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Donald W. Schroeder

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Education

  • Catholic University (JD, 1994)
  • College of the Holy Cross (BA, 1991)

Bar Admissions

  • Illinois
  • Massachusetts
  • Pennsylvania

Don has extensive trial experience in state and federal courts representing Fortune 500 clients on a wide range of employment matters, including restrictive covenant litigation, wage and hour class actions and single plaintiff discrimination cases. His trial experience includes a number of federal and state court jury trials involving claims under Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA), and the Massachusetts antidiscrimination statute (M.G.L. ch. 151B). In addition, Don regularly handles traditional labor matters (management-side) for clients including but not limited to union avoidance training, unfair labor practice proceedings, union elections, mass picketing and 10(j) injunction proceedings, labor arbitrations and collective bargaining negotiations.

From 2006 to 2010, Don was a member of the firm’s Hiring Committee. During that time period, Mintz Levin’s summer associate program was touted as one of the top rated programs nationally. From 2010 to 2012, Don was a member of the firm’s Compensation Committee, which is primarily responsible for addressing partners’ compensation levels across the firm. Don is currently the Chair of the Firm’s Staffing Industry Working Group.

Don is a frequent lecturer and author on a variety of employment law issues, including the Americans with Disabilities Act, Family and Medical Leave Act, NLRB developments and workplace privacy issues. Don has also been interviewed and asked to comment on labor and employment issues by various national and local media outlets including CNN, Fox News, the Wall Street Journal, Corporate Counsel, the Boston Globe, the New York Times, Bloomberg Financial, the Associated Press and Law360.

During law school, he was a member of the Catholic University Law Review. Since 2006, he has served on the Board of Trustees for his alma mater, Saint Peter's Preparatory School in Jersey City, New Jersey.

Representative Litigation Matters and Counseling

  • Secured complete defense verdict for largest U.S. staffing firm on all counts (sex harassment/retaliation) in federal court jury trial in Pittsburgh, PA.
  • Represented international soccer agency in restrictive covenant litigation against former employees, resulting in six figure settlement.
  • Acted as an in-house labor and employment attorney for a client's assistant general counsel for approximately four months and, in that capacity, provided personnel advice on a daily basis for a national union/non-union workforce of approximately 10,000 employees.
  • Defeated a six-figure wage claim filed against a national mental health system by its former chief financial officer.
  • Obtained dismissal for a publicly traded venture capital firm in a high-profile sex discrimination litigation by demonstrating absence of "single employer" status, despite firm's substantial monetary investment in co-defendant subsidiary (reported at 17 F. Supp. 2d 357).
  • Secured a favorable compliance ruling on behalf of a national coffee and bar establishment in federal Department of Labor wage and hour investigation.
  • Successfully represented employers in numerous summary judgment proceedings, including, but not limited to, a favorable ruling on behalf of a national insurance company in a sexual harassment suit (reported at 1997 WL 634501).

Traditional Labor Practice Representing Management

  • Represented internationally-recognized music school in extensive NLRB investigation which resulted in dismissal of over 30 unfair labor practice charges filed by faculty union.
  • Achieved dismissal of numerous unfair labor practice charges (Regions 4, 5, 6, and 22) filed against a national client during a union organizing campaign.
  • Provided advice regarding a client's implementation of initial collective bargaining agreements in 21 bargaining units located in the Mid-Atlantic and New York regions.
  • Conducted injunction proceedings before a three-judge panel in Suffolk County Superior Court during a 2000 strike involving over 12,000 employees in Massachusetts.
  • Represented a national building maintenance company in recent work stoppage involving 10,000 employees in downtown Boston.
  • Successfully defeated an election petition brought in an isolated facility for a national tire manufacturer with over 30 non-union facilities throughout the United States.
  • Assisted in obtaining dismissal of an election petition where a union had already initiated the process under the parties' card check and neutrality agreement (reported at 335 NLRB 558).
  • Successfully ended illegal picketing activities waged against a national non-union roofing company.

Wage and Hour Class Action Experience

  • Represented largest U.S. staffing firm with respect to a nationwide wage and hour class action involving alleged non-payment of overtime and training time wages to temporary pickup and delivery drivers. Following a series of procedural and substantive motions, the federal court rejected the pursuit of nationwide claims, ruling that: (1) the potential “opt-in” class under the FLSA should be limited to the New England region; and (2) the state law claims could only be pursued in the states of the named plaintiffs (Massachusetts and Vermont). In an important ruling for the entire staffing industry reported by Law 360 (the only other reported case on the issue was from the 3rd Circuit in 1970), the court ruled that the Federal Motor Carrier Act overtime exemption not only applied to the motor carrier (FedEx), but also the co-defendant temporary staffing firms. As a result, plaintiffs’ overtime claims were dismissed altogether.
  • Defended national animal health diagnostics company in a purported class action, alleging violations of the Massachusetts Independent Contractor Law and various Massachusetts wage-and-hour laws. Following court’s final approval of the class action settlement, we reached an independent settlement whereby co-defendant (staffing firm) accepted responsibility for over 75% of the monetary cost of class action settlement.

Recognitions & Awards

  • Chambers USA: Massachusetts – Labor and Employment (2012 – 2014)
  • Massachusetts Super Lawyers – Employment & Labor (2013 – 2014)

Professional & Community Involvement

  • Board of Trustees, Saint Peter's Preparatory School, Jersey City, New Jersey (2006 - present)