Speakers

Guest Speaker

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

Thomas M. Colclough currently serves as the District Director of EEOC’s Charlotte District.  Thomas has over 25 years of experience with EEOC investigating charges and complaints of discrimination and leading high-performing teams.  He has served in various leadership positions at EEOC, e.g., Enforcement Supervisor, Local Director, Area Director, Systemic Coordinator, and Deputy District Director.  Only July 21, 2020, Thomas was promoted to the position of District Director.  In this position, he plays a key role in fulfilling the agency’s mission through strategic enforcement management and planning.

A native of North Carolina, Thomas attended Saint Augustine’s College in Raleigh, North Carolina, where he received his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration.  He earned his master’s degree from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro.  Thomas is also a graduate of the military’s Command and General Staff College and the Office of Personnel Management’s Federal Executive Institute. In 2005, Thomas retired from the North Carolina National Guard after 23 years of service (active, reserve, and guard) at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.

Ward and Smith Speakers

Ken GrayKen Gray
Labor and Employment Attorney

Ken leads the firm's Labor and Employment Practice Group. 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.

Justin HillJustin Hill
Labor and Employment Attorney

Justin focuses his practice on labor and employment matters. He works with businesses, employers, and human resources professionals across the state.  Before joining Ward and Smith full-time, Justin served as a summer associate in 2018, which marked a change for the firm's program that was historically focused on second-year law school students only. He returned to the program as a 2L in 2019.

Xavier LightfootXavier Lightfoot
Labor and Employment Attorney

Xavier regularly advises employers on a wide range of labor and employment law issues, including personnel policies and handbooks, employment discrimination and harassment, employee discipline and termination, drug and alcohol testing, and various wage and hour matters.  He has also conducted training presentations and webinars for employers on various COVID-19 employment topics such as workforce reduction, ADA compliance, emergency paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave requirements under the FFCRA, best practices and strategies for employers to return workers to the workplace, and preparation of liability waivers.

Emily Massey

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.  Prior to attending law school, Emily counseled clients in various public relations matters during a four-year career with Capstrat, a full-service communications agency. 

Will OdenWill Oden
Labor and Employment Attorney

Will's practice experience encompasses various areas of employment and workplace-related counseling and civil litigation in both the federal and state courts at the trial and appellate levels. He regularly represents employers and employees before the United States Department of Labor (USDOL), the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA), the North Carolina Department of Labor (NCDOL), the North Carolina Industrial Commission.

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. He 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).

Hayley WellsHayley Wells
Employment Law Attorney

Hayley's practice primarily focuses on alcoholic beverage law, 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.

Devon WilliamsDevon Williams 
Labor and Employment Attorney

Devon is one of the firm's Managing Directors. Her practice encompasses a wide range of labor and employment issues, including wage and hour matters, federal contractor compliance, employment discrimination, harassment, and retaliation claims, employee discipline and termination decisions, personnel policies and practices, restrictive covenants, and background checks.  Devon regularly counsels HR executives and C-suite officers, navigating them through the many state and federal requirements for employers with the aim of helping clients avoid costly litigation and improve workplace relations.  In addition to offering clients proactive solutions to avoid costly litigation, Devon routinely dives in to handle complex employment litigation matters, including defending FLSA Collective Actions, wage and hour class actions, Medicare Secondary Payer Act claims, discrimination and harassment lawsuits, breach of contract, and other legal matters arising out of the employment or quasi-employment relationship.