Russell Kornblith

Russell Kornblith
Russell Kornblith
New York Managing Partner

(646) 402-5646

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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.

This was an experience I never anticipated going through and, not surprisingly, a personal as well as professional challenge. I'm so glad I had the expertise --and wisdom-- of you and your team to count on. An Attorney Client

I would like to share my experience and spread the word about my “attorney extraordinaire”, Russell Kornblith. Russell represented me and helped attain a settlement that was better than expected. As an attorney, Russell is dynamic, knowledgeable, reliable, approachable and much more. He has great communication skills and an approach which is practical and realistic. What makes Russell stand apart from others is his compassionate nature. I never felt alone. Russell stood by my side during turbulent times. There were dreary days where I would get frustrated and wanted to give up and, every single time, Russell was available to walk me through various scenarios, provide encouragement, empathize with me and always buck me up. Russell’s availability, willingness to listen and empathetic approach turned a very difficult and unpleasant process into a bearable experience. There were innumerable times where Russell would respond to my distressed emails past midnight. Knowing that I had a powerful, strong attorney standing by my side brought a huge sense of relief. During a difficult and complicated encounter, Russell came as a breath of fresh air when I was feeling extremely suffocated. A Former Client

I'm eternally grateful to Russell, Alok and Kate for their impressive work with my case. I expected outstanding legal service based on the firm's reputation and track record. In addition, the team brought compassion and a strategic approach to managing the case, which ultimately brought a longstanding matter to a close. I've worked with numerous employment law firms in my profession, and I would unhesitatingly refer clients and friends to the team at Sanford Heisler Sharp. A Former Client

Based upon Sanford Heisler’s reputation, I expected outstanding legal service. However, I cannot express how much I respect and appreciate the skill and compassion David, Russell, and Nicole demonstrated every single day. With their expert guidance and attention, they made an otherwise very difficult process tolerable. The Sanford Heisler team always made me believe the fight was worthwhile! Thank you all so much! General Counsel

If you are reading this, you are likely in the midst of a very difficult journey. I know, because I went through it myself, and I am here to tell you that if you stay positive and trust your Sanford Heisler Sharp team, the road can be transformational and yield amazing results. . . . Russell and Meredith fought for me, and also held my hand throughout the process, during which I experienced some of the lowest lows of my life. We spoke almost every day, to the point where I was very sad to see our relationship end (although they will always be in my life because I'll never stop emailing them :)). Most importantly, they got me to the best possible resolution for me. My path has taken a sharp turn for the better, and they had a huge part to play in that fact. You will be OK at the end of this because you have Sanford Heisler Sharp; trust the process and know that life is infinitely better on the other side of an environment that is holding you back from realizing your full potential in life. Anonymous

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, LLP, a national law firm with offices in the District of Columbia, New York, California, Tennessee, and Maryland. Russell received his J.D. cum laude from Harvard Law School and his B.A. magna cum laude from Amherst College.

Russell 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


  • Honorable Ronald Lee Gilman, the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
  • Honorable James S. Gwin, the United States District Court for the Northern District of Ohio

Bar Admissions

  • California 2013
  • New York 2015

Court Admissions

  • 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 Central District of California
  • 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


Nargol et al. v. DePuy Orthopaedics Inc. et al.

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.

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Scripps Health System Whistleblower Lawsuit – $1.5 Million Settlement

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.

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Temple St. Clair Whistleblower Action – $796,000 Settlement

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.

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Jones Day Gender Discrimination Class and Collective Action

The complaint details how the Big Law firm’s culture harms female associates in compensation and partnership decisions.

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EXL Service Holdings, Inc. Gender Discrimination and Retaliation Lawsuit

The complaint alleges that when Ms. Saltzman complained to EXL Board Member Clyde Ostler about the discrimination that she was personally experiencing, the company fired her.

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Merck Gender Pay, Promotion and Pregnancy Discrimination Class Action

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.

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Confidentiality Provisions: What You Need to Know and the Unique Strategy of the Trump Campaign

The New York Times recently reported that the Trump campaign has proposed that former aide and Apprentice contestant Omarosa Manigault Newman pay for an ad campaign costing over $846,000 to remedy allegedly damaging comments Newman made about the president in a recent memoir. The campaign’s suggestion came as a proposed remedy for Newman’s alleged violation […]

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More than a Reasonable Accommodation: The New York City Human Rights Law’s Protections for Workers with Disabilities

Many Americans are familiar with the formulation “reasonable accommodation,” which the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requires employers to make on for employees who have a disability. The ADA is a federal law. Less well known is that New York City has its own counterpart law that protects employees with disabilities. The New York City […]

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Supreme Court to Cell Phone Users: The Right to Be Free From Spam Calls Is Alive and Well

This month, the Supreme Court handed down a victory for cell phone users (which is practically all of us these days) in Barr v. American Association of Political Consultants, Inc. The case concerns the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 (“TCPA”). Under the Act, anyone who makes an unsolicited robocall or text message can be […]

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Laid Off? Did your Employer Fail to WARN you?

Mass layoffs have unfortunately become an economic reality during the COVID-19 pandemic. Employees should know, however, that federal and New York employment law can provide important rights for employees who lose their jobs in a mass layoff. The federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act protects employees of business with 100 or more full […]

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Customs Fraud: What Whistleblowers Need to Know

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 […]

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The Supreme Court Clarifies the Definition of Whistleblower Under Dodd Frank: What You Need to Know

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. […]

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Confidential Settlements: An Option for Victims Who Don’t Want to Be Named

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 […]

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New York’s New Paid Family Leave Program: What You Need to Know

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 […]

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Non-Competes: Can My Employer Stop Me From Taking a New Job?

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 […]

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Free College Tuition Does Not Mean Diversity

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. […]

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