Firm Administrative Partner
Kate Mueting is the Firm Administrative Partner, Co-Chair of the firm’s Discrimination and Harassment Practice Group, and Co-Chair of the firm’s Executive Representation Practice Group.
Since joining Sanford Heisler Sharp, Kate has been recognized by U.S. News as among the “Best Lawyers” in America for representing individuals in employment law. She has also been among a handful of employment lawyers nationwide honored as a “Rising Star” by Law360 in 2019, and the National Law Journal recognized her as one of Washington, DC’s Rising Stars in 2017. The Profiles in Diversity Journal also recently recognized her as among its Women Worth Watching in Leadership. The District of Columbia Women’s Bar Association also awarded Kate with the Mussey-Gillet Shining Star Award in 2018, which recognizes one member each year who makes extraordinary contributions to the organization.
At Sanford Heisler Sharp, Kate’s practice has focused on discrimination, harassment, and retaliation matters, representing individuals and classes. Kate’s representations have included:
- Litigating on behalf of a class and collective action of accounting and consulting professionals, culminating in a $10 million court-approved settlement agreement with KPMG, LLP
- Negotiating a confidential seven-figure exit package for a female equity partner with race, gender, and retaliation claims against an international law firm
- Renegotiating a non-compete agreement for a company president
- Engaging an expert witness to value for stock options in a pre-IPO tech start-up and negotiating a severance accounting for the options
- Obtaining paid maternity leave for an executive after an employer denied it, assuming she would not return to work after having a child
- Negotiating multiyear severance for senior vice president prevented from advancing any further
- Persuading the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to issue numerous findings of discrimination, including one for pay discrimination against a medical device company and another for race discrimination on behalf of a non-profit executive
Kate received her law degree with Highest Honors from the University of Iowa College of Law and her Bachelor of Journalism with Highest Distinction from the University of Nebraska. While at the University of Iowa, Kate was Senior Articles Editor for the Iowa Law Review. Her volunteerism in law school earned her a Boyd Service Award.
Kate is a member of the District of Columbia, Iowa (inactive), and Minnesota (inactive) bars. Kate has authored and been quoted in articles that have appeared in publications such as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Fast Company, Law360, and other publications. She has presented internationally at numerous conferences, law schools, and law firms on a broad range of topics that include gender and pregnancy discrimination, gender pay gaps in professional services firms, maternal walls, professional development and career advancement, bias in the legal profession, diversity and inclusion, employee privacy rights, mediations, and class and collective actions. Kate is an adjunct professor at the University of Iowa College of Law and a co-chair of the Women’s Bar Association. She is a member of the Legal Network for Gender Equity, the National Women’s Law Center’s Leadership Advisory Committee, the Advisory Board for the Center of Labor & Employment Law at NYU School of Law, and the International Forum of Senior Executive Advisers.
Before joining Sanford Heisler Sharp, Kate completed clerkships for the Honorable Michael J. Melloy of the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals and for the Honorable Richard J. Leon of the District Court for the District of Columbia. Kate has also worked as a lawyer with Covington & Burling and DC’s Children’s Law Center and as a Team Leader with AmeriCorps.
When Kate is not lawyering, she enjoys spending time outside with her husband and their two daughters.
- J.D., University of Iowa College of Law
- Senior Articles Editor, Iowa Law Review
- B.J., University of Nebraska
- Honorable Michael J. Melloy, United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
- Honorable Richard J. Leon, United States District Court for the District of Columbia
- District of Columbia, 2010
- U.S. Supreme Court
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
- U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia
- The 2023 Lawdragon 500 Leading Civil Rights & Plaintiff Employment Lawyers
- 2021 Benchmark Litigation Labor & Employment Star – Northeast in the practice area of Labor & Employment
- Sanford Heisler Sharp Industry Leader in Employment Discrimination Law
- Profiles in Diversity Journal 2021 Women Worth Watching in Leadership Award
- 2021 Best Lawyers in America – Recognized for work in the field of “Employment Law – Individuals”
- 2020 Benchmark Litigation Labor & Employment Star – Northeast in the practice area of Labor & Employment
- 2020-22 Lawdragon 500 Plaintiff Employment Lawyer
- 2019 Law360 Rising Star
- 2019 Benchmark Litigation Labor & Employment Star – Northeast in the practice area of Labor & Employment
- 2018 Benchmark Litigation Labor & Employment Star – Northeast in the practice area of Labor & Employment
- 2018 Mussey-Gillett Shining Star Award, District of Columbia Women’s Bar Association
- 2017 National Law Journal DC Rising Star
- 2015-2020 DC Super Lawyers Rising Star
I would tell anyone who needs employment law help to contact Sanford Heisler Sharp!
