Kate Watkinson Wright is an associate with the firm’s labor and employment group and her practice focuses on employment advice and litigation. Kate enjoys counseling businesses and governments and playing a role in their success. Kate protects the interests of private and public employers in all matters employment related, dealing with everything from day-to-day personnel issues, wage and hour claims, FMLA and OFLA leave, employee discipline, dispute resolution, discrimination and harassment complaints, employment and noncompetition agreements, employee handbooks and trainings, terminations, and related litigation. She also defends employers in federal and state agency investigations conducted by the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Kate regularly speaks and writes articles on employment law topics.
Kate has been included in The Best Lawyers in America® in the field of employment law-management for 2013 and was selected for inclusion in Super Lawyers®-Rising Stars Edition 2012. She is admitted to the Oregon State Bar and to the Tribal Court for the Confederated Tribes of the Coos, Lower Umpqua and Siuslaw Indians.
Kate is also very active in the community, providing service to many local organizations. Kate is a public member and former Vice Chair of the Oregon State Board of Architect Examiners. She also serves on the Board of Directors of Early Start, an organization dedicated to serving the interests of underprivileged students in arts and sciences. In addition, she donates her time to various University of Oregon law school activities, such as Moot Court competitions, practicing law and bar preparation panels and she actively mentors law students and young lawyers.
Kate earned her J.D., Order of the Coif, from the University of Oregon School of Law. She received a B.S. from Stanford University and during her undergraduate years spent time studying in Moscow, Russia.