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Vedder Thinking | News Law360 Announces Nicole Smith Joining Vedder Price

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On March 13, 2018, Law360 published an article entitled, “Vedder Price Snags Ex-Venable OSHA Atty In DC,” announcing that Nicole A. Smith, a traditional labor and OSHA compliance attorney, has joined Vedder Price’s Washington, DC office as a Shareholder in the firm’s Labor & Employment Practice area.

In the article, Ms. Smith says that she joined Vedder Price after speaking with Amy L. Bess, the first female chair of the firm’s labor and employment practice, and felt that joining Vedder Price would be a great opportunity for her.

The article notes that Ms. Smith’s OSHA clients are primarily companies in the oil and gas and electric industries as well as large retailers' distribution centers. In her labor practice, Ms. Smith represents management in collective bargaining negotiations, labor arbitrations and in anti-unionization campaigns.

Ms. Smith shared with the article’s author that labor arbitrations are one of the more fun aspects of her work because the disputes could be "as little as anything," and characterized them as being like a trial, without the discovery. She noted, “You have no idea what the witnesses on the other side are going to say when they get on the stand. But it has that feel of litigation.”

In the article, Ms. Smith also noted that her work with OSHA issues can often involve partially playing part of a grief counselor. “The client is also grieving the loss of this person and dealing with the family and just wanting to cooperate fully in the investigation” and continues, “It's just critical that [clients] have someone on the ground who's going to be looking out for their interest just as soon as possible."

The article ends with the story of her introduction to the OSHA practice and with Ms. Smith’s quote, “I always say I chose to be a traditional labor lawyer, and OSHA kind of chose me.”

To read the article in full, authored by Law360 reporter Danielle Nichole Smith, please click here.


Nicole A. Smith