National Employment Lawyers Association 2014 Convention: A Resounding Success
On June 25-28, 2014, over 600 members of the National Employment Lawyers Association (“NELA”) gathered in Boston from all over the country for the organization’s 2014 Annual Convention. The days were full, the programs fascinating and informative, and the company smart and fun. Special guests included Sheila White Parrish (plaintiff in the landmark retaliation case Burlington Northern & Santa Fe Railway Co. v. White, 548 U.S. 53 (2006)) and Percy Green, II (plaintiff in foundational Title VII case McDonnell Douglas Corp. v. Green, 411 U.S. 792 (1973)). Mr. Green and Ms. White spoke on a panel early in the program, and remained for the rest of the week, attending sessions and participating in events. It was an inspiration to hear their stories and share this event with them.
For a budding plaintiffs’ employment lawyer, the Convention was inspiring and energizing. It was exciting to be surrounded by hundreds of other lawyers fighting the same fights and working for the same causes across the country. It showed that our work is part of a broad movement for workers’ rights that includes lawyers representing individual and class action clients, as well as legal workers and community organizers. After the Convention, I feel a renewed energy to continue fighting on behalf of my clients who have been discriminated against or otherwise mistreated by their employers.