Lynnette D. Espy-Williams

Chief Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Officer

Washington, D.C.

(202) 912-4845

(202) 499-2945

Lynnette serves as the firm's chief diversity officer. She has experience in litigating a wide variety of civil and commercial matters, including matters pertaining to mass and complex torts, professional liability, premises liability, product liability, contract disputes, and extracontractual disputes, including defending bad faith claims.

Lynnette has extensive experience in defending many high-exposure product liability and premises liability matters. With respect to product liability cases, Lynnette routinely represents manufacturers, distributors, and retailers of allegedly defective products in negligence actions stemming from allegations, including, but not limited to, failure to warn, breach of implied and express warranties, and any other theory in tort or contract. She also frequently defends various entities in premises liability matters involving acts of negligent third parties, negligent or improper maintenance of premises, and inadequate security. Lynnette is thoroughly versed in tender and indemnification issues and routinely assists companies in determining where the risk of liability can be shared or absolved completely.

Lynnette handles cases in state and federal courts and she has been involved in every phase of litigation including, taking and defending fact and expert depositions, preparing and arguing key motions, negotiating with opposing counsel, drafting motions for summary judgment and motions in limine, and participating in pre-trial conferences. She has substantial experience handling consumer class action litigation, including cases involving alleged violations of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) and Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA).

Lynnette is the former president of the Gate City Bar Association, the oldest African-American bar association in the state of Georgia. She is also actively involved with the Georgia Association of Black Women Attorneys, American Bar Association, Atlanta Bar Association, the Atlanta Council of Younger Lawyers, and a member of the Federation of Defense & Corporate Counsel.

Named as a Georgia Rising Star (2012-2016), Lynnette was included in Atlanta Business Chronicle’s 40 Under 40 for 2018, Georgia Trend ’s Legal Elite and also Georgia Trend’s 40 Under 40 for 2016. She is also a member of LEAD Atlanta (2013), Outstanding Atlanta (2012), was selected as one of Atlanta’s Power 30 Under 30 (2010) and, most recently, was recognized as one of Georgia's 40 Under 40 (2013), a list developed by The Daily Report that showcases the top Georgia lawyers under 40 who should be on readers' radar.

Prior to earning her JD from the University of Maryland, Lynnette graduated from Spelman College, cum laude, with honors in economics. While at the University of Maryland, Lynnette was a staff member for The Business Lawyer as well as an associate articles editor for the Journal of Business and Technology Law. Following law school, Lynnette served as a judicial intern to former Chief Justice Leah Ward Sears of the Supreme Court of Georgia.



Lynnette Espy-Williams Named a 2021 Diversity in Business Honoree by the Washington Business Journal

February 24, 2021

Cozen O’Connor is pleased to announce that Lynnette Espy-Williams, the firm’s Chief Diversity Officer, has been named a 2021 Diversity in Business Honoree.

How Do You Get Biglaw Firms To Care About Diversity?

June 13, 2019

Lynne Espy-Williams joined The Jabot podcast on Above the Law to discuss what law firms should be doing to change diversity and what it looks like to change the industry to be more diverse.

Lynnette Espy-Williams Honored by the University of Maryland, Francis King Carey School of Law

February 22, 2019

The University of Maryland, Francis King Carey School of Law’s Black Law Students Association (BLSA) has selected Lynnette Espy-Williams this year’s Graduate of the Year Award.

Cozen O'Connor Recognized by Profiles in Diversity Journal® with 11th Annual Diversity Leader Award

January 31, 2019

Cozen O'Connor has been selected by Profiles in Diversity Journal® to receive its 11th Annual Diversity Leader Award. The award is given to organizations that demonstrate a strong commitment to expanding and improving diversity, inclusion, and equity in the workplace and beyond.

More Firms Boosting Diversity Roles Amid Client Pressure

October 01, 2018

Lynnette Espy-Williams, Cozen O'Connor's chief diversity officer, spoke with Law360 about law firms adding a diversity and inclusion professional to their C-suite level.

Maryland Law Alum And Chief Diversity Officer Lynnette Espy-Williams On Honing Your Craft, Finding A Mentor, And Changing Cities [Above the Law]

March 09, 2018

Lynnette Espy-Williams, Cozen O'Connor's Chief Diversity Officer, spoke with Above the Law about her new role in the firm and shared her thoughts on moving to Washington, D.C., advice for those just starting out on their career journeys, and strategies for finding mentors and sponsors in the workplace.

Cozen O’Connor Appoints Lynnette D. Espy-Williams Chief Diversity Officer

February 16, 2018

Cozen O’Connor is pleased to announce it has appointed Lynnette D. Espy-Williams as the firm’s Chief Diversity Officer.


Rescission: An Underutilized Tool [2015 GDLA Law Journal]

June 01, 2015

Alycen Moss and Lynnette Espy-Williams discuss the statutory requirements regarding rescission, the contestable period, rescission methods, waiver considerations, the most common defenses to rescission, and a closing note on a likely claims from the insured – bad faith.

Industry Sectors


  • University of Maryland School of Law, J.D., 2006
  • Spelman College, B.A., cum laude, 2003

Awards & Honors

Atlanta Business Chronicle 2018 40 Under 40

Georgia Trend’s 2016 40 Under 40

Outstanding Atlanta's Class of 2012

  • Georgia
  • District of Columbia
  • Maryland
  • Georgia Court of Appeals
  • Georgia Superior Court
  • Georgia Supreme Court
  • U.S. District Court -- Middle District of Georgia
  • U.S. District Court -- Northern District of Georgia
  • U.S. District Court -- Southern District of Georgia
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
  • American Bar Association
  • Atlanta Bar Association
  • Gate City Bar Association
  • Georgia Association of Black Women Attorneys
  • Federation of Defense & Corporate Counsel