Paulette is a member of Edwards Wildman's Labor & Employment Practice Group and the Firm’s Chief Diversity Officer. Throughout her career of more than 35 years, she has held a number of positions, including in-house counsel to a number of Fortune 500
companies and as a Municipal Court Judge. For the past 25 years, Paulette has engaged in the private practice of law, focusing on all facets of labor and employment and commercial litigation. She has successfully defended employers in cases involving discrimination on the basis of age, sex, marital status, sexual harassment, disability, race and national origin. Paulette has received successful results in class action employment discrimination cases based upon race and wage and hour claims. She is also experienced in all aspects of workplace training and collective bargaining.
Paulette litigates in both federal and state courts, as well as arbitration forums for both unionized and non-union employees. She is a certified mediator for the United States District Court, District of New Jersey and a member of the Employment AAA Panel. Paulette is a frequent lecturer on labor and employment issues and issues related to electronic discovery and serves as Treasurer and 2nd Vice Chair of the Labor and Employment Section of the New Jersey State Bar Association. She is also a former Master of the C. Willard Heckel Inn of Court. Additionally, Paulette has been recognized by the New Jersey Law Journal
as one of the prominent women and minority attorneys in the State of New Jersey and by the National Law Journal
as one of "The 50 Most Influential Minority Lawyers in America." She has been listed as a “NJ Super Lawyer since its inception and for the past three years as one of the top 50 women lawyers and one of the top 100 lawyers. Ms. Brown has also been named by US News as one of the Best Lawyers in America. Paulette also received DRI's 2010 Sheryl J. Willert Pioneer Diversity Award. In 2011, she received the NJ State Bar Association's Excellence in Diversity Award and was honored with The Margaret Brent Women Lawyers of Achievement Award by the American Bar Association Commission on Women in the Profession.
- Obtained recent summary judgments in ADA matters in both Federal and State Court.
- In an arbitration concerning the termination of a union employee for a major manufacturer, obtained a favorable ruling sustaining the termination.
- In an unfair labor practices matter concerning union organizing before the NLRB, obtained a favorable settlement on behalf of a major service provider.
- In an airport taxing matter, successfully obtained a TRO and preliminary injunction against the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey on behalf of a rental car company.
- In a class action employment matter filed by the EEOC, reached a nominal settlement on behalf of employer for all class members.
- In a class action employment matter, Paulette, along with other team members successfully persuaded plaintiffs to amend their complaint to remove all class allegations.
- In a tortious interference matter against a large manufacturer of medical equipment, achieved summary judgment as to all claims asserted against it.
- In consolidated sexual harassment cases, achieved summary judgment in favor of employer with respect to all plaintiffs, despite alleged inappropriate comments such as references to attendance at “nude” beaches and comments related to plaintiffs’ physical attributes.
Recent Speaking Engagements and Publications
- "Visible Invisibility Women of Color in Law Firms," speaker, March 2013.
- "Madison law partner in line to lead American Bar Association," quoted, The Madison Eagle, March 8, 2013.
- “Flawed Social-Media Bill Goes Far Beyond Protecting Privacy," author, New Jersey Law Journal, November 20, 2012.
- "Supreme Court Rejects Department of Labor’s Definition of 'Outside Salesman:' Drug Reps Lose FLSA Case Demanding Overtime Pay," co-author, Edwards Wildman Palmer LLP Client Advisory, June 2012.
- “Status of Women of Color in the Legal Profession,” panelist, Leadership Conference, March 2012.
- “Class Action Roller Coaster,” moderator/speaker, February 2012.
- “Law Firm Diversity: Mixed Progress," author, National Law Journal, October 2011.
- "I Signed What? Forsyth v. First Trenton Indemnity Co. and the Expanding Enforcement of Mandatory Arbitration Clauses in New Jersey Employment Contracts," author, New Jersey Lawyer Magazine, April 2011.
- “Perception of Race and Gender,” panelist, June 2010.
- "Glass Ceiling or Glass Floor," panelist, May 2010.
- "Negotiation Skills for Lawyers," speaker, April 2010.
- "Glass Ceilings Sticky Floors: Women of Color in the Profession," panelist, April 2010.
- "In Deeper Water: Navigating the Employment Laws that Expand Your Liability and Affect Your Bottom Line," speaker, February 2010.
- "Recent Developments in Employment Law," speaker, NJICLE, January 2010.
- "Non-Employees Gain Important Protections in New Jersey," co-author, Edwards Angell Palmer & Dodge Labor & Employment Bulletin, Winter 2010.
