ATLANTA – January 29, 2024 – Ogletree Deakins, one of the largest labor and employment law firms representing management, is pleased to announce that the firm’s equity shareholders have voted Liz Washko as its Managing Shareholder, effective immediately. Washko succeeds Matt Keen, who completed an eight-year term as Managing Shareholder that started in 2016, and who will remain a trusted advisor to the firm’s management committee. Washko is Ogletree Deakins’ sixth Managing Shareholder and the first woman to serve in the role.
Washko joined Ogletree Deakins’ Nashville office as an associate in 2000 and has since held several prominent leadership roles, most recently as one of the firm’s two Managing Directors. She has been a member of Ogletree Deakins’ Board of Directors since 2021, served on the firm’s Compensation Committee, and led the Nashville office from 2010-2018. Washko’s decades-long career has centered on client service. This approach has earned her top marks in notable legal review publications, including being named to the Best Lawyers in America® guide since 2015. Washko has also been inducted as a Fellow in the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers.
“I have practiced at Ogletree Deakins for almost my entire career. While our firm has grown immensely, our previous Managing Shareholders have ensured we remain steadfast in upholding the core values of client service, mutual respect, and collaboration established by our founders nearly 50 years ago,” said Washko. “I am proud to follow in the footsteps of my talented predecessors and am excited to lead the firm into the future, guided by our client service principles.”
For more than three decades, Washko has represented management in a wide variety of employment matters, at the agency level and in litigation. She has a wealth of experience defending employers in FLSA collective actions, in pay discrimination cases, and conducting proactive pay audits and pay equity analyses. Washko co-founded Ogletree Deakins’ Pay Equity Practice Group in 2016 and served as co-chair until 2024.
“During my tenure as Managing Shareholder, I’ve worked closely with Liz in her roles as Managing Director, Office Managing Shareholder, and Compensation Committee member. She is an outstanding leader and role model, and her intelligence, thoughtfulness, empathy, and willingness to take on challenging issues will serve her well as Managing Shareholder,” said Keen. “It has been a privilege to lead this great firm since 2016, and I look forward to supporting Liz in her new role.”
Ogletree Deakins saw transformative growth during Keen’s tenure with a more than 60 percent increase in firm revenue. During this time, the firm also experienced a 43 percent increase in attorney headcount and added seven new offices.
“Through his financial wisdom, focus on innovation, and unwavering commitment to client service, Matt has made a profound impact on the firm and our trajectory,” said Washko. “I have big shoes to fill and look forward to taking on the challenge.”
Keen further bolstered the firm’s commitment to client service by establishing the firm’s Client Pledge. The focus on client service most recently resulted in the firm being ranked No. 2 in the BTI Client Service A-Team 2023 report.
An avid proponent for the advancement of technology and innovation, Keen also oversaw the creation of the firm’s Innovation Council, game-changing Client Portal, and numerous additional projects and offerings.
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. Premier client service, as outlined in the firm’s Client Pledge, is one of the firm’s top priorities and a cornerstone of its core values. Best Law Firms® has named Ogletree Deakins a “Law Firm of the Year” for 13 consecutive years. In the 2024 edition, the publication named Ogletree Deakins its “Law Firm of the Year” in the Employment Law – Management category. Ogletree Deakins has more than 950 attorneys located in 55 offices across the United States and in Europe, Canada, and Mexico. The firm represents a diverse range of clients, including many of the Fortune 50 companies in the U.S. www.ogletree.com