• Biography

    Laura O'Donnell is dedicated to client service. She is a strong advocate and a trusted business partner.

    Laura is co-chair of the firm's Litigation Practice Group and heads the firm’s Wage and Hour Litigation group. Laura is board certified in labor and employment law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. Her practice includes employment litigation, client counseling, executive investigations, executive agreements, nationwide employment-law compliance projects, and employment aspects of M&A and other corporate transactions.

    On the litigation front, Laura focuses on the defense of FLSA collective actions, but Laura also regularly defends employers against a multitude of employment-related claims, including claims involving theft of trade secrets, restrictive covenants, whistleblower retaliation, discrimination, harassment, failure to accommodate and wrongful denial of leave. Laura has also handled several appeals of employment decisions to Texas Courts of Appeal, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals and the United States Supreme Court.

    Laura has been recognized in Chambers USA, Chambers and Partners, for labor and employment in Texas from 2017 to 2020, and Chambers USA previously identified Laura as an "Up and Coming Leading Business Lawyer." Laura was honored as the "2018 Lawyer of the Year" and "2016 Lawyer of the Year" for labor and employment litigation in San Antonio and Best Lawyers, Woodward/White, Inc., has recognized Laura since 2011. She has been recognized by Texas Super Lawyers, Thomson Reuters, from 2010-2020, and as a Texas Super Lawyer Rising Star, from 2004-2010. Laura is listed as an AV Preeminent Lawyer by Martindale Hubbell Law Directory and received the San Antonio Business Journal, American City Business Journals, "40 Under 40 Rising Stars" award in 2006. Additionally, she was recognized as a Standout Lawyer, Acritas Stars, 2018-2020. Benchmark Litigation by Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC named her a "Labor & Employment Star – South (2019-2021)." Laura was named among the Best San Antonio Lawyers in 2020 by San Antonio Scene Magazine and was included in San Antonio Scene Magazine’s 2021 Best Female Lawyers list.

    Selected Publications and Speeches

    • “Employee Duty of Loyalty Litigation – A National Survey,” presenter, Federal Bar Association’s Labor and Employment Law Conference, February 26, 2021.
    • “Losing My Exemption: Avoiding Costly Misclassification Issues As Well As Other Wage & Hour Updates,” presenter, SAHRMA 14th Annual Employment Law Conference, August 19, 2020.
  • Education and Clerkships

    • J.D., Baylor University School of Law, 1996, Presidential Scholarship Recipient; Member, Baylor Law Review
    • B.A., Trinity University, 1993
  • Admissions

    • Texas
  • Court Admissions

    • United States Supreme Court
    • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
    • Texas Supreme Court
    • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas
    • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas
    • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas
    • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Texas