Perspectiva General

Kelley Edwards has dedicated her career to counseling and advocating on behalf of employers. While the clients she partners with are diverse in size, scope, and focus, she has deep experience advising clients in the energy and healthcare industries. Board Certified in Labor and Employment Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization, Kelley has worked with clients in nearly every facet of employment law, from advising employers on implementing legal requirements in the daily workplace, to assisting clients with drafting and revising employment policies and agreements, to representing companies in complex employment disputes. A trusted advisor, Kelley makes a point to understand her clients’ business practices and preferences so that she can appropriately tailor her advice and representation to meet their business needs.

Substantively, Kelley has experience in a variety of labor and employment litigation matters, including discrimination, wage and hour, Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), and unfair competition. She performs training seminars, prepares and reviews personnel handbooks and policies, manages large-scale audits, and conducts workplace investigations. Kelley also has particular experience in the area of reductions-in-force, WARN, and other issues related to business restructuring. In this capacity, Kelley’s legal assistance runs full circle, from advising clients on hiring decisions, to counseling them through terminations, to defending them in any ensuing litigation.

A seasoned litigator, Kelley has tried dozens of cases to verdict in federal, state, and local courts and has handled numerous arbitrations and mediations, having obtained defense verdicts in jury trials involving discrimination on the basis of race, age, disability, national origin, and sexual harassment. Kelley excels at relating to jurors and effectively advocating for her clients to factfinders, including judges and arbitrators. A small sampling of her notable litigation successes includes:

  • Trying two high-profile race discrimination cases for a national fast food franchisee, both resulting in complete defense verdicts
  • Successfully defending a telephone directory company in a multiplaintiff federal bench trial alleging wrongful denial of overtime under the Fair Labor Standards Act
  • Obtaining a complete defense verdict for a Texas healthcare provider in a national origin retaliation case following a three-day jury trial in federal court
  • Successfully uncovering evidence fabricated by the plaintiff in a sexual harassment case, resulting in a voluntary dismissal of the case in exchange for a waiver of costs
  • Winning a directed verdict at the trial of an age discrimination and retaliation case against a national chain of convenience stores
  • Obtaining a complete defense verdict on behalf of a large hospital system in a multiplaintiff pregnancy discrimination case

Kelley also has an active appellate practice, having argued multiple times before the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. She has successfully defended favorable trial verdicts and awards of summary judgment in ERISA, workers' compensation, disability, and Title VII cases before state and federal appellate courts.

Kelley is the Houston Office Managing Shareholder and serves on Littler’s Board of Directors. She is a founding member and current Co-Chair of the firm’s Energy Industry Group and has served on the firm’s Client Investment Management Committee as well as the Associates Committee. Kelley is a classically trained musician, having previously performed as a flautist with the Houston Ballet Orchestra. She is also active in a variety of local nonprofit agencies, having recently served on the board of directors for a Houston-based organization providing education services to children. 

Afiliaciones Profesionales y Comunitarias

Member

Greater Houston Partnership

Member

Litigation Section

Houston Bar Association

Member

Houston Young Lawyers

Federal Bar Association

Member

Labor and Employment and Litigation sections

State Bar of Texas

Membership Chair

Labor and Employment Section

Houston Bar Association

2007 and 2008

Board Member

Writers in the Schools

2015-2021

Reconocimiento

Named, Rising Star

Texas Monthly Magazine

2010-2018

Named, Super Lawyer

Texas Monthly Magazine

2018-2020

Named, Up and Coming 50: 2018 Women Texas Rising Stars

Super Lawyers

News, Analysis & Press

Covid-19 Vaccine-Mandate Bans Tread on Uncertain Legal Ground

The Wall Street Journal

October 14, 2021

Tips for Conducting Virtual Jury Selections

American Bar Association

August 16, 2021

Meet the Largest Labor and Employment Law Firm in Houston

Houston Business Journal

May 25, 2018

Fracking Activities Could Pose Heightened Risks to Employers

Energy Litigation News & Developments, Section of Litigation – American Bar Association (ABA)

July 2, 2012

Littler Rings in New Year with New Shareholders: Leading Labor and Employment Firm Elevates 13 Associates

January 4, 2012

Recent EEOC Lawsuits Highlight Importance of Adopting Comprehensive Procedures for Managing Employee Leaves

