-author, along with his colleague, David A. Lowe, of The Recorder’s 2012 publication, “California Employment Law Forms.”

Mr. Mullan has been recognized as a Northern California Super Lawyer in 2013.  Prior to that, he was recognized as a "Rising Star for Northern California" by Super Lawyers. He is a member of the Labor and Employment Section of the State Bar of California, the Labor and Employment Section of the Bar Association of San Francisco, the National Employment Lawyers Association and the California Employment Lawyers' Association. Mr. Mullan is a member of the State Bar of California.

Mr. Mullan received both his J.D. and his B.A. from the University of California at Berkeley.


Michael Weil, a partner in the San Francisco office, is a member of the Employment Law Group. Mr. Weil represents companies on a variety of matters, including trade secrets, restrictive covenants, employee mobility issues, Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) whistleblower claims, wrongful termination and discrimination. Mr. Weil also defends numerous wage-and-hour class actions and representative actions under state and federal laws, including claims for overtime, vacation, meal and rest break penalties, waiting-time penalties and other alleged Labor Code violations. Some of his representative engagements include the following.

  • eBay v. Google. Mr. Weil represented eBay in this lawsuit alleging trade secrets misappropriation in connection with Google's hiring of a former PayPal employee.  The case resolved confidentially.
  • Varian Medical Systems v. Elekta, Inc. Mr. Weil represents Varian in this ongoing trade secrets dispute alleging that a former employee and her new employer misappropriated trade secrets.
  • First American Equipment Finance v. US Bancorp. Mr. Weil represented US Bank in this lawsuit alleging trade secrets misappropriation in connection with US Bank's hiring of two employees from First American. The case settled confidentially.
  • Oracle America, Inc. et al v. International Business Machines. Mr. Weil represented Oracle in this multiple lawsuit cross-border dispute arising out of Oracle's hiring of an executive from New York who signed a non-compete agreement with IBM. The cases resolved confidentially.
  • Adobe Systems Incorporated v. Joshua G. James. Mr. Weil represented Mr. James, the former CEO of Omniture, Inc., in this multiple lawsuit cross-border dispute arising out of purported non-compete and non-solicit agreements Mr. James' signed with Adobe.  The case resolved confidentially.
  • Johnson & Johnson v. Genentech.  Mr. Weil represented Genentech as defendant against claims for employee raiding, tortious interference and unfair competition. The court granted Genentech's motion to dismiss, and the case ended shortly thereafter with no injunction or damages whatsoever paid by Genentech or any of its employees.
  • Silvaco Data Systems v. Agilent Technologies, Inc.  Mr. Weil was part of a team representing Agilent Technologies Inc. in a trade secrets action filed by Silvaco Data Systems.  The court granted Agilent's motion for summary judgment, which was affirmed on appeal.
  • URS Corporation v. Earth Tech, Inc. Mr. Weil was part of a team representing Earth Tech Inc. and two individual defendants in a trade secrets, employee raiding and contract interference case involving over forty allegedly raided employees.  The case resolved confidentially.
  • Protiva Biotherapeutics, Inc. v. Sirna Therapeutics, Inc. Mr. Weil was part of a team representing Protiva Biotherapeutics, Inc. in a trade secrets case filed by Protiva for misappropriation of biotechnology trade secrets. The court granted Protiva's motion for preliminary injunction, and the case settled thereafter confidentially.
  • Kilby v. CVS. Mr. Weil represents CVS in this class action alleging that CVS violated California law by failing to provide suitable seats for its cashiers.  The district court denied plaintiff's motion for class certification and granted CVS's motion for summary judgment.  The case is currently pending before the 9th Circuit.
  • Rankin v. Longs Drug Stores. Mr. Weil represented Longs in this class action alleging that Longs' employment application was unlawful. The court entered judgment for Longs after a bench trial, which was affirmed by the California Court of Appeal in a published decision.

Admitted in California

Memberships

  • American Bar Association, Section of Labor and Employment: Employment Rights and Responsibilities
  • State Bar of California

 


Noah D. Lebowitz is a partner at the San Francisco law firm Duckworth Peters Lebowitz Olivier LLP where he specializes in representing plaintiffs in the areas of disability discrimination and medical leave related issues.

He also represents employees in all types of workplace issues, including discrimination, wrongful termination, and wage and hour claims. 

