Home > Media Center > Ogletree Deakins Recruits Prominent Attorneys From Three Large St. Louis Firms

Ogletree Deakins Recruits Prominent Attorneys From Three Large St. Louis Firms

   |   Press Release

ST. LOUIS, MO – April 25, 2008 – Ogletree Deakins, one of the nation’s leading labor and employment law firms, which opened its office in St. Louis last August with a cadre of Bryan Cave lawyers, has made yet another major impact on the St. Louis employment law community with the recent addition of three prominent local lawyers: Rodney Harrison, James Paul and Lance Witcher. All three attorneys come to Ogletree Deakins from large, well-known firms in the St. Louis area and bring nearly 40 years of combined labor and employment law expertise to the firm. They join Ogletree Deakins as shareholders.  Just a few months ago Ogletree snagged top talent from two other prominent St. Louis firms, Bryan Cave and Stinson Morrison.

Rodney Harrison, formerly a partner at Thompson Coburn LLP, represents employers in employment-related litigation, including wage and hour class action, discrimination, benefits, and disabilities claims. In addition, he represents clients in non-compete and trade secret litigation and arbitration and provides advice on numerous employment-related matters, including disability and leave-related issues. Rodney is also a frequent speaker and author on labor and employment law topics.  Before entering private practice, he served as judicial law clerk to the Honorable Stephen N. Limbaugh, Jr. of the Missouri Supreme Court.

James M. Paul, formerly a partner at Lathrop & Gage L.C., has extensive experience in handling labor and employment litigation and regularly counsels employers on all labor and human resource management issues including discrimination, harassment, retaliation, policy administration, and non-competition agreements. Jim is the immediate past Chairperson of The Missouri Bar’s Labor and Employment Law Committee.  Before entering private practice, he also served as judicial law clerk to the Honorable William Ray Price, Jr. of the Missouri Supreme Court and then as a Missouri Assistant Attorney General representing the Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations and the Missouri Commission on Human Rights.

R. Lance Witcher, formerly a partner at Husch Blackwell Sanders LLP, has experience providing legal counsel to employers on matters involving discrimination, wage and hour, harassment, disability, and workplace safety claims. He has handled class action cases and has defended numerous employers in actions before the National Labor Relations Board. Lance frequently speaks before state and local organizations on important employment law topics including employee leave, wage and hour, workplace investigations, and workplace violence.

“We couldn’t be more excited to have the opportunity to work with Rodney, Jim and Lance,” said Gregg Lemley, co-managing shareholder of Ogletree Deakins’ St. Louis office.  “These are three of the St. Louis employment lawyers we most respect, and to have the opportunity to bring all three in at once is a real plus both for us and for our clients.” 

“There is a growing labor and employment law trend sweeping the country,” said Timothy Garrett, co-managing shareholder of Ogletree Deakins’ St. Louis office. “More and more employers are hiring employment law specialty firms in an effort to consolidate their employment work and receive better and more cost-effective service. In order to keep up with our market’s growing demands and to better serve our existing clients, we recruited Rodney, Jim, and Lance. They are three of St. Louis’ finest labor and employment law attorneys and will be an excellent resource for our clients and our firm.”

About Ogletree Deakins
Ogletree Deakins is the nation’s third largest labor and employment law firm, representing management in all types of employment-related legal matters. The firm has more than 400 lawyers located in 33 offices from Miami to Los Angeles. In addition to handling labor and employment law matters, the firm has thriving practices focused on business immigration, employee benefits, and workplace safety and health law.  Ogletree Deakins represents a diverse range of clients, including more than half of the Fortune 50 corporations in the U.S.

For more information, please contact Karen Gonzales, communications manager, at 210-277-3606. 

Sign up to receive emails about new developments and upcoming programs.

Sign Up Now