Elyse Whitehead leads the employment, litigation, and IP legal functions at Plaid. She is passionate about supporting her team and business partners to further Plaid's mission to unlock financial freedom for everyone. Prior to joining Plaid in January 2020, she was a shareholder at the boutique law firm of Keesal, Young, & Logan in San Francisco, where she provided employment advice and counsel and litigated a range of disputes. Elyse earned her law degree from UC Hastings College of the Law in San Francisco. In her free time, Elyse enjoys listening to podcasts, getting outdoors, and trying new local restaurants.
Melissa is a senior technology lawyer who has advised both startups and Fortune 500 companies in industries spanning online travel, consumer health & wellness, and e-/mobile commerce platforms. She is currently a Lead Counsel on the product, marketing, and commercial legal team at Airbnb. Before joining Airbnb, she held in-house roles at HotelTonight and The Clorox Company. Melissa has been actively involved in efforts to expand diversity and inclusion in the legal profession, including as chair of Sidley Austin’s DC Diversity Committee, a member of the California State Bar’s Council on Access and Fairness, and a mentor for Berkeley's Women in Tech Law program. She has also served on Boards of Directors of MyHealthEd, Inc. (the tech non-profit behind the Real Talk app) and the Asian/Pacific Islander Domestic Violence Resource Project. Melissa holds a B.A. in philosophy, politics, and economics from the University of Oxford and a J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center.
Liz Atlee oversees CBRE’s robust global Ethics and Compliance Program. She ensures the program is effective at encouraging employees, vendors and stakeholders comply with CBRE’s Standards of Business Conduct and RISE values. Her role includes identifying risks and preventing, detecting and correcting noncompliance with laws, regulatory requirements, policies and procedures to safeguard CBRE’s reputation and brand. She also has oversight of CBRE’s Global Data Protection and Privacy Program, which ensures compliance with domestic and international privacy regulations. She also is very involved in CBRE’s data protection and governance policies.
Liz was previously CBRE’s Deputy General Counsel of Global Litigation, Employment, and Intellectual Property and Data. In this capacity, she managed a broad range of litigation and business issues around the world. Liz oversaw more than 300 active cases each year, reported on legal matters to insurers, senior managers and the board of directors, and developed and managed the company’s e-discovery and litigation hold protocols. Liz was also responsible for protecting CBRE’s technology growth
Liz has been recognized as one of the 50 Most Powerful Latinas in Corporate America, according to the Association of Latino Professionals for America (ALPFA) in collaboration with Fortune magazine. She was also awarded the Professional Achievement Award from the Mexican American Bar Foundation. Liz serves as the executive sponsor of Hispanics Organized to Leverage our Advantage (HOLA), CBRE’s Latino employee network, serves on the company’s Executive Inclusion Committee and the Women’s Network. Liz is also a member of CBRE’s Executive Risk Committee and Cyber Security Response Unit.
Before joining CBRE in 2011, Liz was a senior attorney at BP, an international energy company, where she managed litigation as well as state and federal investigations and transacted franchise-related retail agreements. She is admitted to practice in all California courts, the United States District Court, Central District of California, and the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.
Drawing on her corporate and business experience, Lauren assists clients of all sizes and across industries in identifying practical, strategic, and innovative solutions to employment issues that give consideration to greater business objectives, as well as diversity and inclusion goals. She advises employers on a variety of day-to-day employment issues including accommodations, FMLA and other leave rights, and misconduct allegations and investigations. In addition, Lauren regularly works with employers to navigate complex personnel issues and has successfully negotiated hundreds of severance negotiations. When necessary, Lauren defends her clients in litigation in matters related to wrongful termination, harassment, and claims of retaliation and discrimination.
Employers look to Lauren for advice related to the full spectrum of diversity and inclusion matters and rely on her to perform cultural assessments and risk-reduction audits to analyze current issues and internal processes. Lauren works closely with clients to understand their business and workplace culture so that she can proactively identify potential risks, strategically guide clients in avoiding potential litigation, and advise employers on building and strengthening their workplace culture. She utilizes her creativity and out-of-the box problem-solving ability to advise clients on effective approaches that support successful change management and process improvement. Lauren is prepared to guide clients through investigations and other crisis situations, including providing legal counsel on company messaging, and post-investigation steps such as discipline, trainings, and implementation of new processes and best practices.