Mr. Lebowitz received his JD from University of San Francisco School of Law in 1996 and his BA from the University of Wisconsin - Madison in 1992. Mr. Lebowitz is a member of the California (1998), New York (1997), and New Jersey (1996) bars. 

Mr. Lebowitz is a member of the Executive Board of the California Employment Lawyers Association and is a past member of the Executive Committee of the Labor and Employment Law Section of the California State Bar (2007 - 2010). Mr. Lebowitz frequently speaks at and organizes continuing education events on topics related to disability discrimination, family and medical leave, and general litigation topics.




Phyllis W. Cheng is Director of the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH). Appointed in January 2008 and unanimously confirmed by the Senate, she heads the largest state civil rights agency in the nation. The DFEH takes in, investigates, conciliates, mediates and prosecutes discrimination complaints against employers, housing providers and businesses throughout California. The Department enforces the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), Unruh Civil Rights Act, Disabled Persons Act and Ralph Civil Rights Act.  Under her direction, Ms. Cheng has transformed the Department into a proactive and innovative agency. The Department has automated appointment and right-to-sue systems, established telephone intake to be user friendly, and launched a cost-effective cloud-based case management system on time and within budget; developed a case grading system to better target resources; re-established a special investigations unit to address systemic discrimination; achieved an historic multi-million-dollar class action settlement regarding family leave and other group/class actions; launched a new attorney-staffed dispute resolution division to encourage out-of-court settlements; sponsored legislation and promulgated the Department's inaugural procedural regulations; partnered with numerous stakeholders to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the FEHA and other ongoing events; conducted outreach in person and via mass and social media to hundreds of communities statewide; developed partnerships with the University of California, Irvine and Davis, Schools of Law and other universities/colleges to train future civil rights lawyers and investigators; and introduced new resources to educate the public on civil rights compliance.  In the process, the Department has reduced 50 percent of its overhead, while promoting training, retaining jobs and providing upward mobility for its staff.  As a result, the Department's civil rights mission has flourished, customer service has improved, productivity has doubled, and substantial savings have been returned to the State's general fund.  The State Bar of California named Ms. Cheng the 2012 Ronald M. George Public Lawyer of the Year.




Robert Roginson is a shareholder in the firm’s Los Angeles office. His practice includes all aspects of employment and labor law litigation and counseling for employers.

Mr. Roginson has represented private and public employers in state and federal courts and administrative agencies. Mr. Roginson has defended dozens of employers in class actions involving a variety of allegations, including employee misclassification, meal and rest period violations, off-the-clock claims, and record keeping violations. Mr. Roginson focuses on bringing creative solutions to complex legal problems. He has negotiated several settlements of wage/hour class and representative actions on terms favorable to the companies. He also counsels employers and companies on California and federal wage/hour and pay practice laws, prevailing wage laws, project labor agreements (PLAs), reduction in force issues and WARN notification requirements, labor relations and union matters, tribal immunity and sovereignty issues, and retaliation and discrimination claims.

From November 2007 until March 2010, Mr. Roginson served as Chief Counsel for the California Division of Labor Standards Enforcement (DLSE). Appointed by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, Mr. Roginson represented and advised the California Labor Commissioner and her staff in all aspects of enforcement and interpretation of California’s labor and wage/hour laws, licensing requirements, and retaliation statutes. He also managed and directed the Division’s litigation and handled matters involving meal and rest period compliance and enforcements, public works and prevailing wage requirements, child labor and work permit issues, the Talent Agency Act, farm labor contracting, garment manufacturing, and the Private Attorney General Act (PAGA).

As Chief Counsel, Mr. Roginson authored DLSE amicus briefs and opinion letters, including:

  • DLSE amicus brief in the California Supreme Court meal period case, Brinker Restaurant Corp. v. Superior Court (Hohnbaum)
  • DLSE opinion letter affirming California’s on-duty meal period requirements
  • DLSE opinion letter affirming an employer’s right to take deductions for vacation and sick time for partial-day absences for exempt employees
  • DLSE opinion letter affirming an employer’s right to implement proportionate salary and work schedule reductions for exempt employees
  • DLSE opinion letter authorizing the use of debit paycards and convenience checks
  • DLSE opinion letter approving summertime alternative workweek schedule

Mr. Roginson also co-wrote and edited the DLSE’s Public Works Manual.