Society for Human Resource Management Atlanta

March 1, 2011

Recent EEOC Lawsuits Highlight Importance of Adopting Comprehensive Procedures for Managing Employee Leaves

Littler Mendelson Insight Article

February 2011

Texas Supreme Court Holds Certain Tort Claims Related to Sexual Harassment are Preempted by the TCHRA

Littler Mendelson ASAP

June 21, 2010

Supreme Court Upholds Ability to Agree to Mandatory Arbitration of Discrimination Claims for Union Members,

The Houston Lawyer

July/August 2009

EEOC Issues New Guidance on Severance Agreements

Littler Mendelson ASAP

July 31, 2009

The NEW Americans with Disabilities Act

Human Resource Fundamentals Lorman Educational Services

March 2009

Supreme Court Broadly Interprets Title VII Anti-Retaliation Provision

Firm Publication

January 27, 2009

United States Supreme Court issues Significant Labor and Employment Decisions

Firm Publication

June 20, 2008

Uniform Application of Absence Control Policy Trumps Evidence of Motive in Workers' Compensation Retaliation Case

Firm Publication

May 18, 2005

Employee Handbooks

Employment Related Records in Texas, Lorman Educational Services

May 2005

Speaking Engagements

2021 Houston Employer Conference

Houston, TX

October 26, 2021

What Managers Can Do to Mitigate Litigation Risk (and What You Can Do to Help Them)

Houston, TX

February 12, 2019

2018 Houston Employer Conference

Houston, TX

August 8, 2018

Power Breakfast – Human Resources

Houston Business Journal

July 20, 2018

Workplace Violence: Strategies for Recognizing and Avoiding Workplace Violence

2017 Littler Houston Employer Conference

August 10, 2017

Managing and Improving Wage/Hour and Contingent Workforce Practices in the Energy Industry

Houston, TX

March 7, 2017

2016 Houston Employer Conference

Houston, TX

August 11, 2016

2015 Houston Employer Conference

Houston, TX

August 13, 2015

Furloughs, WARN, Reductions-in-Force and Other Cost-Savings Considerations in the $40 per Barrel Oil Economy

February 11, 2015

Wage & Hour Issues in the Oil Patch

December 2, 2014

Wage & Hour Issues in the Oil Patch

Houston, TX

October 24, 2014

The 2014 Houston Employer Conference

Houston, TX

August 14, 2014

The 2012 Houston Employer Conference

Houston, TX

August 2, 2012

Controlling Employee Personal Behavior in the Age of Social Media and Personal Technology

The 2012 Houston Employer Conference

Littler Mendelson, Houston, TX

August 2, 2012

2012 Littler Healthcare Summit: Critical Employment Law Issues Facing Healthcare Employers Today

Houston, TX

June 14, 2012

Latest Employment Law Trends and How to Channel Compliance Efforts

Employment Law Update

December 2011

The 2011 Houston Employer Conference

August 11, 2011

Social Media and the Workplace: How Does an Employer Manage ‘Social’ Postings?

The 2011 Houston Employer Conference

Littler Mendelson, Houston, TX

August 11, 2011

What does Ricci v. DeStefano Really Mean? The Diversity Tightrope

The Littler Mendelson Houston Employer Conference

Littler Mendelson, Houston, TX

August 12, 2010

Wage and Hour Class Actions in the Healthcare Industry: Diagnosis and Prevention in 2010

Houston Society for Healthcare Human Resources Administration

June 16, 2010

EEOC Issues New Guidance on Severance Agreements

Legal Update, Labor and Employment Section Luncheon - Houston Bar Association

October 12, 2009

The NEW Americans with Disabilities Act - What the ADA Amendments Act of 2008 Means for Disability Discrimination and Harassment Issues in the Workplace

Human Resource Fundamentals - Lorman Educational Services

March 2009

The Employer's Duty to Furnish Information to Unions

Traditional Labor Law 101

February 2009

What Has the Supreme Court Done Now?

Labor and Employment Law Update

September 2008

Employment Litigation: Where's the Action and How Can Your Organization Avoid It?

Labor and Employment Law Update

June 2007

Employee Handbooks

Employment Related Records in Texas - Lorman Educational Services

May 2005

Educación

  • J.D., University of Virginia School of Law, 2003
  • B.S., Rice University, 2000cum laude

Admisión de la barra

Texas

Cortes

  • U.S. Court of Appeals, 5th Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Texas