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Deborah Maddux Allison specializes in employment law and human resources management. A shareholder of Van Dermyden Maddux Law Corporation, Ms. Maddux graduated from UC Davis School of Law in 1993. She is a licensed California attorney, a certified Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR), as well as a certified EEOC investigator. Drawing upon her extensive background, which includes experience as a litigator, advisor to a State Commission, in-house counsel, and now owner and manager of her own firm, Ms. Maddux provides employment law services throughout California. She specializes in investigations into claims of workplace misconduct, often involving complex facts, multiple claims, and politically-sensitive issues. She has investigated hundreds of claims, including claims of harassment, discrimination, retaliation and improper governmental activities. She is experienced in testifying regarding completed investigations, and acts as an expert witness on human resources and investigative best practices. Ms. Maddux also provides consulting regarding optimal management practices, including one-on-one executive coaching; mediation and hearing officer services; and advice and counseling regarding employment law matters. She conducts frequent interactive training seminars on workplace topics, including Employment Law Liability, Best Practices for Managers and Supervisors, and Anti-Discrimination, including Sexual Harassment Prevention courses.
Nancy Bornn is an employment lawyer in Playa del Rey, California. She has over 30 years of experience as an employment lawyer. She currently focuses her practice on conducting workplace investigations, testifying as an expert witness on HR matters, and training for AB 1825 compliance. Ms. Bornn is a Governor on of the Board of Governors of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers, and serves on its Credentials Committee. She is a Founding and Charter Director on the Board of Directors of the Association of Workplace Investigators, Inc. She is a former Chair of the Labor & Employment Law Section of the Los Angeles County Bar Association. She is a former Chair of the California Employment Lawyers Association. Ms. Bornn also served as an Executive Board member of the National Employment Lawyers Association. Ms. Bornn has published numerous articles in the area of employment law and is the author of the legal treatise, Representing California Sexual Harassment Plaintiffs (James Publishing 2004), updated in part in 2007 (Nancy Bornn A Law Corporation 2007), and the co-author of Practice Pointers for Workplace Investigations (SHRM 2010).
Barry Chersky is a trainer and consultant focusing on civil rights issues in the San Francisco Bay Area and nationally. For more than 20 years he has presented training on preventing discrimination, harassment and retaliation in a variety of workplace settings. He has conducted investigations on behalf of employers in a wide range of industries including entertainment, biotechnology, insurance, financial services, legal, and medical, in workplaces ranging from small non-profits to labor unions to multinational corporations. He has served as an expert witness in several court cases which included the evaluation of investigation practices. Since 2007 he has served as the Senior Human Resources Consultant at Saint Mary’s College of California where he conducts internal investigations. Mr. Chersky is a private investigator licensed by the State of California.
Walter Cochran-Bond is a graduate of the UCLA School of Law. During the first fourteen years of his practice, Walter litigated civil rights class actions in Los Angeles with the Center for Law in the Public Interest and in private practice, serving as class counsel in more than twenty employment and housing discrimination cases. In 1988, Walter joined the national law firm of Proskauer Rose LLP. In 1997, Walter started his current practice. This practice includes representing both individuals and employers in employment-related lawsuits as well as providing employment counseling. Walter also is a member of the Employment Law Panel of the American Arbitration Association and serves as an arbitrator and mediator for employment disputes.
Barbara Dalton is an attorney, licensed private investigator, and Vice President of Public Interest Investigations, Inc. She specializes in conducting neutral, third-party investigations into allegations of employment discrimination. She has supervised and conducted investigations of employee and employer misconduct, wage and hour violations, and wrongful termination claims. Prior to joining PII, Dalton was part of the team of attorneys who monitored Denny's restaurants for customer-based discrimination complaints. Denny's ultimately adopted the investigative model designed and used by Dalton and her colleagues during the monitoring period. Dalton also played an integral part in the creation and direction of an independently administered system of arbitration for Kaiser Permanente members throughout California. She served as an attorney with the HIV and AIDS Legal Services Alliance, where she assisted clients with matters involving discrimination, confidentiality, and health care access, and conducted trainings on those topics.
Nikki Hall, a partner of the San Francisco based law firm of Renne Sloan Holtzman Sakai, leads the firm’s investigative practice. Ms. Hall has specialized in employment law since 1996. She started her career as a plaintiff-side employment litigator prior to representing management. Ms. Hall’s practice is now focused on conducting workplace investigations for public sector employers. She has conducted more than sixty investigations, many involving high-ranking employees and elected officials. Ms. Hall’s background as both a plaintiff and management side employment litigator gives her a unique ability to serve as a neutral investigator. Having conducted numerous high-profile public safety investigations, Ms. Hall is well versed in the Public Safety Procedural Bill of Rights and Firefighters Procedural Bill of Rights. She also regularly leads investigations training statewide and nationally and is co-author of Conducting Effective Personnel Investigations: A Manual for Public Sector Managers (Public Law Group Press, 3rd Edition.)
