Andrew T. James

Andrew T. James



Harnessing his substantial trial experience and lessons learned as in-house corporate counsel, Drew passionately represents his clients in labor and employment and education-related matters.

When the situation demands it, Drew tenaciously represents his clients in employment and education-related litigation in courts in Minnesota and across the country. But when a dispute is avoidable, Drew taps his background as in-house counsel and works alongside his clients to proactively address issues before they erupt.

Drew has deep experience litigating and trying employment issues on behalf of his clients in state and federal courts, including discrimination, harassment, hostile work environment, retaliation and reprisal, wrongful termination, breach of restrictive covenants (including claims involving non-competition and non-solicitation agreements), misappropriation of trade secrets, breach of contract, tortious interference with contract, disability, and unemployment claims.

Drew also regularly advises educational institutions (including high schools, colleges, and universities) on a variety of education-specific legal issues such as Title IX, FERPA, sexual assault and harassment matters, and other student and faculty issues. Drew is one of the rare lawyers to have tried and won a Title IX case.

Before joining Dorsey, Drew was a trial associate at another law firm in Minnesota. Drew also has worked as in-house counsel for a financial services company in Minnesota, and he began his career as a criminal defense attorney.

Education & Admissions

University of Minnesota Law School (J.D., 2010)

Marquette University (B.A., Criminology and Law Studies; Political Science, 2007)


  • Minnesota
  • Wisconsin
  • U.S. District Court, District of Minnesota
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Michigan
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit


  • English


  • Judicial Externship, Ramsey County District Court, Honorable Robert A. Awsumb, 2009-2009


Representative Litigation

  • Portz, et al. v. St. Cloud State Univ., et al., Case No. 16-CV-01115 (JRT/LIB) (D. Minn. Aug. 1, 2019): After a seven-day trial, the Court found St. Cloud State University violated Title IX and granted a permanent injunction that benefits a class of female student-athletes. The Court ordered immediate improvements to SCSU's athletics department, including, but not limited to, maintaining women's sports teams, renovating practice and competition facilities, making improvements to women's locker rooms, and the Court also awarded $1.2 million in attorneys’ fees. Media coverage of this case includes:

  • Miller v. The Bd. of Regents of the Univ. of Minnesota, Case No. 15-CV-03740 (PJS/LIB) (D. Minn. Mar. 15, 2018): After a high profile eight-day jury trial on behalf of legendary former UMD women’s hockey coach Shannon Miller, the jury found that UMD retaliated against Miller in violation of Title IX and Title VII and awarded her over $3.74 million in damages (later reduced). The judge later awarded Miller an additional over $460,000 in front pay and $2.33 million in attorneys’ fees, and the case ultimately settled for $4.53 million. Media coverage of this case includes:

  • McGuire v. Bowlins, et al., Case No. A18-0167 (Minn. Sept. 4, 2019): In a decision described as “groundbreaking,” the Minnesota Supreme Court concludes that Nathan McGuire, the former girls’ basketball coach at Woodbury High School, is not a “public official” or “public figure,” and allows his defamation claim against the parent of a student-athlete to proceed to trial. Drew represented Nathan at the district court and Minnesota Court of Appeals levels before joining Dorsey. Media coverage of this case includes:

  • Before joining Dorsey, Drew was a litigation associate at another law firm, where he handled employment litigation, sports-related lawsuits, civil rights matters, and commercial litigation. Before that, Drew was assistant counsel at a broker/dealer and registered investment adviser, and he also has experience as a criminal defense attorney. Drew’s representative litigation described above includes results from before he joined Dorsey.

News & Resources


OSHA’s COVID-19 Vaccination or Weekly Testing Mandate: Legal Status and Employer Next Steps
FAR Council Issues Guidance to Federal Contractors and Subcontracts Related to Mandatory Vaccination of Certain Employees
Biden Administration Announces Broad Employer-Based Vaccination Requirements
Minnesota Governor Tim Walz Issues Executive Order Loosening COVID-19 Restrictions Tomorrow (May 7), Revoking Nearly All Restrictions On May 28, and Ending the Mask Mandate (Including Indoors) No Later Than July 1
Congress Extends the FFCRA’s Payroll-Tax Credit for Employers (but not the Paid-Leave Obligation!)
Mandating COVID-19 Vaccinations in the Workplace: Practical Considerations for Employers
Latest Minnesota Emergency Executive Order Closes Some Businesses and Extends Work-From-Home Requirements
The Education Department Tests its Schools: New Title IX Rule May Force Schools to Revamp How They Investigate and Resolve Sexual-Harassment Complaints
DOL Temporary Rule on the FFCRA: Additional Changes and Clarifications
The Families First Coronavirus Response Act: Twenty (Or So) Questions With Dorsey’s Labor and Employment Team
UPDATE: What Employers need to know now that the President has signed the Family Relief Act
What Employers Should Know About The “Families First Coronavirus Response Act”
Supreme Court Grants Review of Three Title VII Cases Concerning Protections for LGBTQ Workers

News & Press Mentions

Super Lawyers Recognizes 26 Dorsey Lawyers in Minneapolis
Super Lawyers Recognizes 29 Dorsey Lawyers in Minneapolis
Super Lawyers Recognizes 38 Dorsey Lawyers in Minneapolis
Up & Coming Attorneys, Unsung Legal Heroes Announced
Super Lawyers Recognizes 41 Dorsey Lawyers in Minneapolis

Legal Writings

  • Quoted in Duluth News Tribune article entitled, “UMD Discrimination Lawsuit Set to Return to Court,” Nov. 12, 2016.
  • Quoted in St. Cloud Times article entitled, “Hearing Set on SCSU Tennis Team Lawsuit,” May 4, 2016.

Industries & Practices

Government Enforcement & Corporate Investigations
Securities & Financial Services Litigation & Enforcement
  • Appellate
  • Banking & Financial Institutions
  • Benefits & Compensation
  • Class Action Litigation
  • Commercial Litigation
  • ERISA Litigation
  • Food, Beverage & Agribusiness
  • Government Enforcement & Corporate Investigations
  • Labor & Employment
  • Securities & Financial Services Litigation & Enforcement
  • Video Games

Professional & Civic

Community Involvement

  • Varsity Policy Debate Coach (various schools)
  • Past President, The Leadership Emergence and Development (“LEAD”) Project


  • Named "Minneapolis Ones to Watch" in Litigation-Labor and Employment by Best Lawyers®, 2021-2023

Contributed 100+ Pro Bono Hours in 2021

  • Contributed more than 100 Challenge pro bono hours, 2021
  • Named one of Minnesota Lawyer's Up & Coming Attorneys, 2020
  • Listed as a “Rising Star” by Minnesota Super Lawyers, 2019-2021
Andrew T. James