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Rosemary G. Kenyon

Partner
AA Contact Info

Jacqueline Williams
Phone: 919.838.2050
jwilliams@smithlaw.com

Overview

Rose Kenyon’s practice involves all aspects of employment and labor law counseling and litigation, across a wide variety of industries and companies, both public and private.  She has extensive experience advising companies on their most strategic and high risk employment issues.  Rose also works with companies on employment matters in mergers and acquisitions, and has extensive experience drafting complex employment agreements and separation agreements on behalf of both companies and executives.  Rose is a frequent speaker on emerging employment and labor law trends and regularly conducts training for human resources professionals and executive management.  Rose also serves as a mediator to resolve disputes outside of litigation.

Prior to joining Smith Anderson, Rose served for 13 years as in-house counsel for Carolina Power & Light Company (now known as Duke Energy), having served as Deputy General Counsel.

Rose serves as Chair of the Firm’s Pro Bono Committee.

Early in her career, Rose practiced with the Christian Barton firm in Richmond, Virginia.

  • North Carolina Bar Association
    • Board of Governors (2005-08)
    • Chair, Strategic Planning and Emerging Trends Committee (2008-11)
    • Chair, Women in the Profession Committee (2001-04)
    • Chair, Dispute Resolution Section (1995-96)
    • Council Member, Corporate Counsel Section (1989-97
    • Sections of Labor and Employment, Litigation and Dispute Resolution
  • American Bar Association
    • Sections of Labor and Employment, Litigation and Dispute Resolution
  • Wake County Bar Association and Tenth Judicial District Bar
    • Grievance Committee (2013-present)
    • Strategic Planning Committee (2015-present)
  • Saint Mary’s College Alumnae Association, Board of Directors (Notre Dame, IN) (2015-present)  
  • Community Music School of Wake County, Board of Directors (2014-present)
  • Habitat for Humanity of Wake County
    • Board Chair (2011-13)
    • Board of Directors (2005-13)
    • Honorary Co-Chair, Women’s Build (2014)
  • Pines of Carolina Girl Scout Council
    • President (1992-95)
    • Board of Directors (1986-95)
  • Fellow, College of Labor and Employment Lawyers, Inducted 2015
  • Chambers USA: America's Leading Business Lawyers, Labor & Employment (2008-2016)
  • The Best Lawyers in America©, Employment Law - Management (2016-2017)
  • Women of Justice Award, Business Practitioner, North Carolina Lawyers Weekly (2012)
  • North Carolina Super Lawyers (2012-2017)
  • North Carolina Super Lawyers, Top 50 Women (2014)
  • Academy of Women of the YWCA of the Greater Triangle, Inducted 2004
  • Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent Rated
  • Fellow, American Bar Foundation

Experience

Experience

  • Served as lead in-house employment and labor counsel to a Fortune 500 company for 13 years, during a period of rapid change that included major workforce restructurings, union organizational activity, numerous employment based lawsuits and claims (including several multiple plaintiff suits and systemic claims), multiple OFCCP audits (including corporate headquarters and glass ceiling), among other things.
  • Lead employment lawyer in numerous merger and acquisition transactions in a wide-range of industries that included the resolution of significant transition issues regarding the misclassifications of workers (e.g., wage and hour, independent contractor), leased employee arrangements, liability for significant paid-time-off balances, professional employer organization arrangements, non-competition agreements and executive employment agreements, among other things.
  • Conducted internal investigations into misconduct, embezzlement, harassment, threats of workplace violence, and other wrongdoing, for both publicly traded and private companies.
  • Advised a global financial services technology company on employment-related matters in connection with its acquisition of a leading provider of deal analytics and valuation technology
  • Represented employers in the development of employment agreements, severance and non-competition agreements for senior level officers of both private and publicly traded companies.
  • Advised a leading global healthcare services company on employment-related matters in connection with its acquisition of a specialty laboratory and diagnostics products company.
  • Represented CEOs and senior level officers of both private and publicly traded companies in connection with their employment agreements in a wide-range of industries, including the institutional health-care, pharmaceutical, banking, technology and manufacturing industries, and in higher education.
  • Represented national and global companies in major reorganizations and downsizings of their workforces, including the relocation of offices, in a wide-variety of industries including the pharmaceutical, hospitality, technology, utility and manufacturing industries.
  • Provided strategic and risk management advice on sensitive and high risk employment decisions and processes, corporate governance, and the development of system-wide policies and handbooks.
  • Advised a specialty pharmaceutical company on employment-related matters in a $120 million merger with a subsidiary of a publicly-traded international pharmaceutical company.
  • Successfully defended numerous whistleblower claims under federal and state laws.
  • Successfully defended employers against systemic claims of race discrimination, and sensitive harassment and gender discrimination claims before the EEOC and the OFCCP.
  • Successfully defended employers before OSHA in serious injury and fatality cases.
  • Successfully defended employers in discrimination and employment contract lawsuits in federal and state court, including appeals.
  • Advised employers on system-wide wage and hour and independent contractor classification issues under federal and state wage and hour laws and tax laws.
  • Represented employers in government audits of I-9 compliance.

