- Practice Areas: Employment Law
- Firm: Ahmad Zavitsanos & Anaipakos
- Web Site: www.azalaw.com
Joseph Y. Ahmad, a shareholder in the law firm of Ahmad, Zavitsanos & Anaipakos, P.C. of Houston, Texas, is board-certified in labor and employment law and primarily represents employees in employment related litigation. Mr. Ahmad has been recognized as one of the best lawyers in America and is one of only a handful or lawyers in Houston to be selected by his peers in the 2003-2004 publication of "Best Lawyers in America." He was also recognized as one of the leading Employment & Labor Law attorneys in "Chambers USA America's Leading Business Lawyers 2003-2004." Having tried over 20 employment law cases to a verdict, and argued over a dozen cases on appeal, he is a nationally recognized expert in the trial of employment cases. He is also a frequent lecturer on a variety of employment law topics, for organizations such as the National Employment Lawyers Association, the State Bar of Texas, the University of Houston Law Foundation and the Texas Employment Lawyers Association, and has been a frequent commentator on issues related to employment law for various media entities including the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Houston Chronicle, and local television stations.
Mr. Ahmad’s well-publicized courtroom success has enabled him to achieve significant settlements for his clients as well. Mr. Ahmad has a reputation of successfully representing plaintiffs in trial against large multi-national corporations and institutions. Mr. Ahmad is frequently called upon to take on cases on behalf of an individual against large corporations and institutions. Because of his expertise in taking employment cases to trial, he is frequently asked by other lawyers to assist or take over the representation of employees for purpose of trial. While the majority of cases settle, and the vast majority of these settlements are strictly confidential, some of Mr. Ahmad’s publicly recognized successes at trial are as follows:
* Mr. Ahmad was selected by world renowned endocrinologist Dr. Terry Siler-Khodr, when she challenged the University of Texas’ pay structure as being discriminatory on the basis of gender and for violating the Equal Pay Act. Utilizing an expert statistician from American University in Washington, D.C., as well as the University’s own study, Mr. Ahmad obtained a verdict in Dr. Siler-Khodr’s favor finding that she had been the victim of sex discrimination and that the University had violated the Equal Pay Act. The total judgment of approximately $350,000 came after other gender bias claims against the University of Texas had failed. When the University appealed the judgment in favor of Siler-Khodr, Mr. Ahmad obtained a unanimous victory at the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, in a published opinion that is frequently cited by plaintiff’s employment lawyers throughout the country. When the University again appealed to the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals as a whole, thirteen of the fifteen judges voted against rehearing, and the appeal was denied. Siler-Khodr v. University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio, 292 F.3d 221 (5th Cir. 2002).
* Mr. Ahmad was called upon by a former Exxon truck driver after he became disabled, and subsequently terminated. Undeterred by the lack of any substantive offers by Exxon prior to trial, Mr. Ahmad took the case to trial and secured a six-figure judgment against Exxon in favor of his client.
* Mr. Ahmad was also called upon to represent a nationally recognized television reporter in an age discrimination case against KHOU-TV. After obtaining a finding that his client had been terminated in fact because of his age, the case soon settled thereafter.
* Mr. Ahmad was also called upon to represent a former lawyer within the General Counsel’s office at the University of Houston who had sued for retaliation after she complained of sexual harassment from the General Counsel. He was asked by Andrew S. Golub of Dow, Golub, Berg & Beverly to assist in the trial on behalf of Ms. Septimus, securing a verdict of approximately $450,000.00, not including any attorneys’ fees or costs.
* Mr. Ahmad was also asked to assist in the trial of a disability discrimination case on behalf of Professor Jayne Bowman against Texas Woman’s University. Mr. Ahmad and his co-counsel obtained a judgment of $509,281.34 plus interest against Texas Woman’s University.
* Mr. Ahmad also represented a former executive of Charter Communications when he was terminated despite having an employment contract with Charter. Mr. Ahmad, after trial on the merits in front of an arbitrator, secured a judgment in the amount of $309,597.73 on behalf of his client against Charter Communications.
* Admitted to bar 1987, Michigan; 1989, Texas.
* Admitted to all state and federal courts in Texas; United States District Court, Western District of Michigan; United States District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin; United States Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit; United States Supreme Court.
* Board Certified by The Texas Board of Legal Specialization in the area of Employment and Labor Law, 1996.
* Preparatory education, Lawrence University (B.A. with honors, 1984); legal education, University of Michigan (J.D., 1987)
* Law Clerk to Hon. Benjamin F. Gibson, U.S. District Court, Western District of Michigan, 1987-89.
* Houston and American Bar Associations (Sections: Litigation; Labor and Employment Law)
* State Bar of Texas (Sections: Labor; Litigation)
* Texas Trial Lawyers Association
* The Association of Trial Lawyers of America
* National Employment Lawyers Association
* Houston Chapter, National Employment Lawyers Association (past president - 2000)
* Fellow, Houston Bar Foundation
* Fellow, Texas Bar Foundation
* Million Dollar Advocate Forum
* Houston Bar Association’s Houston Volunteer Lawyers Project AIDS Subcommittee
* Brady v. Fort Bend County and R. George Molina, 58 F.3d 173 (5th Cir. 1995), reh’g en banc granted (Aug. 25, 1995), appeal dismissed (Nov. 17, 1995)
* Primeaux v. Conoco, 961 S.W.2d 401 (Tex.App.-Houston [1st Dist.] 1997, no writ)
* Washinton v. HCA Health Services of Texas, Inc., 152 F.3d 464 (5th Cir. 1998), cert. granted 119 S.Ct. 2388 (1999)
* Brady v. Fort Bend County, 145 F.3d 691 (5th Cir. 1998), cert. denied 119 S.Ct. 873 (1999)
* Pratt v. City of Houston, Tex., 247 F.3d 601 (5th Cir. 2001)
* Siler-Khodr v. University of Texas Health Science Center San Antonio, 261 F.3d 542 (5th Cir. 2001)
* Mota v. University of Texas Houston Health Science Center, 261 F.3d 512 (5th Cir. 2001)