Labor and Employment Law Section
Welcome to the Washington State Bar Association Labor and Employment Law Section, one of the larger sections of the Bar with more than 1,000 members. The section includes members practicing many different aspects of labor and employment law, including lawyers representing private- and public-sector employers, unions, management, and individual employees as well as law professors, arbitrators, and other neutrals. Section members practice throughout the state. Lawyers interested in joining the section go to the Join a Sections page .
Become a Section Leader: Nomination Application for Section Executive Committee Positions Opening Soon!
WSBA Sections provide professional development, education and community through CLEs, events, newsletters, list serve forums and active involvement with the state legislature. Each Section is run by a group of volunteers who are elected to serve on the Executive Committee. Many find leading a Section to be a rewarding experience because of the leadership growth, professional development, firsthand experience with the legislative process, and the collegiality it offers. Executive Committee discussions are productive and challenging, offering a unique opportunity to work with other legal professionals (even opposing counsel) in a goal-orientated setting that benefits WSBA members and the greater legal community.
The Labor & Employment Law Section is seeking to fill positions on the Section Executive Committee. If interested, please review the below information and log-in to your MyWSBA profile, select My Profile, and finally select ‘Apply for a Section Executive Committee’ to complete the nomination application. A candidate statement and/or resume may be requested on the application.
Nomination Applications Open: Thursday, March 23, 2018
Nomination Application Deadline: Friday, April 13, 2018
Current Labor & Employment Law Section members that are Active in good standing may apply to serve on the Section Executive Committee.
Open Positions & Terms
For more information about the Section and its Executive Committee roles, please review the Section’s bylaws.
- At-Large Member (Plaintiff): two-year position beginning Oct. 1, 2018, and ending Sept. 30, 2020.
- At-Large Member (Plaintiff): three-year position beginning Oct. 1, 2018 and ending Sept. 30, 2021.
- At-Large Members (Defense/Private Sector): two-year position beginning Oct. 1, 2018, and ending Sept. 30, 2020.
- At-Large Members (Defense/Private Sector): three-year position beginning Oct. 1, 2018, and ending Sept. 30, 2021.
- At-Large Members (Public Sector): two-year position beginning Oct. 1, 2018 and ending Sept. 30, 2020.
- At-Large Members (Public Sector): three-year position beginning Oct. 1, 2018 and ending Sept. 30, 2021.
- At-Large Members (Labor Union – two positions): two-year position beginning Oct. 1, 2018, and ending Sept. 30, 2020.
- At-Large Members (Labor Union): three-year position beginning Oct. 1, 2018, and ending Sept. 30, 2021.
Alternate Nomination Process
Per WSBA Bylaws, Sections also have alternate nominations processes, should you miss the deadline to apply online. The Labor & Employment Law Section has yet to determine an alternate process.
Section Executive Committee elections will begin on or around May 1, 2018, and be conducted electronically.
Questions? Want to Learn More?
Feel free to contact any member of the current Section Executive Committee or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Advising Unions and Employers on Washington's Sick Leave Law Mini-CLE
Noon-1:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018, Seattle
This one-hour CLE discussed practical guidance on implementing sick leave policies, negotiating with unions on changes to policies and rules, common mistakes made by employers and unions on implementing changes, and the remedies and ramifications for non-compliance.
Annual Meeting and 17th Annual Labor and Employment Law Conference
On Friday, Dec. 1, 2017, at the Washington State Convention Center. The section sponsored this CLE, tailored to the needs of Washington attorneys to learn about the most relevant and current issues in labor and employment law. Some materials presented at the seminar are linked below.
Recent Developments in Federal Employment Law by Jillian Barron
Avoiding Litigating Duty of Fair Representation Claims: Plaintiff, Union, and Management Perspectives CLE
On Thursday, June 15, 2017, at Stokes Lawrence, 1420 Fifth Ave., Suite 3000, Seattle, the section sponsored this CLE that provided plaintiff, union, and management attorney perspectives on responding to the duty of fair representation claims. CLE attendees left with an understanding of fair representation and how to resolve, mitigate, and/or successfully prosecute such an action. Approved for 1 Law and Legal Procedure CLE credit for Washington attorneys. A reception followed the CLE.
Avoiding Litigating Duty of Fair Representation Claims: Plaintiff, Union, and Management Perspectives CLE
Thursday, June 15, 2017, at Stokes Lawrence, 1420 Fifth Ave., suite 3000, Seattle
This CLE provided plaintiff, union, and management attorney perspectives on responding to the duty of fair representation claims. CLE attendees left with an understanding of fair representation and how to resolve, mitigate, and/or successfully prosecute such an action. Approved for 1 Law and Legal Procedure CLE credit for Washington attorneys. A reception will followed the CLE.
