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Day 1 | 38th Annual North Carolina/South Carolina Labor and Employment Law Program

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 4, 2022

8:25        Welcome and Introductions

8:30        2022 U.S. Supreme Court Commentary: Employment Law

Paul E. Smith, Patterson Harkavy LLP, Chapel Hill, NC

Hear updates on employment-related decisions rendered by the U.S. Supreme Court through the end of its most recent term in July of 2022. The materials summarize these cases followed by the comments about the decision's significance for workplace stakeholders. Also included are abbreviated summaries of all opinions and orders from the so-called "shadow docket" that are of consequence to employment relations. The session concludes with brief additional commentary on the Court's work as it affects the American workplace.

9:30        Break

9:40        Continuing to Pivot

Thomas Colclough, EEOC, Washington, D.C.

Fiscal year 2021 has been a year of change and challenge in employment. While COVID has not retreated, we continue to navigate the new world of "how" we work. In this presentation, the speaker discusses how the EEOC and the employer community has pivoted during COVID-19 over the last 12 months. Finally, we discuss the results of our "pivot" — the good and the bad.

10:40      Break

10:50      Fourth Circuit Update

Sean F. Herrmann, Herrmann & Murphy PLLC, Charlotte, NC

This presentation covers Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals basics and some of the most noteworthy decisions from November 2021 through October 2022.

11:50      Lunch Break

1:00        What's Precedent Got to Do With It? The Earthshaking Employment Law Implications of Dobbs

Susanna S. Birdsong, Planned Parenthood South Atlantic, Raleigh, NC
Katherine Dudley Helms, Ogletree Deakins Nash Smoak & Stewart PC, Columbia, SC

Grant Burnette LeFever, Burnette Shutt & McDaniel PA, Columbia, SC
Chandra A. Stallworth, Richardson Plowden & Robinson PA, Columbia, SC (Moderator)

The U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health overturned decades of precedent regarding the right to access to abortion. With that dramatic upset in the law and the resulting rapidly changing state law landscape comes significant impacts on employment law. Do federal employment laws protect employees who obtain abortion services in states where doing so is now illegal? Do employers incur civil or criminal liability for maintaining benefit programs to assist employees to travel to other jurisdictions to obtain abortion services? Employees and employers will face many such questions in this new era.

2:00        Break

2:10        Ethical Considerations in Employment Settlement Agreements*

Kathryn Abernethy, Noble Law Firm, Chapel Hill, NC
Bartina L. Edwards, The Law Office of Bartina Edwards PLLC, Charlotte, NC

Kyle R. Still, Wyrick Robbins Yates & Ponton LLP, Raleigh, NC

Congratulations! You have settled your client's employment law case in principle with opposing counsel — now all that is left is navigating ethical and legal considerations regarding settlement agreements and ensuring that both parties' intent is reflected in the written settlement agreement. This presentation addresses these legal and ethical considerations, including issues regarding the tax treatment of settlement payments, the use of non-disclosure and non-disparagement provisions (and applicable state law affecting these issues), the scope of waivers and releases, and other critical issues.

3:10        Break

3:20        DEI*

Erika K. Wilson, UNC School of Law, Chapel Hill, NC

Across the country a firestorm over critical race theory (CRT) exploded seemingly overnight, casting the once-obscure academic theory into mainstream discourse. This session provides an overview of what CRT really is, dispelling the myths and distortions, and discusses how legal practitioners can use the insights offered by CRT to guide them in developing both their professional identities and lawyering choices.

4:20        Adjourn for the day

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 5, 2022

9:10        Announcements

9:15        Choosing Wellness for Your Mind, Body and Best Life as an Attorney

April Harris-Britt, Ph.D., AHB Center for Behavioral Health and Wellness, Durham, NC

This presentation describes the unique challenges and factors that contribute to anxiety, depression and increased stress amongst attorneys. There is an emphasis on the importance of, and ways to, purposely choose a self-care plan that optimizes mental, physical and overall well-being.

