History

Chairman David Sanford & Managing Partner Jeremy Heisler

In 2004, David Sanford and Jeremy Heisler founded Sanford Heisler, LLP, in an effort to litigate public interest and social justice cases that add a significant value to individuals in society as well as improve the community on a whole. Since opening its doors, Sanford Heisler has achieved unparalleled success securing extraordinary systemic changes in corporate America. In addition, the employment law firm has recovered more than one billion dollars for individual clients and the United States government.

Chosen from top law firms and top ten law schools throughout the United States, our lawyers have represented C-suite executives, as well as non-managerial, hourly employees throughout the country. Our chairman David Sanford has served as lead counsel in more than 50 class actions and numerous qui tam fraud cases around the country and has represented more than 100 General Counsel and attorneys (in house and outside counsel) in contract disputes, employment matters, and severance packages.

Sanford Heisler’s first important case came in 2004 when Mr. Sanford was lead counsel in a race discrimination class action against the Cracker Barrel restaurant chain, which was the only race discrimination case intervened in by the George W. Bush administration. Mr. Sanford represented the NAACP, as well as Cracker Barrel employees and customers. The case settled for more than $8 million.

The Firm’s most high profile gender discrimination case came in 2010 when it represented approximately 7,000 female employees in Velez v. Novartis. After a seven-week trial, a verdict of $253 million was secured, considered to be one of the largest employment discrimination verdicts in United States history.

Among our most successful whistleblower qui tam matters, Mr. Sanford was lead counsel for a relator in a case against Amgen that the United States government settled for $762 million to resolve criminal liability and False Claims Act allegations.

The Firm currently has four offices throughout the United States  in New York, Washington, DC, San Francisco, and San Diego – with more than 35 attorneys, 25 legal assistants, and a vibrant summer associate program. To this day, the Firm and all its members are still committed to the ongoing fight for justice on behalf of our clients.

Since 2014, the Firm has attracted and welcomed a number of new partners:

  • Charles Field, Co-Chair of the firm’s Financial Services Litigation practices and Partner in the Firm’s San Diego office; and
  • Kate Mueting, Partner in Washington, DC

In 2015,

  • Ed Chapin, Managing Partner of the Firm’s San Diego office; and
  • Michael Palmer, Co-Chair of the Firm’s national wage and hour practice and a Partner in the New York office.

In 2014,

  • Felicia Medina, Managing Partner of the San Francisco office
  • H. Vincent McKnight Jr., Co-Chair of the Firm’s national qui tam practice and Managing Partner in Washington, DC
  • Ross Brooks, Co-Chair of the Firm’s national qui tam practice and a Partner in the New York office
  • Andrew Melzer, Co-Chair of the Firm’s national wage and hour practice and a Partner in New York; and
  • Altomease Kennedy, Partner in the Firm’s Washington, DC office.

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