Law360 today profiled our Employment Practice as one of its 2018 Employment Practice Groups of the Year, highlighting our high-profile wins for Microsoft and Twitter and our position as “a leader in the employment sector.”
In the Microsoft and Twitter cases, an Orrick team led by partners Lynne Hermle and Jessica Perry succeeded in turning away efforts to certify national class actions in gender discrimination litigation closely watched throughout the tech industry. Two separate judges sided with our arguments that plaintiffs had failed to establish a factual basis to allow the cases to proceed as class actions.
“We always try to be cognizant of what is going on more broadly that could impact any particular case. And certainly there is a lot of attention and scrutiny on gender issues in the workplace, and in tech in particular,” Jess, who heads Orrick’s global litigation practice, told the publication. “But both Microsoft and Twitter invest deeply in diversity and are committed to getting better at these issues. And regardless of the broader movement, the facts in these cases and the applicable law showed a class action wasn’t the right vehicle to solve a bigger societal issue."
The profile also noted other wins by our employment team last year, including a precedent-setting case on behalf of a chief diversity officer hired by Microsoft from IBM, which sued alleging a violation of a non-compete agreement. Mike Delikat, co-leader of Orrick’s employment practice with partner Julie Totten, successfully argued the case.
Mike told Law360 that Orrick’s employment team keeps growing globally. “We continue to grow mostly organically through elevating associates to partner, but we also look for other opportunities,” he said.
This marks the third time Orrick has been recognized for Employment Practice Group of the Year. In addition to employment, Law360 recognized our appellate, project finance and tech practices as Practice Group of the Year in 2018.