Ashley Hardin focuses on complex civil matters and has litigated cases at both the trial and appellate level. A substantial portion of Ashley’s practice focuses on the health care industry and includes representing corporations and individuals in False Claims Act cases and other fraud cases, including in state and federal government investigations. Ashley also has considerable experience representing a pharmaceutical distributor in the nation’s complex opioid litigation and in representing pharmaceutical manufacturers in product liability litigation, including class actions and multi-district litigation.
In 2020, Ashley was recognized by Who’s Who Legal in their global guide to recommended healthcare lawyers, Who’s Who Legal: Healthcare 2020. In 2016, she was named a Law360 “Rising Star” for health care law. Ashley also is an active member of the International Association of Defense Counsel (IADC).
Tyng Loh is an Assistant General Counsel at Genentech, a member of the Roche Group, where she has advised on legal and regulatory matters across the biotechnology product portfolio and across the lifecycle, including international clinical research, manufacturing, quality, trade compliance and sanctions, cybersecurity, as well as US commercial sales and marketing, Prior to joining Genentech, Tyng practiced in private international law firms in Washington D.C. and Tokyo, where she focused on healthcare regulatory and litigation matters and corporate and securities issues in the life sciences space. She graduated from Georgetown University Law Center, cum laude, and received her undergraduate degree in Molecular Biophysics & Biochemistry from Yale University.
Myrto Koimtzoglou is currently a Senior Vice President at Wells Fargo Asset management. Prior to joining Wells Fargo, Myrto spent the bulk of her career in London serving as an Assistant general counsel and deputy head of compliance over at JP Morgan Asset management and UBS Wealth Management respectively. Myrto started her career as a junior litigator at Bank of Piraeus and then moved to M&As as junior counsel at ABN Amro Bank. Myrto is a Solicitor of England & Wales ,a Greek Lawyer and a registered foreign attorney with California bar. An International Funds and Investment Management Compliance Lawyer, In-house advisor for investment funds and investment solutions for institutional clients, she specifically focuses on advising the structuring and distributing regulated and unregulated funds (and fund of funds) on a cross border basis globally. Myrto earned her law degree from Aristotle University of Greece ad her Maters in Banking law (LLM) from London School of economics and political science. Myrto is also a certified UK Compliance officer and currently serves as a board member on 2 nonprofit organizations in San Francisco.
Elspeth Hansen is a partner in Mayer Brown's Palo Alto office and a member of the Litigation & Dispute Resolution and Antitrust & Competition practices. Elspeth’s practice has encompassed all stages of litigation in federal and state courts as well as arbitration proceedings, including dispositive motion practice, written and oral discovery, expert reports, and final hearings. Her practice primarily focuses on representing national and multinational clients in complex commercial and class action litigation, including antitrust litigation, healthcare disputes, privacy and consumer actions, and mass tort and product liability actions. She has experience in the tech, semiconductor, healthcare, chemical, telecommunications, medical device, and banking industries.
Prior to joining Mayer Brown, Elspeth served as a law clerk to the Honorable Roger T. Benitez of the United States District Court, Southern District of California. During law school, she served as Executive Editor for the online portion of Harvard Law School's National Security Journal.
Laila Paszti is a technology & IP transactions partner in the Bay Area office of Kirkland & Ellis LLP. Laila leverages her expertise in technology, intellectual property and privacy to help clients navigate risk and protect their commercial interests.
Laila’s practice focuses on technology and related aspects of mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance, licensing and other commercial transactions. She has acted on both sides of multinational mergers and acquisitions, patent purchases and sales, and licensing and IP transactions. Laila routinely advises clients on evolving multijurisdictional privacy regimes, cybersecurity, big data platform diligence and IP matters. She is sought out for her guidance on artificial intelligence and commercialization, including on patent strategy.
Troy Valdez is a trial attorney with more than 20 years of experience practicing labor and employment law.