Pamela L. Hemminger is an arbitrator, mediator, workplace investigator and trainer. She is an officer and on the Board of Directors of the Association of Workplace Investigators (AWI). She chaired the committee that developed the AWI Training Institute and currently chairs and serves on the faculty of the 2013 AWI Training Institute, participated in the drafting of “Guiding Principles for Investigators Conducting Impartial Workplace Investigations,” developed the initial AWI webinar series and has spoken at AWI programs. Ms. Hemminger has not only conducted workplace investigations but has managed them both as outside counsel and, formerly, as part of Gibson Dunn & Crutcher LLP’s Office of General Counsel with responsibility for the firm’s employment matters. She is on the American Arbitration Association special employment and national class action panels. An employment law partner of Gibson, Dunn for many years before recently retiring, she is a past chair of the Labor and Employment Law Section, Los Angeles County Bar Association, a Fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers, a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation, a past Board member of Dispute Resolution Services (1999 -2009) and a gubernatorial appointee to the California Law Revision Commission (1998-99; 2005-2010). She is a well-known author and speaker, and has contributed to Employment Discrimination Law (settlement), California Practice Guide: Employment Litigation (leaves of absence; worker safety) and EEOC Litigation and Charge Resolution (employer responses), and has been featured in The Best Lawyers in America (15 years), Top 50 Women Super Lawyers (Southern California) and similar publications.
Debra Hinshaw Vierra has practiced employment law for more than 20 years. She is a founding partner at Employment Law Counsel, LLP and also serves of counsel to Cook Brown, LLP. Ms. Hinshaw Vierra has represented employers in collective bargaining negotiations and arbitrations, employment discrimination and harassment proceedings and advised employers on all aspects of labor and employment law matters, stressing preventative measures to avoid liability. Since founding ELC, Ms. Hinshaw Vierra has concentrated primarily on conducting workplace investigations. Ms. Hinshaw Vierra's legal background results in thorough investigations and sound conclusions supported by the evidence. Ms. Hinshaw Vierra provides workplace training for both managerial and nonmanagerial staff and has lectured and authored numerous articles on employment law.
Karen Kramer is an employment law attorney specializing in workplace investigations. Since forming Kramer-Wiese in 2000, Ms. Kramer’s practice has focused primarily on conducting personnel investigations involving allegations of discrimination, harassment and retaliation, as well as misconduct and disciplinary matters. She previously litigated employment law matters with Porter Scott and worked as an Employment Law Attorney with LexisNexis. Ms. Kramer’s experience includes testifying during administrative and judicial proceedings regarding completed investigations. Ms. Kramer has conducted hundreds of workplace investigations for public agencies, and is well versed in the Public Safety Officers Procedural Bill of Rights and the Firefighters Procedural Bill of Rights. She has also conducted many complex and high profile investigations involving high level public employees and elected officials. Ms. Kramer is a graduate of the University of California, Irvine (1989) and University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law (1992).
Stefan Miller is a California employment law attorney and is retained by both public and private entities (including public school districts) to serve as an objective and impartial fact-finder to investigate complaints of alleged workplace misconduct (including those filed with the DFEH and EEOC). Likewise, Mr. Miller regularly advises in-house human resource or other contacts regarding the conduct of such workplace investigations. Mr. Miller also delivers training workshops for HR professionals and members of management on conducting timely and thorough workplace investigations as well as variety of other employment and HR-related subjects. In addition, Mr. Miller counsels small and medium sized businesses on a day-to-day basis on all aspects of employment law & HR-related issues, including: the hiring/disciplinary/termination processes; leaves of absence; wage/hour matters; discrimination/harassment; and preparing employee handbooks, at-will offer letters, independent contractor agreements, non-disclosure & other trade secret protection agreements, performance management programs, etc.
Marilou F. Mirkovich is a partner in the Cerritos office of Atkinson, Andelson, Loya, Rudd & Romo. She represents employers in all aspects of labor relations and employment law. Ms. Mirkovich focused on defending discrimination claims in federal and state courts and handles matters pending before the EEOC, DFEH, and FEHC. In addition to her employment practice, Ms. Mirkovich serves as the firm's lead investigator on numerous public and private sector matters. She served as President of the Board of Directors for the Community Family Guidance Center. She has been an active participant in the HIV and AIDS Legal Services Alliance (HALSA). Ms. Mirkovich has also been on the Board of Directors for the Friends of the Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts.
