Pat brings a holistic and service-oriented approach when representing employers.

Overview

Pat understands how disruptive an employment-related dispute can be for a business, so she uses her extensive experience in litigating employment-related lawsuits to help clients resolve disputes effectively and efficiently. She also regularly advises clients to ensure their employment policies and practices meet legal and compliance requirements.

Pat's extensive experience includes representing employers in lawsuits involving wage and hour violations (including collective and class actions); harassment; sex, race, age and disability discrimination; retaliation; and other employment-related claims. She defends companies against whistleblower claims both in agencies and in court. Pat also represents employers in the defense of discrimination claims filed with federal, state and local administrative agencies, and has represented clients in appellate actions in state and federal courts of appeal. Additionally, Pat regularly advises clients on, and litigates cases involving, non-competition and non-solicitation agreements.

In addition to her litigation practice, Pat counsels employers on all aspects of employment law and human resources practices including discharge; employment and severance agreements; discrimination and harassment; employee handbooks; contracts and policies; wage and hour issues; employee leave; accommodations for disabilities; privacy issues; and defamation. She regularly conducts and directs internal investigations of alleged misconduct by employees, as well as claims by employees of harassment or discrimination.

Pat has experience working with employers in a wide range of industries, including live entertainment and sports arenas, accounting, banking, retail, manufacturers, health care companies, and wireless networking companies. She is a frequent speaker at continuing legal education seminars and employer workshops and also provides educational and training seminars for employers.

She consistently wins high marks from clients for her accessibility and client service, and is a top-ranked labor and employment lawyer by Chambers USA. Pat joined the firm after serving as a law clerk to the Honorable Deanell Reece Tacha, Circuit Judge, United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit.

Experience

Defended providers of support services to individuals with disabilities in collective and class actions alleging failure to pay overtime wages, in violation of state and federal law

Defended a worldwide provider of health care information technology in several class and collective action lawsuits alleging violations of federal and state wage and hour laws

Obtained a defense verdict in a jury trial for a nationwide retailer in a lawsuit alleging sexual harassment and retaliation

Conducted numerous investigations of sensitive claims of alleged workplace harassment or discrimination for employers

Defended a regional utility company in a SOX whistleblower case, which was tried before an administrative law judge

Defended a nationwide retailer in various employment-related claims

Obtained a preliminary injunction against several former shareholders of a national accounting firm who left the firm to form a competing business in violation of their noncompetition agreements

Defended a provider of transportation and wireless networking implementation services in a putative collective and class action claiming the company failed to pay overtime wages in violation of state and federal law

Assisted numerous banks and financial institutions on a variety of employment-related matters

Assisted numerous clients seeking to enforce, or resist the enforcement of, non-competition and non-solicitation agreements

News & Insights

News

Recognitions

Recognitions

Pat is listed in the 2012-2017 Chambers USA Guide: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business for Labor & Employment. "Pat frequently defends employers against discrimination claims. She also possesses a wealth of knowledge of FLSA and wage and hour related matters." Sources say: "she is very strong in her field," and clients value her admirable client service. "She's absolutely excellent. She gives outstanding advice, she understands the company perspective and she is always readily available." She is well known for her effective litigation and counseling abilities and represents clients in an array of employment matters including discrimination cases, noncompetition matters and contract disputes.

Listed in the 2010-2020 edition of The Best Lawyers in America© for Labor and Employment Law

Listed repeatedly in Missouri and Kansas Super Lawyers® for Employment Litigation

Pat was recognized by the KCMBA with the 2019 Sly James Diversity and Inclusion Award

Pat received the 2018 Vanguard Award from the Asian American Bar Association of Kansas City

Professional & Civic Activities

Professional & Civic Activities

Wage and Hour Defense Institute (WHDI)

Heartland Labor & Employment Law Institute Steering Committee

  • Member since 2000
  • Chair, 2007

Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Association

  • Legal Advisor to Board, 2018
  • Labor & Employment Committee, Co-chair, 2010
  • Heartland Diversity Legal Job Fair Committee, 2005-2007; Chair, 2006
  • Kansas City Metropolitan Bar Foundation Board Member

Asian American Bar Association of Kansas City

  • Board Member 2018 - present

Kansas City Friends of Alvin Ailey

  • Board Member, 2015-Present

UMKC Women's Council

  • Board Member, 2007-2013
  • Board President, 2013-2015

National Asian Pacific American Bar Association

Kansas Bar Association

The Missouri Bar

Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, candidate in 2002 Man & Woman of the Year campaign

Admissions

  • Missouri, 1994
  • Kansas, 1995

Education

University of Kansas, J.D., 1994

  • Order of the Coif
  • C. Stewart Award in Law
  • Faculty Award for Outstanding Scholastic Achievement

University of California-Berkeley, A.B., History, 1983

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