Carolyn L. Gemma is a Partner in Lozano Smith's Walnut Creek office and co-chair of the Investigations Practice Group. Ms. Gemma advises educational institutions throughout the state on all matters affecting employment, students and board governance.
Ms. Gemma is AWI (Association of Workplace Investigators) trained and has significant experience conducting prompt, thorough and effective workplace and Title IX investigations for both K-12 and higher education clients. In addition, her trauma-informed training offers clients further expertise in investigating allegations of sexual harassment, sexual assault and other forms of sexual misconduct. Ms. Gemma conducts respectful interviews of witnesses and understands how trauma has an impact on credibility determinations.
Ms. Gemma specializes in labor and employment matters, including employee discipline and termination; responding and facilitating resolutions to grievances, unfair labor practice charges and DFEH/EEOC charges; and conducting workplace investigations. She also advises clients regarding compliance with state and federal laws; drafting, negotiating, and revising board policies, administrative regulations, employee handbooks, consent forms and contracts; and student matters such as discipline, search and seizure and free speech.
Ms. Gemma earned a law degree from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law. During law school, Ms. Gemma served as member of the McGeorge Law Review and as a Judicial Extern for the Honorable John A. Mendez of the United States District Court, Eastern District of California. Ms. Gemma earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of San Diego, where she majored in Political Science, minored in Italian Studies, and graduated cum laude
. Ms. Gemma has received certification through ATIXA as a participant in Level 1 and Level 3 ATIXA Civil Rights Investigator Trainings.
Host Sloan Simmons talks with Lozano Smith attorneys Marisa Lincoln and Carolyn Gemma about California's Uniform Complaint Procedures (UCP). Their discussion covers increasingly important legal parameters and best practices for complying with the State's UCP, and how the UCP interacts with best practices in investigations and other complaint processes, such as that before the U.S. Department of Education's Office for Civil Rights.