Prior to joining Ogletree Deakins, Mr. Roginson worked in the industrial relations department for the Associated General Contractors of California (AGC of California), where he represented construction contractors in labor grievance and arbitration matters in addition to the negotiation of the Southern California Basic Trades Master Labor Agreements.

Education:

J.D., Loyola Law School, 1996

B.A., Georgetown University, 1989

Practice Areas:

Employment Law, Litigation


Vanessa Holton is a managing attorney at the California Department of Industrial Relations, where she has practiced for 25 years in the areas of public employment, public works/prevailing wages, workers' compensation, Cal-Warn, apprenticeship, privacy and ethics laws. For 15 years she was a subject matter consultant to the State Bar of California's examinations unit in the Rules of Professional Conduct, the State Bar Act and the ABA model rules. Holton earned her bachelor's degree at the University of California, Berkeley, and a law degree at the University of California Hastings College of the Law.




WILLIAM R. TAMAYO (Bill Tamayo) was appointed in 1995 as the Regional Attorney for the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, San Francisco District. The EEOC is the federal agency charged with investigating and litigating claims of employment discrimination based on race, color, sex, national origin, religion, age and disability.  He directs the Commission's litigation and legal program in Northern California, Northern Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, Idaho and Montana. From 1995-2005 he directed the EEOC's litigation program in Northern and Central California, Hawaii, American Samoa, Wake Island, Guam and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
 
From 1979 - 1995 he was a staff attorney and the Managing Attorney for the Asian Law Caucus, Inc. of San Francisco where he emphasized the practice of immigration and nationality law and civil rights litigation and advocacy involving employment discrimination, affirmative action, immigrant rights, voting rights, and the Census.  He was co-counsel for the plaintiff-intervenor in EEOC and Castrejon v. Tortilleria La Major, 785 F. Supp. 585 (E.D. Cal 1991) (undocumented workers are protected under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964) and was on the legal team that developed the "self-petitioning provisions" for immigrant battered women under the Violence Against Women Act.

During his tenure as Regional Attorney, the EEOC San Francisco District  has obtained significant settlements including among others, Arnett & EEOC v. California Public Employee Retirement System ($250 million for disabled public safety officers),  EEOC v. Walmart ($3.5 million for disabled workers denied accommodations or jobs),  EEOC v. 3M Company ($3.0 million for older workers laid off),   EEOC v. Lockheed-Martin ($2.5 million for black avionics electrician harassed and retaliated against), EEOC v. Fry's Electronics ($2.3 million for Asian employee terminated for alerting company to sexual harassment and for teenage Latina employee who was harassed),  EEOC v. Les Schwab Tires ($2.0 million for women denied sales and service jobs),  EEOC v. Tanimura & Antle ($1.855 million for sexually harassed and retaliated farm workers),  EEOC v. Lowe's Home Improvement  ($1.72 million for sexual harassment of store workers),  EEOC v. Kovacevich "5" Farms ($1.68 million for female farm workers denied hire), EEOC v. Herrick Corporation ($1.11 million for 4 Pakistani Muslims harassed at work), EEOC v. National Food Corporation ($650,000 for farm worker repeatedly raped and co-workers who were fired in retaliation) and obtained a nearly $1 million verdict for a farm worker who was sexually harassed (raped) and retaliated against, EEOC v. Harris Farms. 

B.A. San Francisco State University.  J.D. University of California, Davis, School of Law, King Hall. 


Lawrence H. Wexler is Assistant General Counsel at Delta Air Lines, Inc. and has worked as an employment lawyer in Delta's Law Department since January 1995.  As in-house counsel, Larry provides advice and training to internal clients on all aspects of employment law, and actively litigates employment suits throughout the country, including taking plaintiff depositions, drafting dispositive motions, participating in trials and has argued before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. In California, Larry has handled over 15 single plaintiff cases and multiple wage and hour class actions. In March 2013, Larry began serving as Chief Counsel of Delta subsidiaries DAL Global Services, LLC and Delta Private Jets, Inc. In this role, Larry is responsible for handling or overseeing all of the legal matters at these companies, which employ over 13,000 employees in over 40 states. Larry obtained his J.D. from Mercer Law School and his B.S.B.A. from Ohio State University.


