Women's Leadership Initiative

At Porter Wright, we recognize and value the talents and abilities of our women attorneys whose qualities benefit the firm as well as our local and legal communities. Porter Wright’s Women’s Leadership Initiative provides a supportive environment for our women lawyers and encourages their participation in programs and policies that will lead to greater opportunities for success for Porter Wright women and the firm as a whole.

Internally, we concentrate on strengthening and furthering our dedication to retaining and promoting women attorneys in the firm. Externally, we focus on community involvement and marketing efforts that expand our leadership skills, initiate career-enhancing relationships and increase our visibility as professionals in the marketplace. We believe that an inclusive culture creates a more collaborative work environment that ultimately results in outstanding client service.

Experience

Porter Wright’s female attorneys are knowledgeable, highly experienced attorneys who are trusted partners in our clients’ legal matters. They are deeply engaged in all practice areas within the firm and represent diverse areas within governmental and corporate interests. They have taken lead roles in many high-profile cases and consistently receive honors and praise from clients and peers.

Corporate

Served as outside general counsel and advise multi-state diversified financial holding company regarding a variety of corporate matters including representation in public offerings and private placements valued at more than $12 billion.

Represented borrower and acted as lead developer counsel and bond counsel for the financing of a high-profile, $149 million mixed-use development project comprising 243 residential units, more than 115,000 square feet of retail/restaurant space and green space.

Served as outside general counsel for retailer with sales operations in more than 90 countries, advising the company with regard to securities, corporate governance, licensing and intellectual property matters.

Represented lender in the foreclosure of a $50 million housing development project; obtained summary judgment in the lenders' favor, granting their mortgage priority over mechanic's liens that enjoyed chronological priority.

Provided advice to global publisher regarding print and digital product development and licensing, marketing strategies, privacy regulation, intellectual property protection and trade secret issues.

Represented European medical device company with regard to multinational patent application preparation and prosecution, technology licensing and an international arbitration conducted under the ICC Rules.

Negotiated and structured all agreements regarding the sale of our clients’ cryogenic plant equipment, valued at more than $5 million, to a bio-methane manufacturer in the South Pacific.

Provided analysis and strategic direction for retail clients regarding brand and intellectual property protection worldwide as nearly 2,000 new generic top-level domains launch, which industry observers predict will change the face of the Internet.

Advised health care clients to ensure adherence with Stark law, Anti-Kickback Statute, state anti-referral and anti-kickback laws, HIPAA, ACA, and other state and federal laws and regulations.

Represented seller with in the carve-out and sale of the assets associated with a software business valued at more than $5 million.

Labor & Employment

Represented large school district in connection with wide-ranging investigations by the US Attorney’s Office, the US Department of Education, The Ohio Auditor of State and the Franklin County Prosecuting Attorney involving allegations that student and school performance data was manipulated. A significant part of our work has involved providing advice to the district regarding what actions, if any, should be brought against district administrators who may have been involved in the alleged manipulation. We represented the district in two highly publicized administrative hearings seeking the termination of two district employees for their role in the data manipulation. In both cases we prevailed, obtaining awards upholding the actions taken by our client. Both are now on appeal in the common pleas court and we are handling the appeals. We have also successfully defended three other cases, two of which were class actions, arising out of the alleged data manipulation. The district received favourable rulings in both cases, and those rulings are now on appeal.

Defended client against EEOC charge and lawsuit alleging FMLA interference, disability discrimination and retaliation. The case was voluntarily dismissed with prejudice during discovery (no settlement) after pressure from counsel to prosecute the case.

Defended regional bank in two related cases brought by terminated vice president and terminated administrative employee before the US District Court for the Southern District of Ohio. Both claimed race discrimination and retaliation, female administrative employee also claimed sex harassment. After completion of extensive discovery and defendant filing motions for summary judgment in each case, the matter was resolved on favorable terms for our client within weeks from the scheduled mediation.