Troy has represented clients in a range of employment matters, from wage and hour class actions, founder and executive disputes, breach of contract actions, whistleblower and other retaliation claims, discrimination and harassment matters, to traditional labor arbitrations. He has also prosecuted and defended trade secret misappropriation and corporate raiding suits.
In addition to his litigation experience, Troy counsels clients on all aspects of the employer/employee relationship, including the implementation of wage and hour compliance programs, the creation and implementation of employee and workplace policies, the negotiation of executive recruitment and terminations, the implementation of legally compliant reductions in force and other cost-saving measures, and the navigation of the law with respect to employee compensation, leaves, discipline, and terminations. He also advises clients on the employment issues that can arise in merger and acquisition transactions.
Prior to joining Coblentz, Troy was a partner at Thoits Law. He was a partner and co-founder of Valdez Law Group, an employment law boutique that specialized in litigation and pre-litigation counseling services.
Troy is a member of the Hispanic National Bar Association, the American Bar Association, the San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association, the San Francisco, Alameda, Contra Costa, and Santa Clara Bar Associations, and the Edward J. McFetridge Inn of Court.
Troy earned his J.D. from the University of California at Davis School of Law in 1997 and earned his B.A. from the University of California at Berkeley in 1994.
Claudia is a Legal Counsel at CI&T, an end-to-end digital transformation partner, where she oversees the legal aspects of the company's operations in North America and Europe. Claudia advises the company on M&A deals, commercial transactions and corporate issues. Claudia is an attorney licensed in California and Brazil with 15+ years of Contract Law, Corporate Law, M&A and international Litigation experience leading the design and execution of results-oriented legal strategies. Born and raised in Brazil, Claudia practiced at Brazilian law firms before moving to the US in 2014. Prior to joining CI&T, Claudia worked at OnPoint Analytics, a litigation consulting firm based in Emeryville, CA. She was a visiting scholar at UC Berkeley School of Law, and holds a Master's Degree in Law and a LLB from Pontificia Universidade Catolica de Sao Paulo
Melissa Pastrana is Associate General Counsel in Amgen Inc.’s Corporate Litigation Group. In her role, Melissa manages and advises on complex commercial disputes, from the counseling to resolution phase, both in traditional litigation and ADR. Melissa has particular experience with proceedings involving cross-border issues and has worked on matters where evidence, witnesses or partners were located in Europe, the Middle East, and Asia Pacific regions. Melissa also manages and advises on investigations involving both domestic and international issues (ABAC, FCPA, privacy, antitrust) and works closely with cross-functional teams (compliance, regulatory, commercial, development) to advise on and minimize risk. Prior to joining Amgen in 2011, Melissa was an attorney at Mayer Brown (first an associate in Mayer Brown’s Chicago and Los Angeles offices and, ultimately, a partner in the Los Angeles office). Melissa also served as a judicial law clerk to Senior Justice Elizabeth B. Lacy on the Virginia Supreme Court. Melissa has a JD from the University of Chicago Law School and an AB from Harvard College.
An experienced trial attorney, Jennifer focuses her practice on helping clients navigate mass tort, product liability and commercial claims.
For more than 20 years, Jennifer has led trial teams, defending owners, manufacturers, contractors, distributors and suppliers of a wide range of industrial and pharmaceutical products including chemicals, talc, pesticides/herbicides and asbestos. Jennifer works closely with clients on end-to-end litigation, from discovery and depositions, pre-trial motions, trial preparation and trial. She has defended clients in state and federal courts, with a unique ability to develop legal strategies that advance client goals in both individual cases and national caseloads.
In addition to her toxic tort practice, Jennifer assists clients with general commercial litigation, such as breach of contract claims. Clients value her broad legal background, which includes having worked on matters of labor & employment, defending governmental entities in personal injury cases, and representing broker-dealers before the National Association of Securities Dealers (NASD) in mandatory arbitrations.
Jennifer currently serves as Office Managing Partner for the firm's Oakland office.
Hillary Lehmann is a member of Lubin Olson’s Litigation Practice Group focusing on the defense and prosecution of complex commercial disputes. She is experienced in the litigation of matters involving contract claims and business torts in a variety of commercial settings including real estate, financial services, construction, and merger disputes.