Julie Moore Julie A. Moore is President of Employment Practices Group, a legal and human resources consulting firm in MA and NH which she founded in 1998. She has been practicing law for 20 years and previously litigated cases. Much of her practice is devoted to conducting investigations into alleged harassment and misconduct. She also conducts training for employers; drafts policies, procedures and handbooks; consults and advises on employment law and HR issues; and represents employers and employees before administrative agencies. Ms. Moore has over 100 publications and speaks at seminars for the MA Bar Ass'n, NH Bar Ass'n, Business and Legal Resources (BLR), local and regional SHRM chapters, and many business and trade organizations. She is a Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR). She has been retained as an expert witness in cases involving a wide variety of employment-related issues, and has testified at trial in NH, MA and ME courts.
Lynn M. Morgenroth is the founder of CallMeHR.com, which provides Human Resources consulting services to a wide variety of clients in the high-tech, environmental, non-profit, manufacturing, transport and service industries. She holds a JD as well as an MBA and has over has over twenty years of extensive human resources and business management experience, both in-house as well as in a business consultant role. Her expertise includes: strategic business planning, management training, coaching and counseling, workplace investigations including DFEH and EEOC complaints, labor relations and negotiations, HR audits, employment law interpretation and compliance, policy and procedure development, performance management and recruiting.
Robin Oaks is an attorney who practices exclusively as an independent workplace investigator, trainer, and conflict resolution consultant. Ms. Oaks worked as an employment and education law attorney for twelve years. Since 1997 she has focused her practice on conducting investigations and resolving conflicts in both the public and private sectors. She began her legal career in 1985 as a judicial law clerk for Judge John Garrett Penn, District Court, District of Columbia, who was the trial judge for Meritor Savings Bank v. Vinson, the landmark case in which the Supreme Court first recognized a hostile environment claim under Title VII. A former public school teacher and law school instructor, Ms. Oaks has special expertise investigating sexual harassment and discrimination complaints arising in schools and public institutions. She has written extensively about investigations, including the chapter, “Cross Cultural Issues and Sexual Harassment,” in a national textbook published by Allyn & Bacon, and the section on conducting investigations in Educator’s Guide to Controlling Sexual Harassment, published by Thompson Publishing Group.
Amy Oppenheimer has over 30 years of experience in employment law—as an attorney, investigator, arbitrator, mediator, trainer, and administrative law judge. She has trained employees and employers throughout the US in how to prevent harassment, how to investigate workplace harassment, discrimination, and retaliation, and in diversity in the workplace. She has performed impartial investigations for a large range of employers—public and private, large and small. A trial qualified expert in State and Federal court, Ms. Oppenheimer has testified for both the plaintiff and the defense about employment practices in preventing, responding to and investigating workplace harassment. She has testified at deposition, arbitration or trial more than 60 times. Ms. Oppenheimer is the author of numerous articles about harassment and discrimination, and is co-author of one of the few books about the practice of investigations, Investigating Workplace Harassment, How to be Fair, Thorough and Legal, (Society of Human Resource Management, 2003). She speaks frequently on these issues. Ms. Oppenheimer is the founder and past president of the Association of Workplace Investigators, Inc. (AWI), past president of Berkeley Dispute Resolution Services, and an advisor to the Executive Committee of the Labor and Employment Law Section of the State Bar of California.
Geralynn Patellaro is the legal director of Global Employment at NetApp, Inc., a global technology company currently ranked #5 of the "Best Companies to Work For" list by Fortune Magazine. Ms. Patellaro is also President of Building a Better Workplace, a Human Resources consulting firm in the San Francisco Bay Area. The firm counsels executives, managers, HR professionals, and employees in employment matters, and specializes in workplace investigations. The firm also presents interactive seminars in disability accommodation, harassment prevention, and workplace investigations. Ms. Patellaro offers a unique approach to HR challenges by leveraging her extensive and diverse experience as an attorney and business professional. Prior to her legal career, she worked for high profile technology companies as a SalesDirector, Marketing Director, and Sr. HR Director. As an attorney she worked for well regarded, national law firms. She is multi-lingual, holds an MBA, and is an active community volunteer.