It was wonderful working with Kate Mueting and Serena Bernal on my case. They worked quickly and effectively to negotiate my settlement. Now, thanks to their dedication and professionalism, it feels like a huge weight has been lifted off my shoulders. I am very grateful for their help in getting relief for my employment situation, and now I feel like I have a new lease on life. I would tell anyone who needs employment law help to contact Sanford Heisler Sharp!
–Former Director at a Fortune 500 Company
They combine compassion with experience
Thank you to Kate Mueting, Sarah Chu, and Madison Zucco for their wise guidance during a difficult time. After being let go from a large consulting firm, Kate, Sarah and Madison helped me assess my options for an age and sex discrimination case without sugar coating my chances for success. This gave me the tools I needed to make a decision and the confidence that I had chosen the right path. They combine compassion with experience. Thank you.
– Former Managing Director of Consulting Firm
Support and professionalism
I am incredibly thankful for the hard work and dedication that Kate Mueting, Frank Xu, and Katie Swenson put into my case. I contacted Sanford Heisler Sharp after being denied my compensation due to gender discrimination in assigning credit. Within less than three months of negotiations and while I was still working at the company, Kate, Frank, and Katie secured my compensation and the company has not attempted to deny me my credit or compensation again. I would not have been able to go through the process without their support and professionalism. Even after my case had settled and I had some new concerns, they were still eager to listen and help me in any way they can.
– Former Client
I was able to resolve my case for over a year’s worth of my compensation
I came to Kate Mueting late on a Friday afternoon after I was blindsided by my discriminatory termination. She responded right away and later that night confirms that the firm would represent me. I was so relieved to put my situation in her hands. In less than two months, I was able to resolve my case for over a year’s worth of my compensation. The efficiency and dedication Kate and her team gave to my case was extraordinary.
– Finance Executive
I truly appreciate all of the advice and counsel
I truly appreciate all of the advice and counsel Kate Mueting and the team provided me throughout the process. I will absolutely highly recommend you to any family or friends with any employment law questions.
– Human Resources Executive
I’m keenly aware of how necessary folks like you are for wrongs to be righted
I’m keenly aware of how necessary folks like you are for wrongs to be righted. I couldn’t do it on my own, and neither could almost anyone else. [Kate Mueting,] thank you not only for what you’ve done for me, but for the work you continue to do for the community and the country.
– Former Client
Comfort to me and my family
Kate Mueting was indispensable when it came to reviewing my severance package. She lent her experienced, professional eye not just to the four corners of the document, but also to the broader scope of the terms and their impact on my life. Kate listened thoroughly and provided thoughtful feedback. She drew upon her vast knowledge of employment matters to carefully explain the contract and answer all my questions in great detail. Kate brought insight into the situation and comfort to me and my family. She is the employment lawyer you want in your corner.
– Former Client
Passionate and informative approach
I am appreciative of the level of professionalism and care that I received while working with Kate, James, and Grace. I felt that the team’s passionate and informative approach was what led to our success in going against a tech giant. I can not recommend Sanford Heisler enough and will be forever grateful for their dedication to my case.
– Former Client, COO
Commitment, Dedication and Respect
“Kate Mueting is a dedicated professional who is passionate about her work and most importantly, her clients! The choice to pursue legal action is never an easy one; however, the balanced, fair and human approach taken by Kate is rare and renders her an invaluable asset to Sanford Heisler Sharp.During a very difficult time, Kate made herself available whenever I needed to speak and provided sound guidance which allowed me to make informed decisions. Despite the circumstances, I am inspired by her commitment, dedication and respect for her profession. For those who find themselves in similar situations, I would recommend Kate a million times over!”
– Anonymous Client
You are all phenomenal.
“Thank you again to you all for representing me on this matter. You are all phenomenal. I am very grateful for your knowledge, professionalism and compassion.”
– Big Law Attorney
“I’m about to start my second semester at NYU, and wanted to write and let you know how much I’ve been enjoying 1L so far, and how well I think working with you at Sanford Heisler Sharp prepared me for the demands of being a law student.”
– Former Legal Assistant
Peace of mind.
