Robert A. Odell
Robert A. Odell is an employment attorney and founding shareholder of Workplace Justice Advocates, PLC where he represents employees filing lawsuits for sexual harassment, discrimination, wrongful termination and a variety of other employment-related matters.
Robert attended Chapman University School of Law where he first clerked for the Homicide Unit of the Orange County District Attorney’s Office.
During his clerkship with the District Attorney, Robert was given the opportunity to assist some of the Nation’s best criminal prosecutors in numerous high-profile murder trials and investigations – most notably in the prosecution of Jason Russell Richardson, the “Home Depot Killer,” who was sentenced to death following his conviction for the murder of Tom Egan.
Robert credits his time with the D.A. as the foundation for his love of trial advocacy and his desire to obtain justice for those who have been unlawfully harmed.
During law school, Robert excelled in trial competition as a member of Chapman’s prominent Mock Trial Honor Board, winning several awards in both regional and national mock trial competitions across the country. Robert was also recognized by one of Orange County’s most distinguished judges as a top talent in the courtroom, earning him a CALI Excellence for the Future Award.After passing the California Bar, Robert came together with his mentor, Tamara Freeze, to form Workplace Justice Advocates, a Professional Law Corporation which currently represents employees on a contingency basis in a broad spectrum of employment matters including harassment, discrimination, wrongful termination and wage and hour class actions.
In his very first jury trial (just two years out of law school), Robert and his partner, Tamara Freeze, obtained a $1,377,000.00 discrimination verdict on behalf of their client, Huron Mayo, in a complex employment discrimination and harassment case - prevailing on all five (5) causes of action against defendant Community Development Commission of the County of Los Angeles. In doing so, Robert became one of the youngest trial attorneys in U.S. history to obtain a seven-figure discrimination verdict.
Just six months later, Robert and Tamara tried another complex employment discrimination case. Their client, Joseph Snead, was a 15-year custodian with the Chino Valley Unified School District and was fired after he was injured on the job and could no longer climb ladders as a result. Mr. Snead's previous attorney declined to take the case to trial and the School District refused to offer anything more than a small, nuisance-value settlement, as they saw very little risk that Mr. Snead would prevail at trial.
Despite this, Robert and Tamara tried the case and were able to obtain a $550,000.00 jury award for Mr. Snead, which was one of the largest discrimination verdicts in San Bernardino County for 2015.
Today, Robert continues to dedicate his practice to mostly low-income and minority employees in need of strong representation against large, unscrupulous employers.
In his spare time, Robert enjoys college football, binge-watching documentaries on Netflix and traveling with his wife, who is also a USC and Chapman Law Alumnus.
J.D., Chapman University School of Law
Mock Trial Honor Board; Emphasis Certificate in Advocacy and Dispute Resolution; CALI Excellence for the Future Award: Trial Practice; Stetson National Pretrial Competition: Third Place; American Association for Justice Trial Advocacy Competition: Perfect Score; Rutan & Tucker Golden Gavel Oral Advocacy Competition: Finalist; Employment Law Society.
B.S. Molecular Biology, University of Southern California
Minor in Environmental Microbiology, Wrigley Institute for Environmental Studies: Graduate-level Coursework in Molecular and Microbial Ecology, Geochemistry & Microbial Genetics; Directed Research in Marine DMSP Metabolism and Climate Change; Collegiate Medical Volunteers; Delta Delta Sigma Honor Society; AYUDA Clinic Volunteer.
United States District Court, Central District of California
California Employment Lawyers Association
Member Since: 2011
Consumer Attorneys Association of Los Angeles
Member Since: 2014
$1,377,000.00 Jury Verdict:
- Mayo v. Community Development Commission of the County of Los Angeles (LASC Case No. BC486184), Obtained a $1,377,000.00 jury verdict on behalf of a 60-year old woman who was harassed and discriminated against for reporting religious discrimination at work. After reporting the conduct to HR, Plaintiff was retaliated against, written-up for poor performance, and then terminated for insubordination. Prevailed on all causes of action at trial, including Retaliation, Failure to Prevent Retaliation, Disability Discrimination, Failure to Prevent Disability Discrimination and Violation of the California Family Rights Act. Attorneys' Fee motion approved for an additional $613,000.00.
$550,000.00 Jury Verdict:
- Snead v. Chino Valley Unified School District (San Bernardino Case No. CIVRS 1101184), Obtained a $550,000.00 jury verdict on behalf of a 65-year-old disabled custodian who was terminated after Defendant failed to accommodate his work restriction of no working on ladders. Attorneys' Fee motion approved for an additional $429,403.00.
- Confidential settlement obtained for an age discrimination case against a major fast food chain.
Wergechik v. Anaheim Arena Management, LLC (Case No. 30-2015-00786670-CU-WT-CJC, June 25, 2016):
- Obtained $32,720.00 in attorneys' fees against Defendant after prevailing on an Anti-SLAPP Motion. The large corporate employer filed a cross-complaint against Plaintiff, its former employee, for taking and using company documents in her own lawsuit against the corporate employer. The court granted the Anti-SLAPP motion, dismissed the Corporation's cross complaint and awarded costs and attorneys fees against them.
Harris v. Bingham McCutchen LLP, 214 Cal. App. 4th 1399 (2013):
- Defeated employer’s Petition to Compel Arbitration; Represented Plaintiff-Respondent on appeal involving novel issue of employment arbitration contract law; Submitted briefing to the United States Supreme Court and successfully opposed grant of certiorari; Case featured in SCOTUSblog, AboveTheLaw, Law360, ABA Journal, The Recorder, Law.com, and the Daily Journal.