Jasmine founded The Dincert Movement in 2017, hosting at-home concerts + dinners to raise money for local nonprofits lacking institutional giving channels. The initiative has raised tens of thousands of dollars for non-profits that provide direct services and aims to decentralize philanthropy while engaging the Oakland community through music and food. Jasmine also serves on the Boards of Public Advocates and California ChangeLawyers and was formerly on the boards of the South Asian Bar Association and the Young Women Social Entrepreneurs. In the wee morning hours, Jasmine teaches indoor cycling at Ride Oakland and Bhangra Barre at Remedy Barre.
Jasmine earned a Bachelor of Arts degree with high distinction from the University of Michigan in 2004 and graduated Order of the Coif from UCLA School of Law in 2008. She was selected by the SF Business Times as one of 2019's Most Influential Women in Business.
Erica Kassman advises technology companies on corporate and securities laws, with a focus on leading initial public offerings and other capital-raising transactions, corporate governance, and SEC compliance. Ms. Kassman has extensive experience representing companies and underwriters in a wide range of capital markets transactions, including:
■ Initial public offerings, direct listings, and follow-on equity offerings
■ Convertible debt offerings
■ Liability management transactions and debt offerings
She has also represented private companies and venture capital funds in transactions from seed through growth stage. Before joining Latham, Ms. Kassman was a partner at another global law firm, with a focus on tech capital markets, public and private company corporate governance, SEC reporting, and venture capital financings. Before that, she advised issuers and underwriters in primarily Latin American debt offerings and liability management transactions.
Ritu Ghai is currently Corporate Counsel at Google and was previously Senior Legal Counsel at Thomson Reuters and a litigation associate at Sidley Austin LLP. Ritu provides commercial legal support for partnerships for the Devices and Services team at Google. At Thomson Reuters, Ritu provided product and commercial legal support for the company's Legal Managed Services business.
Ritu is a member of her team's Legal Culture Committee at Google, was a founding member of her previous team's DEI committee, and was previously a Co-Chair of the Women@Thomson Reuters' New York Chapter. Ritu also serves as an Advisory Board Member of the Thomson Reuters Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Advisory Board. Ritu was a member of the Thomson Reuters Pro Bono Committee and takes an active interest in pro bono work, especially in the field of immigration and asylum. She has been published in this field in the Columbia Human Rights Law Review with her piece, "Deciphering Motive: Establishing Sexual Orientation as the 'One Central Reason' for Persecution in Asylum Claims".
Ritu received a J.D. from Columbia Law School, where she was a Managing Editor of the Columbia Human Rights Law Review, and received a B.A. from University of California, Berkeley in Political Science.
Kavitha Mecozzi is Assistant General Counse, Senior Counsel Specialist at Genentech, where she focuses on healthcare law, counseling clients on healthcare fraud and abuse, FDA regulations and other matters related to the development, manufacture, and commercialization of products. Prior to joining Genentech, Kavitha practiced at Ropes & Gray and focused on government enforcement and litigation related to several industries including healthcare. She graduated from Harvard Law School and received her undergraduate degree from UCLA. She serves on the Executive Committee for the Harvard Law School Association for Northern California.
Mary H. Kim is an associate in the firm’s product liability and mass torts practice group. She focuses her practice on complex commercial litigation matters, with particular emphasis on representing major pharmaceutical companies and medical device manufacturers in federal multidistrict litigation and coordinated state court proceedings involving claims of personal injury and consumer fraud.
Over her career, Ms. Kim has handled all aspects of litigation strategy from discovery and case workup, to motions practice, to trial. She has considerable experience developing expert witnesses and preparing company witnesses for deposition and trial, and has successfully briefed and argued motions in both state and federal court.
Ms. Kim maintains an active pro bono practice, including successful representation at trial of plaintiffs challenging state voter registration laws in the District of Kansas and in the Tenth Circuit.
Prior to joining the firm, Ms. Kim was a law clerk at the Bluhm Legal Clinic where she worked with the Legal Assistance Foundation in client representation. She was an intern at the United Nations’ Special Tribunal for Lebanon in The Hague, Netherlands, and was a judicial extern for the Honorable Young B. Kim at the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.