Elizabeth Rita has been conducting workplace investigations since 1994. An employment lawyer with 20 years of experience, Ms. Rita has conducted hundreds of investigations for clients around the nation and in Canada. She has investigated complaints involving company-wide race discrimination, sexual harassment, rape, assault, ethics violations, ethnic origin discrimination, hostile work environment, age discrimination, retaliation, gender bias, SOX retaliation, public corruption and employee misconduct. Ms. Rita has worked for government entities, Fortune 100 companies, small family-run businesses, professional partnerships and every sized organization in between. She has trained HR professionals and lawyers in conducting investigations, and has spoken and written on this subject for a variety of audiences. In addition to investigations, Ms. Rita maintains a law practice with her friends David Stacy and Bill Kelly at Kelly, Stacy & Rita, LLP. Her firm provides employment law services to corporate and individual clients. She spends her free time hiking, camping and skiing in the Colorado Rockies, playing with her kids and dogs and trying to keep mind and body together with a regular yoga practice. She loves cooking and food, and is attempting to produce a kitchen garden despite Colorado’s minute growing season.
Michael A. Robbins is President of EXTTI, Incorporated. EXTTI provides Expert Testimony, Training and Investigation services in employment matters. He is a frequent lecturer and author on employment issues. Mr. Robbins has conducted and/or supervised over 500 workplace investigations and has served as an expert witness in close to 450 employment cases--mostly on workplace investigations and interactive process issues. Prior to forming EXTTI, he was a Labor & Employment attorney for 20 years--including 4 years as in-house counsel and 16 years in two nationally recognized law firms. Mr. Robbins graduated Phi Beta Kappa from San Diego State University and received his JD degree from UCLA School of Law. He is a member of the Executive Board of the Los Angeles County Bar Association Labor & Employment Section, is a founding member and Immediate Past President of the Society of Independent Workplace Investigators (SIWI) and is a Charter Member and current President of the Association of Workplace Investigators (AWI).
Keith Rohman has worked as an investigator in both the public and private sectors for 30 years. As president of Public Interest Investigations, Inc. in Los Angeles, he has been involved in many high-profile cases, including litigation related to the torture of prisoners at Abu Ghraib, allegations of shootings of Iraqis by Blackwater, Inc., the trial against Los Angeles police officers accused of beating Rodney King, and numerous capital murder cases. Mr. Rohman is an Adjunct Professor of Law at Loyola Law School, where he teaches fact investigation. Mr. Rohman currently serves as the court appointed Monitor in the matter of Pierce v. Orange County, et al., a federal ADA class action case filed on behalf of disabled inmates at the Orange County Jail. He was appointed by the L.A. County Board of Supervisors to the Equity Oversight Panel (EOP) of the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department, a civilian oversight board that oversees Internal Affairs investigations of discrimination allegations at the LASD. Mr. Rohman served as the executive director of Los Angeles City Office of Discrimination Investigation, which conducted more than 300 employment discrimination investigations, and provided recommendations to the City Council on restructuring how the City handled these matters. Mr. Rohman is a member of the Board of Directors of the Association of Workplace Investigators (AWI).
Daniel Rowley has represented employers and employees in a wide variety of employment law matters since 1985. His law practice includes consultation on employment matters, advising employers, and handling employment litigation, including discrimination, sexual harassment, wrongful termination, and wage and hour claims. In addition, Mr. Rowley performs neutral, independent investigations of workplace complaints and disputes. Mr. Rowley has performed more than 125 investigations for a variety of public and private employers. The investigations have included issues such as sexual harassment, hostile work environment, discrimination, corporate mismanagement, and possible violations of the Fair Political Practices Act.
Sue Ann VanDermyden, a shareholder of Van Dermyden Allison Law Corporation, has specialized in employment law since 1993. She is a licensed private investigator and certified EEOC investigator. She is also qualified as an expert in Federal Court on the adequacy of investigations. Her practice focuses on investigating complex work-related claims related to harassment, discrimination, retaliation, misconduct and performance issues; providing expert witness testimony on employment matters; advising clients on complex employment-related matters; and, conducting training seminars. Ms. Van Dermyden is a founding member of the Association of Workplace Investigators (AWI). She is also a AWI Board Member and Officer, and currently serves as the Annual Conference Committee Vice-Chair and the Sacramento Local Circle Convener. She has authored numerous articles on employment law and conducted countless training seminars. Ms. Van Dermyden is a native of North Dakota and alumnus of Pacific McGeorge School of Law.
Lizbeth West is a shareholder in the Labor and Employment, Appeals and Writs, and Litigation groups of Weintraub Tobin Chediak Coleman Grodin. She is admitted to practice law in California and Washington. Ms. West assists employers in all aspects of their employment relationship with their employees and defends employers in employment disputes. She has extensive experience defending employers in various forms of employment-related litigation in state and federal court, and in administrative actions before a number of state and federal agencies. Ms. West also conducts workplace investigations for both public and private employers. She was selected for inclusion in the Northern California SuperLawyers for 2009, 2010, and 2012. Ms. West is a regular speaker for various commercial and continuing education programs on employment issues facing employers in California, and has also been an adjunct professor of law at UOP McGeorge School of Law.