Admissions

  • Illinois
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois
  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois (trial bar)
  • U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Illinois

Education

University of Illinois at Chicago, B.A., 2000

  • with honors; Phi Beta Kappa

University of Illinois College of Law, J.D., 2003

  • cum laude

Profile

Nicholas A. Gowen is a partner in Burke, Warren, MacKay & Serritella’s Litigation and Labor & Employment practice groups. He represents companies, individuals and law firms in commercial disputes, including those involving intellectual property, trade secrets, unfair competition, employment matters and other business litigation matters in courts and arbitration forums throughout the country. Mr. Gowen approaches litigation with an eye toward results; understanding that advancing his clients’ litigation strategies should fit within their overall business interests. He counsels businesses on ways to avoid litigation and resolve disputes using alternative measures and has authored articles on various business litigation topics.

Mr. Gowen has extensive litigation experience that ranges from representing entrepreneurs to Fortune 100 companies in pre-suit investigations through discovery, trial, and appeal in a multitude of commercial litigation and employment matters. He also has considerable experience defending Am Law 100 and boutique law firms in professional liability matters. 

Mr. Gowen was honored as one of Chicago’s “Top 40 under 40 Game Changers” by Ariel Investments and The Urban Business Roundtable and selected as an “Illinois Rising Star” by Illinois Super Lawyers Magazine from 2008 to 2017. He has a wide range of pro bono experience from representing prisoners in federal civil rights litigation and appeals to providing voter protection services during federal and state elections throughout the midwest.

Mr. Gowen received his B.A. in political science with honors from the University of Illinois at Chicago in 2000, where he was admitted to Phi Beta Kappa, and his J.D., cum laude, from the University of Illinois College of Law in 2003.

Experience

Business Litigation

  • Lead trial counsel securing arbitration victory and damages for construction-industry client in breach of contract dispute against one of the nation's largest construction companies
  • Lead counsel defeating TRO filed against real estate developer by commercial tenant that sought to delay a $100 million redevelopment of a regional shopping center
  • Lead counsel in successful defense of private equity firm in multi-million dollar contract dispute with a national bank
  • Lead counsel in successful defense of real estate investor in multiple multi-million dollar disputes with a regional bank
  • Represented international investment firm in action to recover several million dollars from industrial equipment leasing company for breach of asset purchase agreement
  • Defended investors against claims brought by an investment fund alleging breaches of contractual and fiduciary duties and conversion
  • Won summary judgment on behalf of North America’s largest manufacturer of industrial gas in dispute with distributor for breach of distribution agreement
  • Recovered several million dollars on behalf of a computer software design company in breach of contract against a professional services provider
  • Defended majority shareholder of an L.L.C. in a derivative action brought by minority shareholders who alleged breaches of contractual and fiduciary duties in connection with licensing the use of various trademarks
  • Recovered millions of dollars on behalf of a nanotechnology company in securities claims against a large financial institution
  • Recovered millions of dollars on behalf of a biopharmaceutical company in securities claims against a large financial institution
  • Prosecuted false advertising and trade secret claims on behalf of technology company
  • Represented telecommunications company in trade secret and restrictive covenant litigation against a competitor for poaching former key employees

Employment Litigation

  • Lead counsel representing closely-held company in multiple successful actions to enforce restrictive covenants in employment agreements against former sales representatives
  • Successful representation of the former CFO of a manufacturing company to enforce employment agreement against former employer
  • Lead counsel representing manufacturing company in an action to enforce confidentiality agreement against former senior sales manager
  • Lead counsel representing closely-held company in internal investigation of sexual harassment and discrimination claims brought by employees against senior executives

Professional Liability Defense

  • Lead counsel representing boutique law firm in breach of fiduciary duty and malpractice claims asserted by former client arising out of a patent licensing dispute
  • Defended AmLaw 25 firm in malpractice action arising out of the prosecution of patents for a medical device
  • Defeated tortious interference claims asserted by competitor against AmLaw 25 firm and its partners
  • Represented AmLaw 25 firm as third-party in product liability litigation

Intellectual Property Litigation 

  • Lead counsel in successful defense of major research university in patent infringement litigation related to use of electronic equipment
  • Represented entertainer in copyright infringement dispute with music producer over use of vocal arrangements
  • Represented a former executive in a trademark infringement action against the software company he founded
  • Represented national franchisor in litigation against a former franchisee stemming from continued unauthorized use of trademarks
  • Prosecuted copyright infringement actions on behalf of a global manufacturing company against third-party distributors

Honors & Awards

  • Ariel Investments and The Urban Business Roundtable, honored as one of Chicago's Top 40 under 40 Game Changers for 2012
  • Illinois Super Lawyers, recognized as a Rising Star, 2008-2016

Professional/Community

  • Chicago State University, Board of Trustees, member
  • University of Illinois at Chicago, Visiting Instructor, Political Science, 2005-2017
  • Project H.O.O.D. Advisory Committee Board of Directors
  • Chicago Bar Association Judicial Evaluation Committee, Investigative Division, member
  • National Bar Association

o Commercial Law Section

  • Chicago Bar Association

       o Federal Civil Practice Committee, Past Vice Chair/Chair

Pressroom

Publications

330 North Wabash Avenue, Suite 2100
Chicago, Illinois 60611-3607
T: 312.840.7000
F: 312.840.7900