Regina Williams Tate

TEL: (617) 479-5000
EMAIL: gtate@mhtl.com

Ms. Tate has been practicing law since 1978. She practices primarily in the areas of labor and education law. Her practice in the area of education covers the spectrum of issues related to education including student discipline, special education, Education Reform, due process rights of teachers and other school employees, and other employment matters, academic freedom and civil rights. She also participates in the collective bargaining process on behalf of her education clients. She has served as counsel to over 60 school committees and private schools, providing advice on a daily basis as well as advocacy in litigation and in hearings before administrative agencies. Ms. Tate frequently litigates issues before the Bureau of Special Education Appeals, the office for Civil Rights, the Labor Relations Commission, and arbitrators on behalf of school systems. Ms. Tate has represented school committees and superintendents at all levels of the court system, including the Supreme Judicial Court, in key decisions on teacher tenure, the right of a district court judge to order a special education, residential placement, due process rights of principals and assistant principals in a reorganization and the appropriateness of a school-based IEP. She also has conducted numerous workshops and seminars on educational issues such as developments in special education, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, teacher evaluation, teacher and administrator liability and student discipline.

Ms. Tate’s practice in the area of labor law includes collective bargaining, representation of employers before the MCAD and EEOC and advocacy in labor-related litigation. She has argued labor cases before the federal district court, the United States Court of Appeals and the appellate courts of Massachusetts, and has represented numerous companies and public entities in negotiations before administrative agencies on issues ranging from unfair labor practice to unemployment compensation. She has also represented companies and public entities during audits by the Department of Labor and other governmental bodies. A member of the Committee on Discrimination of the Labor and Employment Law Section of the American Bar Association, Mrs. Tate has conducted seminars and workshops on discrimination, affirmative action and collective bargaining, and has written numerous articles for businesses on discrimination concerns. She is also the author of a number of articles on various aspects of education and employment issues in the public sector. Ms. Tate is a summa cum laude graduate of Chestnut Hill College and a cum laude graduate of Harvard Law School. She has been a partner at Murphy, Hesse, Toomey and Lehane since 1987.

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St. Mary's Center for Women and Children Diamonds of Dorchester

On October 20, 2016, Attorney Katherine Hesse introduced Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker at the annual St. Mary’s Center for Women and Children Diamonds of Dorchester event which was held at the Westin Copley Place.  Ms. Hesse currently serves as the Chair of the Board of Trustees for the St. Mary’s Center for Women and Children which focuses on offering innovative and family-centered programs for women and children who have experienced trauma and are living in poverty.  As Governor Baker noted, the St. Mary’s Center has been known for “healing” for well over 100 years.   According to Attorney Hesse, “of the many charities in which I have been involved over the last 40 years of my professional career, St. Mary’s is closest to my heart.”  Other highlights of the evening included Lorrie Higgins receiving the John M. Corcoran Award for Excellence based upon her advocacy of and commitment in helping those most vulnerable in our community.  Over six hundred individuals attended the event, which raised approximately $500,000 for the women and children who rely upon the center.  

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Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Issues Landmark Ruling on Medical Marijuana in the Workplace

In a much anticipated ruling,the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (“SJC”) issued a decision recognizing a potential claim for disability discrimination if an employer terminates or otherwise takes an adverse employment action against an employee who uses lawfully prescribed medicinal marijuana while off-duty.   In short, this decision prohibits blanket restrictions on the off-duty use of marijuana and requires employers to engage in an interactive process to determine whether the off-duty use of lawfully prescribed medical marijuana may be a reasonable accommodation under Massachusetts anti-discrimination law, M.G.L. c. 151B.

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