Outten & Golden is pleased to announce the appointment of partner Wendi S. Lazar, who co-heads the firm's Individual Practice and spearheads its Executives & Professionals Practice Group, to the American Bar Association's Commission on Women in the Profession. As the national voice for women lawyers, the ABA Commission strives to ensure that women have equal opportunities for professional growth and advancement commensurate with their male counterparts. The privilege of serving on the commission is limited to 12 attorneys selected from across the nation and from every area of legal practice.
The Commission was created in August 1987 to assess the status of women in the legal profession, identify barriers to advancement, and recommend to the ABA actions to address problems identified. Hillary Rodham Clinton, the first chair of the Commission, set the pace for the Commission to change the face of the legal profession by issuing a groundbreaking report in 1988 showing that women lawyers were not advancing at a satisfactory rate.
"I am thrilled to be able to work on the Commission's existing projects on women and leadership in our profession as well as to bring my own goals and ideas on fighting gender bias in our field to this platform," said Ms. Lazar. "As lawyers, our duty is to uphold the law. Yet, in 2015, we still struggle to protect women and minority lawyers from injustice and inequity. The commission is making great strides to address these issues."
Ms. Lazar has been practicing employment law since the mid-1990's, with a focus on representing employees and partners in the negotiation of executive compensation, non-competition, employment, and severance agreements and on advising individuals in multinational employment transactions. She has also been deeply involved in gender issues facing women in the workplace, particularly those affecting female associates and law partners. While most of her practice involves representing senior executives across industries in complex transactions, she continues to represent women in gender bias cases.
Michele Coleman Mayes, Chair of the Commission, knows firsthand how committed Ms. Lazar is to ensuring equality for Women lawyers, "Wendi's dedication and passion are unwavering and the Commission will truly benefit from her contributions."
Martindale-Hubbell recognizes Ms. Lazar as an "AV Preeminent" rated attorney. She was selected to Best Lawyers in America in the field of Employment Law – Individuals and was selected to Super Lawyers for 2012-2015. Ms. Lazar has been named as a 2013 and 2014 Lawdragon 500 Leading Lawyer. In 2014, she was selected as a Fellow of the College of Labor & Employment Lawyers.
Ms. Lazar is the former Employee Co-Chair of the American Bar Association Labor and Employment Law Section's International Labor and Employment Law Committee. She is Diversity Co-Chair and a member of the Executive Committee of the New York State Bar Association Labor & Employment Section, and is an active member of several other NELA, ABA and NYSBA committees. Ms. Lazar writes a quarterly column for the New York Law Journal entitled "Employees in the Workplace." She regularly lectures on employment issues to bar associations and industry groups and has had numerous legal articles and book chapters published.
Outten & Golden LLP focuses on advising and representing individuals in employment, partnership, and related workplace matters both domestically and internationally. The firm counsels individuals on employment and severance agreements; handles complex compensation and benefits issues (including bonuses, commissions, and stock/ option agreements); and advises professionals (including doctors and lawyers) on contractual issues. It also represents employees with a wide variety of claims, including discrimination and harassment based on sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, race, disability, national origin, religion, and age, as well as retaliation, whistleblower, and contract claims. The firm handles class actions involving a wide range of employment issues, including economic exploitation, gender- and race-based discrimination, wage-and-hour violations, violations of the WARN Act, and other systemic workers' rights issues.