Home > Media Center > Mark Schmidtke Named Vice Chair of U.S. Department of Labor’s ERISA Advisory Council

Mark Schmidtke Named Vice Chair of U.S. Department of Labor’s ERISA Advisory Council

   |   Press Release

CHICAGO – December 16, 2014 – Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C. (Ogletree Deakins), one of the largest labor and employment law firms representing management, is pleased to announce that Chicago shareholder Mark E. Schmidtke has been named vice chair of the U.S. Department of Labor’s 2015 Advisory Council on Employee Welfare and Pension Benefit Plans, also known as the ERISA Advisory Council. Schmidtke, who was appointed to the council in March 2014, is serving a three-year term as a representative for the insurance field.

The 15-member ERISA Advisory Council provides advice on policies and regulations affecting employee benefit plans governed by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). The board includes three representatives of employee organizations, three representatives of employers, three representatives of the general public, and one representative from each of the following fields: insurance, corporate trust, actuarial counseling, investment counseling, investment management, and accounting. By law, members of the council serve for staggered three-year terms.

“Over the past three decades, Mark has established himself as a top ERISA lawyer for clients in a number of industries, including the insurance industry,” said Kim Ebert, managing shareholder of Ogletree Deakins. “Mark’s vast experience and incredible familiarity with ERISA, including ERISA litigation in almost every U.S. state, make him an outstanding choice to help lead the ERISA Advisory Council.”

An attorney with more than 30 years of experience, Schmidtke focuses his practice on representing insurers in litigation of life, health and disability insurance matters and counseling employers on the development of employee benefit plans. He has been lead or co-lead counsel in ERISA litigation matters pending in the courts of 49 states and has argued appeals in the United States Courts of Appeals for the Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, Tenth, and Eleventh Circuits, as well as the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, the Minnesota Supreme Court, the Minnesota Court of Appeals, the Indiana Court of Appeals, and the California Court of Appeals. Schmidtke has also authored several briefs and petitions at the United States Supreme Court, including amicus curiae briefs in several important ERISA cases. Schmidtke has spoken and written widely on ERISA litigation and is a Fellow in the American College of Employee Benefits Counsel.

About Ogletree Deakins

Ogletree Deakins is one of the largest labor and employment law firms representing management in all types of employment-related legal matters. The firm has more than 700 lawyers located in 46 offices across the United States and in Europe and Mexico. Ogletree Deakins is the “Law Firm of the Year” in both the Employment Law – Management and Labor Law – Management categories in the 2014 edition of the U.S. News – Best Lawyers® “Best Law Firms” list. In addition to handling labor and employment law matters, the firm has thriving practices focused on business immigration, employee benefits, and workplace safety and health law. Ogletree Deakins represents a diverse range of clients, from small businesses to Fortune 50 companies.

Sign up to receive emails about new developments and upcoming programs.

Sign Up Now