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Danielle E. Gonnella

Danielle E. Gonnella


Danielle E. Gonnella focuses her practice on representing employers and managers in employment discrimination and wrongful discharge cases arising under employment laws such as Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, the ADEA, the ADA, the FMLA, the Conscientious Employee Protection Act, the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination, and the New Jersey Family Leave Act. In addition, Danielle handles wage payment and overtime compensation claims, including class actions, under the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Danielle assists clients in a variety of employment matters including drafting policies and handbooks; ensuring wage and hour compliance; and defending Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and state fair employment practice agency charges. Additionally, Danielle has an active pro bono practice, including appellate, criminal, domestic violence, and family law matters.


  • Workforce compliance
  • Regulatory enforcement
  • Workplace strategies
  • Class action employment litigation
  • Collective action employment litigation



  • Prevailed on a motion to dismiss an appeal in the Second Circuit for a regional supermarket chain. 
  • Prevailed in an appeal at the 6th Circuit on behalf of York Risk Services Group, which upheld the award of a preliminary injunction enforcing  the restrictive covenants of an executive in their entirety.
  • Obtained a directed verdict at trial in New Jersey state court on behalf of a health care organization, in a law suit brought by an employee for alleged wage and hour violations. 
  • Prevailed in 2018 on a motion to dismiss a complaint filed in the Superior Court, Mercer County, by a former employee alleging age and disability discrimination, wrongful termination, and retaliation in violation of the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination. Successfully defended a subsequent motion for reconsideration in 2019 and was further awarded attorneys’ fees.
  • Obtained summary judgment on behalf of a Major Hospital System in 2019 in the Superior Court of New Jersey, Middlesex County in a case filed by a former director against the Hospital System and several officers, claiming gender and age discrimination in violation of the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination and whistleblower retaliation in violation of the New Jersey Conscientious Employee Protection Act.
  • Representation of York Risk Services Group, in the Western District of Michigan, in a case involving an executive’s breach of his non-compete restrictive covenant. Initially awarded a temporary restraining order and, following an evidentiary hearing, prevailed on an order to show cause resulting in a preliminary injunction enforcing the restrictions in their entirety. 
  • Represented international grocery store chain in a premise liability appeal at the New Jersey Appellate Division. This precedent-setting case involved damages to an employee’s car during the work day. The New Jersey Appellate Division reversed the trial court’s decision, finding that the retailer had no duty to prevent vandalism in a common area.
  • Obtained Rule 12(b)(3) dismissal in federal court on behalf of national legal services company whose prior employee alleged age discrimination and retaliation under the ADEA and New York City and State Human Rights Laws.
  • Prevailed on a partial motion to dismiss with prejudice in Middlesex County on behalf of health care organization in a lawsuit brought by a manager alleging, among other things, age and gender discrimination and CEPA claims.
  • Obtained a spoliation inference in a Morris County matter, on behalf of a national claims and risk management company, whose former executive claimed race discrimination and retaliation in violation of the NJLAD.
  • Defeated conditional certification of two groups of employees and significantly limited scope of a Fair Labor Standards Act collective on behalf of a New York City restaurant.
  • Represented international delivery/logistics company in purported age discrimination and retaliation lawsuit.
  • Obtained dismissal of criminal contempt charge against client in Morris County, New Jersey.
  • Obtained sole legal custody of a minor child on behalf of a client in Somerset County, New Jersey.
  • Law Clerk, United States Attorney’s Office, United States Department of Justice, Summer 2013
  • Law Clerk, Alexandria Public Defender’s Office, Spring 2013
  • Student Attorney, American University Washington College of Law General Practice Clinic, 2013


  • Listed, Super Lawyers magazine, New Jersey Super Lawyers, "Rising Stars," 2018-2019
  • Member, New Jersey Women Lawyers Association 
  • Member, Morris County Bar Association
  • Member, New Jersey State Bar Association


  • J.D., American University Washington College of Law, 2014
    • Managing Editor, American University Labor & Employment Law Forum

  • B.A., cum laude, Gettysburg College, 2011
  • Hon. Maryann L. Nergaard J.S.C., New Jersey Superior Court, 2014-2015
  • New Jersey
  • Maryland
  • District of Columbia
  • U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan
  • U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit