Speakers

Guest Speakers

 Thomas M. Colclough, Deputy District Director
Charlotte District Office of the U.S. Employment Opportunity Commission

Thomas M. Colclough began his career with EEOC in 1988. He has held various positions such as Investigator, Enforcement Supervisor, Local Office Director of Greensboro, NC, Local Director of the Richmond, Va. Office and Area Director of the Raleigh Area Office.  Since June 1, 2014, Tom has served as the Acting District Director of the Charlotte District. 

 As the Deputy District Director of the Charlotte Office, he provides guidance and direction to support the EEOC's national and local enforcement plans. His office model ensures that employees focus on the Commission's top priorities and he works to motivate all employees to work together on common goals.  He works closely with the District Director and other management employees within the Charlotte District.

Mr. Colclough graduated from Saint Augustine's College with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration and received his Master of Arts degree from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro ("UNCG"). He also earned a Certificate in Global Studies from UNCG. 

Mr. Colclough served in the military for 23 years (active and reserve). In 2005, Colclough retired from the North Carolina National Guard at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.  He is also a graduate of the Army's Command and General Staff College.

Josh Stein, Esq.
North Carolina Attorney General

Josh Stein was sworn in as North Carolina’s 50th Attorney General in 2017. As Attorney General, he is focused on protecting North Carolina families from crime and consumer fraud.

Stein has made combatting the opioid epidemic a top priority. His office drafted the STOP Act to reduce the number of people who become addicted to opioids through smarter prescribing practices, the HOPE Act, which gives law enforcement additional tools to stop the flow of prescription pain pills into the drug trade, and the Synthetic Opioid Control Act to crack down on the trafficking of illicit fentanyl. All three laws were passed by the General Assembly and signed into law by Gov. Roy Cooper.

Stein is leading the effort to identify, track, and test untested sexual assault kits. Testing these kits will help law enforcement identify and prosecute criminals, prevent future crimes, and bring closure to victims.

As Attorney General, Stein has also worked to protect taxpayers, seniors, students, and military families from fraud. His Department of Justice won awards or settlements of more than $80 million from scam artists. He is working to improve data security and is leading a national effort combat robocalls. Additionally, his office has recovered nearly $50 million from tax cheats and health care providers defrauding Medicaid over the past two years.

Stein is also focused on protecting our state’s natural resources. He opposes offshore oil drilling along North Carolina’s coast and fights to ensure that polluters are held accountable to clean up the messes they create.

Stein previously served as a state Senator and as Senior Deputy Attorney General in the North Carolina Department of Justice. In those roles, he successfully led efforts to put more violent criminals behind bars by expanding the state’s DNA database, wrote the School Safety Act and the Identity Theft Protection Act, worked to protect kids from online sexual predators, and helped run payday lenders charging loan shark interest rates out of the state.

Stein grew up in Chapel Hill, is a graduate of Dartmouth College, and earned law and public policy degrees from Harvard University. He and his wife Anna have three children – who all attend or attended North Carolina public schools, like Anna and he did. 

Ward and Smith Speakers

Ken Gray
Labor and Employment Attorney

Ken leads the firm's Labor and Employment practice. His practice experience encompasses various areas of employment-related litigation.  He advises clients and litigates cases involving all forms of employment discrimination, wrongful discharge, and breach of employment contracts from small start-up companies to Fortune 500 corporations.  Ken is a frequent lecturer on employment discrimination, workplace retaliation, workers' compensation, and wage and hour law issues.  He has been rated by his peers as being "preeminent" in his fields of law and serves in leadership roles with various legal and civic organizations.  Ken is a former president of the Craven County Bar Association, a former two-term president of the Board of Directors for the United Way of Coastal Carolina, and Chairman of the Deacons of First Baptist Church of New Bern.

Emily Massey
Labor and Employment Attorney

Emily's practice focuses on a wide range of labor and employment law issues, including personnel policies and handbooks, background checks, employment discrimination, and harassment, employee discipline and termination, drug and alcohol testing, and various wage and hour matters.

 

Grant OsborneGrant Osborne
Labor and Employment Attorney

Grant's practice experience of more than 30 years encompasses a wide range of issues that arise in employment and labor law. He provides counsel to clients in the health care, financial, hospitality, construction, business services, employee staffing, and non-profit sectors. Grant represents clients in state and federal courts as well as administrative agencies. He regularly advises employers of all sizes and litigates civil cases regarding all forms of employment discrimination, wrongful discharge, unlawful retaliation, contractual issues, personnel policies and practices, and wage and hour issues. 

Grant also has advised and represented employers with respect to their rights and obligations arising under laws pertaining to collective bargaining and labor unions. He is a frequent lecturer regarding all aspects of the employment relationship that arise under numerous federal and state laws, and often represents employers before the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the National Labor Relations Board, and federal and state "wage and hour" agencies. He also serves as a mediator and is certified by the North Carolina Dispute Resolution Commission. Grant served as the Chairman of the North Carolina Bar Association's Labor and Employment Law Section (from 2015 to 2016).

Jerry Sayre
Employment Law Counselor and Litigator

Jerry's practice experience encompasses all aspects of federal and state employment law, including Title VII, Family and Medical Leave Act, Americans with Disabilities Act, Age Discrimination in Employment Act, Fair Labor Standards Act, and various state law provisions. He has litigated employment matters in federal and state courts at both trial and appellate levels.  He regularly defends claims of discrimination (including sex, race, age, national origin, and disability), retaliation, sexual and racial harassment, breach of contract, wrongful discharge, and other work-related tort claims.

Jerry also is an experienced employment counselor. He regularly advises employers on ways to avoid litigation and improve employee relations.  He advises clients on all aspects of federal and state employment law, including hiring and termination practices, pay policies and practices, employee discipline, employee handbooks, drug testing, background checks, and employee safety.  He is a frequent author and speaker, addressing topics related to employment law and litigation.

Hayley Wells
Employment Law Attorney

Hayley's practice primarily focuses on labor and employment law and civil litigation. She regularly advises individual and corporate clients in matters of covenants not to compete, employment discrimination, discipline and termination, harassment, wrongful discharge, wage and hour matters, personnel policies and procedures, and preparation of employee handbooks and employment agreements. Additionally, she represents both corporate and individual clients in all aspects related to litigation including hearings, depositions, discovery, mediation, arbitration, and trial. Her experience ranges from commercial litigation to personal injury matters. Hayley also advises brewery and craft alcoholic beverage clients in various aspects of the law, including permitting, negotiation and preparation of distribution agreements, enforcement actions, interpretative guidance, music licensing, and personnel matters.

Devon Williams 
Labor and Employment Attorney

Devon's experience focuses on a wide range of labor and employment issues, including wage and hour matters, federal contractor compliance, employment discrimination and harassment, employee discipline and termination, personnel policies, and background checks. In matters relating to employee benefits, she concentrates on issues confronting welfare benefit plans (such as medical, dental, and other plans) and their sponsors, including the provisions and impact of the Affordable Care Act.