Deborah S. Adams

T 513.651.6705
F 513.651.6981
301 East Fourth Street
Great American Tower, Suite 3300
Cincinnati, Ohio 45202

Deborah is a member of Frost Brown Todd LLC and practices in the labor and employment law practice group. She represents management in the areas of employment discrimination and wrongful discharge. She has successfully represented companies defending against class and collective actions alleging employment discrimination, including class actions under the FMLA and collective actions under the EPA.

Her practice is devoted not only to defending companies in litigation but also to developing litigation-prevention strategies through advice and counsel and in-house training programs. She is included in the Best Lawyers in America®, and Chambers USA® (2006) describes her as having a "great presence in front of a jury."


Deborah was primary counsel in two leading sexual-harassment decisions in the Sixth Circuit:

  • Highlander v. KFC, 805 F.2d 644 (6th Cir. 1986)
  • Black v. Zaring Homes, 104 F.3d 822 (6th Cir. 1997)

Other notable defense victories with Deborah as lead counsel include:

  • Niswander v. The Cincinnati Insurance Company, 529 F.3d 714 (6th Cir. 2008)
  • Gambill, et al. v. Duke Energy Corporation, 2012 U.S. App. LEXIS 1563 (6th Cir.)
  • Lentz v. The Cincinnati Insurance Company, et al., 2006 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 72354 
  • Al-Khadra v. Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Case No. A0909199 (Hamilton Co. June 9, 2011) (judgment entry on defense verdict following four-week trial)

Highlights & Recognitions

  • AV® Rated, Martindale-Hubbell®
  • The Best Lawyers in America® (35th year), 2019
  • The Best Lawyers in America® Cincinnati Litigation - Labor and Employment Lawyer of the Year, 2014
  • The Best Lawyers in America® Cincinnati Employment Law-Management Lawyer of the Year, 2012, 2015
  • Selected for inclusion in Ohio Super Lawyers® 2004-2019 (Top 50 in Cincinnati, Top 100 in Ohio, Top 25 Women in Cincinnati, Top 50 Women in Ohio)
  • Chambers USA, Labor and Employment, 2008-2018
  • BTI Client Service All-Stars, BTI Consulting Group, 2012
  • Inclusion in National Corporate Counsel Super Lawyers®
  • College of Labor and Employment Lawyers, Fellow

Memberships & Affiliations

  • Cincinnati Bar Association, Labor and Employment Law Section
  • Ohio State Bar Association, Labor and Employment Law Section
  • Ohio Management Lawyers Association

Press Releases

Non-FBT Publications and Events

October 4, 2013 - Proving and Disproving Selected Theories of Liability

June 5, 2013 - Retaliation: A Bad Idea

April 22, 2011 - Retaliation: The Claim That Keeps on Giving

February 8, 2011 - Silence or Waiver:  What's the Best Strategy for Employers with Arbitration Agreements to Avoid Class Actions?

April 16, 2010 - Internal Investigations:  Preserving Privileges and Protecting Against Compelled Self-Disclosure

October 2010 - Hostile Work Environments

October 2009 - Pregnancy Discrimination - Recent Developments

September 2007 - Sexual Harassment - Current Developments in the Law

September 2006 - Jury Dynamics of an EEO Case:  Winning is Everything - A Defense Perspective

October 2004 - Harassment in the Modern Workplace

October 2001 - Discovery Issues in Employment Litigation

December 2000 - Law and Politics - The Impact on Employment Rulings

Other Contact Info


Shannon Heaton
T 513.651.6703