Nena Cook

Partner

1000 SW Broadway, Suite 1400
Portland, Oregon 97205

503.227.1111 Main
503.243.1626 Direct

Assistant: Kori Morehead: 503.243.1661 x 243

Practice Areas
Overview

Ms. Cook is a trial attorney with over twenty-two years of experience specializing in complex business disputes, appellate law and professional liability defense.  Nena carries the preeminent AV designation by Martindale-Hubbell® and is a frequent speaker and writer on the topics of professionalism, ethics and employment law.

Ms. Cook represents businesses in state and federal court including matters related to:

  • Class Actions
  • Corporate Disputes
  • Estate and Trusts
  • Insurance Coverage/Defense
  • Intellectual Property
  • Real Estate

Each year since 2006, when the Super Lawyers program began in Oregon, Ms. Cook has been named an Oregon Super Lawyer® in the area of Business Litigation.  In 2009 and 2012, she was included in the list of Oregon's Top 25 Women Super Lawyers.  Ms. Cook has been selected to the Best Lawyers in America® in the area of Labor and Employment Law from 2011-2014.  In 2005, she was selected by Willamette Week as one of the 50 most influential women in Portland.  In 2004, she was named by Oregon Business Magazine as one of the top five female business leaders in the State of Oregon.  In 2002, she was honored by the Portland Business Journal as one of the "Forty under 40" people recognized for outstanding leadership in business and civic affairs.  Ms. Cook has been rated an AV® Preeminent lawyer, the highest possible peer review rating in legal ability and ethical standards for 17 years. 