10:15      Break

10:45      Breakout Sessions:

National Labor Relations Board Update

Jordan N. Wolfe, National Labor Relations Board, Winston-Salem, NC

This presentation addresses topics of interest regarding the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), including information about recent case law developments and the General Counsel's initiatives.

or

The Evolving Legal Landscape in Employee Departures

M. Todd Sullivan, Fitzgerald Hanna & Sullivan PLLC, Raleigh, NC

This presentation addresses developments in the law pertaining to employee departures, including analysis of important or interesting state and federal opinions regarding restrictive covenant agreements, trade secret and computer trespass law, and related issues including the potential liability for new employers of departing employees. We address tips and guidance for HR professionals involved in these matters and discuss national legislative movements regarding noncompete agreements and the evolving concepts of fair competition. While the accompanying manuscript catalogues recent state and federal case law developments, the presentation is designed to assist attending attorneys and HR professionals with spotting issues and pragmatically identifying and addressing legal risks from both the former employer's and the departing employee's/new employer's perspectives.

11:45      Break

11:55      Breakout Sessions:

North Carolina State Update

Jonathan "Jon" Wall, Higgins Benjamin PLLC, Greensboro, NC
Laura J. Wetsch, Winslow Wetsch PLLC, Raleigh, NC

In this session, receive an overview of North Carolina state and district court labor and employment law updates.

or

South Carolina State Update

George A. Reeves III, Fisher & Phillips LLP, Columbia, SC

This presentation covers state and federal courts in South Carolina, highlighting recent developments and case law in labor and employment law in the state between November 2021 and October 2022.

12:55      Adjourn

* Indicates portion providing Ethics/Professional Responsibility (SC LEPR) credit
† Indicates portion providing Substance Abuse/Mental Health credit

Thank you

Thank you for joining us for Day 1 of 38th Annual North Carolina/South Carolina Labor and Employment Law Program. We'll see you tomorrow.

Description

This year's program highlights trending topics in labor and employment law, including evolving issues in employee departure litigation, ethical considerations in the negotiation of settlement agreements, a discussion of critical race theory (CRT), and an EEOC update by the agency's director of field management programs. We also hear from a panel discussing the employment implications of the U.S. Supreme Court's recent Dobbs decision

Contributors

  • Kathryn F. "Katie" Abernethy

    Kathryn F. "Katie" Abernethy is a partner with the Noble Law Firm in Chapel Hill. She joined the employment law firm in January 2018 following more than 15 years in the defense bar at large international law firms. She has represented clients in matters arising under Title VII, the North Carolina Retaliatory Employment Discrimination Act ("REDA"), the North Carolina Whistleblower Statute, the North Carolina False Claims Act, the North Carolina Wage & Hour Act, the Fair Labor Standards Act, and other state and federal employment statutes. She has extensive background and experience as a litigator in class and collective action cases. She has also developed significant experience with navigating the regulatory frameworks surrounding medical practice and related industries. Among other things, she has represented physicians and medical providers in Administrative Law Judge proceedings and appeals before the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and with respect to licensure proceedings.

    Katie is admitted to practice before the State Bars of both North Carolina and Illinois, and in the United States Courts of Appeals for the Third, Fourth, Fifth and Seventh Circuits. She has written and presented on topics relating to e-discovery, civil procedure, insurance coverage and the Medicare payment process.

    Katie received her J.D. from Washington University School of Law, graduating Order of the Coif (top 10% of law school graduating class) and was an Articles Editor for the Washington University Law Quarterly. She has a B.A. in History from Westminster College in Fulton, MO. While practicing as an employment attorney in Chicago, she was named a North Carolina "Super Lawyer" in 2022.

    Click here for more information about Katie.

  • Jennifer L. Bills

    Jennifer L. Bills is a Partner at Patterson Harkavy LLP in Chapel Hill. For more than 20 years, she has represented individuals, nonprofits, and organizations in a full range of labor, civil rights, and disability-related legal matters.

