Russell Kornblith is the New York Managing Partner who works on both qui tam / whistleblower cases and on discrimination cases. He received his law degree from Harvard Law School in 2012.
David Sanford called me on Super Bowl Sunday (imagine that!) to let me know that Sanford Heisler Sharp would represent me. From start to finish, my legal team, Russell Kornblith, Ed Chapin, Adán Martinez and Natalie Chew, demonstrated its intricate knowledge and interpretation of employment law, specifically the risks and psychology of my employer’s strategy. As the case progressed quickly and constructively, I felt understood and respected throughout each step of the journey. The outcome was beyond what I could have imagined! I thank Sanford Heisler Sharp in my heart every time I read about them in the press. Just be thankful that they are on YOUR side and not the opposing counsel! Former Banking Executive
Russell Kornblith is the New York Managing Partner of Sanford Heisler Sharp. He practices both employment law and whistleblower law, representing individuals and classes in a wide range of disputes, including claims of unlawful termination, unlawful denials of promotions, unequal pay, and hostile work environment, related to race, gender, pregnancy, protected leave, and disability. In addition, Russell represents whistleblowers alleging fraud on the U.S. government under the False Claims Act.
He is currently class counsel in a nationwide gender discrimination case against Merck & Co., Inc., in which Sanford Heisler won collective action certification and represents more than 650 women alleging pay discrimination against the pharmaceutical giant. He has also successfully represented individuals in a broad range of individual discrimination claims, including claims brought by in-house counsel, BigLaw partners and associates, and executives in the financial services, pharmaceutical, and advertising industries, among others. Russell represents clients both in litigation matters and in confidential negotiations.
Russell has also successfully pursued whistleblower cases both alongside the government and on a non-intervened basis. Russell was co-lead counsel in the Temple St. Clair whistleblower action filed in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. The case is believed to be the first in the state to recover money for the federal government based on a company’s failure to properly mark its imported products with their country of origin. Russell likewise played a leading role in the Scripps Health System’s $1.5 million whistleblower settlement in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California, in which the whistleblower alleged Scripps unlawfully billed the federal government for physical therapy services on behalf of a physician who was not present when the services were rendered. In litigation, Russell obtained a First Circuit victory reversing a trial court’s dismissal of all claims in Nargol et al. v. DePuy Orthopaedics Inc. et al., a case brought by physicians and researchers who were the first to discover the company manufactured and sold large numbers of defective hip implants to the government.
Prior to joining Sanford Heisler Sharp, Russell served as a law clerk for the Honorable Ronald Lee Gilman of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit and for the Honorable James S. Gwin of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio. As part of Harvard Law School’s International Human Rights Clinic, he contributed to several amicus curiae briefs to the U.S. Supreme Court addressing the Alien Tort Statute on behalf of professors of legal history. Before law school, Russell worked as a researcher in support of the successful 2008 campaign of U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen.
- J.D., Harvard Law School 2012 cum laude
- Exchange Fellow, l’École Normale Supérieure, 2006-07
- B.A., Amherst College 2006 magna cum laude
- International Human Rights Clinic at Harvard Law School
- California 2013
- New York 2015
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
- U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California
- U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York
- U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York
- U.S. District Court for the Western District of Tennessee
Sanford Heisler Sharp, LLP brought whistleblower claims on behalf of Dr. Antoni Nargol and Dr. David Langton, two physicians and researchers who were first to uncover that medical-device company DePuy Orthopaedics manufactured and sold large numbers of defective hip implants to the government.
The whistleblower alleged that the San Diego-based Scripps Health System unlawfully billed the United States Government for physical therapy services on behalf of a physician who was not present while the services were rendered. The case claimed that Scripps persisted in this conduct despite warnings from the whistleblower.
The case is thought to be the first in New York to recover money for the United States government based on the defendant’s failure to properly mark its products with their country of origin.
This gender discrimination class action against pharmaceutical giant Merck & Co., Inc. was originally filed by Plaintiff Kelli Smith in May 2013 in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey. In January 2014, four additional class representatives from around the country joined the suit as plaintiffs alleging pay, promotion and pregnancy discrimination against the company.
- Law360’s Legal Industry Editorial Advisory Board
- Merck Can’t Sink Cert. In $250M Sex Bias Class Action
- Law360 Names Attys Who Moved Up The Firm Ranks In Q1
- After Trump order, volunteer lawyers descend on big airports
- Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE:MRK) Embattled By Over 400 Pay Discrimination Claims
- Fortune, April 28, 2016 – Bad News for Merck in U.S. Sex Discrimination Case
- Thomson Reuters, April 27, 2016 – Merck sex discrimination case could be collective action -judge
The False Claims Act is one of the government’s most powerful tools to fight fraud. Under the Act a whistleblower, called a “relator,” can provide the government with information about the ways in which it is being defrauded. If the government subsequently recovers money as a result of the relator’s tip, the relator receives a […]
Last week, the Supreme Court, by a 9-0 vote, issued an important ruling on the protections that the Dodd Frank Wall Street Reform Act offers to whistleblowers. The case, Digital Realty Trust Inc. v. Somers, determined that Dodd Frank protects from retaliation only those whistleblowers who complain about corporate fraud to the Securities Exchange Commission. […]
As increasing numbers of women come forward to speak out about sexual harassment and discrimination in the workplace, many news commentators have called for an end to confidential discrimination settlements. The intentions behind this call are honorable and righteous, but the reality may be more complicated. Confidential settlements offer benefits for victims. Not every victim […]
Beginning January 1, 2018, New York’s Paid Family Leave Program will provide employees in New York State with a range of new benefits. Here’s what you need to know: Under the Program, employees will receive paid leave and continuation of health insurance coverage (subject to the employee contribution) for 8 weeks beginning in 2018, increasing […]
Finance professionals, executives, sales people, pharmaceutical professionals, information technology professionals, and others today face an increased number of employer-issued restrictions on their right to continue working after they leave their job. For employees, these provisions, often called “non-competes” can have devastating consequences. Read to the letter, these provisions may purport to stop employees from working […]
Bernie Sanders has been garnering national media attention with his plans to offer free tuition at public colleges and universities. It’s an idea worthy of debate, although I am not entirely convinced at this point. For example, I am not sure that I understand the societal benefits of guaranteeing free college to, say, Barron Trump. […]
The recent big news in lawyer land is the nomination of Chief Judge Merrick Garland of the US Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit to replace Justice Scalia. He is, by all appearances, eminently qualified, a model public servant, and at least a tad (I say in jest) to the left of the late […]
The New York Times recently published a fascinating and tragic article about a small group of women in rural India who challenged the social order of their village by seeking and obtaining jobs at a meat-processing factory. The women walked 10 miles each way (to save the 7-cent rickshaw fare) to the factory. There, they […]
My colleague, Sara, wrote last month about D.C.’s Universal Paid Leave Act, which would entitle workers to 16 weeks of paid leave for the birth of a child or another qualifying event. It’s a step in the right direction, but we’re still a long way from ensuring that working parents have all of the protections […]
National media, including the New York Times, have been reporting recently that Senator Marco Rubio used a Republican Party credit card for personal items, such as the purchase of paving stones at his home, travel for a family reunion, flights, and even groceries. According to the Times, Senator Rubio has admitted spending more than $16,000 […]