Thursday, May 17, 2012

Who Does Debra Katz Represent and What Does She Have to Say About Cato?

Details of the inside Cato drama continue to develop.

EPJ has learned that a former female Cato employee retained Washington D.C.  lawyer Debra Katz to represent her in matters concerning Cato and a certain high level Cato employee.

According to the Katz web site, Katz is:
Recognized as one of the “toughest” employment lawyers in Washington, D.C. by Washingtonian magazine, and recognized as an expert in sexual harassment and employment law by The New York Times, The Washington Post, TIME magazine and others.
I spoke with Katz last week by phone and asked her if she represented a certain former Cato employee and if some kind of settlement had been reached between the former Cato employee and Cato, itself, and a senior Cato employee. She responded that she could not discuss who her clients are and said she could neither confirm nor deny any settlements.

She then told me: "I am going to hang up the phone now." And proceeded to do just that.

I also contacted Chris Kennedy, Director of Media Relations at Cato. I provided him with the name of a specific female and asked if any settlement was made by Cato with this woman. He told me that responses to these kinds of questions are answered by email. He then asked for my email address and told me that he would email me if Cato chose to respond. Cato has not responded.

But beyond any settlement with any Katz client by Cato, EPJ has learned that Katz set off  a bombshell in the Cato board room, charging that a certain Cato employee has acted in a "serial"  improper fashion and questioned how the board in the past has responded to the alleged serial misconduct.

EPJ has learned that a high powered attorney, Barbra Brown of Paul Hastings, has been hired by Cato board chairman, Bob Levy, to investigate the matter. The Paul Hastings web site says about Brown:
Barbara Brown is the office chair and senior employment lawyer in Paul Hastings’ Washington, D.C., office. She represents employers in the entire range of employment law matters, particularly employment discrimination class actions challenging pay, promotion, hiring and other personnel decisions, and wage and hour class actions. In these suits, she has been successful in defeating class certification or winning summary judgment. She also is frequently called upon to defend sexual harassment and retaliation suits or to perform investigations of such allegations, often in the executive suite.
From what other sources tell me, Brown is going to be very busy and that a thorough investigation will require talking to many females, including one now in Phoenix and another at a  university-based research center in Virginia.


  1. Why would Katz bother talking on the phone if she's neither going to deny or confirm? Can't she afford a receptionist to parrot what she said on the phone? Imagine the lost billing minutes talking to a journalist, albeit THE Journalist.

  2. RW, the modern day version of Woodstein. Did RW also once have TS clearance with Navy intel? The power is shifting from the Nixonians to the Rockwellians so maybe this journalistic move has been approved at the highest places.

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