Kofi A. Semenya
Kofi Semenya defends employers in a variety of labor and employment matters. He has significant experience representing employers in labor and employment litigation, including employment discrimination, harassment, retaliation, and employee and contractor classification. He also defends cases under the ADA, ADEA, Title VII and numerous state laws.
Kofi has represented both public and private employers before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the Ohio Civil Rights Commission (OCRC), and state and federal courts, having achieved favorable results on behalf of employers. Additionally, his practice includes counseling on a variety of employment issues, including human resources policies and internal investigations.
Kofi is a frequent speaker and writer on labor and employment issues and has also conducted sexual harassment training for municipal corporations.
COVID-19 management counseling
Helped clients understand their legal obligations under new labor and employment laws passed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Drafted work-from-home, leave, and reopening policies; advised on mass layoff obligations, terminations, furloughs, unemployment issues, and alternative work arrangements; and recommended best practices for essential workers, safe reopening, employee testing and health assessments, employee travel, and face covering requirements.
Disability discrimination and harassment defense
Defended a health care system against claims of disability discrimination and harassment and Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) interference lodged by a 10-year employee against two members of the system’s human resources department and the employee’s former manager. Through extensive negotiations, resolved the matter for a fraction of the employee’s initial demand.
Professional & Community Activities
- 2020 Pathfinder, Leadership Council on Legal Diversity
- Volunteer attorney, Vineyard Immigration Counseling Services, 2017–present
- Volunteer attorney, Pro Bono Partnership of Ohio, 2017–present
- Mentor, Community Service Development of Nashville, 2013–2014
Presentations & Published Works
- Speaker, "Impact of COVID on Hospitals as Employers," Ohio Society of Health Care Human Resources Administrators Fall Conference, October 2020
- Speaker, "Hindsight is 2020 When it Comes to COVID-19" Hot Topics in Employment Law Seminar, October 2020
- Speaker, "Mandatory Arbitration Agreements: Are They Still Enforceable?," Hot Topics in Employment Law Seminar, October 2019
- Author, “NLRB Update: What Every Employer Needs to Know,” Employee Relations Law Journal, Spring 2019
- Author, “7 Tips for Creating Effective Employee Wellness Programs,” Law360, February 2018
- Presenter, “Are Ohio’s Employers Prepared for Medical Marijuana?” Circleville Rotary Club, January 2019
Bar Admissions & Activities
- Admitted, State of Ohio, 2015
- Member, Ohio State Bar Association
- Member, Columbus Bar Association
Awards & Recognition
- Ones to Watch, Best Lawyers in America (Litigation - Labor and Employment), 2021
- Vanderbilt University Law School (J.D.), 2014; Chancellor’s Law Scholar; Chair of Recruitment, Admission and Black History Month Committee, Black Law Students Association (BLSA)
- University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (B.A. in International Studies, with distinction), 2009; Hayden B. Renwick Academic Achievement Award, 2008, 2009