Fred Gaona, III
Counsel

I’m a tenacious advocate for my clients in litigation. But I always step back and look at both sides of the case to see if there’s a more cost-effective solution that makes sense from a business perspective and keeps my client out of the courtroom.

Employers across the country rely on Fred Gaona to resolve all types of labor and employment disputes, including claims under Title VII, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Family Medical Leave Act, the Fair Labor Standards Act and numerous state statutes. He has successfully defended employers against a variety of high-stakes claims through dispositive motions, skillful negotiation and aggressive litigation when necessary. Fred’s clients span several industries, including transportation, energy, retail and construction.

In addition, Fred handles disputes involving unfair competition issues, including non-competition agreements, non-solicitation agreements, confidentiality agreements and misappropriation of trade secrets. He often steps outside of his employment practice to handle general litigation matters, including cases involving breach of contract, collections and premises liability. Fred also has significant experience defending class action and collection action lawsuits and cases in arbitration.

A natural problem-solver and trained mediator, Fred earned the CALI award for the mediation practicum course at the Ohio State University College of Law, and was a member of the ABA negotiation team. He is certified in alternative dispute resolution and available to help individuals and businesses reach a compromise in all types of labor and employment disputes.

Fred was the recipient of the Texas Minority Counsel Program’s 2016 “Trailblazer Outside Counsel of the Year Award.” He has also held leadership positions in various organizations focused on diversity issues, including the Dallas Hispanic Law Foundation, the Texas Minority Counsel Program, the Dallas Hispanic Bar Association and the Hispanic Issues Section of the State Bar of Texas.

Fred is a regular speaker on a variety of employment law issues, including the numerous federal and state regulations impacting employers, Texas arbitration law and electronic issues in the workplace.

Representative Experience
  • Counsel and represent employers in litigation in employment-related matters including age, race, national origin, disability and sex discrimination charges, and sexual harassment claims, wrongful termination suits, defamation actions, family leave issues, employee benefits, health and safety matters, and wage-hour disputes
  • Represents corporate clients in arbitrations brought pursuant to collective bargaining agreements
  • Frequently trains executives and managers on compliance issues related to labor and employment law
  • Successfully represented corporate client on appeal before the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals
Thought Leadership / News
Honors
  • Texas Minority Counsel Program (TMCP) Trailblazer Outside Counsel of the Year award (2016)
  • Texas Super Lawyer (2014)
  • Texas Super Lawyer "Rising Star" (2007 - 2012)
Related Employment
  • Senior Attorney - American Airlines (2015 - 2016)
Organizational Involvement
  • American Bar Association
  • State Bar of Texas
    • Employment Law Section
  • Board of Directors, Dallas Hispanic Law Foundation (2012-2013)
  • Co-Chair, Texas Minority Counsel Program (2011-2012)
  • Board of Directors, Dallas Hispanic Bar Association (2009-2010)
  • Elected Secretary of the Hispanic Issues Section of the State Bar of Texas (2008-2009)
  • Notre Dame Club of Dallas
Education
  • J.D., The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law (2000)
  • B.A., cum laude, University of Notre Dame (1995)
Bar Admission
  • Texas