Faye Paul Teller is an experienced litigator who focuses on matters impacting the life sciences, health care, technology and higher education industries. She is Of Counsel in the Los Angeles office of Munger, Tolles & Olson.
Managing cases from filing to disposition and appeal, Ms. Teller has defended a leading pharmaceutical company’s highly successful treatment against claims of patent infringement and represented a top university in a breach of contract action related to a $100 million grant. Her work in case management has included coordinating document collection, review, and production; managing client communications; drafting and arguing discovery motions; and preparing dispositive motions, pretrial and post-trial filings, and appeals.
Ms. Teller has served as trial counsel in abbreviated new drug application (“ANDA”) bench trials, patent jury trials and arbitrations, including handling direct and cross examinations of fact and expert witnesses. Her work includes successfully defending a leading information technology company in the Eastern District of Texas against patent infringement claims covering Ethernet-related technology. She has also represented a major manufacturer of heavy duty axles in a contract dispute, a manufacturer of health and technology products in complex patent litigation involving more than ten patents, and major transportation company in defending against personal injury claims.
Ms. Teller clerked for both the Honorable Thomas L. Ambro of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit and the Honorable Edmond Chang of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. She began her career in private practice, where she was involved in arbitration and financial services matters.
Ms. Teller’s community involvement includes representing pro se inmates litigating the constitutionality of their conditions of confinement in federal prisons. She has also served as the vice chair of the board of directors for Chicago’s Great Lakes Academy, chairing a $3.2 million capital campaign for a South Side K-8 charter school that prepares students for Chicago’s selective enrollment high schools. During law school, she worked for the University of Chicago’s Civil Rights & Police Accountability Clinic.
Carmen Aviles is a legal counsel at Advantest America, Inc., a leader in providing solutions for a wide variety of semiconductors and test needs, from SoC and memory, to R&D evaluation and system level test. Carmen is responsible for drafting and negotiating a wide variety of commercial contracts, cross-border transactions, counsels on litigation matters, performs corporate compliance functions, and participates in a variety of corporate legal undertakings and projects in support of strategic business and legal objectives. Prior to joining Advantest, Carmen spent over ten years in law firms representing clients in intellectual property matters, including patent, trademark, trade secret, and copyright and represented clients in commercial transactions relating to patent and other technology license agreements. She is currently a member of the Advisory Council for the Hispanic Scholarship Fund. Carmen received a J.D. from the University of San Francisco School of Law and received a B.A. from the University of California, Berkeley in Molecular and Cell Biology and Psychology.
Lisa's real estate practice includes representing clients ranging from multinational companies to local companies in the purchase and sale of real property and commercial leasing of industrial and warehouse space. She has special experience working with the real estate needs of institutional property owners, including self-storage companies, telecommunications companies and automotive manufacturers, for whom she has negotiated and finalized thousands of commercial leases and acquired and disposed of billions of dollars’ worth of real property, and she serves as a real estate resource for the firm’s CBD team. Lisa is the chair of the McGuireWoods Los Angeles Women Lawyers Network.
Ted Suzuki is Vice President and Associate General Counsel for AT&T. Currently, his team is responsible for support of Marketing and Growth Organization for AT&T. In this capacity, his team provides legal guidance and support for all consumer and business advertising matters which consists of AT&T’s wireless, broadband and other products and services. In addition, the team supports the company’s Brand and Sponsorship teams. Prior to the AT&T-DIRECTV merger, he was the attorney for DIRECTV’s Sales, Marketing, Advertising and Public Relations functions. In his role, he negotiated numerous deals involving sales, marketing, promotional and advertising matters for DIRECTV, including deals for National television ads featuring such celebrities and athletes like Kate Upton, Rob Lowe, Charlie Sheen, Beyoncé Knowles, Peyton and Eli Manning, Deion Sanders and Albert Pujols, among others.
Sofia is a partner in the New York office of Kirkland & Ellis LLP and member of the Firm’s ESG & Impact Practice Group, which advises some of the world’s most sophisticated and dynamic private equity firms, corporations, and project sponsors and lenders on complex and evolving legal issues relating to ESG and climate-related regulatory requirements, investor demands, strategic opportunities, and voluntary reporting frameworks and coalitions.
