Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C.
Danuta (“Donna”) Bembenista Panich has a varied practice advising and advocating for employers. Since graduating at the top of her law school class in 1978, Ms. Panich has dealt with all aspects of labor and employment law. However, since 1995, she has focused primarily on defending employers – including many of the nation’s largest companies – in class actions, multi-plaintiff and collective actions, pattern and practice claims, and other “bet the company” matters such as investigations of catastrophic industrial accidents. In all such matters, Ms. Panich brings to bear a calm, orderly, and strategically insightful approach. She combines aggressive defense with civility, and excels at demystifying the most complex issues. Both within the context of complex litigation and outside litigation realms, Ms. Panich has dealt extensively with electronic discovery and litigation preparedness. As a result of this experience, her wealth of knowledge, and her penchant for detail, when Ms. Panich left Mayer Brown to join Ogletree Deakins in 2007, she established, and has since served, as chair of Ogletree Deakins’ Record Retention and E-Discovery Practice Group. In this role, she helps professional services firms and companies plan for litigation by developing programs for records management, electronic discovery, and legacy data remediation.Professional, bar, and trade associations, law schools, CLE providers, and employers frequently ask Ms. Panich to speak or provide training on litigation techniques, electronic discovery and records management, as well as various employment related issues such as wage-hour, harassment, diversity, and occupational safety and health. Ms. Panich has also authored several articles on these topics, and is active, through her leadership role in the Federal Bar Association, in developing continuing legal education programs for practitioners and their clients.