Peterson White LLP

Attorney Profile


Catherine Dugan

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Cate is a litigation attorney who has practiced in the insurance defense industry since 2004. She has handled claims from workers’ compensation to general liability to coverage, and has worked in private practice and in-house. For most of her career, Cate’s focus has been on defending employers and insurance carriers in workers’ compensation claims, assisting her clients as they navigate necessary administrative procedures and defending claims through litigation, as necessary. She has tried cases before Courts throughout Tennessee and has successfully argued before the Tennessee Supreme Court Special Workers’ Compensation Panel. Another key focus of Cate’s practice is on training and education for employers and carriers, keeping her clients updated as the workers’ compensation law has evolved in recent years and advising on successful practices to avoid common pitfalls when a worker is injured.
Cate also enjoys lecturing and presenting at seminars and conferences on important issues facing the practice of workers’ compensation defense. She was chosen for the Tennessee Bar Association Leadership Law Program Class of 2014, and was selected as a Mid-South Super Lawyers Rising Star in 2013.
Cate is a Past President and current Board Member with the Tennessee Defense Lawyers Association. She is also the Tennessee State Representative for the Defense Research Institute, as well as the Marketing and Annual Meeting Co-Chair for the national Workers’ Compensation Committee.
Cate is also involved with the Mid-South Workers’ Compensation Association, the Blue Goose Tennessee Pond, the Tennessee Bar Association Leadership Law Alumni, and the Lawyers’ Association for Women, Marion Griffin Chapter. She is licensed to practice in all courts in the State of Tennessee. 
Cate was born in Lexington, Kentucky and lived in Kentucky and South Carolina before moving to West Tennessee at age 9. Cate attended the University of Tennessee at Martin, graduating summa cum laude and as a University Scholar, in 2001. She then attended the University of Tennessee College of Law, graduating cum laude in 2004, with an emphasis in Trial Advocacy.
Cate, her husband John, and her daughters Clare and Emme, live in Brentwood, Tennessee, a suburb of Nashville. Cate is active with the Nashville Chi Omega Alumnae Association, previously serving as its President and Make-a-Wish Chair. She is also an avid Kentucky Wildcats fan. Cate and her family love living in Nashville and enjoying all the fantastic events and music the city has to offer. 
  • University of Tennessee College of Law, Knoxville, Tennessee
  • Juris Doctor – 2004
  • Honors: cum laude
  • Honors: Dean’s List
  • Honors: William H. Wicker Scholarship Recipient
  • Honors: Richard T. Sowell Scholarship Recipient
  • Major: Trial Advocacy
  • University of Tennessee, Martin, Tennessee
  • Bachelor of Arts – 2001
  • Honors: summa cum laude
  • Honors: University Scholar
  • Major: English Literature
  • Partner
  • Nashville Bar Association, Member
  • Tennessee Bar Association, Member
  • Tennessee Defense Lawyers’ Association, Regional Vice President
  • The Lawyers’ Association for Women
  • Defense Research Institute, Tennessee State Representative
  • Tennessee Defense Lawyers Association, President
  • National Workers’ Compensation Committee, Annual Meeting Co-Chair
  • Lawyers Association for Women – Marion Griffin Chapter, Practicing Parents Committee Chair
  • Mid-South Workers’ Compensation Association, Member
  • Tennessee Bar Association Leadership Law Alumni, Member

  • Tennessee, 2004
  • U.S. District Court Middle District of Tennessee, 2005

  • Tennessee Bar Association Leadership Law Program Class of 2014
  • Mid-South Super Lawyers Rising Star, 2013

  • President, Nashville Chi Omega Alumnae Association
  • Make-a-Wish Chair

  • Workers’ Compensation Defense
  • Insurance Defense
  • General Litigation