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About The Institute
Board and Staff

Patricia A. Barasch, President

Patricia A. Barasch, a partner in the law firm of Schall & Barasch L.L.C., concentrates her law practice in representing individual plaintiffs in employment rights litigation. She is also a frequent speaker on issues of sexual harassment, disability discrimination and family medical leave. Ms. Barasch is the President of The Employee Rights Advocacy Institute For Law & Policy. In addition, she is the Immediate Past President of the National Employment Lawyers Association and has been a member of its Executive Board since July, 2004. Ms. Barasch graduated from Cornell Law School in 1993 and is a 1987 graduate of Wesleyan University. Prior to beginning law school, she worked as a Research Assistant at Harvard University where she actively participated in the successful union organizing drive on behalf of approximately 3,500 clerical and technical workers across Harvard University. Ms. Barasch's accomplishments as an employment lawyer have been repeatedly recognized over the years. In 2000, Ms. Barasch received the Professional Achievement Award for the Young Lawyers Division of the New Jersey State Bar Association. In August, 2002, Ms. Barasch was selected as one of the top 40 lawyers under 40 years of age by the New Jersey Law Journal. In August 2003, Ms Barasch was selected by SJ Magazine as the "Top" Labor/Employment Attorney in South Jersey. Ms. Barasch was also named in New Jersey Monthly Magazine as a "Super Lawyer in Employment Litigation: Plaintiff" in every year from 2005 to 2011, and as one of the "Top 50 Female Super Lawyers "in the 2005 and 2007 editions of the magazine. In 2006, Ms. Barasch was named one of the "Top Women in Business" by South Jersey Magazine.

Bruce A. Fredrickson, Immediate Past President

Mr. Frederickson is a partner in the Washington, DC based law firm, Webster & Fredrickson PLLC. The firm is perhaps most noted for its twenty-five year old sex discrimination class action, Hartman v. Powell, which settled for a record-breaking $508,000,000 plus more than $25 million for 48 claims tried and decided. A 1973 Summa Cum Laude graduate of Dartmouth College, Mr. Frederickson obtained his law degree from the National Law Center, George Washington University, in 1976 with high honors. He also a member of the National Employment Lawyers Association, a member of the Metropolitan Washington Employment Lawyers Association's Board of Directors, the American Association for Justice, and the Trial Lawyers Association of Metropolitan Washington DC. Since 1986, Mr. Frederickson has taught trial practice as an adjunct Professor of law at the Washington College of Law of the American University.

Rebecca L. Salawdeh, Secretary

Ms. Salawdeh has devoted her legal career to the representation of individuals in employment litigation. She is a Co-Chair of NELA's National Origin Discrimination Committee, as well as a member of NELA's Membership Committee. Ms. Salawdeh is a member of the Wisconsin Employment Lawyers Association (WELA) and is a former WELA Co-Chair. In 2000, Ms. Salawdeh, in conjunction with other WELA members, helped to form the Unemployment compensation Appeals Clinic. She serves as a volunteer attorney for Wisconsin's ACLU and the Milwaukee Branch of the NAACP Legal Redress Committee. Ms. Salawdeh received her law degree and her masters degree in Industrial Relations from the University of Wisconsin Madison in 1996.

Diane S. King, Treasurer

Throughout her career, Ms. King has been committed to community service and has performed substantial pro bono work as well as serving on numerous nonprofit boards. She began her legal career at Davis, Graham & Stubbs, working in the areas of employment, antitrust and securities litigation. Ms. King is currently a partner in the firm of King & Greisen, LLP, and Vice President of Public Policy of the National Employment Lawyers Association. Her practice is focused in the areas of civil rights, employment, and anti-discrimination litigation, primarily in the federal courts. She lectures frequently on civil rights issues. Ms. King received her undergraduate degree from Colorado State University in 1983, and received her law degree from the University of California at Berkeley in 1987.

Thomas J. Henderson

Thomas J. Henderson is the founder of the Washington, DC firm, Henderson Law Firm. Prior to that, Mr. Henderson was a partner at Sprenger & Lang, PLLC, a plaintiff's class action firm specializing in employment, civil rights, pension, benefits and other cases. He previously served as Chief Counsel for the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, was in private practice, worked for Neighborhood Legal Services Association, and taught constitutional civil rights litigation as Adjunct Professor at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. Mr. Henderson has litigated numerous employment, education, housing, voting, environmental justice and other civil rights class actions, authored amicus curiae briefs on class action issues in the United States Supreme Court, presented invited testimony on class actions to the Senate and House and authored comments on proposed Rule 23 amendments to the Advisory Committee on Civil Rules. He has a great deal of experience in co-counseling cases with attorneys from communities across the country. Mr. Henderson is the chair of NELA's Fundraising Committee and was a member of NELA's 2007 and 2008 Annual Convention Committees.

Staff

Terisa E. Chaw
Executive Director

Carmen Comsti
Paul H. Tobias Attorney Fellow 

Colleen Goodin
Director of Donor Relations & Events

Leah Hofkin
Director of Development

Karen Maoki
Project Manager

 

 

Nareeya Nalivka
Finance Associate

Irving Sambolin
Administrative Assistant

Roberta L. Steele
Director of Programs  

Julie M. Strandlie
Director of Law & Policy

Pedro A. Valverde
Technology & Office Administrator

Contact us: info@employeerightsadvocacy.org