Education
B.A., Gonzaga University
J.D., Willamette University College of Law 
      Willamette Law Review, Production Editor (1990-1991)
Admitted to Practice
United States Supreme Court
United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
Oregon State Bar
      U.S. District Court, Oregon
Washington State Bar
      U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Washington
      U.S. District Court, Western District of Washington
Representative Cases
Appellate Law
  • Graham et. al v. Sunset Hills Memorial Park, Oregon Court of Appeals, Case No. A148685, rev. den. S061494 (October 3, 2013)
    We represent the respondent/defendant in an appeal of the trial court's granting of our motion dismissing the case.  Our client is the second largest "death care" service provider in the country, with over 218 funeral homes and 140 cemeteries.  The lawsuit was filed by six adult siblings who alleged that, as a result of our client's mishandling of their mother's remains at a cemetery in Portland, they suffered $9 million in emotional distress damages.  The Court of Appeals agreed with our position and the Supreme Court chose not to review the Court of Appeals' decision. 
  • Jensen v. Duboff, 253 Or. App. 517, 291 P.2d 738 (2012)
    We represented the respondent/defendant in an appeal of the trial court's granting of our motion dismissing the case.  The plaintiff alleged breach of fiduciary duty, breach of contract, and negligence, and sought over $1.8 million in damages.  The issue on appeal was whether the trial court abused its discretion when it granted our Motion to Dismiss the Second Amended Complaint with prejudice. 
  • Classic Painting, Inc. v. Willamette Builders Group at Stoneway, LLC, 235 Or. App. 572, 233 P.3d 827 (2010)
    We were co-counsel for the appellant in a case of first impression in Oregon.  We sought the court's interpretation of the interplay between a lien claimant's entitlement to its attorneys fees and costs under the statute versus the reasonableness of those fees and costs pursuant to ORCP 68.
Business Litigation
  • Secured a judgment of dismissal on behalf of a national funeral home company where the plaintiffs alleged negligence, breach of contract and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
  • Defended clients against claims arising from a failed transaction on the development of a major subdivision.
  • Sued a former officer and employee of a construction company for fraud, conversion and breach of the duty of loyalty.
  • Represented multiple defendants who were sued for $2.5 million for breach of fiduciary duty, negligence, breach of contract, and unjust enrichment.  The defendants denied the allegations and asserted two counterclaims.  After successful motion practice, the case settled when the plaintiff paid the defendants $17,500 and dismissed all claims against them.
Employment and Separation Agreements
Represented clients in well over 50 non-competition, non-solicitation and non-disclosure agreements.  
Federal Mine Safety and Health Amendments of 1977, as amended ("Mine Act").
Defended a regional underground utilities construction company against the Secretary of Labor's claims before the Federal Mine Safety and Health Review Commission.
Intellectual Property
Defended a corporation being sued for breach of contract, trade infringement, false designation of origin, trademark dilution, cyber squatting and unfair competition.
Leave of Absence and Disability Accommodation
Represented a company providing management services to fifty-eight skilled nursing and assisted living facilities across the country in defense of a case brought by former employees who alleged racial discrimination, violation of the Family Medical Leave Act, Americans with Disabilities Act, and wrongful discharge. The former employees sought over $10 million in damages and a permanent injunction.
Military Leave and Reinstatement
Represented a construction company against employment law claims brought by an injured veteran under the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Act (USERRA).
Preventative Counseling and Advice
Routinely provide advice, training and counsel to Fortune 100 companies on a wide range of employment-related topics including drafting arbitration provisions, conducting harassment and discrimination investigations, analyzing wage and hour issues, and advising on hiring, termination, and effective employment documentation.
Public Sector Defense
Represented Douglas County, Oregon and its three commissioners in several matters including defense of a $2 Million case brought by a former employee for alleged violations of freedom of speech, due process, equal protection and for wrongful discharge, defamation and retaliation.
Unlawful Trade Practices Act (UTPA)
  • Defended a national teleservices company for alleged breach of contract and unfair business practices. 
  • Sued an international IT solutions company headquartered in Canada on behalf of an Oregon family-owned business for breach of contract, violation of Oregon's Unlawful Trade Practices Act and negligence
Honors
2011-2015 Selected as one of the Best Lawyers in America® in the specialty of Labor and Employment Law
2006-2014 Named to the Oregon Super Lawyers list in the category of Business Litigation
2009 and 2012 Included in the list of Oregon's Top 25 Women Super Lawyers
2005 Voted by Portland area lawyers as the "Best of the Bar" in the category of Litigation and Dispute Resolution
2005 Selected by Willamette Week as one of the 50 most influential women in Portland
2004 Named by Oregon Business Magazine as one of the top five female business leaders in the State of Oregon
2002 Honored by the Portland Business Journal as one of the "Forty under 40" people recognized for outstanding leadership in business and civic affairs

Professional Organizations
American Bar Association, 1991-Present
American Constitution Society for Law and Policy, 2007-Present
Campaign for Equal Justice Advisory Board, 2007-Present
Federal Bar Association, 1991-Present
Federal Practice & Procedure Committee, 1997-1999, Chair 1999
Gus J. Solomon American Inn of Court, 1991-1998
Leadership College Advisory Board, Chair 2006-2008
Multnomah County Judicial Screening Committee, 1999-2002
Multnomah County Pro Tem Judge, 2007-2013
Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference Representative, 2000-2003
Oregon Commission on Professionalism, 2005
Oregon Commission for Women, 2007-2010
Oregon Hispanic Bar Association, 2014-Present
Oregon State Bar, 1991-Present
      Litigation Section
      Labor and Employment Section
      Business Litigation Section
Oregon State Bar Board of Governors, 2002-2005
Oregon State Bar President, 2005
Oregon State Bar Procedure and Practice Committee, 1999-2002
Oregon Women Lawyers, 1991-Present
Oregon Women Lawyers Foundation Board, 2007-Present
Washington State Bar Association, 1992-Present
      Litigation Section
      Labor and Employment Section

