Skip to Main Content
W. Stephen Cockerham

W. Stephen Cockerham

Partner
Dallas
office: 214.999.6167
fax: 214.999.6170
Austin
office: 512.479.1167
fax: 512.479.1101
Overview

Stephen has assisted clients in the energy industry for more than 30 years as a labor and employment lawyer, including the nuclear power industry.

Stephen also represents clients in a wide variety of other industries, including manufacturing and healthcare. Stephen develops long-term relationships with corporate clients in order to provide effective advice for preventing workplace disruption and maximizing workforce productivity. Stephen advises clients on all types of employment matters, including discipline and discharge issues; work place safety; compliance with employment laws and regulations; and labor issues, including union avoidance, negotiations, contract interpretation, grievances and NLRB cases. He prepares employment, noncompetition, nondisclosure and non-solicitation contracts, as well as employee handbooks, policies, codes of conduct, arbitration programs, compliance programs and protection of trade secret programs. He also conducts training for management and human resource professionals on avoiding employment lawsuits, compliance with employment laws, respect in the workplace, effective supervision and supervising a union workforce. 

Stephen is an experienced litigator, defending employers in federal and state courts, during administrative law proceedings, and in labor arbitrations and governmental investigations on a full range of employment and labor matters. In addition, he has successfully prosecuted former employees and competitors for breach of noncompetition agreements, employment agreements and fiduciary duties, and for theft of trade secrets and employee raiding. Stephen also does a significant amount of pro bono work each year, which has granted him membership into the State Bar of Texas’ Pro Bono College. Prior to joining Husch Blackwell, Stephen practiced with Brown McCarroll.


Industry

Services

Recognition

  • Client Distinction Award, Martindale-Hubbell
  • Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent
  • Pro Bono Excellence Award, 2010

Education

  • J.D., Baylor Law School

Admissions

  • Texas
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Texas
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Texas
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • American Bar Association
  • Dallas Bar Association
  • State Bar of Texas, Pro Bono College
Experience
  • Represented management before the National Labor Relations Board and in labor arbitrations, acting as lead counsel in more than 60 arbitration cases.
  • Represented clients regarding Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and safety-related matters, including the development of safety programs and OSHA response protocols anddefended clients in OSHA proceedings.
  • Engaged in legislative activities on behalf of clients at the state and federal level, including meeting with state legislators and their staff, testifying at committee hearings, drafting legislative language and performing bill analysis regarding proposed employment, homeland security, antitrust and electricity deregulation legislation.
  • Tried workers compensation retaliation case in 2014 in state district court in Midland. Jury verdict determined no liability for client.
  • Tried breach of fiduciary duty case in 2014 against client’s former employees in state district court in Austin. Six figure jury verdict in favor of client.
  • Tried an age and disability case in 2012 in state district court in Dallas, Texas. Jury verdict determined no liability for client.
  • Tried a breach of fiduciary duty case in 2012 in state district court in Dallas. Jury verdict resulted preclusion of claims in a companion lawsuit.
  • Tried a Title VII case in federal district court in Denver, Colo. Jury verdict determined no liability for client.
  • Tried a case in federal district court in San Antonio, Texas, on breach of fiduciary duty by client’s former manager and tortious interference by a competitor. Resulted in a six-figure judgment in favor of client.
Community Leadership
  • City Square, Board of Directors, 2010-present
  • Grace Place Properties, Founding Board of Director, Vice President, 2010-present
  • Ministerio Next Generation, Founding Board of Director, 2014-present
  • Perot Museum of Nature and Science, Advisory Board, 2000-present