Deborah I. Ecker

Deborah I. EckerShareholder

Phone: 617.654.1714
Practice Areas: Litigation, Employment Law, Insurance Defense, General Municipal Law

Attorney Deborah I. Ecker has over 25 years of experience as a trial attorney representing both public sector and private clients.  She represents clients in a broad range of complex litigation including employment law, constitutional law, land use and general practice litigation.  Attorney Ecker litigates cases in state and federal courts and before administrative agencies in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and nationally.  She has also successfully represented bank clients at arbitrations before the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority.

In her employment law practice, Attorney Ecker counsels clients on a wide variety of personnel issues, including policy promulgation, implementation and enforcement, best management practices as well as employee hiring and firing.  She has counseled clients on and defended them against claims brought pursuant to the Massachusetts Wage Act and the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Attorney Ecker has conducted numerous work-place investigations into allegations of discrimination and sexual harassment and has conducted trainings on anti-discrimination sexual harassment prevention in the workplace.  She was named a Massachusetts Super Lawyer in the areas of State, Local, Municipal Law and Employment Law, for 2016 – 2023.

Representative Matters

  • Negotiated numerous settlements favorable to clients at mediation.
  • Successfully defended municipalities against claims brought pursuant to the Massachusetts whistleblower statute, G.L. c. 149, § 185.
  • Successfully defended a municipality against a challenge brought by an employee following the municipality’s search of its email system.
  • Successfully defended a School Department at trial against claims of sexual harassment brought by a special education teacher against the School Resource Officer.
  • Successfully defended a School Department on appeal against claims of student on student sexual harassment.
  • Conducted workplace investigations into allegations of sexual harassment and discrimination.
  • Represented parties in the defense of general liability matters, including damage to commercial property that involved review of leases and applicable insurance policies as well as matters arising from construction projects.
  • Successfully defended a bank client against a former employee’s claims for age and gender discrimination, prevailing on a motion for summary judgment.
  • Successfully represented a financial institution at arbitrations pending before the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority against claims brought by former employees for defamation and wrongful termination.
  • Successfully represented large national companies in multi-state employment law litigation against claims of discrimination under state and federal laws as well as claims for retaliation, defamation, wrongful termination and the violation of the Family Medical Leave Act.
  • Extensive experience representing clients at deposition, mediation and arbitration

Representative Decisions

  • Delaney v. Town of Abington, U.S. Court of Appeals, 16-2308 (1st Cir. 2018).  Federal Court of Appeals upheld dismissal of federal civil rights claims and state whistleblower claims brought by police officer against the Town’s Police Department claiming that he was retaliated for complaining about an alleged “ticket quota system.” 
  • Araujo v. Town of Abington, MCAD Docket No. 16C-2016-0166.  MCAD dismissed Complainant’s claim that he was discriminated against on the basis of his nationality when he was not hired to be a full time police officer.
  • Town of Abington v. Civil Service Commission, Plymouth Superior Court C.A. No. 1883CV00336 (2019).  The Court upheld the Town’s decision to bypass of a candidate for a full time Police Officer position who claimed he was bypassed because of his immigration status finding that the Town had reasonable justification for bypassing the candidate, reversing a decision of the Civil Service Commission granting the candidates appeal of the Town’s bypass of him.
  • Lewis v. City of Haverhill, Essex Superior Court C.A. No. 1677CV01725 (2018).  Plaintiff brought a claim pursuant to G.L. c.258 alleging that she was injured when she slipped and fell at City Hall.  Superior Court granted summary judgment, dismissing Plaintiff’s complaint.
  • Indianhead Realty, Inc. v. Town of Plymouth Zoning Board of Appeals, Massachusetts Appeals Court, 18-P-1533.  Appeals Court upheld the Land Court’s decision after trial that the Town’s Board of Appeals properly affirmed the Building Commissioner’s denial of Plaintiff’s application for a permit to be allowed to remove 475,000 cubic yards of gravel.

Memberships & Affiliations

  • Massachusetts Bar Association

Bar & Court Admissions

  • Massachusetts Bar
  • U.S. District Court (Mass.)
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit


Boston University School of Law
Juris Doctor, 1989

University of Vermont
Bachelor of Arts, 1989