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NJL People: Matthew E. Damon

Matt’s practice is built from over three decades’ experience preventing and resolving business disputes in the labor and employment arenas, as well as winning them.  He places clients’ business needs first, providing practical, problem-solving advice focused particularly in the substance of non-competition, labor and discrimination law. Matt is often called upon to step in when business, legal and HR priorities collide, creating solutions that allow clients to realize their collective interests. Identifying key business objectives first, then assessing risks and alternatives, Matt helps clients devise and implement effective plans to move the business forward.

He has twice led NJL as President, and served multiple terms on our Board of Directors.

When not assisting clients, you can find Matt mountain biking, volunteering for Artspace Projects, Inc., or traveling with his family.

Key Industry Experience

  • Manufacturing
  • Field Sales & Service
  • Health
  • Retail
  • Hospitality
  • Construction
  • Transport/Distribution
  • Financial Services

Representative Matters

  • Grimm v. Target Corporation (Sarbanes Oxley and Dodd-Frank whistleblower claims; dismissal in client’s favor) (2017)
  • Collette v Ecolab, Inc. and Nalco Champion (arbitration of ADEA disparate treatment and retaliation claims; favorable settlement after partial summary judgment in client’s favor) (2015-2016)
  • United Health Group, Inc. & Optum Services, Inc. v. Glasgow (non-disclosure and non-solicitation claims; favorable settlement after initiation of action) (2015)
  • Lee v. UPS (workers’ compensation retaliation, FMLA and disability discrimination claims; favorable settlement after partial dismissal) (2015)
  • United Health Group, Inc. v. Dale Zurbay and Nuance Communications, Inc. (non-disclosure and non-solicitation claims; favorable settlement for client after TRO hearing) (2014)
  • Walz v. UPS (breach of contract; dismissal in client’s favor on Section 301 preemption grounds) (2013)
  • Wattier v. UPS (ADA accommodation and retaliation; summary judgment in client’s favor granted with nominal settlement of remaining partial claim) (2012-2013)
  • Ecolab, Inc. v. Fluke (employment contract; client granted declaratory judgment and employee’s counterclaims dismissed) (2012)
  • Roeller v. UPS (OSHA retaliation and whistleblower claims; summary judgment in client’s favor granted) (2012-2013)
  • Brodman v. Univita, et al. (FMLA retaliation; client dismissed by plaintiff and indemnified by co-defendant) (2011-2012)
  • Geving, et al. v. Long Term Care Group, Inc. (FLSA/collective action; opt-in settlement class limited to five individuals) (2011-2012)
  • Carroll v. Edina Eye Physicians & Surgeons, et al. (minority shareholder and disability discrimination; favorable settlement) (2006-2007)
  • Primary Surgical v. Smith & Nephew, Inc., et al. (non-competition and tortious interference; injunctive relief vs. clients denied; favorable settlement) (2006)
  • Key Surgical v. First Step Asset Tracking, LLC, et al. (unfair competition, injunctive relief vs. clients denied; claims against client voluntarily dismissed) (2006-2007)
  • Carter v. Tennant Company (workers’ compensation retaliation; summary judgment in client’s favor, affirmed on appeal in 7th circuit) (2002-2004)
  • Carney v. Universal Hospital Services, Inc. (gender and sexual orientation discrimination; summary judgment in client’s favor, affirmed on appeal to 4th circuit) (2003-2004)
  • Bemis Company, Inc. v. Frantschach AG, et al. (non-compete and non-disclosure injunction granted for client; favorable settlement) (2004)
  • Garrido v. Restaurant Technologies, Inc. (FLSA overtime claim; nominal settlement) (2008-2009)
  • Bowerman, et al. v. Lenox Group, Inc. (FMLA, ADA discrimination involving unionized employees; nominal settlement) (2007-2008)
  • Holderness v. GLS Companies, et al. (age, disability discrimination; summary judgment in favor of client) (2007)
  • GCIU Local 1B (Heinrich Envelope Corporation) (union’s discriminatory enforcement of union security and dues requirements under NLRA; tried to ALJ decision in favor of client)
  • Aubrecht v. Heinrich Envelope Corporation, et al. (class action sex harassment; partial summary judgment and settlement class limited to 1% of putative group)

Recognitions and Honors

  • Selected to Minnesota Super Lawyers list, 1991-2019
  • “100 People to Watch”, Minneapolis St. Paul Magazine, February 2000
  • Minnesota Business Guidebook, Law & Leading Attorneys, 1994/1996
  • Leading Minnesota Attorneys, 1997

Recent Publications and Presentations

  • Program Chair, Grey is the New Black: Labor & Employment Practice Group Seminar, ALFA International, July 2015
  • “The NLRB and Labor Law:  What All Employers Need to Know Now”, ALFA International, March 2013
  • “The Union Organizing and Bargaining Landscape Under the New Administration,” ALFA International, November 2010
  • “Dealing with U.S. and International Unions and Works Councils,” ALFA International, March 2009
  • “Should Employers Rein In Employee Blogging?” Association of Corporate Counsel of America, MN Chapter, September 2008
  • “Employer’s Right to Limit Employee’s E-mail Use Upheld,” The Corporate Counselor, December 17, 2007
  • “The New Meaning of ‘Supervisor’,” Employee Benefits Planner, First Quarter 2007
  • “Scenes from the 27th Floor: Gender Issues in the Legal Workplace,” Upper Midwest Employment Law Institute, 2006

Professional Associations

  • Steering Committee, Labor & Employment Practice Group, ALFA International

Community Engagement

  • Board and Executive Committee Member, Chair of Consulting and Strategic Projects Committee, Artspace Projects, Inc.
  • Past Board Member, Storefront Group

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