Mindy M. Morton is a senior counsel with Procopio, Cory, Hargreaves & Savitch LLP, and her practice focuses on intellectual property litigation. She has handled a variety of cases in state and federal courts, including trade secret, patent, trademark, copyright, computer fraud, and non-compete agreement litigation.  Prior to joining Procopio, Ms. Morton was a partner at Bergeson LLP. She has also practiced at Squire Sanders & Dempsey, Fenwick & West, and Cahill Gordon & Reindel.

Ms. Morton is admitted to practice before the United States District Court, Northern, Central, Eastern, and Southern Districts of California and Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, and the United States Court of Appeal, Ninth and Federal Circuits. 

Representative Matters

Served as first chair in a $10 million jury trial in Santa Clara County Superior Court (DVS v. Sun, et al.), in which she obtained a nonsuit verdict. Ms. Morton briefed and argued the successful appeal.

Represented a group of investors in a $60 million breach of contract case involving novel issues of Chinese and New York law, obtaining two motions to dismiss, a $60 million writ of attachment and transfer order, and a contempt order.  The trial court's denial of the investors' summary judgment motion was recently overturned on appeal.

Successfully moved to dismiss declaratory relief complaint in case involving patent for embryo imaging.

In a trade secrets case, obtained a temporary restraining order (2007 WL 2429652), preliminary injunction (2008 WL 564634), and contempt citation for violation of temporary restraining order (2008 WL 2128145) against a former employee who started a competing company using client's technology; case settled on the eve of trial.

Represented Napster in its dispute with the recording industry.

Defended a group of multinational companies at the district court level for patent infringement involving Intel chipsets. Quanta v. LG Electronics, 553 U.S. 617 (2008)

Education

JD, Yale Law School, 1997 (Editor - Yale Law Journal)

BA, University of California, Berkeley, Highest Distinction in General Scholarship, Highest Honors in Political Science, Phi Beta Kappa, 1994

Community Involvement


Santa Clara County Bar Association -2012 President

Open Courts Coalition

Schola Cantorum - Co-Chair of 50th Anniversary Committee, Past Chair of the Board of Directors


Roberta L. Steele became the Regional Attorney for the San Francisco District Office of the Equal Opportunity Commission (EEOC) in November 2015.   Before joining the EEOC, Ms. Steele was a partner at the law firm then known as Goldstein, Demchak, Baller, Borgen & Dardarian (Oakland, CA), where she spent 17 years litigating plaintiffs’ employment discrimination and wage and hour class and collective actions nationally.  She also served as the Program Director for the National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA) for two years directing the organization’s broad range of continuing legal education and advocacy initiatives, including NELA’s Amicus and Judicial Nominations Programs.   Ms. Steele was an Executive Editor and Employee Reviewer for Lindemann & Grossman, Employment Discrimination Law, 5th ed. (2013) and 1st supp. (2014). She has been actively involved in the American Bar Association’s Labor & Employment Law Section for many years and most recently served as the Employee Program Co-Chair for its Equal Employment Opportunity Committee.  Ms. Steele is a frequent lecturer and panelist on subjects relating to the fair employment and wage and hour laws, class and collective actions, and litigation practice and procedure.  She received her J.D. from Case Western Reserve University School of Law, Cleveland, OH, in 1993, where she was an Associate Editor and Notes Editor on its Law Review.  In 1990, Ms. Steele graduated summa cum laude with a B.A. in English from the University of Massachusetts, Boston, MA.


Tracey S. Lesetar is the General Counsel for Bellator MMA, a Viacom company that is currently one of the two leading Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) promotional organizations in the world, airing weekly live MMA events and specials as well as reality-based MMA programming on Spike TV Network. As General Counsel, Ms. Lesetar handles, supervises, and advises on all legal matters for the Company, including all contracts, negotiations, sponsorship, athletic commission regulation, television production, licensing, international distribution, labor and employment, trademark and copyright, immigration, and litigation. Prior to joining Bellator, Ms. Lesetar practiced at Orrick, Herrington, & Sutcliffe LLP, where she specialized in labor and employment litigation and played an integral part in founding the firm's MMA industry practice. Prior to law, Ms. Lesetar served as a legislative aide to the Chairman of the Congressional Black Caucus. She received her B.A. with honors distinction from Duke University and her J.D. from George Washington University School of Law.