Cyrus Mehri is a founding partner of Mehri & Skalet, PLLC. He litigates cases involving discrimination, civil and consumer rights, and corporate fraud. Fast Company says, “He is something of a one-man army in the battle against business as usual... His impact – both in terms of penalties and remedies – is undeniable,” while the New York Times says “Mr. Mehri’s vision for corporate America involves sweeping change, not the piecemeal kind.” In 2001, he was named by Regardie’s Power magazine as one of “Washington’s Ten Most Feared Lawyers” and in 2003, by Workforce magazine as “Corporate America’s Scariest Opponent.”
Mr. Mehri’s reputation is well-earned. He has led and co-led some of the largest and most significant race and gender cases in U.S. history, including Roberts v. Texaco Inc. which resulted in a $176 million award for discrimination; Ingram v. The Coca-Cola Company, which resulted in a $192 million settlement to dramatically reform employment and promotion practices at Coke, and Robinson v. Ford Motor Company, which resulted in the creation of 279 apprenticeship positions for African-American employees and a $10 million payment, as well as lasting implications for testing protocols in the industry. Mr. Mehri also spearheaded a project to exposing long-running gender inequity on Wall Street. He challenged some of the largest financial titans - and won, securing settlements against Morgan Stanley & Co. ( $47 million) Smith Barney ($33 million), Wells Fargo/Wachovia ($32 million).
Mr. Mehri has launched a number of projects aimed at systematically remedying discrimination, improving opportunities, and bettering corporate behavior. These projects include “Women on Wall Street” which seeks to end discrimination against women in financial institutions; the Madison Avenue Project, which is investigating discrimination claims against the most powerful advertising agencies; Voices for Corporate Responsibility, which creates a home for senior executives and professionals concerned about corporate wrongdoing; and the Fritz Pollard Alliance, an affinity group for NFL minority coaches, front office and scouting personnel that has worked to dramatically change the face of NFL management.
Mr. Mehri has written and testified extensively about seeking justice in an ever-changing landscape. His most recent work includes:
- Cyrus Mehri & Michael Lieder, “Onward and Upward after Wal-Mart v. Dukes,” American Association for Justice (April 2013, Volume 49, No. 4).
- Cyrus Mehri & Ellen Eardley,“Defending Twentieth Century Equal Employment Reforms in the Twenty-First Century,” in Toward a More Perfect Union: A Progressive Blue Print for the Second Term. American Constitution Society (January 2013).
- Cyrus Mehri & Danielle E. Davis, “A Few Thoughts on Tackling the Issue of Diversity and Inclusiveness in Law Firms,” Mehri & Skalet (May 2011).
Mr. Mehri graduated from Cornell Law School in 1988, where he served as Articles Editor for the Cornell International Law Journal. He clerked for the Honorable John T. Nixon, U.S. District Judge for the Middle District of Tennessee. Mr. Mehri serves on the advisory boards of the Cornell Law School, the Peggy Browning Fund and Farmworkers Justice, and on the judicial nominations committees for the American Constitution Society and the National Employment Lawyers Association.
Mr. Mehri is a frequent guest on radio and TV, and a popular lecturer on CLE programs. Selected interviews and appearances include:
- “The Federal Bench in the Age of Obama" at the National Civil Rights Access to Justice Forum