    Jennnifer is a frequent teacher and lecturer on employment law and primarily represents employees facing discrimination. She conducts workplace investigations and training for managers and employees regarding best employment practices and compliance issues. She is an Association of Workplace Investigators (AWI) certificate holder and teaches Disability Law as an Adjunct Professor at the University of North Carolina School of Law in Chapel Hill.

    Jennnifer also offers her expertise as a trusted advisor to small, women- and BIPOC-owned businesses and organizations helping employers to assess and navigate compliance issues. As a trusted neutral, Jennifer brings vast experience in conducting impartial, third party workplace investigations for municipalities, non-profits, and employers faced with employee complaints.

    Graduating from Haverford College with a major in Sociology, Jennifer worked as an advocate with non-profit organizations in Washington D.C. before attending Northeastern University School of Law. Upon graduation, she clerked for U.S. District Court Judge Gene Carter in Federal District Court in Portland, ME. She then worked for two small Boston law firms practicing civil rights and employment law before coming to North Carolina in 2008. She was recognized as a Rising Star while practicing in Boston, MA.

    Click here for more information about Jennifer.

  • Susanna S. Birdsong

    Susanna S. Birdsong is General Counsel and Vice President of Compliance at Planned Parenthood South Atlantic in Raleigh. She has been working in various capacities for over ten years to expand access to reproductive healthcare and defend against attacks on bodily autonomy.

    PPSAT operates health centers in four states: South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia, and those health centers provide a full range of reproductive healthcare, including abortion. Prior to joining PPSAT in 2020, she was the Senior Policy Counsel at the ACLU of North Carolina.

    Susanna previously held positions at the ACLU of North Carolina and the North Carolina Coalition to End Homelessness. She was also a Georgetown Women's Law & Public Policy Fellow/ABA Tax Section Public Service Fellow at the National Women's Law Center in Washington D.C.

    Susanna earned her B.A. in English Literature and American History and M.S.W. in Community and Policy Practice from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her J.D., cum laude, from American University Washington College of Law.

    Click here for more information about Susanna.

  • Jack E. Cohoon

    Jack E. Cohoon is a partner with Burnette Shutt & McDaniel PA in Columbia, SC. He focuses his legal practice on employment law, civil rights, appeals, and administrative law.

    Jack is an experienced litigator who has successfully challenged agencies and policies to move law forward. He has won in trial and appellate courts as well as before state and federal government agencies. The common thread running through his cases: A drive to defend those whom the legal system has wronged. He battles tirelessly to remove barriers for clients, working to eliminate roadblocks that prevent them from obtaining jobs and moving toward better futures. This includes seeking pardons, criminal record expungement, working to correct errors in criminal records, defending occupational licenses, and reinstating driver's licenses. He has successfully sued under the Fair Credit Reporting Act to correct errors on a background report that denied a client a job opportunity.

    Jack developed legal clinic models now used throughout the state, including workshops on criminal records and driver's licenses. He also has taught numerous continuing legal education programs on topics such as representing clients in administrative law proceedings, unemployment benefits, and criminal records.

    Jack earned his B.A., with honors, majoring in History and Political Science from the University of Georgia and his J.D. from University of South Carolina School of Law, where he was the President of the USC Chapter of Just Democracy, an organization of law students dedicated to protecting voting rights, and a Research Editor for the South Eastern Environmental Law Journal.

    Click here for more information about Jack.

  • Thomas M. Colclough

    Thomas M. Colclough currently serves as the Director of Field Management Programs for the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) in Washington, D.C. He is the facilitator of the EEOC's field programs, providing guidance and support to all of the EEOC's 53 field offices across the country in matters of investigation, charge processing, education, outreach and other areas.

    Thomas has over 25 years of experience with EEOC investigating charges and complaints of discrimination and leading high-performing teams. He has served in various leadership positions at EEOC, e.g., Enforcement Supervisor, Local Director, Area Director, Systemic Coordinator, Deputy District Director and District Director.

