Barbara A. O’Connell

Phone: (215)-963-2428
Facsimile: (215)-557-0999


Barbara A. O’Connell is a partner in the Philadelphia and New Jersey offices where she heads the Employment Practice & Professional Liability Group. Her practice focuses on advising employers in all aspects of employee management and litigation. This includes negligent hiring, wrongful discharge, civil rights and employment discrimination cases. In her over 25 years of trial practice she has defended hundreds of cases in state and federal courts including a widely-publicized jury trial involving a law firm accused of discriminating against a lawyer who had AIDS (similar to the claim depicted in the movie, Philadelphia). Ms. O’Connell also represents lawyers, medical professionals, brokers, and accountants, among others, in professional liability cases.

Ms. O’Connell is a past Chair of the DRI Employment Law Committee. As Chair, she directed the course of the organization and facilitated outstanding educational and professional development opportunities. She has published and lectured on Employment Law topics for DRI and other professional organizations and clients throughout the country. She is also an active member of the DRI Professional Liability Committee and was a Co-Chair of the USLAW Professional Liability Seminar.

Ms. O’Connell has been named a Pennsylvania Super Lawyer twelve times and was honored as a Top Woman Lawyer in the Northeast by Arrive Magazine.

Ms. O’Connell graduated Summa Cum Laude from the University of Bridgeport, Connecticut and received her J.D. from Villanova University where she won the Theodore Reimel Moot Court Competition.


University of Bridgeport — B.S., Education, summa cum laude.
Villanova University School of Law — J.D.

Bar Admission

  • Pennsylvania — 1986
  • New Jersey — 1987
  • United States Supreme Court — 1993
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit — 1991
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania — 1987
  • U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey — 1987
  • U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania — 2003