The Wall Street Journal: Top attorneys at California fair-employment agency leave roles amid Activision Blizzard lawsuit


California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s office fired a lawyer involved in the workplace-misconduct lawsuit against videogame company Activision Blizzard Inc.
prompting a second attorney to quit in protest, according to a lawyer representing both attorneys.

The California Department of Fair Employment and Housing Chief Counsel Janette Wipper was told by Newsom’s office on March 29 that she was being fired, according to a statement from Alexis Ronickher, Wipper’s attorney. Wipper’s last day at the department was Wednesday and she is evaluating her legal avenues, including a claim under the California Whistleblower Protection Act, the statement said.

The department’s assistant chief counsel, Melanie Proctor, resigned in protest of Wipper’s firing, the statement from Ronickher, who is also her lawyer, said. Proctor’s resignation was effective Wednesday. 

Bloomberg News earlier reported that Proctor had accused Newsom’s office of meddling in the Activision case, citing an email Proctor had sent to staff.

“Claims of interference by our office are categorically false,” said Erin Mellon, a spokeswoman for Newsom, in an email.

An expanded version of this report appears on

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