Publications
Oregon State Bar, Civil Litigation Manual
     "Injunctive Relief," 1999
     "Summons," 2003
     "Temporary Restraining Orders and Preliminary Injunctions," 2003
BOLI Annual Employment Law Conference
     "Current Issues in Employment Law," 2005
     "How to Prevent Employment Litigation," 2006
     "Navigate Changing Employment Laws," 2007
     "Documentation, Discipline & Discharge," 2008
Past Speaking Engagements
2013 Oregon Pleadings and Parties:  Tips and Traps for the Unwary:  Oregon State Bar
2011 Summary Judgment Tips for Avoiding Admissibility Pitfalls:  OLI
2011 Motions Against Pleadings/Motions to Amend:  Oregon State Bar
2011 Convocation on Equality:  Oregon State Bar
2010 50 Tips and Strategies for Businesses:  Oregon State Bar
2009 Negotiation Ethics: Professional Liability Fund
2009 Employment Law Update : Oregon State Bar
2009 Employment Law Conference: Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries
2009 ADA Amendments Act: Oregon State Bar
2008 Employment Law Conference: Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries
2008 Discipline, Documentation & Discharge: Oregon State Bar
2008 Annual Employment Law Seminar: Sussman Shank LLP
2007 Navigating ADA, FMLA & Workers Compensation: The Seminar Group
2007 How to Prevent Employment Litigation
2007 Hot Topics in Employment Law: Oregon State Bar
2007 Employment Law Conference: Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries
2007 Annual Employment Law Seminar: Sussman Shank LLP
2006 Employment Law Conference: Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries
2006 Annual Employment Law Seminar: Sussman Shank LLP
2005 Professionalism: University of Oregon School of Law
2005 Ethics in 18 Holes: Oregon State Bar
2005 Employment Law Conference: Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries
2005 Annual Employment Law Seminar: Sussman Shank LLP
2004 Employment Law Update: Oregon Economic & Business Forum
2004 Employment Law CLE: Oregon State Bar
2004 Annual Employment Law Seminar: Sussman Shank LLP
News
Personal Interests
Nena was born in Salt Lake City, Utah and is the proud mother of two children.  She enjoys all outdoor activities and volunteering at her sons' school.

1642
Practice Areas
Education
B.A., Gonzaga University
J.D., Willamette University College of Law 
      Willamette Law Review, Production Editor (1990-1991)
Admitted to Practice
United States Supreme Court
United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
Oregon State Bar
      U.S. District Court, Oregon
Washington State Bar
      U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Washington
      U.S. District Court, Western District of Washington
Honors
2011-2015 Selected as one of the Best Lawyers in America® in the specialty of Labor and Employment Law
2006-2014 Named to the Oregon Super Lawyers list in the category of Business Litigation
2009 and 2012 Included in the list of Oregon's Top 25 Women Super Lawyers
2005 Voted by Portland area lawyers as the "Best of the Bar" in the category of Litigation and Dispute Resolution
2005 Selected by Willamette Week as one of the 50 most influential women in Portland
2004 Named by Oregon Business Magazine as one of the top five female business leaders in the State of Oregon
2002 Honored by the Portland Business Journal as one of the "Forty under 40" people recognized for outstanding leadership in business and civic affairs

Nena Cook

Partner


1000 SW Broadway, Suite 1400
Portland, Oregon 97205

503.227.1111 Main
503.243.1626 Direct

Assistant: Kori Morehead: 503.243.1661 x 243
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Ms. Cook is a trial attorney with over twenty-two years of experience specializing in complex business disputes, appellate law and professional liability defense.  Nena carries the preeminent AV designation by Martindale-Hubbell® and is a frequent speaker and writer on the topics of professionalism, ethics and employment law.