“I was devastated when an offer for my dream job was rescinded based on the biased opinion of a former supervisor who retaliated against me. My industry is small, and so, in addition to my deep sadness, I also felt extreme anxiety over how this retaliatory animus would continue to haunt my career. Because of Kate, Felicia, Conor, and their team, I not only reached an amicable financial settlement but I also found peace of mind knowing that this person could no longer discriminate against me. I also earned the satisfaction of holding a major company accountable for condoning retaliatory behavior. I cannot thank Sanford Heisler Sharp enough for supporting me wholeheartedly and giving me solid ground to stand on again.”
– A Director
Words don’t really express my deep gratitude.
“Thank you! Words don’t really express my deep gratitude. I can finally move on with my life and be done with this burden.”
– Former Client
I am grateful.
“Sanford Heisler Sharp represented me in my gender discrimination claims against my former employer, a law firm where I was a partner. I am grateful to Kate Mueting and Rob Van Someren Greve for fighting for me aggressively and efficiently and attaining my freedom to move on. It was an honor to have them represent me in negotiations and mediation, and I certainly sing their praises to those who may need help.”
– L.M., Former Client
I admire your professionalism.
“I appreciate your team’s efforts in assisting me in this matter. It was a pleasure working with all of you and I admire your professionalism throughout this process. I am so glad that your firm decided to help me resolve the situation.”
– Former Client
You two were just phenomenal!
“I just want to take this opportunity to thank you for your time with my class on February 14! You two were just phenomenal! You can’t imagine how much of a treat it is to get lawyers to come into the classroom and talk to students about actual cases. And, truth be told, it is not uncommon for lawyers just show up and start sharing war stories with no real prepared agenda. NOT true for you! It was absolutely clear to me that you two discussed the issues in advance and prepared a strong agenda designed to effectively teach my students (in 75 minutes or less–LOL) about the world of gender bias in employment. Your examples of some of the complexities in trying these cases and your thoughts about the challenges with the law were illuminating. Your execution was informative, engaging, flawless, and entertaining (Deborah you are really funny!!!). Students are still talking about your presentation! You gave us a gift that my students will never forget.”
– Kimberly Norwood
A real blessing
“It has been a real blessing working with Kate Mueting and Sanford Heisler Sharp and I truly appreciate their expertise, diligence, and care through this process… Working with [Kate] was exceptional, and I absolutely will refer any family, friends, or colleagues to Sanford Heisler without hesitation.”
– A Pharmaceutical Representative
Demonstrated genuine concern
“Being wrongfully dismissed after 25 years of meritorious service to the same institution was a dramatic and emotionally draining experience. Kate, Felicia, and their team’s attention to detail combined with their extensive knowledge of the legal process enabled me to reach an amicable settlement. They also demonstrated genuine concern for me as a person with every conversation and throughout the entire process. I feel very fortunate to have worked with them.”
– A University Director
I sincerely appreciate it.
“Thank you, Kate and the Sanford Heisler Sharp team, for your hard work on my behalf. It was a difficult decision to make to pursue this and I definitely couldn’t have done it without the right people on my team. I sincerely appreciate it and look forward to moving on to bigger and better things.”
– A Female BigLaw Senior Associate
“I just want to send my sincerest thanks to Kate and Sophie for their work regarding my case. Standing up to my former employer after being illegally fired was a very difficult situation for me, and I appreciate their help during this entire process. It means a lot that they took my case and handled it so carefully and considerately. I feel confident in my ability to move on due to this settlement.”
– A Recording Industry Marketing Professional
“Thank you Kate and the Sanford Heisler Sharp team for your support, guidance, and wise counsel during this process. It is indeed a daunting process and your professionalism and encouragement helped see me through.”
– A Female Communications Executive
A real pleasure.
“I’m sure this is the case with other clients [Kate, Aimee, and Cansu] have worked with, but in my own experience it is uncommon, I think, to develop such a bond so quickly with attorneys . . . . I think [they] are masterful at molding [their] advocacy beautifully around the needs and the personality of [their] client . . . without compromising the strength of the representation one bit. It is a real pleasure to know [them].”
– Former Client
“I contacted Sanford Heisler Sharp based on their stellar reputation supporting gender equality in the pharma industry. Kate Mueting and her team provided sound guidance when addressing my request for fair and equal treatment. They were engaged, treated me professionally, set realistic expectations and handled the situation masterfully. Thanks to Kate and her great team, I received strong support and never felt I was left out on a limb to fight this battle solo. In fact, this helped my confidence and tenacity to endure almost a year and a half fighting for my rights and those of fellow colleagues. With Sanford Heisler Sharp, we got the attention of company leadership and made positive strides for not only myself, but for other women as well.”
