Karen F. Tynan

Of Counsel || Sacramento

Karen Tynan is an of counsel attorney in the Sacramento office of Ogletree Deakins. Karen is originally from the state of Georgia, and after graduating with honors from the United States Merchant Marine Academy, she worked for Chevron Shipping Company for ten years – sailing as a ship’s officer on oil tankers rising to the rank of Chief Officer with her Unlimited Master’s License as well as San Francisco Bay pilotage endorsement.  Karen was the highest ranking woman in the Chevron fleet when she left her seafaring life.  This maritime and petroleum experience is unique among employment lawyers and brings a “real world” approach to working with management and achieving litigation goals.

After her decade in the merchant marine, Karen relocated to California and graduated cum laude from Empire College School of Law.  During law school, she clerked with the Sonoma County District Attorney’s office for two years.  The last decade, Karen’s specialized in defending employers in the workplace safety arena and defending sexual harassment and wrongful termination lawsuits for California employers including construction companies, transportation companies, wineries, and media companies.  Recent notable successes include a 2017 defense verdict in a sexual harassment case in Napa County for a large construction company as well as successful settlement of Cal OSHA citations with a 90% reduction in fines for Willful and Serious citations issued out of Oakland for a large San Francisco based company in 2018.  Karen’s expertise also includes blood-borne pathogen regulatory compliance related to the Cal/OSHA standard for hospitals, nursing homes, and general industry.  She effectively defended five companies regarding the proper hazard minimization with regard to blood-borne pathogens in California.

Karen has been a community leader in Northern California taking leadership positions in a number of school boards and community organizations including libraries and professional organizations.  She is the founding counsel for the Committee for Equity in Women’s Surfing, which brought prize equality to women’s surfing by working closely with the leading big-wave women athletes and the California Coastal Commission and State Lands Commission from 2016 through 2018.

Learn more about Karen F. Tynan

Education

  • J.D., cum laude, Empire College School of Law, 2001
  • B.S., United States Merchant Marine Academy, 1987

Admittance to Practice

  • California
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern and Northern Districts of California

Professional Activities

  • Sonoma County Bar Association
  • Sonoma County Women in Law
  • Committee for Equity in Women’s Surfing
  • February 6, 2019 - The New York Times Magazine - "The Fight for Gender Equality in One of the Most Dangerous Sports on Earth"
  • October 2018 - Santa Rosa Press Democrat - "Surf's Up and So Is the Pay"
  • September 2018 - San Francisco Chronicle - "World Surf League Offers Equal Pay"
  • August 2018 - San Jose Mercury News - "Women Surfers Want Equal Pay"
  • November 2016 - Esquire Magazine - "Industry Fights Prop 60"

Insights by Karen F. Tynan