2016 Section CLE: Another Record-Breaking Success
The Labor & Employment Law Section held its annual day-long CLE Nov. 18, 2016, at the Washington State Convention Center in Seattle. The successful event drew rave reviews from attendees. This continues the section's multiyear streak of high attendance. Nearly half of the attendees participated via live webcast, demonstrating that the section's high-quality CLE is accessible to attorneys across the state. Thank you for your support.
2016 East of the Mountains Fall Mini-CLE
The Labor and Employment Section’s third East of the Mountains Mini-CLE and social event was quite a success; for the first time, the event was held in Yakima. For the convenience of many attendees, the section-hosted CLE and reception that followed was scheduled the evening before the Federal Bar Association, Eastern District of Washington, conference in Yakima. About 75 people registered for the event.
2016 Ethics Mini-CLE: Capacity Crowd at CLE & Reception
The section hosted a new event this year, and the free CLE program and reception SOLD OUT! On March 9, 2016, more than 100 labor and employment lawyers attended our ethics mini-CLE (1 Ethics CLE credit): Avoiding Ethics Pitfalls in Labor and Employment Arbitration presented by noted legal ethics expert, John Strait of Seattle University School of Law.
Labor and employment advocates and lawyer-arbitrators (who were attending a National Academy of Arbitrators session preceding the CLE) participated in the interactive session and afterward had the opportunity to socialize at the hosted reception, both at the WAC in Seattle.
WSBA Labor and Employment Law Section 2016-2017 Election Results
The votes are in! Thank you to all of the qualified candidates who ran for the four open executive committee positions. We would like to welcome Aviva Kamm, Jeanie Tolcacher, Shelly Shapiro, and Jamal Whitehead to the committee. Kamm and Tolcacher are filling the two defense counsel positions, and Whitehead occupies a plaintiff's counsel position. Shapiro returns to the committee in the neutral position.
WSBA Labor and Employment Law Section Summer Grant for Law Students
Each year, the WSBA Labor and Employment Law Section is proud to partner with Washington’s three law schools to provide student grants funding summer work in labor and employment positions at nonprofits and public sector entities around the state. The WSBA grant is awarded annually to one student from each law school through a competitive selection process administered by each of the schools.
In years past, the WSBA L&E Section has awarded $3,000 to each student grantee. For the summer of 2017, the section is thrilled to announce it will be able to increase its share of the grant award to $5,000 per student.
Each November, the WSBA L&E Section is also happy to host each of the grant-winning students at its annual labor and employment law CLE in Seattle, where they can mix and mingle with section members at the CLE’s luncheon.
Meet the 2016 WSBA L&E Grantees
Glogovac is a 2017 J.D. candidate at Gonzaga University School of Law. She completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Nevada, Reno. In her grant application, Glogovac shared that her interest in labor and employment law was fostered at a young age by listening to the stories of her great-grandparents’ involvement in union work during the 1930s and 1940s. Glogovac’s summer grant enabled her to continue working for the labor and industries division of the Washington State Office of the Attorney General in Spokane.
Okantey is a 2018 J.D. candidate at the University of Washington School of Law. He is a graduate of Whitman College. He began his law school career with the goal of working in the labor and employment field, spurred in part by first-hand observation of the vital role labor and employment law plays in the workplace. His grant award allowed him to spend the summer working in the labor and employment section of the Seattle City Attorney’s Office.
Schell is a 2017 J.D. candidate at Seattle University School of Law, and a graduate of Lewis and Clark College. She is a former immigration paralegal with a demonstrated interest in worker’s rights. Her law school record reflects a continued commitment to both public interest work and labor and employment issues. Schell’s summer grant gave her the opportunity to obtain valuable courtroom experience as a Rule 9 intern for the labor and industries division of the Washington State Office of the Attorney General in Seattle.
Chair: James Shaker (defense)
Secretary: Jillian Cutler (plaintiff)
Treasurer: Katie Rosen (defense)
Immediate Past Chair: Leslie Hagin (plaintiff)
Young Lawyer Liaison: Emily Arneson*
BOG Liaison: Angela Hayes*
Laura Ewan (labor union) 2015-2018
Erica Nelson (labor union) 2015-2018
Grace O'Connor (public sector) 2015-2018
Brad Medlin (labor union) 2016-2018
Sarah Morehead (public sector) 2016-2018
Aviva Kamm (defense) 2017-2019
Shelly Shapiro (neutral) 2017-2019
Jeanie Tolcacher (defense) 2017-2019
Jamal Whitehead (plaintiff) 2017-2019
Please contact subcommittee member for details on their upcoming meeting dates and locations.
To join the section list serve and for general questions, please send your email address and Bar number to email@example.com. For more information and to get involved with the section, please contact the section Chair James Shaker.