Derek T. Luke

Associate

Pittsburgh

(412) 620-6541

(412) 275-2390

Derek focuses his practice on corporate governance and strategic planning with an emphasis on labor and employment and executive compensation decisions.

During law school, Derek participated in Cozen O'Connor's 2018 summer associate program. He assisted in a variety of projects related to corporate, real estate, and labor and employment law. Derek also worked for one of Pittsburgh’s legal technology startups that applies artificial intelligence and natural language processing to certain legal tasks with the goal of helping attorneys be more efficient.

Prior to entering law school, Derek worked in public education in the Lake and Peninsula School District in rural Alaska where he held roles as principal, head teacher, and teacher. While head teacher, Derek served as teacher union president and was responsible for negotiating a three-year agreement between the teacher's union and the district administration. Given his interest in technology, Derek served as co-chair of the district’s technology committee and created technology-based enrichment programs focused on robotics and computer programming.

Derek earned his bachelor's degree in elementary education from Pennsylvania State University, and his master’s in educational leadership from University of Alaska Anchorage. He earned his law degree, cum laude, from University of Pittsburgh School of Law where he was vice president of the Class of 2019 in the Student Bar Association and editor-in-chief of the University of Pittsburgh Law Review. He authored “From Filling Buckets to Lighting Fires: The ABA Standards and the Effects of Teaching Methods, Assessments, and Feedback on Student Learning Outcomes” which appeared in the Law Review. He was the teaching assistant for Cyber Law, Policy & Security with Professor David Hickton and American Constitutional Law with Professor Jon Pushinsky. Derek was active in the law school’s Innovation Practice Institute, the Randall Family Big Idea Competition, and various law school committees. He received awards for the highest grade in Corporate Governance and Electronic Discovery Seminar. Upon graduation, he was also awarded the Robert Maxwell DeBroff Prize, an award given by the law school faculty recognizing motivation, interest, and achievement in corporate law.

Experience

News

Cozen O’Connor Advises United Hydrogen Group, Inc. in Sale to Plug Power, Inc.

June 24, 2020

United Hydrogen is one of the largest privately held merchant hydrogen producers in North America. The company operates a manufacturing plant in southeast Tennessee with a capacity to produce 6.4 tons of liquid hydrogen daily, with plans to expand to 10 tons per day.

Publications

Summary and Analysis of Key Provisions of the CARES Act

March 28, 2020

Members of Cozen O'Connor's Coronavirus Task Force provide analysis of the CARES Act and how it will impact small businesses, distressed industries, employers and employees, taxes, and the health care, real estates, and energy industries.

Should My Company Have Independent Contractors or Employees? [COpilot Blog]

December 10, 2019

While an independent contractor and an employee may receive the same compensation for the same work, the legal differences between the two types of workers can have serious consequences.

Industry Sectors

Education

  • University of Pittsburgh School of Law, J.D., cum laude, 2019
  • University of Alaska Anchorage, M. Ed., 2013
  • Pennsylvania State University, B.S., 2010

Awards & Honors

Robert Maxwell DeBroff Prize, University of Pittsburgh School of Law, 2019

  • Pennsylvania

Allegheny County Bar Association 

Pittsburgh Venture Capital Association