Sofia builds upon over a decade of experience in U.S. securities law to advise clients on a wide array of ESG matters. She advises public and private companies on recent and emerging ESG regulatory developments, such as anticipated U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission proposed rules related to climate risk, human capital, including workforce diversity and corporate board diversity, and cybersecurity risk. She also counsels clients on ESG disclosures in sustainability reports, proxy statements and annual reports, which includes advising on regulatory requirements, international disclosure trends and industry best practices.
Sofia’s practice also focuses largely on social and governance issues. With respect to social matters, she has advised clients on topics such as diversity, equity, and inclusion; pay equity; and human rights. Sofia’s experience advising on governance matters includes assessments of ESG programs and disclosures through benchmarking and gap analysis, as well as board presentations, trainings, and tabletop exercises. She helps clients to identify opportunities to strengthen their ESG programs and mitigate legal and reputational risks, including developing strategies for integrating ESG into larger business and governance practices.
Sofia has extensive cross-border capital markets experience across Latin America, the United Kingdom, Europe and Japan. She uses this international lens to stay abreast of global regulatory developments and trends related to ESG. Sofia has represented companies across a range of industries, including technology and energy companies, as well as financial institutions.
Shanti Ariker is SVP, General Counsel at Zendesk and has been practicing for more than 20 years with experience working internationally with high-growth companies and working with board of directors and executive management, managing and building teams and negotiating complex agreements. Previously Shanti was Deputy General Counsel at Twilio Inc. and also worked at Autodesk and Salesforce, including 3.5 years as General Counsel of Salesforce.org, the non-profit arm of Salesforce.
Qiaojing Ella Zheng is Co-Managing Partner of Sanford Heisler Sharp's Palo Alto and San Francisco Offices and Chair of the firm’s Asian American Litigation and Finance Practice Group. Ella represents employees in individual and class actions as well as privately negotiated settlements involving discrimination and harassment, retaliation and wrongful termination claims. She also represents whistleblowers in qui tam lawsuits. Ella is widely recognized as one of the nation’s emerging leaders in the legal community. She is the President of the Chinese American Lawyers of the Bay Area, and the Board Vice President of YWCA Golden Gate Silicon Valley.
Annie started her legal career as a litigator at Arnold & Porter in DC, where she also maintained an active pro bono practice advocating for immigrant women and children and various human rights causes. She later moved to Silicon Valley and went in-house to counsel tech companies in all business areas, including product development, data privacy, regulatory compliance, public policy, marketing/comms, human resources, and corporate/IP transactions. Her expansive experience at large, mid-size and startup tech companies spans across a diverse range of industries, including cybersecurity, consumer electronics, fintech, social broadcasting/media, and online/app services.Additionally, Annie has maintained a commitment to community service, particularly in areas promoting education equity and inclusion in underserved communities, youth online safety, and other human rights/DEI initiatives. Currently Annie is Deputy Head of Legal at Glassdoor, the worldwide leader on insights about jobs and companies, whose mission is to help people find a job and company they love.
Passionate about physical and mental fitness, Annie can often be found out running, boxing, hiking or practicing yoga and meditation.
Ellen Bronchetti is a Partner in McDermott Will & Emery’s Labor & Employment practice group. She represents employers in state and federal cases involving issues in wage and hour, trade secret misappropriation, wrongful termination, harassment, discrimination, statutory leave, retaliation, and breach of contract claims across the country. Ellen’s practice also focuses on traditional labor, representing clients before the National Labor Relations Board and defending clients on unfair labor practice charges. She also counsels employers on labor strategy, corporate campaigns and union-management relations. Ellen’s practice encompasses clients in a variety of industries including transportation, energy, healthcare, entertainment, hospitality and the gig-economy.
Sophia assists individual, multinational and corporate clients with various aspects of corporate U.S. immigration, including nonimmigrant visas, permanent residence, compliance issues and corporate restructuring. Her experience also includes handling extraordinary ability cases in the sciences and business, outstanding professor and researcher matters, and reentry permits.