Ms. Cook represents businesses in state and federal court including matters related to:

  • Class Actions
  • Corporate Disputes
  • Estate and Trusts
  • Insurance Coverage/Defense
  • Intellectual Property
  • Real Estate

Each year since 2006, when the Super Lawyers program began in Oregon, Ms. Cook has been named an Oregon Super Lawyer® in the area of Business Litigation.  In 2009 and 2012, she was included in the list of Oregon's Top 25 Women Super Lawyers.  Ms. Cook has been selected to the Best Lawyers in America® in the area of Labor and Employment Law from 2011-2014.  In 2005, she was selected by Willamette Week as one of the 50 most influential women in Portland.  In 2004, she was named by Oregon Business Magazine as one of the top five female business leaders in the State of Oregon.  In 2002, she was honored by the Portland Business Journal as one of the "Forty under 40" people recognized for outstanding leadership in business and civic affairs.  Ms. Cook has been rated an AV® Preeminent lawyer, the highest possible peer review rating in legal ability and ethical standards for 17 years. 

Personal Interests
Nena was born in Salt Lake City, Utah and is the proud mother of two children.  She enjoys all outdoor activities and volunteering at her sons' school.

Publications
Oregon State Bar, Civil Litigation Manual
     "Injunctive Relief," 1999
     "Summons," 2003
     "Temporary Restraining Orders and Preliminary Injunctions," 2003
BOLI Annual Employment Law Conference
     "Current Issues in Employment Law," 2005
     "How to Prevent Employment Litigation," 2006
     "Navigate Changing Employment Laws," 2007
     "Documentation, Discipline & Discharge," 2008
News
Representative Cases
Appellate Law
  • Graham et. al v. Sunset Hills Memorial Park, Oregon Court of Appeals, Case No. A148685, rev. den. S061494 (October 3, 2013)
    We represent the respondent/defendant in an appeal of the trial court's granting of our motion dismissing the case.  Our client is the second largest "death care" service provider in the country, with over 218 funeral homes and 140 cemeteries.  The lawsuit was filed by six adult siblings who alleged that, as a result of our client's mishandling of their mother's remains at a cemetery in Portland, they suffered $9 million in emotional distress damages.  The Court of Appeals agreed with our position and the Supreme Court chose not to review the Court of Appeals' decision. 
  • Jensen v. Duboff, 253 Or. App. 517, 291 P.2d 738 (2012)
    We represented the respondent/defendant in an appeal of the trial court's granting of our motion dismissing the case.  The plaintiff alleged breach of fiduciary duty, breach of contract, and negligence, and sought over $1.8 million in damages.  The issue on appeal was whether the trial court abused its discretion when it granted our Motion to Dismiss the Second Amended Complaint with prejudice. 
  • Classic Painting, Inc. v. Willamette Builders Group at Stoneway, LLC, 235 Or. App. 572, 233 P.3d 827 (2010)
    We were co-counsel for the appellant in a case of first impression in Oregon.  We sought the court's interpretation of the interplay between a lien claimant's entitlement to its attorneys fees and costs under the statute versus the reasonableness of those fees and costs pursuant to ORCP 68.
Business Litigation
  • Secured a judgment of dismissal on behalf of a national funeral home company where the plaintiffs alleged negligence, breach of contract and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
  • Defended clients against claims arising from a failed transaction on the development of a major subdivision.
  • Sued a former officer and employee of a construction company for fraud, conversion and breach of the duty of loyalty.
  • Represented multiple defendants who were sued for $2.5 million for breach of fiduciary duty, negligence, breach of contract, and unjust enrichment.  The defendants denied the allegations and asserted two counterclaims.  After successful motion practice, the case settled when the plaintiff paid the defendants $17,500 and dismissed all claims against them.
Employment and Separation Agreements
Represented clients in well over 50 non-competition, non-solicitation and non-disclosure agreements.  
Federal Mine Safety and Health Amendments of 1977, as amended ("Mine Act").
Defended a regional underground utilities construction company against the Secretary of Labor's claims before the Federal Mine Safety and Health Review Commission.
Intellectual Property