    Thomas is also now serving as the EEOC representative on the U.S. Commission on the Social Status of Black Men and Boys, a 19-member bipartisan body. Six members are members of Congress, and the rest are appointed by congressional leaders, cabinet departments, federal agencies and other leaders. That commission examines factors that impact on black men and boys such as incarceration rates, income, financial literacy, fatherhood – and employment discrimination. Each year the commission makes policy recommendations to Congress and the White House.

    A native of North Carolina, Thomas attended Saint Augustine's College in Raleigh, where he earned his B.S. in Business Administration. He earned his master's degree from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Thomas is also a graduate of the military's Command and General Staff College and the Office of Personnel Management's Federal Executive Institute. In 2005, Thomas retired from the North Carolina National Guard after 23 years of service (active, reserve, and guard) at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.

    Click here for more information about Thomas.

  • Bartina L. Edwards

    Bartina L. Edwards is with The Law Offices of Bartina Edwards in Charlotte. She is an employment and business lawyer who is MD-110 Certified, mediation and collaborative law trained. Her special focus is on navigating the workplace, workplace issues and business disputes.

    Bartina has utilized collaborative law as part of her corporate and entrepreneurial background giving her a unique ability to advise companies while being an employee advocate. Helping businesses understand the strategic benefits of helping their employees navigate the workplace by replacing symptomatic responses with equity, inclusion and collaborative principles also led her to implement her vision of a workplace culture firm, CP3 Paradigm, LLC, where she is a co-founder.

    Bartina is also one of the founding board members of the NC Civil Collaborative Law Association, an NCAJ PAC Trustee, immediate past Board of Governor, serves as an officer on the NC Bar Association Employment Law Council, is the Chair of the Employment Law Section of the Mecklenburg County Bar and a Director on the College of Charleston Foundation Board.

    Bartina is a graduate of The College of Charleston and received her J.D., cum laude, from NCCU School of Law.

    Click here for more information about Bartina.

  • April Harris-Britt, PhD

    April Harris-Britt, PhD is a licensed psychologist who maintains an active practice in NC and VA while also engaging in research and teaching at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Fielding Graduate University. In addition to providing child, adolescent, adult, and family therapy, she conducts comprehensive psychological evaluations and forensic evaluations. Specific areas of expertise include trauma and violence, adoption and attachment, medically fragile children, divorce transitions, ADHD and learning disabilities autism spectrum disorders, and multicultural issues.

    April's primary orientation is to utilize a systems-based, holistic approach to wellness. She is actively involved in several committees and task forces for the American Psychological Association, North Carolina Psychological Association, and the Association for Family and Conciliatory Courts.

    April is currently a member of the Board for the Center for Cooperative Parenting, APA Advocacy Coordinating Committee, APA Working Group to Review Scientific Literature for High Conflict Family Relationships and AFCC Task Force on Model Standards of Practice for Child Custody Evaluations.

    Click here for more information about April.

  • Katherine Dudley "Kathy" Helms

    Katherine Dudley "Kathy" Helms is a shareholder, and former managing shareholder, at Ogletree Deakins Nash Smoak & Stewart PC in Columbia, SC. She has extensive experience representing clients in employment matters as varied as the practice offers. She has represented companies and individuals in both the private and public sectors ranging from production line supervisors to company executives. Although she represents a wide spectrum of employers, she has a particular emphasis in the health care industry including employment matters involving medical residents, physicians, and the range of health care and particularly hospital employees.

    Kathy is a member of the South Carolina Bar, American, Arkansas and Georgia Bar Associations. She is also a member of the National Association of Women Lawyers, South Carolina Association of Women Lawyers, Women Lawyers Alliance and the Litigation Counsel of America.

    Kathy earned her B.A from University of Arkansas and her J.D. from Georgia State University College of Law.

    Click here for more information about Kathy.

  • Sean F. Herrmann

    Sean F. Herrmann is a partner at Herrmann & Murphy PLLC in Charlotte. He represents workers in employment law disputes and False Claims Act whistleblower matters. He is licensed in both North and South Carolina, and he represents employees throughout both states.

