Steven H. Winterbauer | Managing Member
Steve is the firm’s founder and managing member. He began his legal career at Foster, Pepper & Shefelman, where he became a partner and served as Chair of the Employment and Labor Group. Steve has over twenty-five years of experience counseling and litigating in employment and labor matters. He counsels employers through the employment and labor implications of mergers, acquisitions, reductions-in-force, early retirement programs, successive planning, and plant closures. He has successfully defended companies before state and federal courts, as well as administrative agencies.
Steve also has significant experience prosecuting and defending claims related to employee mobility and the disposition of business assets, including, for example, claims for breach of non-competition, non-solicitation and no-hire agreements, breach of fiduciary duty, violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, and trade secret misappropriation. His arbitration experience ranges from private arbitration pursuant to mandatory arbitration agreements to traditional labor arbitration, to public sector interest arbitration.
- Executive Committee - Washington State Bar Association Employment and Labor Law Section, 2012-2015
- Employee Relations Law Journal Editorial Advisory Board, 1996–Present
- Washington Defense Trial Lawyer Association
- Washington State Bar Association’s Annual Employment Law Institute, co-founder and co-chair, 1993-2010
- Pacific Coast Labor Law Conference Planning Committee, 1993–1995
- Mercer Island Civil Service Commission, Commissioner, 1996–2001
- JAMS/endispute, Mediator/Arbitrator, 1996-2001
- Woodward/White, named the Best Lawyers® 2018 Seattle Litigation-Labor and Employment "Lawyer of the Year"
- Chambers USA, A Leading Lawyer for Labor & Employment Law in WA, 2004-2019
- Martindale-Hubbell, AV® Preeminent™ 5.0 out of 5 Peer Review, 1999-2019
- Thomson Reuters, Inclusion in the Washington Super Lawyers® list, 2000-2019
- Woodward/White, Inclusion in the Best Lawyers in America® 2006-2020
- Woodward/White, named the Best Lawyers® 2014 Seattle Employment Law - Management "Lawyer of the Year"
- “Reductions In Force: Reducing Staff Without Increasing Litigation,” Employee Relations Law Journal, Vol. 26, No. 3, Winter 2000.
- “Multiple Chemical Sensitivity Syndrome: What Is It And What Does It Mean For Employers?,” Employee Relations Law Journal, Vol. 23, No. 2, Autumn 1997.
- “The Direct Threat Defense: Striking a Balance Between The Duties To Accommodate and Provide A Safe Workplace,” Employee Relations Law Journal, Vol. 23, No. 1, Summer 1997.
- “Is Disability-Related Absenteeism A Lawful Basis For Discharge Under the ADA?,” Employee Relations Law Journal, Vol. 21, No. 3, Winter 1995.
- “When Things Aren’t What They Seem: Labor Issues in the Nonunion Context,” Employee Relations Law Journal, Vol. 20, No. 2, Fall 1994.
- “The Corporate Opportunity Doctrine: What Employers Should Know,” Employee Relations Law Journal, Vol. 18, No. 3, Winter 1992.
- “Understanding the Americans With Disabilities Act: Employing Disabled Persons,” Video Training Program, Co-produced with The Pacific Institute, April 1992.
- “Sexual Harassment: The Reasonable Woman Standard,” The Labor Lawyer, Fall Edition, Vol. 7, No. 4, 1991.
- “Sexual Harassment in the Workplace: Management Presentation,” at LifeCenter Northwest in Bellevue, WA, October 2015.
- “Sexual Harassment in the Workplace: Employee Presentation,” at LifeCenter Northwest in Bellevue, WA, October 2015.
- "Tips for Handling Unemployment Claims," at the Small Business Employment Law Issues seminar sponsored by The Seminar Group in Seattle, WA, November 2012.
- “Ask and Ye Shall Receive: Planning and Conducting Effective Deposition Examinations: The Defense Perspective,” at the “13th Annual WSBA Employment Law Institute” in Seattle, WA, March 2006.
- “FMLA, ADA, IIA Maze,” at a seminar sponsored by The Council on Education in Management in Bellevue, WA, March 2006.
- “National Origin Discrimination” at the “12th Annual WSBA Employment Law Institute” in Seattle, WA, April 2005.
- “Annual Conference of Hospital Administrators” in Seattle, WA, March 2003.
- Co-chair for the “10th Annual WSBA Employment Law Institute” in Seattle, WA, March 2003.
- “Employment Law Update,” at the “Annual Conference of Hospital Administrators” in Seattle, WA, March 2003.
- “RIF–Fair Tool for Reducing the Workforce or Smokescreen for Discrimination?” at the “9th Annual WSBA Employment Law Institute” in Seattle, WA, March 2002.
- “Federal & State Legal Update,” at the “Fall 2001 Conference” sponsored by Washington State Healthcare Human Resources Association in Leavenworth, WA, September 2001.
- “Present and Future Trends in Employment Law,” “The Interplay Between The ADA and The FMLA” and “Workplace Harassment Issues” at the “Fourth Annual Labor & Employment Law Conference” sponsored by The Seminar Group in Seattle, WA, August 2001.
- “Handling Internal Investigations of Harassment: An Advanced Course,” at the LGPI conference in Snoqualmie, WA, June 2001.
- “Labor Law Issues in the Non-Union Context” at the “8th Annual WSBA Employment Law Institute” in Seattle, WA, March 2001.