Overview

Heather has represented private and publically traded companies, ranging from start-up businesses to Fortune 500 companies, in a broad range of labor and employment matters.  As an experienced litigator, she specializes in providing clients with strategic and practical advice designed to minimize compliance risks and litigation.   Heather is a trusted advisor who partners with her clients to fully understand the problems and business needs and to identify effective solutions.

She routinely counsels in-house attorneys, business executives and human resources professionals on complex employment issues.  She advises on best practices, develops policies and procedures, and provides training on compliance with the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), and related state laws, as well as harassment, discrimination, religious accommodations, employer use of background checks, drug testing, workplace investigations, discipline and documentation, workplace violence, and a variety of other employment issues. 

She routinely provides counsel on restrictive covenants, employment agreements, severance agreements, independent contractor agreements, and other agreements. She advises companies on federal and state wage and hour compliance, conducts proactive employment practices audits, and represents clients in federal and state agency audits and investigations.

Heather has successfully represented clients and resolved disputes in a variety of employment-related matters,  including trade secret and non-compete litigation, employment discrimination claims, and other workplace disputes.  She has successfully defended clients against charges before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the Ohio Civil Rights Commission, and similar administrative agencies.

Heather regularly speaks on a variety of employment topics. She has been named an Ohio Super Lawyer Rising Star for three straight years.

Experience
Representative Litigation Experience:
  • Obtained over a million dollar jury verdict and attorney fee award for a national home-building industry client on trade secret and related claims brought against former employee and competitor.
  • Obtained a complete defense verdict in jury trial for an automobile retailer in a religious and national origin discrimination and harassment lawsuit in the Southern District of Ohio.
  • In a race discrimination lawsuit, obtained a dismissal of the case brought by a former employee against an international manufacturer.
  • Obtained a series of orders of temporary injunctive relief in favor of medical device provider, leading to effective resolution of the matters without additional litigation.
  • Negotiated a settlement with a former employee of a medical service provider to repay portion of salary due to breach of loyalty.
Publications
Presentations
  • “Employee Handbooks,” HR Partners, 2014
  • "ADA Compliance Update," Cleveland Employment Seminar, 2013
  • “Striking a Balance: Criminal Record Policies,” GCHRA, 2013
  • “Workplace Violence,” Legal Update for HR Professionals, 2013
  • “EEOC & Criminal Record Policies,” Legal Update for HR Professionals, 2013
  • “Managing Leave Abuse,” Breakfast Briefing, 2013
  • "Thought You Knew the ADA?", Understanding and Managing the Changes Resulting From the EEOC's New ADAAA Regulations, May 2011
  • "Hiring and Recruiting Documents," NBI, April 2011
  • "FMLA Update," GCHRA Legal Briefing, November 2010
  • "Revising Your Policies for the New Year," GCHRA Resources, December 2009
  • "Employment Law Update," Spotlight on Women, December 2009
  • "Lessons of the Swine Flu," GCHRA Resources, June 2009
  • "Sexual Harassment and Fraternization," Thompson Hine's Labor & Employment Law Update, May 2008
Distinctions
  • Selected for inclusion in 2012 to 2014 Ohio Super Lawyers® as a Rising Star
  • YWCA Academy of Career Women of Achievement Rising Star Award (2009)

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