    Sean has been named to the Super Lawyers' Rising Stars list since 2019. He has received Best Lawyers in America recognition each year since 2018 and was recognized by them as the 2023 "Lawyer of the Year" for employee-side Employment Law in Charlotte. He is chair of the North Carolina Bar Association's Labor and Employment Section.

    Sean graduated, magna cum laude, from the University of Illinois College of Law. After graduating from Illinois, Sean moved to Charlotte and began representing employees the day after he was sworn into the bar. He gained valuable experience at one of North Carolina's top-rated plaintiffs-side employment law firms where he has won trial victories for clients in federal jury trials and arbitration.

    Click here for more information about Sean.

  • Grant Burnette LeFever

    Grant Burnette LeFever is an associate at Burnette Shutt & McDaniel PA in Columbia, SC. She focuses her legal practice on employment law, including a range of civil rights and discrimination issues. She also practices family law and education law, including issues involving Title IX, special education, school discipline and teacher employment issues.

    In addition, Grant is on the litigation team representing Planned Parenthood South Atlantic in its lawsuit challenging the six-week abortion ban in South Carolina.

    Grant has been selected by her peers for inclusion in: Ones to Watch, The Best Lawyers in America 2021 to present, in the fields of labor and employment law, civil rights law, education law, family law and litigation. She also has been recognized in Super Lawyers Rising Stars and Legal Elite of the Midlands.

    Grant is a graduate of the University of South Carolina School of Law. Prior to law school, she earned a master's degree in Southern Studies from the University of Mississippi, where she concentrated on the long Civil Rights Movement. It is this work that ultimately led to her decision to pursue a career in law. She graduated, cum laude, from Presbyterian College with a bachelor's degree in English and History.

    Click here for more information about Grant.

  • L. Nicole Patino

    L. Nicole Patino is owner of the Law Offices of L. Nicole Patino PLLC in Greensboro. She is a labor and employment attorney who diligently and zealously advocates both public and private sector clients, whether they be employers, employees, or local governmental agencies.

    Nicole graduated from Elon University School of Law where she was a staff member of the Elon Law Review in 2013-2014 and became Notes and Comments Editor during the 2014-2015 school year. She was a law clerk with the Law Offices of Fred T. Hamlet during her second and third year in law school. She continued her legal career as an associate with Law Offices of Fred T. Hamlet for five years until Mr. Hamlet's death. Her goal is to honor his memory and work with the same dedication and devotion to the ethical practice of law.

    Before attending law school, Nicole worked as a substance abuse counselor where she gained knowledge of HIPAA, FMLA, federal privacy laws, and medical records. She also gained experience working with EAPs, human resources personnel, employers, and employees. She uses her knowledge of medical records and medical practices in her representation of medical practices, nurses, and in litigating cases which require medical knowledge.

    Click here for more information about Nicole.

  • George A. Reeves III

    George A. Reeves III is a partner at Fisher & Phillips LLP in Columbia, SC. His practice primarily involves representation of management in employment and labor litigation involving discrimination, harassment and retaliation under Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA); wage and hour litigation under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA); and employment litigation under state law for workplace torts such as defamation, wrongful termination, invasion of privacy, and negligent hiring or supervision. George also represents employers in audits and investigations by federal and state agencies investigating or challenging employers' wage and hour practices and worker misclassification issues.

    George is a frequent presenter on employment and labor issues for local and state Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) chapters, chambers of commerce and other professional organizations.

    George earned his B.S. from Augusta State University and his J.D. from University of South Carolina School of Law. Prior to attending law school, George served in the United States Navy.

    Click here for more information about George.

  • Paul E. Smith

    Paul E. Smith is a partner with Patterson Harkavy LLP in Chapel Hill. An integral member of the firm's civil rights and appellate practice, he primarily represents employees, labor unions and the victims of police misconduct. He is active in the North Carolina Bar Association Labor and Employment Section and the North Carolina Advocates for Justice.

