BARBARA A. PETRUS, ESQ.
AREA OF EXPERTISEEmployment/Labor
All neutrals on the DPR Panel are willing to travel to the neighbor islands and the mainland. If you have any questions, please contact DPR at (808) 523-1234
Retiring from the practice of law, Barbara A. Petrus brings an experienced perspective to labor and employment disputes. After more than 39 years as a labor and employment lawyer, Ms. Petrus has shifted her focus from advocate to a commitment to assist individuals and businesses in resolving their disputes through mediation, arbitration and other alternative dispute resolution means.
Often it is to the benefit of employees and their employers to seek early resolution of employment disputes. In addition to post-claim mediation and arbitration, Ms. Petrus can uniquely assist in early pre-litigation resolution of disputes through mediation as well as independent workplace investigation given her knowledge of workplace dynamics.
Ms. Petrus is well familiar with the intricacies of labor and employment disputes having litigated countless cases before the Hawaii and federal courts, including cases brought by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, as well as cases before the U. S. Department of Labor and the Hawaii Department of Labor and Industrial Relations. Ms. Petrus is quite attuned to the issues presented in unionized workplaces, having litigated numerous labor relations arbitration cases involving both discharge/discipline and contract interpretation issues. Ms. Petrus has also conducted many workplace investigations, addressing allegations of management as well as employee misconduct related to harassment, retaliation, and other forms of discrimination. Notably, Ms. Petrus has conducted numerous investigations into allegations of sexual harassment, experiencing the nuances present in assessing the credibility of witnesses especially in “he said/she said” situations.
Having graduated cum laude from Albany Law School in 1982, Ms. Petrus focused her legal practice in the labor and employment area. Ms. Petrus is a Fellow in the prestigious College of Labor and Employment Lawyers. She has been recognized by Chambers USA, ranked in Band 1 for Hawaii Labor and Employment lawyers. She has also been recognized for many years by Best Lawyers.
Committed to use of the facilitative and evaluative mediation models as dictated by the needs of the case, Ms. Petrus has gained key insight through her completion of the Mediating the Litigated Case program at the Straus Institute for Dispute Resolution at the Pepperdine Caruso School of Law. Ms. Petrus has also completed the Mediation Center of the Pacific’s basic and advanced mediation training programs.
Ms. Petrus has been married for 43 years. She and her husband have two grown daughters and two granddaughters.