Boston, MA, September 7, 2023 – Burns & Levinson partners Ellen Zucker and Beth R. Myers have been selected for inclusion in the 2023 Lawdragon 500 Leading Plaintiffs Employment & Civil Rights Lawyers Guide for their innovative work protecting the rights of workers.
Ellen Zucker is one of the most powerful and respected civil rights litigators in the country. She gives voice to those wronged in the workplace and has been a legal champion of civil rights throughout her career. Most recently, she secured a $5.7 million judgment in favor of Det. Kathleen Donohue against the Town of Watertown. The jury found that the Town had discriminated against Det. Donohue based on her gender and retaliated against her when she dared to complain. The jury awarded her significant compensatory damages and determined that the Town’s conduct warranted the imposition of a $1 million punitive damages award.
Zucker secured a trailblazing $13 million settlement for an orthopaedic surgeon, Dennis W. Burke, M.D., who blew the whistle on a practice at the Massachusetts General Hospital of allowing surgeons to book and conduct multiple surgeries at the same time and who – because of his standing up for patient safety – had his longtime Medical Staff appointment terminated. The case has had a national impact, including the American College of Surgeons changing its policies and major medical centers revising their practices. In Massachusetts, the Board of Registration in Medicine promulgated regulations that limit the practice of concurrent surgery and set standards for informed consent. She has also secured other important victories at the trial and appellate court levels.
Zucker’s work and contributions to the legal community has earned her recognition by the local branch of the NAACP, NOW and other professional organizations. She received her J.D. from Boston College Law School, her M.S. in political theory from the London School of Economics and Political Science and her B.A. from Wesleyan University. She began her legal career as law clerk to the Honorable Nancy Gertner in the Federal District Court/District of Massachusetts.
Beth R. Myers is a formidable plaintiff employment litigator who is highly regarded for her advocacy representing employees in cases involving claims of discrimination, sexual harassment, retaliation, wage and hour disputes, and non-compliance with the Family Medical Leave Act. In May 2023, Myers settled a gender and sexual orientation case against the Boston Police Department for $900,000. Other recent cases include: working as part of the legal team that obtained a $3.25 million settlement from the City of Boston on behalf of a female firefighter who was sexually assaulted by a male firefighter at work and securing a $2.3 million jury verdict for a female police officer against the Town of Winthrop over unlawful sex discrimination and retaliation, a case that ultimately settled for over $3 million.
Myers is currently an appointed member of the Supreme Judicial Court’s Standing Committee on Lawyer Well-Being. She also serves on the Board of Directors of Lawyers Concerned for Lawyers, Inc. (past president), on the Board of Directors of GLAD (GLBTQ Legal Advocates & Defenders), and as a member of the City of Medford School District Race and Equity Task Force. She is involved in the Massachusetts LGBTQ Bar Association as a mentor in its Mentorship Program. She has held numerous leadership roles with the Massachusetts Chapter of the National Employment Lawyers Association since 2011, most recently serving as the organization’s president from 2018-2020. Myers received her J.D. from Northeastern University School of Law and her B.A. from New York University.
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