    Paul has successfully represented individuals and labor unions in private arbitration, the North Carolina Industrial Commission, State and Federal trial courts, and before the North Carolina Court of Appeals and North Carolina Supreme Court. In 2019, Governor Roy Cooper appointed him to the North Carolina Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission, where he currently serves as Chair.

    A native of Kinston, Paul graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill and from Columbia Law School, where he was a Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan Fellow and a James Kent Scholar.

    Click here for more information about Paul.

  • T. Cullen Stafford

    T. Cullen Stafford is a Partner at Wyrick Robbins Yate & Ponton LLP in Raleigh. He represents management in employment litigation matters involving wage and hour disputes, breach of contract, restrictive covenants, unfair competition, discrimination, harassment, and unfair labor practice charges. He also represents clients in commercial disputes, including such areas as trade secret misappropriation, intellectual property, construction litigation, and other complex business litigation.

    Cullen has represented clients at all stages of litigation in state and federal court and routinely represents clients in proceedings before the N.C. Department of Labor, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and other federal and state agencies. He represents companies in a variety of industries, including healthcare, construction, transportation, manufacturing, retail, education, and finance. In addition, he counsels employers on a variety of issues, including reductions in force, terminations, regulatory compliance, and drafting effective employment agreements.

    Prior to joining the firm, Cullen worked at Ford Harrison LLP, a labor and employment firm in Atlanta, GA.

    Cullen graduated, cum laude, from Emory University School of Law, where he received awards for outstanding achievement in Negotiations and Disability Discrimination. During law school, Cullen clerked for the Georgia Supreme Court. He earned his B.A. in Political Science from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

    Click here for more information about Cullen.

  • Chandra A. Stallworth

    Chandra A. Stallworth is an associate at Richardson Plowden & Robinson PA in Columbia, SC. She focuses her practice in General Litigation and Employment Law.

    Prior to joining Richardson Plowden, Chandra worked as a Judicial Law Clerk for the Honorable Jocelyn Newman. Prior to that, she was a law clerk for Richland County School District One. Before starting her legal career, she taught for four years at Auburn University with the Honors College. Additionally, she held research fellowships at Utah State University and The University of Minnesota.

    Chandra is a member of the South Carolina Bar, Richland County Bar Association, Education Law Association, the South Carolina Women Lawyers Association, and the SC Defense Trial Attorneys' Association.

    Chandra earned her J.D., cum laude, from the Charleston School of Law. She earned her Doctor of Philosophy in Work and Human Resource Education and her Master of Education in Business and Industry Education from the University of Minnesota. She earned her B.S. in Graphic Communication Systems from the North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University.

    Click here for more information about Chandra.

  • Kyle R. Still

    Kyle R. Still is a partner at Wyrick Robbins Yates & Ponton LLP in Raleigh. He is the Practice Group Leader for the firm's Labor and Employment Practice Group. He regularly represents, counsels, and trains clients regarding all state and federal employment laws, including Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act ("ADEA"), the Americans with Disabilities Act ("ADA"), the Fair Labor Standards Act ("FLSA"), the Family and Medical Leave Act ("FMLA"), the Retaliatory Employment Discrimination Act ("REDA"), and state wage and hour laws. He also advises clients and litigates cases related to these issues, as well as regarding covenants not to compete, trade secrets, drug testing, employment terminations and severance, employment policies, and other employment-related issues.

    Kyle is admitted to practice before all federal and state courts in North Carolina. He regularly represents clients in proceedings in state and federal court and before the U.S. Department of Labor ("US DOL"), the North Carolina Department of Labor ("NCDOL"), the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"), the National Labor Relations Board ("NLRB"), and other federal and state agencies.

    Kyle received his B.A., with honors, from the University of North Carolina, and his J.D., with honors, from the University of North Carolina School of Law. While in law school, Kyle was a published member of the North Carolina Law Review, where he also served as a Comments Editor and received the Thornton Brooks Award. Prior to joining the firm, Kyle was a shareholder at a large North Carolina-based firm.

    Click here for more information about Kyle.

