John devotes his practice to zealously defending businesses in employment lawsuits, while helping them avoid litigation in the first place. John’s strong advocacy, sound legal analyses, practical advice and commitment to client service have allowed him to become a trusted advisor in many business sectors.
In addition, John handles business litigation involving employee raiding, theft of trade secrets, and breach of non-competition covenants. John advises businesses on employee privacy rights laws and data security, as well as on conducting effective internal investigations into misconduct and criminal acts in the workplace.
As a core part of his practice, John routinely defends companies in litigation involving discrimination and harassment claims under Title VII, the ADA, the ADEA and the FMLA; claims of wrongful termination and retaliation; claims under the NLRA; and individual and collective action claims for unpaid wages and overtime under the FLSA and state wage and hour laws. John regularly appears before state and federal administrative agencies and courts, both at the trial and appellate levels, and defends businesses in employment arbitrations.
John frequently speaks and writes on employment-related issues, and is the principal author of three Firm blogs: Fair Labor Standards Act; SEEmployment Law; and Non-Compete and Restrictive Covenants.
Presentations and Publications
- Association of Corporate Counsel Docket Magazine - Enemies at the Gate – Or Are They Already Inside (co-author) (October 2011)
- Privacy & Security Law Report, Bloomberg BNA f/k/a The Bureau of National Affairs, Inc., Vol. 6, No. 32 - Disloyal Employees and the Misappropriation of Trade Secrets and Private Information (co-author) (August 2007)
- Commerce Magazine, a publication of the Winston-Salem Chamber of Commerce, Issue 2 - Identity Theft: What Every Business Needs to Know (2006)
- Presenter, “How to Manage Your Workforce in a Pandemic”, SHRM 2020 Legal Update, June 2020
- Winston-Salem Society for Human Resource Management Legal Update – Anyone Have a Crystal Ball? Employment Law Issues Under the Trump Administration (June 2017)
- Winston-Salem Society for Human Resource Management – Seven Rules of Internal Investigations/Legally Compliant Screening and Monitoring/Workplace Bullying (November 2016)
- Winston-Salem Society for Human Resource Management Legal Update – Employment Tests and Assessment Tools and 2016 Employment Law Update (June 2016)
- Wake Forest University – Charlotte Campus – Diversity and Employment Law (March 2016)
- Winston-Salem Society for Human Resource Management Legal Update – FMLA and ADA Update (June 2015)
- North Carolina Association of Staffing Professionals – The EEOC’s Strategic Enforcement Plan – A Halftime Analysis (March 2015)
- Winston-Salem Society for Human Resource Management Legal Update – FMLA and ADA Update (June 2014)
- Forsyth-Stokes-Davie County Medical Society - Legally Compliant Employee Screening and Monitoring (March 2014)
- Winston-Salem Society for Human Resource Management Legal Update - Discrimination and Retaliation Law: Lessons and Trends for 2013-2014 (June 2013)
- Winston-Salem Medical Group Managers - Effective Background and Criminal History Screening (November 2012)
- Winston-Salem Society for Human Resource Management Legal Update - Effective Hiring Practices and Employee Screening (June 2012)
- Winston-Salem Medical Group Managers - Effective Social Media Policies (November 2011)
- Winston-Salem Society for Human Resource Management Legal Update - Effective Social Media Policies (June 2011)
- Winston-Salem State University - Panel Discussion on Privacy, Technology, and the Law (February 2011)
- Winston-Salem Chamber of Commerce - Cyber Security Panel Discussion, Panelist (September 2010)
- Winston-Salem Society for Human Resource Management Legal Update - A Legal Update on the Americans With Disabilities Act (June 2010)
- Womble Carlyle Sandridge & Rice, LLP Lunch and Learn - Enemies at the Gate – Or Are They Already Inside (March 2010 / April 2010)
- Winston-Salem Society for Human Resource Management Legal Update - Managing Technology in the Workplace – E-Mail, Privacy, and Data Security (June 2009)
- North Carolina College and University Professionals Association –Expanded Disability Rights Under the ADA Amendment (April 2009)
- Rotary Club of Winston-Salem -Identity Theft: Legislation, Legal Risks, and Best Practices (July 2007)
- Family Business Center of the Triad -Data Security and Identity Theft (October 2006)
- CAHEC Partners Conference -Data Security and Identity Theft (June 2006)
- Member, North Carolina Bar Association, Labor and Employment Section
- Member, Forsyth County Bar Association
- Member, Society for Human Resource Management
- Member, International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP)
Honors and Awards
- Recognized in The Best Lawyers in America (BL Rankings) in the fields of Employment Law – Management, Litigation – Labor and Employment, 2014 – Present
- Selected to the North Carolina Rising Stars list by Super Lawyers (Thomson Reuters) in Employment & Labor, 2009 – 2011
Any result the lawyer or law firm may have achieved on behalf of clients in other matters does not necessarily indicate similar results can be obtained for other clients.
- Obtained a complete defense verdict in favor of a government agency in a week-long trial where a former employee alleged wrongful discharge and retaliation.
- Prevailed in securing the complete dismissal of a case against a health care institution brought by a former provider, and successfully defended the decision on appeal in both state and federal court.
- Obtained dismissal of breach of restrictive covenant case brought against a client’s employee in the financial services industry.
- Successfully enforced restrictive covenant and obtained recovery of confidential information for a health care sector client.
- Defends businesses in FLSA collective actions and wage and hour matters in state and federal courts in multiple sectors, including health care, financial services, retail and manufacturing.