Defended a corporation being sued for breach of contract, trade infringement, false designation of origin, trademark dilution, cyber squatting and unfair competition.
Leave of Absence and Disability Accommodation
Represented a company providing management services to fifty-eight skilled nursing and assisted living facilities across the country in defense of a case brought by former employees who alleged racial discrimination, violation of the Family Medical Leave Act, Americans with Disabilities Act, and wrongful discharge. The former employees sought over $10 million in damages and a permanent injunction.
Military Leave and Reinstatement
Represented a construction company against employment law claims brought by an injured veteran under the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Act (USERRA).
Preventative Counseling and Advice
Routinely provide advice, training and counsel to Fortune 100 companies on a wide range of employment-related topics including drafting arbitration provisions, conducting harassment and discrimination investigations, analyzing wage and hour issues, and advising on hiring, termination, and effective employment documentation.
Public Sector Defense
Represented Douglas County, Oregon and its three commissioners in several matters including defense of a $2 Million case brought by a former employee for alleged violations of freedom of speech, due process, equal protection and for wrongful discharge, defamation and retaliation.
Unlawful Trade Practices Act (UTPA)
  • Defended a national teleservices company for alleged breach of contract and unfair business practices. 
  • Sued an international IT solutions company headquartered in Canada on behalf of an Oregon family-owned business for breach of contract, violation of Oregon's Unlawful Trade Practices Act and negligence
Past Speaking Engagements
2013 Oregon Pleadings and Parties:  Tips and Traps for the Unwary:  Oregon State Bar
2011 Summary Judgment Tips for Avoiding Admissibility Pitfalls:  OLI
2011 Motions Against Pleadings/Motions to Amend:  Oregon State Bar
2011 Convocation on Equality:  Oregon State Bar
2010 50 Tips and Strategies for Businesses:  Oregon State Bar
2009 Negotiation Ethics: Professional Liability Fund
2009 Employment Law Update : Oregon State Bar
2009 Employment Law Conference: Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries
2009 ADA Amendments Act: Oregon State Bar
2008 Employment Law Conference: Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries
2008 Discipline, Documentation & Discharge: Oregon State Bar
2008 Annual Employment Law Seminar: Sussman Shank LLP
2007 Navigating ADA, FMLA & Workers Compensation: The Seminar Group
2007 How to Prevent Employment Litigation
2007 Hot Topics in Employment Law: Oregon State Bar
2007 Employment Law Conference: Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries
2007 Annual Employment Law Seminar: Sussman Shank LLP
2006 Employment Law Conference: Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries
2006 Annual Employment Law Seminar: Sussman Shank LLP
2005 Professionalism: University of Oregon School of Law
2005 Ethics in 18 Holes: Oregon State Bar
2005 Employment Law Conference: Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries
2005 Annual Employment Law Seminar: Sussman Shank LLP
2004 Employment Law Update: Oregon Economic & Business Forum
2004 Employment Law CLE: Oregon State Bar
2004 Annual Employment Law Seminar: Sussman Shank LLP
Professional Organizations
American Bar Association, 1991-Present
American Constitution Society for Law and Policy, 2007-Present
Campaign for Equal Justice Advisory Board, 2007-Present
Federal Bar Association, 1991-Present
Federal Practice & Procedure Committee, 1997-1999, Chair 1999
Gus J. Solomon American Inn of Court, 1991-1998
Leadership College Advisory Board, Chair 2006-2008
Multnomah County Judicial Screening Committee, 1999-2002
Multnomah County Pro Tem Judge, 2007-2013
Ninth Circuit Judicial Conference Representative, 2000-2003
Oregon Commission on Professionalism, 2005
Oregon Commission for Women, 2007-2010
Oregon Hispanic Bar Association, 2014-Present
Oregon State Bar, 1991-Present
      Litigation Section
      Labor and Employment Section
      Business Litigation Section
Oregon State Bar Board of Governors, 2002-2005
Oregon State Bar President, 2005
Oregon State Bar Procedure and Practice Committee, 1999-2002
Oregon Women Lawyers, 1991-Present
Oregon Women Lawyers Foundation Board, 2007-Present
Washington State Bar Association, 1992-Present
      Litigation Section
      Labor and Employment Section