Tanya N. Blocker is a litigator and trial attorney with significant federal practice experience.
A Senior Counsel in the firm’s Labor & Employment group in New York, Ms. Blocker has extensive experience litigating management-side employment matters. This includes federal and state anti-discrimination laws, state and local wage and hour, and class and collective actions. Ms. Blocker has successfully tried cases in both state and federal court and has significant experience litigating race, gender, age, disability, and retaliation actions.
Prior to joining Gordon & Rees, Ms. Blocker served as Senior Counsel in the Labor & Employment Law Division of the New York City Law Department, Office of Corporation Counsel. There she successfully co-chaired a trial on significant First Amendment retaliation claims, defended numerous depositions in various employment and retaliation matters on behalf of municipal agencies, led the defense of a class/collective action involving a 50,000 employee municipal agency against gender discrimination and pay equity claims, and litigated an equal pay action involving executive compensation resulting in a favorable settlement for her client.
Ms. Blocker is also a complex commercial litigator. Preceding her tenure at the NYC Law Department, Ms. Blocker was an associate at the law firm Kaye Scholer LLP, where she concentrated on white collar criminal defense, securities litigation, and government and corporate investigations. Ms. Blocker played a key role in successfully defending a fraudulent inducement/conveyance action on behalf of the firm’s Fortune 500 client.
Recognizing the importance of community engagement and leadership, on November 1, 2017, Ms. Blocker was installed as the twenty-second President of the Association of Black Women Attorneys (ABWA), a non-for-profit bar association, established in 1976, committed to promoting and supporting both the personal and professional development and growth of Black women attorneys. Notably, the New York Law Journal recognized Ms. Blocker as a Distinguished Leader in the 2018 edition of the journal’s Professional Excellence Awards for her exemplary leadership of the organization.
Ms. Blocker also spent a significant portion of her time in West Africa engaging in diversity and governance work as well as presenting on international employment law. Ms. Blocker was recently selected to participate in the Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS) Abshire-Inamori Leadership Academy (AILA) 2019 Fellowship program—a flagship leadership program designed to equip aspiring global leaders to be effective and ethical changemakers. In addition, Ms. Blocker has volunteered a significant portion of her time serving as a mock trial coach for a public school in Harlem, New York, and she is a former board member of the After- School All-Stars (ASAS) NY/NJ Chapters—a not-for-profit organization committed to sustaining after school programing for middle schoolers.
Ms. Blocker currently serves as the Co-Chair of the Metropolitan Black Bar Association (MBBA) Labor and Employment Law Section and is a member of the New York City Bar Association Labor and Employment Committee.
Association of Black Women Attorney’s (ABWA) – President (2017 – present)
New York City Bar Association – Labor and Employment Committee Member (2018 – present)
Metropolitan Black Bar Association (MBBA) – Labor and Employment Section Co-Chair (2013 – present)
National Bar Association – Legislative Committee Chair
Council of Urban Professionals (CUP) Executive Leadership Participant (ELP)
Abshire-Inamori Leadership Academy (AILA) 2019 Fellow