- "A Catch-22 for Employers: Supreme Court Rules Against City of New Haven in Reverse Discrimination Case," co-author, Edwards Angell Palmer & Dodge Client Advisory, July 2009 and Edwards Angell Palmer & Dodge Labor & Employment Bulletin, Summer 2009.
- "Federal Court Summary Judgment Practice," speaker, Hot Tips in Labor & Employment Law: 2009, New Brunswick, New Jersey, June 5, 2009.
- "Even the EEOC Is Not Exempt From FLSA Requirements," co-author, Edwards Angell Palmer & Dodge Client Advisory, April 2009.
- Speaker, Managing Terminations and Reductions in Force, a webinar presented by Edwards Angell Palmer & Dodge LLP, April 7, 2009.
- Speaker, Beyond Diversity 2009: The Next Generation, New York, New York, February 25, 2008.
- "Cracker Barrel: Resurrection of § 1981 Retaliation Claim Limits Applicability of Title VII and Expands Plaintiffs' Opinion in Discrimination Suits," co-author, Edwards Angell Palmer & Dodge Labor & Employment Bulletin, Fall 2008.
- "Issues and Solutions Affecting Women of Color in the Law," author, The Woman Advocate, Summer 2008.
- "Successful Strategies For Assisting Clients In Labor Law Disputes," author, a chapter within the book "Inside The Minds - Working with Government Agencies in Labor Law," 2008.
- "The Changing Face of the Corporate Bar: Discrimination and Diversity in the Profession," speaker, The American Legal Profession: Current Controversies, Future Challenges, Stanford, California, March 14, 2008.
- "EEOC Settles Age Claims Against Partnership for $27.5 Million," co-author, Edwards Angell Palmer & Dodge Labor & Employment Bulletin, Winter 2008.
- "Severance Agreements," speaker, Hot Tips in Labor & Employment Law: 2007, June 13, 2007.
- Women on the Move IV, closing speaker, April 26, 2007, New York.
- "Affirmative Action in Higher Education & Employment," speaker, April 24, 2007, New Jersey Law Center.
- "Visible Invisibility: Women of Color in Law Firms," author, Diversity & the Bar, March/April 2007.
- "Success Strategies for Women of Color in the Law and the Companies that Want to Recruit and Retain Them," featured speaker, The Committee on Minorities in the Profession's Second Annual Constance Baker Motley Diversity Symposium, January 22, 2007, New York.
- "Severance Agreements: Balancing Corporate Interests and Ex-Employees' Legal Rights," co-author, Edwards Angell Palmer & Dodge Labor & Employment Bulletin, Fall 2006.
- "A Survey Of State Whistleblowers," co-author, Employment Law 360, October 20, 2006.
- "Supreme Court Decision Puts Employers at Greater Risk on Retaliation Claims," co-author, Edwards Angell Palmer & Dodge Labor & Employment Bulletin, Summer 2006.
- Paulette was a presenter for the Mercer County Bar Association on the subject of Electronic Discovery and Document Retention and has conducted internal seminars on the impact of Zubilake v. UBS Warburg.
- Paulette was a presenter on behalf of the Labor and Employment Law Section of the NJ State Bar on Making and Defending a Case of Discrimination: A Primer to Practicing Before the EEOC and DCR. Paulette is frequently called upon to serve as a lecturer or panelist for national and international legal education programs.
- "Faulty Employment References Can Cause Unexpected Liabilities," Edwards Angell Palmer & Dodge Labor & Employment Bulletin, Fall 2005.
- Paulette speaks frequently around the country on issues concerning diversity
Besides Edwards Wildman
Paulette is the former President of the YWCA of Central New Jersey, which in the Fall of 2006, opened a twenty-four hour-a-day, seven day-a-week early childhood learning center. The YWCA also completed the restoration of its historical theater in the Spring of 2006. One of Paulette’s proudest moments was when she led a delegation to monitor the first free and democratic elections in South Africa.
As a result of her charitable efforts and work with various bar associations, Paulette has received numerous awards, including the Medal of Honor Award from the New Jersey Bar Foundation, the Equal Justice Award from the National Bar Association, the Spirit of Excellence Award from the American Bar Association, the Award of Excellence from the Thurgood Marshall College Fund and the Gertrude Rush Award from the National Bar Association. She has also received the Professional Lawyer of the Year Award from the New Jersey Commission on Professionalism.
Paulette has completed five 3-day 60 mile walks to raise money through Susan Komen Breast Cancer Foundation.