Prior to joining Ogletree Deakins, Ms. Katherine Manuel practiced at an employment litigation firm in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where she handled discrimination, harassment, retaliation, wage and hour, whistleblower, qui tam, breach of contract, defamation, tort, medical leave, and licensing matters.
Since joining Ogletree Deakins in August 2013, Ms. Manuel has advised, litigated, and negotiated on behalf of companies across all industries in a variety of labor and employment matters in state and federal courts and agencies in Illinois and Wisconsin.
Ms. Manuel was named as an Illinois Rising Star in 2015, 2016, and 2017, which is a distinction awarded to attorneys under the age of 40 based on peer recognition and professional achievement.
During law school, Ms. Manuel was a member of Hamline University’s National Moot Court Competition team and served as a research assistant for one of her professors. Ms. Manuel also worked as a judicial extern for U.S. District Court Judges Michael J. Davis and Donovan W. Frank in the District of Minnesota.
- J.D., Hamline University School of Law, 2009
- B.A., University of Minnesota – Twin Cities, 2006
Admitted to Practice:
- U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota
- U.S. District Court, Central and Northern Districts of Illinois
- U.S. District Court, Eastern and Western Districts of Wisconsin
Ms. Manuel has extensive experience drafting and arguing non-dispositive and dispositive motions and appeals, taking and defending depositions, mediating settlements, participating in administrative agency investigations, fact-finding conferences and hearings, and issuing and responding to discovery, in single-plaintiff and multi-plaintiff matters and class and collective actions.
Ms. Manuel practices in both federal and state court, and her courtroom experience includes second-chairing three jury trials and motion practice. Most recently, in a jury trial in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Ms. Manuel won a defense verdict for the defendant university on the plaintiff’s retaliation claim.
- • Defended former vice chancellor of university against Title VII/Section 1981 failure to promote race discrimination claims brought by former engineer in the Northern District of Illinois. Successfully dismissed employee’s claims at summary judgment. Jones v. Bd. of Trustees of Univ. of Ill., et al., Case No. 16-cv-10258 (N.D. Ill. Aug. 22, 2018).
- Defended pet products retailer against ADA disability discrimination and failure to accommodate claims brought by former distribution center employee in the Northern District of Illinois. Partially dismissed employee’s claims (disability discrimination) at summary judgment. Kottke v. PetSmart, Inc., Case No. 16-cv-08849 (N.D. Ill. July 6, 2018).
- Defended online mobile application-based technology company against a variety of claims brought by former ride sharing driver in the Northern District of Illinois. Successfully dismissed driver’s claims at summary judgment. Mohammed v. Lyft, Inc., Case No. 16-cv-02470 (N.D. Ill. Nov. 27, 2017).
- Defended athletic club against former employee’s retaliatory discharge claim in the Northern District of Illinois. Successfully dismissed employee’s complaint. Rees v. LTF Club Mgmt. Co. LLC, Case No. 15-cv-10411 (N.D. Ill. Jan. 8, 2016).
- Defended insurance company against former employee’s disability discrimination, failure to accommodate and retaliation claims in the Northern District of Illinois. Successfully dismissed a portion of claims in complaint, resulting in a stipulated dismissal with prejudice. Freeman v. Travelers Companies, Inc., 63 F. Supp. 3d 867 (N.D. Ill. 2014).
- Defended numerous clients before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Department of Labor, and Illinois and Wisconsin state agencies against current and former employees’ discrimination, harassment, retaliation, wage and hour, commission, OSHA and other labor and employment related claims.
- American Bar Association
- Illinois State Bar Association
- Chicago Bar Association
- Minnesota State Bar Association
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