Bob is the chair of Tonkon Torp's Labor & Employment practice group. He represents companies, professionals, and executives in employment litigation and provides counseling on a broad range of employment related issues. He has substantial jury trial experience in Oregon and Washington, defending wrongful discharge, discrimination, sexual harassment, wage and hour, and whistleblower cases. He also has defended ERISA lawsuits, been on both sides of post-termination cases with non-competition, trade secret and related claims, and has defended numerous labor disputes in arbitration.
Bob has represented companies in labor negotiations, and in election petitions and unfair labor practice charges before the NLRB, and he has negotiated compensation, benefits, and other terms and conditions of employment contracts for companies, professionals, and executives.
He also serves as a mediator in complex commercial disputes and in employment and ERISA/benefits cases.
Before joining the firm, Bob was a partner at Barran Liebman (1998-2006), and an associate and partner at Lane Powell (1993-1998). Before entering private practice, Bob served on active duty as a captain in the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General's Corp, at the U.S. Army Communications and Electronics Command, Fort Monmouth, N.J. and the U.S. Army Defense Appellate Division, Falls Church, V.A. (1987-1993). While stationed at Fort Monmouth, Bob was appointed as a Special Assistant to the U.S. Attorney for the District of New Jersey.
Bob is certified as a Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) by the Human Resources Certification Institute, and is also designated as a Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP) by the Society for Human Resource Management.
Court Admissions — U.S. Supreme Court
U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
U.S. District Court, District of Oregon
U.S. District Court, Eastern and Western Districts of Washington
— Representative Cases
- Washington jury issued defense verdict on wrongful discharge and wage claims against real estate management company. The employer also recovered on counterclaim against plaintiff, and the court awarded attorney fees to our client.
- Summary judgment granted on perceived disability and contract claims against large paper products company and its union.
- Obtained defense verdict on wrongful discharge and whistleblower claims before an Oregon jury. Our client also won a counterclaim for breach of fiduciary duty against its former nursing home administrator.
- Summary judgment granted in state court for large retailer where plaintiff had claims for discrimination, wrongful discharge, intentional infliction of emotional distress and assault.
- Won summary judgment to enforce noncompete agreement for the benefit of acquiring company where agreement was signed by seller's employees in anticipation of the sale of the business.
- Court granted directed verdict for employer during jury trial where former accounting clerk brought claim under the Fair Credit Reporting Act.
- Small local newspaper won jury verdict against employee suing for wrongful discharge and discrimination.
- Obtained a directed verdict during jury trial of claims for sexual harassment and wrongful discharge. Manufacturing company recovered on counterclaim against former employee.