Represented a state university in response to plaintiff’s claims of race and gender discrimination and retaliation under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, and against race discrimination claims against individuals acting under the color. Our motion for summary judgment and the case was dismissed.

Handled a major business competition litigation case between two large banks. We defended our banking client against a complaint filed by a competing bank after 10 wealth managers who were hired after an acquisition. The validity and enforceability of the wealth managers’ non-compete agreements resulted in hard fought litigation on both sides. Over 50 depositions were taken in the case. All 11 defendants asserted counterclaims for declaratory judgment and “bad faith” assertion of trade secret misappropriation claims again them. The Court granted in part and denied in part our clients' motion for summary judgment. Remaining claims were settled confidentially.

Represented large employer in this case which was filed by a former employee who had been terminated for poor performance. Several years following his termination, plaintiff filed a lawsuit alleging breach of contract, fraud, misrepresentation, promissory estoppel, and defamation. Plaintiff alleged that he was guaranteed employment throughout the period of time that it would take him to complete a night law school program. Plaintiff also alleged that he was promised the company would pay for his law school education in total, without regard to the restrictions in the company's Educational Assistance Program. Defendant's motion for summary judgment on plaintiff's fraud claim was granted. Defendant's motion for summary judgment on plaintiff's breach of contract claim was pending at the time the matter was resolved. Shortly before trial, plaintiff presented a modest settlement demand and the case was resolved without going to trial.

Represented a large state university a number of individual defendants, including the president of the university, in a sequence of federal court lawsuits and EEOC charges brought by a tenured faculty member alleging public policy and other torts, First Amendment and whistle blowing retaliation, race, age and national origin discrimination and who sought at one point to enjoin the university from receiving federal grant monies. After the federal court denied the requested injunction, and following extensive discovery, the matter was settled in August 2011 on very favorable terms for our clients, which included the plaintiff's resignation.

Assisted our client with planning and executing the sale of a major piece of its operation, and the attendant displacement of employees to minimize both litigation and business risks, including significant non-compete considerations. It involved a nationwide footprint, so required not only federal compliance issues such as the WARN Act and OWBPA, but state and local compliance and notice issues as well.

Obtained temporary restraining order and injunction for an equity research firm in state court and FINRA proceedings that required group of former employees in a competing firm to return trade secret and confidential information and prohibited them from soliciting top customers.

Obtained summary judgment and successfully argued appeal for manufacturer in employment action involving claims of discrimination and negligent retention.

Litigation

Served as first chair in the defense of an international aid organization in a personal injury trial in federal court in Ohio; after brief deliberations, the jury returned a complete defense verdict.

Representing clients in a price fixing grand jury investigation related to a consolidated antitrust class actions seeking treble damages for alleged participation in a conspiracy to fix the price of certain automotive parts.

Represented Fortune 500 energy company before the Ohio Supreme Court.

Represented financial industry stakeholders in several matters before the Ohio Supreme Court and the Sixth Circuit Court.

Part of a Porter Wright team which secured a jury verdict for $8.2 million for an aerospace company; the case spanned several years and culminated in a nearly four-week trial.

Defended restaurant industry client against class action claim alleging false advertising of menu items with regard to calorie counts.

Defending seven direct purchasers in a class actions and two individual antitrust actions alleging conspiracy and predatory and monopolistic practices to raise the price of fresh produce.

Representing a financial services provider in consumer class action claims challenging its practice of repossessing and selling vehicles, then assessing owners for remaining deficiency.

Defending a publicly traded company in the secondary mortgage market in consumer class action claims under Ohio statute requiring mortgage satisfactions to be recorded in 90 days; a motion to Ohio Supreme Court for discretionary appeal is pending.

Representing an international food and flavoring manufacturer in multi-plaintiff cases involving the chemical diacetyl in state courts in Ohio, Missouri, Georgia and California.

Representing an international pharmaceutical company in a consumer class action alleging violations of Ohio consumer statutes.