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Overview

Joe is a labor and employment attorney who aims to serve as a true business partner.

Joe concentrates his practice on labor and employment matters, with an emphasis on traditional labor issues and military leave law. After growing up in a union household, traditional labor is a world he’s extensively familiar with. Joe’s background helps him understand the thought processes and concerns on the other side of the table, a perspective that enhances his counsel for corporate clients.

Joe has represented Husch Blackwell clients in matters involving the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA), Title VII, the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and similar state laws. Much of his practice focuses on positive employee relations and the impact of federal labor law on employer policies and communications. Joe is particularly passionate about helping companies work with their staff to proactively avoid future difficulties.

Previously, Joe worked in-house for FedEx Express for nearly 11 years, where he served as lead attorney over the labor law education and employee relations program for front-line managers across the country. He also provided regular counsel on union campaigns, jurisdictional issues under the Railway Labor Act (RLA) and National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), handbook and employer-policy concerns relating to federal labor law, and FMLA compliance as applied to flight-crew-specific regulations.

Due to the high number of military Guard and Reserve members employed by the airline, Joe developed extensive niche knowledge of USERRA and its provisions for employee military leave and related benefits, including pension entitlements and reemployment rights. He continues to draw on this experience with Husch Blackwell clients: USERRA has emerged as an area of increasing concern for employers in recent years, with a high volume of class action lawsuits, and Joe counsels companies on how to avoid litigation.

His more-than-a-decade of in-house experience also means that Joe understands client issues in context and has an inside perspective on client business concerns. He aims to keep business needs and practicalities in mind alongside legal issues, serving clients as not just a legal advisor, but a true business partner.


Industry

Services

Education

  • J.D., William & Mary Law School
  • B.S., Truman State University

Admissions

  • Illinois
  • Missouri
  • Tennessee
Experience
  • Served as lead in-house attorney over FedEx's labor law education and employee relations program for front-line managers, presenting approximately 150 modules for managers and HR advisors across the country.
  • Designed and implemented FedEx's policies and procedures impacting employees who served in the military.
  • Responded to Department of Labor investigations and consulted on class action litigation involving pension entitlements and unpaid leave under USERRA.
  • Met regularly with Department of Defense and Department of Labor officials as member of industry group Airlines 4 America to influence national policy under USERRA.
  • Drafted arbitration briefs and position statements for matters before the National Labor Relations Board.
Outside the Office

Outside of the office, Joe is a hobby farmer.

During his time in Tennessee, he owned a 30-acre farm and often spent time working on, and simply enjoying, the land. He was especially fond of practicing habitat-improvement techniques and tending the wildlife food plots he cultivated on the land. After his recent move to Missouri, Joe is in the market for a similar local property.

Joe is also the father of two young daughters whom he spends as much time with as possible, along with his wife, Karen. The family loves spending time together on local lakes in the summer and is looking forward to some sledding-worthy snowfall in the winter.

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