– Former Client
I can’t thank them enough.
“Balancing a career you love and early motherhood can feel impossible. When my employer demoted me because I’d asked for a place to pump breast milk, I felt despondent. A friend recommended that I contact the team at Sanford Heisler Sharp. I wish I had called them earlier. Kate Mueting, Felicia Gilbert, and Lindsay (Funk) listened to me, were respectful towards me, and assured me that my experience was objectively not okay (and not just an illusion of my hysterical lady-brain, as my employer insisted.) They got me the financial relief necessary to make a fresh start in my career. I can’t thank them enough.”
– Former Client
“Kate Mueting is by far one of the most brilliant attorneys I’ve ever worked with. Her commitment, professionalism and authenticity made a very difficult time manageable. Julia Coppelman also provided outstanding service and professionalism and my hope is that Sanford Heisler is fortunate enough to count Julia amongst its amazing team of attorneys in the near future. The legal expertise and dedication, as well as the excellent, consistent communication, was continually exemplified for the duration of my case. Should I find myself or any colleagues and friends in need of legal representation in the future I will not hesitate to send them your way.”
– Former Client
Astute legal counsel.
“Sanford Heisler Sharp's hard work brought me and my fellow colleagues’ resolution on a very difficult matter. I deeply appreciated not only their astute legal counsel, but also the understanding, human touch they used at every turn during the sometimes fraught process. As a lawyer myself, I felt privileged to have gotten the chance to work with them. They are making a difference in the world for the betterment of working women’s rights.”
– Female Law Partner
“Working with Kate and her team at Sanford Heisler Sharp is an empowering, validating experience. Their professionalism and humanity, coupled with their passion for fairness and transparency, are at the core of their success. Whether working with individual clients or getting justice for groups of women who have been limited by gender bias in their careers, they are making a big contribution to women’s equality in the workplace.”
– Senior VP and Global Head in Cancer Research
On July 12, 2023, Sanford Heisler Sharp filed a class action lawsuit against Twitter and Elon Musk for failing to provide promised severance benefits owed to terminated employees, and for failing to communicate accurately and truthfully with employees about the severance plan benefits, in violation of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA).
The Complaint, brought under the federal Equal Pay Act (EPA), alleges that ABOR dramatically underpaid Dr. MacCorquodale during her tenure as Honors College Dean relative to male deans at the university and to her male successors at the Honors College. Dean MacCorquodale had been employed by UA since 1978.
Federal court complaint alleges that female professors in the University of Arizona College of Science earn less, are denied promotions, and lack equal access to resources.
In June 2011, Class Representative Donna Kassman filed a lawsuit against KPMG to remedy KPMG’s systemic discrimination in pay and promotion, discrimination based on pregnancy, and chronic failure to properly investigate and resolve complaints of discrimination and harassment. Later that same year, the lawsuit was amended to add Named Plaintiffs from around the country who had experienced discrimination similar to what Ms. Kassman had suffered.
In a class action race discrimination case, Sanford Heisler Sharp is counsel for the class, which includes over 700 current and former African American Deputy U.S. Marshals and Detention Enforcement Officers who have experienced racism in hiring, promotions, and headquarters assignments from 1994 to the present. The class also includes all African American candidates who applied for Deputy U.S. Marshal positions since 1994 but were never hired.
