Onye Chinwah

Principal Attorney

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Fighting for the powerless has always been important to Onye. For him, being a civil rights and employment attorney is not just a job. It’s a calling. That’s why he focuses his practice on vindicating people who have suffered civil rights violations in areas ranging from employment and education to lending and housing.

Onye is an agile litigator and a creative strategist. He has successfully represented individuals in a wide range of individual discrimination claims, including claims brought by low-income workers, federal employees, and executives in the financial services industry. He has also negotiated substantial settlements and favorable severance packages for clients. His approach to litigation is straightforward: “Litigation is the pursuit of practical ends, not a game of chess.”

Nearly a decade of experience has given Onye invaluable insight into the legal subtleties and real-life implications of his clients’ problems. While in law school he worked at the Human Rights Campaign, our nation’s largest LGBTQ advocacy organization, as a McLeary Law Fellow. Onye lobbied the Obama administration for an executive order that increased workplace protection for LGBTQ individuals. He also wrote witness inquiries used by U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy during the historic Senate Judiciary Committee hearing that spurred the repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act.

After graduating from law school, Onye clerked for Commissioner Chai R. Feldbum at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s Washington, DC headquarters. Soon afterward he joined the D.C. Office of Attorney General where, as an Assistant Attorney General, he successfully defended the District of Columbia in a wide range of employment cases. Onye then moved to a litigation boutique where he successfully represented employees before numerous administrative agencies, trial courts, and appellate courts.

Onye is a graduate of The University of California at Riverside and The University of Texas School of Law.

Onye is licensed in the State of Maryland and admitted to the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland. He is a member of the American Bar Association, Maryland State Bar Association, Maryland Employment Lawyers Association, and the Metropolitan Washington Employment Lawyers Association. 

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