Tom works to defend against employee lawsuits, advise employers during union avoidance campaigns, negotiate collective bargaining agreements, and design policies for local, regional, national, and international employers of all sizes – from a few dozen to thousands of employees.
Tom understands how to effectively and persuasively communicate an employer’s message in the midst of a union organizational campaign and to manage litigation in a way that achieves good results, balanced with the economic interests of the company.
Tom’s family has a long history in labor relations with his father having served as a steward in the National Postal Mail Handler’s Union, and his grandfather having been a member of the United Mine Workers of America in the Appalachian coal country of southwestern West Virginia. His ancestors were also involved in the Battle of Matewan – a violent coal miners' strike that occurred in 1920 in Mingo County, West Virginia, which eventually required the Governor to order the state police to retake control of the town of Matewan.
Tom serves as general outside labor and employment counsel to one of Alabama’s largest healthcare industry employers. With two decades of experience in the long-term care industry, industrial manufacturing, and food processing industries he is well-positioned to help businesses interpret and apply laws that never envisioned the realities of the modern workplace.
Honors & Recognitions
- Best Lawyers in America® (2021-2022)
- Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent® Peer Rated for Highest Level of Professional Excellence
- Member of the Year, Tuscaloosa Human Resource Professionals (2009)
- Mid-South Super Lawyers® (2016-2020)
Professional & Civic Associations
- Alabama State Bar, Section on Labor and Employment Law
- Tuscaloosa Human Resource Professionals (2000-2018)
- Legislative Director (2000-2012)
- West Alabama Chamber of Commerce, Board of Directors (2010-2016)
- Legal Counsel (2018)
- Exchange Club of Tuscaloosa, Board of Directors (2005-2008)(Chairman of the Americanism Committee)
- Adopt-A-School Foundation, Steering Committee (2001-2011)
- The EDGE Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Advisory Board
- Tuscaloosa County Bar Association
- Leadership Tuscaloosa, Class of 2008 (Steering Committee, 2011-2012)
- Black Warrior Council of the Boy Scouts of America, General Counsel (2011-2012)
Tom is an avid fan of Louisiana State University sports and the Atlanta Braves. He spends his early morning hours in the gym, loves driving his off-road racing truck, and spends his free time with his four children including triplets born in 2009.
- In 2012 Tom counseled a large seafood processing plant through a successful decertification of a United Food and Commercial Workers bargaining unit.
- In 2016 Tom represented a nursing home during its election victory over an effort by a Steelworkers’ effort to organize the facility.
- Tom has negotiated numerous collective bargaining agreements for a number of employers including a worldwide manufacturer of shell and tube heat exchangers.
- Tom was successfully involved in the largest and most public union organizing election of 2017 assisting the execution of a campaign that saw the employer win the election by a nearly 2-1 vote margin.
News & Analysis
Client Presentations & Firm Publications
- Virtual Event
- Quarterly Birmingham Lunch & Learn - Staying Afloat in the Bermuda Triangle: Managing the Overlapping Winds of FMLA, ADA, and Worker’s Compensation Laws -3500 Blue Lake Drive, Ste. 120 Birmingham, AL 35243
- 3500 Blue Lake Drive, Ste. 120 Birmingham, AL 35243
- Two Chase Corporate Drive, Suite 120 Birmingham, AL 35244
Speaking Engagements & Industry Publications
- “On the Business End of Obamacare,” Rising Tide, December 2013
- “State of Confusion: The Brief Life and Times of Alabama’s Immigration Bill,” Alabama Defense Lawyers Association Journal, Spring 2012, Co-Author
- “An Arizona Bill with an Alabama Twist – The Effort to Deter Illegal Immigration in the Deep South,” Alabama Defense Lawyers Association Journal, Fall 2011, Co-Author
- “CERCLA Liability and Insurance Indemnity” The Enlaw, Fall 1998
- “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”
- Wayne Gretzky
- Defense of Employee Litigation
- Union Avoidance Counseling and Campaigns
- Defense of NLRB and EEOC Charges
- Employment Policy Formulation and Advice
- Union Contract Negotiations
- Defense of Grievances in Arbitrations
- Management Training
- Sexual Harassment Investigations and Defense
- Policy Analysis and Employment Law Training
- Compliance Audits
- Investigations of Workplace Misconduct
University of Alabama School of Law
- J.D., magna cum laude, 1999
- Articles Editor, The Alabama Law Review
Louisiana State University
- B.A., 1996
Bar & Court Admissions
- Alabama, 1999
- Georgia, 2001
- Supreme Court of Alabama
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit
- United States District Court for the Northern District of Alabama
- United States District Court for the Middle District of Alabama
- United States District Court for the Southern District of Alabama