FordHarrison Opens St. Louis Office and Adds Five Attorneys

Date   Nov 5, 2018

ST. LOUIS – FordHarrison LLP, one of the country’s largest management-side labor and employment law firms, is pleased to announce that the firm opened the doors of its new St. Louis, Missouri office on November 2, 2018. The attorneys in this office are Corey L. Franklin, St. Louis Office Managing Partner; Heidi L. Eckert, Partner; Karen E. Milner, Partner; Matthew B. Banocy, Senior Associate; and Jamie M. Westbrook, Senior Associate. Corey, Heidi, Karen, Matt, and Jaime all come to FordHarrison from Jackson Lewis.

“We are thrilled to have Corey and his team join the firm,” said Al McKenna, FordHarrison Managing Partner. “This group of attorneys has a certain level of cohesion that can only be achieved through working together for so many years. They are an invaluable addition.”

“FordHarrison’s culture really sold us on making the move. I look forward to everything we are going to be able to accomplish with the firm,” said Corey.

A majority of Corey’s practice is dedicated to helping clients with both unionized and non-unionized personnel when facing labor relations issues. He is highly skilled in advocating for clients in complex collective bargaining negotiations, labor arbitration and grievance proceedings, union organizing campaigns, strikes, and administrative proceedings before the National Labor Relations Board. Corey represents private companies as well as public entities, including municipal bodies, in collective bargaining, state labor relations act compliance, and contract arbitration/impasse resolution proceedings. Corey frequently litigates employment law matters including restrictive covenant disputes as well as claims of wage and hour violations, discrimination, harassment, and retaliation. He counsels employers on remaining compliant with constantly evolving labor and employment laws and provides tailored guidance on policy compliance, workplace safety, internal investigations, and legal risk management. 

Heidi is an active litigator who has defended claims in state and federal courts as well as before governmental agencies. She has also arbitrated and mediated numerous matters to successful resolution on behalf of her clients. Her litigation experience includes assisting clients with a wide variety of employment matters including claims of discrimination, harassment, ADA violations, and retaliation. Heidi also represents clients in matters involving civil rights claims, the majority of which are defended in federal court.

Clients rely on Karen’s day-to-day employment law counseling in the areas of wage and hour compliance, affirmative action planning and compliance, business immigration law, and workplace safety and health. She routinely works with in-house counsel, human resources directors and staff, and directors of labor relations to develop litigation avoidance strategies and to successfully defend against administrative actions or litigation from current and former employees. Well-versed in Department of Transportation drug and alcohol testing regulations, Karen is comfortable drafting and editing company handbooks and policy manuals to ensure compliance with these unique and ever-evolving regulations.

Matt is adept at providing preventive advice and counsel to his clients to help them ensure their employment practices and policies remain compliant with the myriad of constantly evolving national and state specific employment laws. When litigation is unavoidable, Matt represents employers in a broad range of claims, appearing before state and federal courts as well as administrative agencies. Matt is also skilled in helping parties resolve disputes through mediation and is a Missouri Rule 17 Certified Mediator.

Jamie advocates for clients in labor, employment, employee benefits, wage and hour, and general business litigation matters. The proactive legal guidance Jamie provides clients on employee discipline and termination, hiring decisions, non-compete and non-solicitation agreements, wage payment and leave of absence practices, HIPAA compliance, FMLA compliance, unemployment determinations, and handbook policy and procedure development, often helps them avoid litigation. Jamie is well-versed in workplace investigations, having handled a number of investigations addressing complaints of discrimination, harassment, and retaliation, and has also managed audits of wage and hour practices.