Ms. Semmer is an experienced employment and business litigator, advisor, and problem-solver. Her employment law practice focuses on representing employers through good times and bad, including claims of wrongful termination, discrimination, retaliation, and harassment in a variety of venues (federal and state courts, arbitration, mediation, and administrative proceedings).
Ms. Semmer’s business litigation experience focuses on complex litigation contexts, including breach of contract, business tort claims, non-competition and non-solicitation litigation, securities fraud, and civil RICO.
At all times, Ms. Semmer’s litigation philosophy is the same: Understand the client’s litigation goals and business realities; work to identify the strengths and mitigate the weaknesses of each case at the outset; and resolve cases creatively, efficiently, and pragmatically – be it through early resolution or ongoing litigation. As a result, Ms. Semmer has established a reputation for excellence and cultivated strong and lasting relationships with her clients.
A San Diego native, Ms. Semmer attended college and law school in the Midwest. In law school, Ms. Semmer was the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Dispute Resolution, one of the leading legal publications in the area of alternative dispute resolution – dispute resolution being a skill Ms. Semmer has honed over a lifetime with four siblings and two attorney-parents. Ms. Semmer also received CALI Excellence for the Future Awards for earning the highest grade in the following classes: Pre-Trial Litigation; White Collar Crimes; and Freedom of Speech & Association.
After graduating, Ms. Semmer began her legal career as an associate at a Minneapolis-based AmLaw 100 firm, Faegre Baker Daniels (now Faegre Drinker), where she received first-rate training and challenging work.
However, after years of shoveling snow, Ms. Semmer and her family returned to San Diego. Upon her return, Ms. Semmer served as a judicial law clerk to the Honorable Nita L. Stormes of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California. Thereafter and immediately before joining TencerSherman,
Ms. Semmer practiced at Wilson Turner Kosmo LLP, a mid-sized employment law firm where she sharpened her skills taking and defending depositions, drafting and arguing substantive motions, negotiating settlements, and trying cases at trial and arbitration.
-Second-chair in a federal jury trial, obtaining a unanimous defense verdict for a Fortune 50 healthcare company on a former employee’s race and age discrimination claims;
-Second-chair in an arbitration for a Fortune 50 healthcare company on equal pay, gender/race discrimination, and retaliation claims;
-Winning motion to compel arbitration and summary judgment in national origin harassment and discrimination case, which award was confirmed by the superior court and appellate court;
-Winning summary judgment in FEHA and Title VII race and religious -discrimination and harassment case in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California;
-Advising major oil corporation on legal issues pertaining to advertising campaign throughout California, including unfair competition law and state statutes regulating gas station advertising;
-Counseling employers regarding Proposition 54 (legalizing recreational adult-use cannabis in California) and workplace drug policies.
-Second-chair in an arbitration on behalf of claimant biotechnology company in a breach of contract action and negotiating policy-limits settlement payment to client;
-Successfully arguing motion to dismiss securities fraud case in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California and successfully arguing on behalf of appellee in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals;
-Obtaining summary judgment for a real estate investment company in a multi-plaintiff lawsuit with more than $5 million in damages;
-Serving as a member of a Fortune 500 medical device manufacturer’s national non-compete litigation team, enforcing the company’s restrictive covenants against former sales employees in jurisdictions around the country;
-Successfully representing one of the country’s largest mutual insurance companies in litigation involving a former agent, in which a federal jury awarded the company its entire damages claim for the agent’s breach of contract and rejected the agent’s multi-million dollar counterclaim for wrongful termination.
-Representing an international medical device manufacturer in a federal fraud and abuse investigation.
University of Missouri School of Law, JD 2009
- Editor-in-Chief, The Journal of Dispute Resolution
Macalester College, BA 2005 (cum laude)
- Major: Political Science