Brooke Arena is a senior associate in Orrick’s San Francisco office and a member of the employment law group. Orrick’s Employment Law and Litigation group was recently named Labor & Employment Department of the Year in California by The Recorder, the premier source for legal news, in recognition of their significant wins on behalf of leading multinational companies on today’s most complex and challenging employment law matters.
Ms. Arena practices employment litigation on a variety of issues, including discrimination, harassment and wrongful termination claims. She also has significant experience in the defense of wage-and-hour class actions involving a full range of claims, such as misclassification, meal and rest periods, off-the-clock work, uniforms and expense reimbursement, unfair competition, and Private Attorney General Act claims.
Ms. Arena has litigated in numerous forums, including state and federal courts, and has arbitrated employment claims before FINRA and private arbitrators.
In addition, Ms. Arena advises clients and leads in-house training sessions regarding a broad range of employment issues, including human resource policies and procedures, offer letters, severance agreements, employee terminations and reductions in force.
Recent successes include the following:
- Obtaining a unanimous jury verdict in favor of the defense in a high-profile disparate impact age discrimination case.
- Defeating class certification in Mies v. Sephora, San Francisco County Superior Court, wherein plaintiff sought to represent a class of exempt retail store employees on claims of misclassification and misuse of paid time off.
- Defeating class certification in Gonzales v. Bank of the West, Alameda County Superior Court, wherein plaintiff sought to represent a class of retail bank employees on claims of missed meal breaks.
- Working as part of the team that won a complete victory in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeal on behalf of a technology company. The team secured dismissal of a former executive’s claims for malicious prosecution, defamation, and invasion of privacy stemming from a stock option backdating investigation.
- Successfully arguing before the California Court of Appeal to uphold summary judgment in a wrongful termination case for a financial services client.
- Obtaining favorable settlements of wage-and-hour class actions on behalf of clients in the financial services, retail, and restaurant industries.
Prior to joining Orrick, Ms. Arena was an associate in the Labor and Employment practice of Heller Ehrman LLP.