News & Publications

News

Publications

  • Author, ADR is Good News for Corporate Counsel, Corporate Counsel Section Newsletter, (North Carolina Bar Association 1995)
  • Contributing Author, Mini-Trial Overview, Desk Book on Dispute Resolution in North Carolina, (North Carolina Bar Association 1991)

Events & Webinars

Events

  • Presenter, "Employee Medical Issues in the Workplace: Update on the ADA, FMLA and More," Smith Anderson’s 23rd Annual Employment Law Update, Cary, N.C.
    10.2015
  • Co-Presenter, "Background Checks: Managing the Risks," Smith Anderson’s 23rd Annual Employment Law Update, Cary, N.C.
    10.2015
  • Presenter, "Employment Claims and Litigation: Trends and Risks," Eastern North Carolina Chartered Property Casualty Underwriters (CPCU) Association
    11.2014
  • Presenter, "Health Issues in the Workplace: Understanding and Managing the Expanding Reach of the ADA and FMLA," Smith Anderson's 22nd Annual Employment Law Update, Cary, N.C.
    10.2014
  • Presenter, "Key Employment Law Issues for a Business Owner," Women Presidents Organization, Greensboro, N.C.
    06.2014
  • Presenter, "Selling a Business," Women Presidents Organization, Greensboro, N.C.
    04.2014
  • Presenter, "Health in the Workplace: What's Hot under the ADA, the FMLA and More," Smith Anderson’s 21st Annual Employment Law Update, Cary, N.C.
    11.2013
  • Presenter, "Myths and Truths of Employment Law," Eastern North Carolina Chartered Property Casualty Underwriters (CPCU) Association
    02.2013
  • Presenter, "Applying the ADA, FMLA and GINA to Employee Health Issues: Navigation Tips for Smooth Sailing," Smith Anderson’s 20th Annual Employment Law Update, Cary, N.C.
    11.2012
  • Presenter, "More on Health in the Workplace: A Workshop on Tackling the Most Common HR Problems," Smith Anderson’s 19th Annual Employment Law Update, Cary, N.C.
    11.2011
  • Presenter, "Health in the Workplace: Key Trends under the ADA, FMLA and GINA," Smith Anderson’s 19th Annual Employment Law Update, Cary, N.C.
    11.2011
  • Presenter, "Health in the Workplace: Key Issues for Employers Under the ADA, FMLA and Other Laws," Smith Anderson’s 18th Annual Employment Law Update, Cary, N.C.
    10.2010
  • Presenter, "Something for Everyone: Retooling the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Family and Medical Leave Act," Smith Anderson’s 17th Annual Employment Law Update, Cary, N.C.
    10.2009
  • Presenter, "The Employment Law and ESOP Implications of Reductions in Force and Multiple Layoffs," Carolinas Chapter of The ESOP Association 2nd Annual Conference, Pinehurst, N.C.
    2009
  • Presenter, "Medical Workplace Issues: Getting a Handle on the Major Developments under the ADA, the FMLA and Related Laws," Smith Anderson’s 16th Annual Employment Law Update, Cary, N.C.
    10.2008
  • Moderator, "Tough Employment Law Questions," Smith Anderson’s 16th Annual Employment Law Update, Cary, N.C.
    10.2008

Bar & Court Admissions

  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • U.S. District Courts for the Eastern, Middle and Western Districts of North Carolina
  • U.S. District Courts for the Eastern and Western Districts of Virginia
  • North Carolina, 1986
  • Virginia, 1980
  • Michigan, 1979

Education

University of Notre Dame, J.D., 1979

Saint Mary’s College (Notre Dame, IN), B.A., magna cum laude, 1976

Clerkships

  • Volunteer clerk for the Honorable W. Earl Britt, District Court Judge for the Eastern District of North Carolina
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