Sophia returned to Fragomen in her current role after spending several years as a solo practitioner handling nonimmigrant visas, employment and family-based immigration, waivers and removal defense matters. Sophia had previously worked with Fragomen as a Law Clerk and then as an Associate for seven years, representing Fortune 500 companies throughout various industry sectors on all aspects of corporate U.S. immigration, including nonimmigrant visas, permanent residence and naturalization.
Sophia has provided pro bono services to the Harlem, Brooklyn and Bronx communities of the New York City area and in Westchester County, New York throughout her career. Her services have included representation in asylum and removal proceedings, family-based cases, special immigrant juvenile petitions, U visas, VAWA self-petitions, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and general immigration consultations.
Kathy practices U.S. corporate immigration law and provides counsel to clients in the high-technology sector, ranging from large public companies to start-up businesses. She advises clients on all aspects of employment-based immigration, including the impact of evolving government policies on a company’s immigration program. Kathy has a passion for partnering with businesses to develop programmatic and legal strategies that fit their dynamic needs.
Prior to joining Fragomen, Kathy worked in-house at a renewable energy company supporting immigration matters. While in law school, Kathy was an active member of UC Hastings’ Women’s Law Journal.
Kathy provides pro bono legal services through Kids in Need of Defense (KIND). She has also assisted clients with VAWA cases pro bono through the Public Law Center and Catholic Charities.
Kathy speaks English and Khmer.
Ellen Oberwetter represents clients in complex civil litigation in courts and arbitrations around the country. She is a Co-Chair of the firm’s Arbitration practice group and Chair of the firm’s Bankruptcy Litigation practice group. In recent years, her primary areas of practice have included patent and licensing disputes, legal malpractice matters, and bankruptcy litigation. Many of her matters over the years have been litigated through arbitration.
Ellen has represented clients in a number of patent and licensing disputes, including Hatch-Waxman litigation, Biologics Price Competition and Innovation Act (“BPCIA”) litigation, and licensing disputes concerning collaboration agreement obligations, and royalty and sublicensing payment obligations. She has significant experience in litigating intellectual property and product valuation issues.
In the professional malpractice area, Ellen has defended law firms against allegations of mishandling litigation and transactional matters, including intellectual property, trust and estate, and bankruptcy matters; claims for securities fraud; allegations of overbilling; and claims for breach of fiduciary duty. She also defended a major accounting firm in arbitration and court proceedings around the country against claims relating to tax advice.
Ellen has represented clients in numerous bankruptcy litigation matters, including defending against claims brought by litigation and liquidating trusts, handling adversary proceedings, representing a company in a transnational substantive consolidation dispute, and negotiating Rule 2004 discovery requests.
Nikki Kerman (née Hasselbarth) focuses her practice on advising tax-exempt organizations on a variety of tax and governance matters, including the formation of new tax-exempt organizations, the termination of private foundation status, charitable solicitation registration, and general tax and corporate compliance requirements. Nikki also counsels for-profit clients on a variety of charitable fundraising matters, such as commercial co-venture campaigns, and assists high-net-worth individuals with charitable giving, and estate and business succession planning. A respected advocate, she is adept at managing the matters critical to maintaining successful operations while guiding clients through the most challenging and nuanced issues.
Meredith Bushnell is co-chair of Venable's West Coast Estate Planning Group. Meredith advises high-net-worth individuals on estate planning and wealth management issues. Her clients include entrepreneurs, business owners, and real estate investors facing complex issues. She designs and implements wealth preservation and management strategies that mitigate income, estate, and generation-skipping transfer taxes, and limit risk to family assets.
Era Zelenko serves as Head of Global Mobility at Palantir Technologies bringing over 15 years of experience to the team. In her role, Era has built out the mobility program from the ground up, developing scalable solutions to support Palantir’s growth across global offices and through IPO. Era’s expertise lies in Expat Management; Immigration and Tax Compliance; International and Domestic Assignments; Relocation and Localization.
