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Message from the Chair

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Dear Labor and Employment Law Section Members:

We hope you have been enjoying your involvement with the Section and are gaining true value from your membership this bar year. If you are not already involved with the Section, you still have time to choose an activity or gathering that interests you. The Section continues to offer excellent, high-quality programs, and we hope to see you at one of our upcoming events.

On Friday, March 16, 2018, the Section will host its audio webcast “A Primer on Unfair Labor Practices.” This webcast will feature Gregg R. Morton, Deputy General Counsel with the Florida Public Employee Relations Commission. We hope you will consider registering for this and other upcoming webcasts.

The Section continues working with the American Bar Association to schedule joint programs and co-sponsor CLEs and gatherings. You don’t want to miss the upcoming ABA Labor and Employment Law Section’s Employment Rights and Responsibilities Committee Midwinter Meeting in Clearwater, Florida, on March 20-24, 2018, which is also co-sponsored by our Section. Section members may register for this program here. The Advanced Labor Topics Seminar is scheduled for June 1 and 2, 2018, at the JW Marriott in Marco Island, Florida. The seminar will have excellent presenters (including several from Washington D.C.) and include a reception and dinner on the beach on Friday, June 1st. The co-chairs for the program are Kristen Foslid of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and Greg Hearing of Thompson Sizemore Gonzalez & Hearing, P.A.

The Section’s upcoming program “Because Legal Practice Isn’t Always a Day at the Movies: Health, Wellness, and a Welcoming Workplace for Lawyers and Their Clients” was selected for the 2018 President’s Showcase Seminar, which will take place on Thursday, June 14, 2018, at the Annual Florida Bar Convention. This program is chaired by David Adams and will be moderated by the Honorable Alan Forst and the Honorable Stephanie Ray. Only one or two seminars a year are recognized as a President’s Showcase Seminar, and the Section is honored to have been chosen.

The Section’s long range planning retreat will be in St. Pete Beach at the Don CeSar on April 14-15, 2018. At the retreat, executive council members and committee co-chairs will strategize about the future goals and priorities of the Section, as well as areas that may be strengthened to better serve its members. If you are interested in contributing or have thoughts about what may be addressed at the retreat, please contact the Honorable Robert Kilbride.

The Wage and Hour Administration Committee is compiling, as a resource for you, a practice manual of Orders from federal judges throughout the State of Florida on Fair Labor Standards Act matters such as their scheduling and settlement practices. This project is being led by Robyn Hankins and Jay Lechner.

Most recently, the Section began issuing regular Eleventh Circuit employment-related case updates, which are being emailed to the membership at no cost on a weekly basis. A special thank you to the Honorable Frank Brown for this accomplishment. Again, there are many opportunities for members to get involved. The Section contributes to the Florida Bar Journal, and authors are always welcome. Please contact Robert Eschenfelder if you are interested in contributing to the Journal or Carlo Marichal if you are interested in writing for the Checkoff or an E-Update. And, our committees are active and always looking for more volunteers. Please contact the committee cochairs listed on the Section website if you have an interest in a particular committee. We will continue planning activities and gatherings in the months to come, so get connected and stay tuned. For more information, visit our Section web page; our Section LinkedIn page; or our Section’s Facebook page. You may also obtain information by contacting our Section Administrator, Angie Froelich, who runs the show. And as always, if you have questions or ideas you want to share about the Section, please contact me anytime at or (305) 379-0400. I wish you every success as we “spring” into the last quarter of the bar year.

Zascha Blanco Abbott | Chair