  • M. Todd Sullivan

    M. Todd Sullivan is a founding partner at Fitzgerald Hanna & Sullivan PLLC in Raleigh. He has practiced in North Carolina for almost thirty years, the majority of which with the firm now known as Womble Bond Dickinson. He represents former employers, new employers and key employees in departure matters and has been litigation counsel in some of North Carolina’s most noteworthy employee departure litigations and arbitrations.

    Todd has co-taught the Pre-Trial Litigation course at Duke Law School and routinely speaks and writes about employee departure issues. He also developed a unique reputation for his pro bono representation of less-well-off defendants in noncompete litigation that includes representation of hair stylists, lawn maintenance workers, and chefs.

    Todd earned his B.A., magna cum laude, in Philosophy from Lake Forest College and his J.D. from Cornell Law School.

    Click here for more information about Todd.

  • Jonathan "Jon" Wall

    Jonathan "Jon" Wall is a partner with Higgins Benjamin PLLC, in Greensboro, where he specializes in employment law litigation, including class actions.

    Jon has chaired the Labor & Employment Law sections of both the North Carolina Bar Association and the North Carolina Advocates for Justice, as well being recognized in multiple years by Legal Elite and Super Lawyers. He has served on Elon University School of Law's Board of Advisors since the school opened in 2006, and he also currently serves on the Board of the North Carolina Wildlife Federation.

    Jon graduated from Duke University and Washington & Lee University School of Law and was certified as a mediator in 2001.

    Click here for more information about Jon.

  • Laura J. Wetsch

    Laura J. Wetsch is a partner in the Raleigh firm of Winslow Wetsch PLLC. She is the author of A Practitioner's Guide to North Carolina Employment Law, and co-author of the North Carolina chapter in the ABA's Employment at Will: A State-By-State Survey.

    Laura has previously served as the Chair of the NCBA Labor & Employment Law Section, and the Chair of the NCAJ Employment Law Section, and has been named to Best Lawyers in America, N.C. Super Lawyers, N.C. Super Lawyers' Top 50 Women Lawyers, and N.C. Legal Elite.

    Laura was born in Fargo, ND, raised in Minot and Bismarck, ND, married a guy from Killdeer, ND, and graduated from the University of North Dakota School of Law in 1985 – in that order. After law school she was a federal law clerk and then practiced law in North Dakota until 1991 when she and her family moved to North Carolina (the other Great North State).

    Click here for more information about Laura.

  • Erika K. Wilson

    Erika K. Wilson is a Professor of Law, the Wade Edwards Distinguished Scholar and Thomas Willis Lambeth Distinguished Chair in Public Policy at the UNC School of Law in Chapel Hill. Her areas of expertise include civil litigation, civil rights, clinical legal education, critical race theory, education law and public policy.

    Erika's scholarship on issues related to education law and policy, and the intersection between race and the law, has appeared (or will appear) in the Harvard Law Review, Yale Law Journal Forum, Columbia Law Review, Cornell Law Review and UCLA Law review, among others. In 2016, her research was selected for presentation at the Yale/Stanford/Harvard Junior Faculty Forum held at Yale Law School in New Haven, CT. She was twice awarded in 2017 and 2022 the James H. Chadbourn Award for Excellence in Scholarship. In 2020 she also founded the Critical Race Lawyering Clinic, a clinic that teaches law students how to bridge the gap between CRT theory and praxis.

    Erika received her B.A., cum laude, from the University of Southern California and her J.D. from the UCLA School of Law. After law school she worked as an associate at Arnold & Porter LLP. She also served as the George P. Lindsey Staff Attorney fellow for the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights.

    Click here for more information about Erika.

  • Jordan N. Wolfe

    Jordan N. Wolfe is a Field Attorney at the National Labor Relations Board in Winston-Salem.

    Jordan earned her B.A., magna cum laude, in Political Science and Spanish from University of North Carolina Asheville and her J.D. from the University of North Carolina School of Law.

    Click here for more information about Jordan.

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November 4, 2022
Fri 8:25 AM EDT

Duration 7H 55M

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