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LAS VEGAS, NV – Lionel Sawyer & Collins is pleased to announce that Gregory E. Smith and Malani L. Kotchka, partners/shareholders in the Las Vegas law firm of Smith & Kotchka, have joined the Firm’s Employment and Labor Law Practice Group. The addition of Smith and Kotchka expands the team of Lionel Sawyer & Collins attorneys who maintain a comprehensive and robust labor and employment law practice, counseling employers on all aspects of the employment relationship and representing employers before state and federal administrative agencies and the courts.

Gregory E. Smith has 33 years of experience in labor and employment law. A partner/shareholder with Smith & Kotchka since 1982, Smith was a field attorney with the NLRB from 1974-1977 and was in-house labor counsel for the Nevada Resort Association from 1979-1981. Smith has extensive experience in advising and representing management in traditional labor law matters, including unfair labor practice proceedings, union organizing campaigns, contract negotiations, arbitrations, and state and federal court injunction proceedings involving union strikes and picketing. In addition to his traditional labor law experience, Smith has litigated extensively in federal and state courts, as well as before administrative agencies, in the areas of wrongful discharge, employment discrimination, and wage and hour disputes. Smith was selected for inclusion in Best Lawyers in America and in Nevada Super Lawyers for Labor and Employment Law.

Malani L. Kotchka, also a partner/shareholder with Smith & Kotchka since 1982, has represented employers for 30 years in all aspects of labor and employment law. Kotchka was previously an associate at Lionel Sawyer & Collins, where she litigated before the NLRB and other federal and state administrative agencies, in federal and state courts, and represented management in union organizing campaigns, union contract negotiations, arbitrations and strike injunctions. At Smith & Kotchka, Kotchka has represented both public and private sector employers. During her legal career, Kotchka has represented employers before the Internal Revenue Service, the United States Department of Labor, the Nevada Employee-Management Relations Board, the Nevada Equal Rights Commission, and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Kotchka has also developed a strong practice in employment advice and safety and industrial insurance compensation matters before Nevada hearing officers, appeals officers, regulatory agencies, the OSHA Review Board and courts, where she represents only employers. She was selected for inclusion in Best Lawyers in America and in Nevada Super Lawyers for Labor and Employment Law.

Smith and Kotchka join a team that includes Laura Thalacker, a shareholder at Lionel Sawyer & Collins and a driving force in the Firm’s Employment and Labor Law Practice Group. As a litigator and employment law practitioner in Nevada since 1994, Thalacker’s practice with Lionel Sawyer & Collins has focused on representing employers in employment and labor law matters. Thalacker provides day-to-day compliance advice and training to employers on a wide range of workplace matters, drafts employment policies, handbooks, and contracts, and litigates employment and labor disputes before federal and state administrative agencies and courts.

Lionel Sawyer & Collins represents a variety of large and small businesses in employment and labor matters before all Nevada, federal and state courts and various administrative agencies. Since 2003 Chambers USA has consistently rated the firm as one of the top labor and employment firms in Nevada.

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