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Overview

Tanya helps education clients navigate complex issues so they can focus on their mission: student education.

In addition to her 14 years of corporate law experience – both at large law firms and in-house – clients appreciate Tanya’s perspective and practical approach to legal matters after serving as the first general counsel for a large community college. As former general counsel of a League for Innovation college, she understands the operational aspects at institutions of higher learning and how these day-to-day demands intersect with legal risk, compliance and governance. Colleges, universities and other education clients rely on Tanya as a well-rounded and experienced legal and business partner when faced with issues such as:

  • Clery Act
  • Title IX
  • Title IV
  • Union contracts
  • Tenure disputes
  • Accreditation
  • Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)
  • Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA)
  • Reductions in force (RIF) and separation agreements
  • European Union General Data Protection Regulation (EU GDPR)
  • Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)
  • Business operations and board governance

Tanya helps educators large and small with proactive training and executive-level handbooks, internal reviews and checklists, First Amendment policies, and safety/security best practices, among other matters. She enjoys positioning clients for success, whether mitigating risk through training, streamlining best practices, or finding a way forward through investigation or litigation.


Industries

Service

Education

  • J.D., University of Kansas School of Law
  • B.A., University of Southern California
    • with honors
    • Political Science
    • Environmental Social Science and Spanish minors

Admissions

  • Kansas
  • Missouri
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Missouri
  • U.S. District Court, District of Kansas

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Principles of Core Mediation, certified, 2019
  • Johnson County Bar Association, 2012–Present
  • Kansas Bar Association, 2012–Present
  • National Association of College and University Attorneys, 2011–Present
  • American Bar Association, 1997–Present
  • The Missouri Bar, 1997–Present
Experience

Education – Operational

  • Served as first general counsel for community college with 18,000+ credit students, introducing legal risk identification and mitigation, standard operating procedures, training, and preventative and proactive law measures resulting in significantly reduced caseload and internal expenses.

Compliance

  • Oversaw Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) and other regulatory/government compliance programs.
  • Counseled on numerous high-risk/high-profile internal investigations and audits.
  • Developed and provided proactive training and handbooks, including at C level.
  • Provided clients with diversity initiatives and equity participation programs.
  • Responded to open records requests.

Governance

  • Oversaw drafting, implementation, enforcement and audit of corporate policies (including Code of Conduct, Computer Usage Policy, Economic Espionage Act Policy, Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Policy and Policy on Interactions with Healthcare Professionals); trained executives on legal risks and mitigation strategies.
  • Facilitated college board governance and executive board matters.

Labor & Employment

  • Negotiated regularly with and responded to Office for Civil Rights (OCR) of the U.S. Department of Education (ED) and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) regarding sexual misconduct and retaliation.
  • Negotiated and mediated wide range of student, staff, and faculty complaints and grievances.
  • Negotiated and drafted faculty association/union collective actions and agreements under Kansas Professional Negotiations Act (PNA).
  • Handled procurement contract negotiations/disputes.
  • Negotiated executive employment agreements, and severance and release agreements.
  • Enforced restrictive covenant provisions of public company's employment agreements.
Outside the Office

Tanya enjoys exploring national parks with her family.

Tanya and her husband both grew up in families that took advantage of adventures found in the national parks. Now the couple and their three children have traveled to more than 15 U.S. National Parks and have plans for more. The family’s favorite is Canyonlands in Utah.

Community Leadership
  • Arts & Recreation Foundation of Overland Park, Board Member, 2018–Present
  • DECA Competition, Blue Valley School District (BVSD), Judge, 2018
  • Blue Valley School District (BVSD) Business and Education for Schools of Tomorrow (BEST) Committee, 2017–Present
  • Leadership Overland Park, Graduate, Class of 2016
  • Journey Bible Church, Youth Group Leader, 2013–Present; Sponsor for the Class of 2021
  • Gateway of Hope Ministries, Pro-Bono Legal Advisor, 2012–Present
  • University of Southern California (USC) Alumni Association, Kansas City (KC) Chapter, 2004–Present; Board Member, 2007–2009; Scholarship Committee Member, 2008–2010
  • Second Presbyterian Church, Caring Ministries Committee Member; Usher, Sunday School Volunteer, 2002-2011