- Consulting Co. Workers Get Class Cert. In 401(k) Suit, Law360, October 10, 2023
- Milliman 401(k) Target Risk Fund Lawsuit Gets Class Treatment, Bloomberg Law, October 10, 2023
- US Marshals Ink $15M Deal In Decades-Long Race Bias Fight, Law360, September 26, 2023
- Elon Musk’s Twitter owes former employees $500 million in unpaid severance, lawsuit alleges, SFGATE, July 13, 2023
- New lawsuit claims Elon Musk’s Twitter owes more severance to former employees, CNN, July 12, 2023
- Elon Musk, Twitter Slapped With $500 Million Lawsuit Over Ex-Employee Severance Payments, Variety, July 12, 2023
- Elon Musk accused of owing $500m in Twitter severance, BBC, July 12, 2023
- Twitter and Elon Musk Face $500 Million Lawsuit For Allegedly Refusing Severance For Fired Employees, Forbes, July 12, 2023
- Ex-Consulting Co. Worker Wants Class Cert. in 401(k) Suit, Law360, June 9, 2023
- Law Curbing Forced Arbitration Takes Shape: Midyear Report, Law360, June 8, 2023
- Construction Firm Settles Racial Harassment and Retaliation Case, SHRM, May 16, 2023
- UPDATE: Sanford Heisler Sharp Announces Four New Partners, Four Senior Litigation Counsel, GlobeNewswire, February 03, 2023
- We All Must Be the Feminists Who Work to “Take Care of This”, Sanford Heisler Sharp, LLP
- Pandemic Worsens Pay Inequity For Women, Experts Say, Law360 Employment Authority, March 11, 2022
- Activision Sells Culture Shakeup to Skeptics in Harassment Deal, Bloomberg Law, October 01, 2021
- What Employers Can Require With the Approved Covid-19 Vaccine, Bloomberg Law, September 9, 2021
- Employer Lessons In Avoiding Intersectional Bias Claims, Law360 Employment Authority, September 8, 2021
- Texas Sexual Harassment Laws Signal Stronger #MeToo Push, Bloomberg Law, September 03, 2021
- Eight Sanford Heisler Sharp Attorneys Listed In 2022 Best Lawyers, Sanford Heisler Sharp, LLP, August 19, 2021
- Around the Table with Kate Mueting, Avid Core, June 22, 2021
- 6 Books Wage And Hour Attorneys Should Read This Summer, Law360 Employment Authority, June 3, 2021
- Will The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act Get To Biden’s Desk?, Law360 Employment Authority, May 17, 2021
- Recognizing Title VII’s Broad Anti-Retaliation Protections, Law360 Employment Authority, May 13, 2021
- KPMG Strikes $10M Deal To End Decade-Long Sex Bias Suit, Law360, March 30, 2021
- 3 Things To Know About The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, Law360 Employment Authority, February 18, 2021
- Benchmark Litigation Reviews – Sanford Heisler Sharp, Sanford Heisler Sharp, LLP, October 15th, 2020
- Jones Day Women Can Pursue Bias Claims Over ‘Black-Box’ Pay, Bloomberg Law, May 20, 2020
- Should Other Law Firms Fear Latest Ruling in Jones Day Gender Bias Case?, Law.com, May 20, 2020
- Law360’s 2020 Employment Editorial Board Members, Law360, March 27, 2020
- As ex-PPG scientist continues legal fight on gender bias allegations, national focus on such issues grows, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, March 17, 2023
- Rising Star: Sanford Heisler’s Kate Mueting, Law360, September 13, 2019
- If You’re Pregnant and Working, Know Your Rights, New York Times, April 18, 2020
- Sanford Heisler, The Firm Helping Female Lawyers Sue Big Law, Bloomberg Law, April 12, 2019
- Law360’s Employment Editorial Advisory Board, Law360, March 15, 2019
- Sanford Heisler Sharp Files Gender Discrimination Class Action Lawsuit Against Arizona Board of Regents, Sanford Heisler Sharp, LLP
- KPMG Workers Urge Court To Certify Sex Bias Action, Sanford Heisler Sharp, LLP
- Job Cuts at KMPG a Reminder That Laid-Off Employees Have Legal Rights
- Congress Should Pass the Judiciary Accountability Act
- Seeking COVID-19-Related Accommodations for At-Risk Household Members
- Don’t Hesitate: Statute of Limitations in Discrimination and Harassment Cases
- “Take care of your kid situation” — Employers are Failing Working Moms During this Pandemic
- Bostock v. Clayton County, Georgia: Four Other Takeaways for Discrimination Victims
- Five Reasons to Celebrate the Virginia Values Act
- Dos and Don’ts of Severance Agreements
- Dos and Don’ts to Consider Before Going to Human Resources
- Dos and Don’ts to Consider Before Calling an Employment Lawyer
- Employee Evaluations in BigLaw: How Best to Reduce Bias
- Recognizing GOOD Guys
- Barriers to Success for Women in Law Firms
- Join the Experts for a Conversation About the Gender Pay Gap
- Q&A with Anna Rappaport
- Q&A with Andi Cullins
- How AI ‘Cultural Fit’ Assessments Can Be Analyzed For Bias, Law360, November 17, 2023. Co-Author.
- Sanford Heisler Sharp’s Comment on the EEOC’s Proposed Rule RIN 3046-AB30 to Implement the Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, October 10, 2023. Co-Author.