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It’s Official: Top Union Lawyer To Be NLRB General Counsel

Gerald Lutkus

Gerald F. Lutkus

Of Counsel (Retired)

And you thought Lafe Solomon was anti-employer? Buckle your seat belts folks because the employer community is in for a rough ride.

The White House has confirmed Board member Richard Griffin has been nominated to be the new General Counsel for the NLRB. Before joining the Board as a “recess” appointee, Griffin served as General Counsel for the International Union of Operating Engineers. Griffin has served on the board of directors for the AFL-CIO Lawyers Coordinating Committee and has held various legal jobs with the IUOE. Griffin holds a B.A. from Yale University and a J.D. from Northeastern University School of Law. With Griffin’s nomination, the President also withdrew the nomination of Lafe Solomon Jr. to be General Counsel. Solomon had been named Acting General Counsel on June 21, 2010. His nomination for that job went to the U.S. Senate on January 5, 2011 and again in May of this year, but the nomination was never voted upon.

As we previously reported here and here, Griffin’s nomination for the GC job comes on the heels of the deal crafted in the Senate to allow the President’s nominations for the Board to come to the floor for an up or down vote. Republicans insisted that the President withdraw the nomination of Griffin and Sharon Block. He agreed and replaced their nominations with those of Kent Hirozawa and Nancy Schiffer, both reportedly hand-picked by AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka. With the recent confirmation of all five of the nominations, the Board is at its full five-member complement for the first time in more than a decade. However, with a solid 3 member pro-Union majority and Griffin in the General Counsel’s slot, it will be full speed ahead on President Obama’s pro-Union agenda.


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