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The Daily Journal
Daily Journal Recognizes Elizabeth J. Cabraser and Kelly M. Dermody as Top Women Litigators
May 10, 2012
The Daily Journal has named Elizabeth J. Cabraser and Kelly M. Dermody to its list of the 2012 Top California Women Litigators. The editors reviewed hundreds of nominations from law firms, public agencies, nonprofits and universities, and selected 75 litigators based on the criteria that their work has had a broad impact on the legal community and on society at large. Over 80,000 women in California are licensed to practice law.
The Daily Journal noted that Ms. Cabraser, the chair of the firm's personal injury practice group, is at the forefront of the federal litigation arising from the 2010 BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. More than 20,000 individual claims were filed against the company. "A major challenge for [the steering committee] was the wide variety of damages that were caused by the spill," Ms. Cabraser said. "What was very important is that we did this as quickly as possible so folks didn't have to wait. We now have a major settlement just less than two years from the day of the oil spill." Having practiced law for nearly 35 years, Ms. Cabraser also noted that settlements like the one in the BP case demonstrate the importance of class actions.
The chair of Lieff Cabraser's Employment practice group and President of the Bar Association of San Francisco, Ms. Dermody is, as described by the Daily Journal, "keeping Wall Street on its toes." She serves "as co-lead counsel for plaintiffs in a gender discrimination class action against investment banking giant Goldman Sachs & Co. [alleging that] Goldman Sachs distributes its enormous proceeds -- it paid $16 billion to employees in 2009 -- unequally, systematically favoring male professionals over their female counterparts," the Daily Journal noted.
"You never see people who hold these titles in a lawsuit, much less in a class action lawsuit," Ms. Dermody said. But the plaintiffs want to force the investment firm to permanently change its practices for the benefit of all women there. "These are women who have decided to take on the burden of litigation on behalf of other people," Ms. Dermody added.