Prior to Palantir, Era has led Human Resources and Global Mobility functions at small to mid-size companies with a global presence. She is based in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Leader of enterprise-wide Big Data strategy and governance; experienced in Healthcare Information Technology (Health IT); complex technology transactions, Big Data strategy, and IP attorney for one of the largest health care non-profits ($79 billion operating revenues); over 18 years experience in structuring and negotiating high dollar technology transactions, cloud services, AI, strategic innovation collaborations, licensing, professional and managed services, web-based, and outsourcing transactions. Negotiated upwards of one billion dollar IT deals, including domestic and international transactions. Advised on customer and supplier side of technology agreements for both in and out-bound transactions. Counseled clients ranging from Fortune 100, and early stage companies in IT, healthcare, software, web-based, e-commerce, automotive, manufacturing, insurance, energy, and banking and financial industries. Lead a Data Strategy Team of 12 attorneys and paralegals. Co-chair of the Enrichment and Development Subcommittee of the Equity, Inclusion and Diversity Committee.
Christin Hill is a partner in Morrison & Foerster’s San Francisco office and a member of the Securities Litigation, Securities Enforcement, and Investigations + White Collar Defense practice groups. Christin has extensive experience representing clients in securities class actions, derivative actions and other complex civil litigation in both federal and state courts, as well as in government and internal investigations.
With over a decade of experience in private practice, Christin has successfully represented public companies and their boards of directors and officers in securities fraud actions, derivative actions, SEC enforcement actions, internal investigations, and general corporate counseling. She also has experience working with pre-IPO companies in complex civil litigation in both federal and state court, internal investigations, responding to government inquiries, and advising on general compliance matters.
Hina Gupta draws from her environmental planning background to help clients navigate through regulatory, land use entitlements, and environmental issues.
Public and private sector clients turn to Hina for advice and counsel on a wide variety of land use and environmental matters, including compliance with local planning and zoning laws, California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the California Coastal Act, local municipal and election laws, and brownfield redevelopment. Her experience includes assisting clients with land use entitlements and CEQA compliance for large and small-scale residential projects, office buildings/business parks, self-storage facilities, industrial warehouses, medical and higher education facilities, and redevelopment projects. She assists clients with renewable energy siting and permitting issues as well.
Clients also rely on Hina for her litigation experience handling writs of mandamus matters for CEQA and land use issues.
Before her career as an attorney, Hina worked as an environmental planning consultant preparing CEQA and NEPA compliance documents on a variety of projects, including large infrastructure and transit projects.
Jung-Kyu McCann oversees the global legal team at Druva, including all corporate, commercial, IP, privacy and litigation matters. Prior to joining Druva, she served as Associate General Counsel at Broadcom and Principal Corporate and Governance Counsel at Apple. She started her legal career at Shearman & Sterling, where she spent more than 15 years counseling companies with respect to all corporate matters. She was honored with the 2017 Rising Star award at IR Magazine's Corporate Governance Awards. She currently serves as a director of the Society for Corporate Governance and a member of its Audit and Finance Committee. She also serves on the Advisory Council of the Women's General Counsel Network. She received a B.A. from Cornell University and a J.D. from Fordham Law School.
Candice Petty joined Tesla, Inc. as Senior Employment Counsel in November 2018, bringing 15 years of experience as both in-house and outside counsel. At Tesla, she provides advice and counsel on every aspect of labor and employment law, and manages employment litigation ranging from single plaintiff charges to class action litigation.
Prior to Tesla, she was the Director of Litigation for 24 Hour Fitness, a national fitness chain based in the SF Bay Area, where she managed and led strategy on all litigation against the company and supervised all aspects of case management. Candice has extensive experience advising on complex wage and hour issues arising from both exempt and non-exempt workforces, as well as navigating discrimination, harassment and retaliation complaints at the state and national level.
In her spare time, Candice volunteers as the Executive Director of the 20/20 Bipartisan Justice Center, a national nonprofit organization focused on criminal justice reform. Candice received her law degree from Stanford Law School in 2004, and her Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the University of California at Berkeley in 2001.
A North Carolina native and avid music lover, Jasmine is a passionate attorney with a strong background in music business and the law. After passing the bar, Jasmine worked as a solo attorney and focused on counseling artists, musicians, entrepreneurs, and investors in bringing traditional media to digital platforms. She has since pivoted into negotiating commercial agreements for technology companies. She is now Commercial Counsel at Asana, Inc. the leading work management SaaS provider.
Jasmine is a graduate of the UC Hastings College of the Law and holds a degree in Music Business from New York University.