Heather B. Brock is a shareholder in the firm’s Labor and Employment Law Section and is also the Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer (CDIO).
Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer
As CDIO, Heather creates initiatives to further firm’s strong commitment to diversity and inclusion in hiring, retention and attorney advancement. Heather also looks for ways to partner with our clients to meet and advance their diversity and inclusion goals.
Prior to becoming CDIO, Heather served on the firm’s Diversity Committee, the firm's Women’s Business Development Committee, assisted with the summer associate program and helped create the firm’s first in-house training programs for new and lateral lawyers. She has also been involved with the Florida Diversity Council.
Heather has 20 plus years of experience focusing on management-side litigation and proactively and strategically problem-solving for employers. She also handles litigation involving confidential information and trade secrets/covenants non-compete and employment contracts. Heather’s approach focuses on the business’s bottom line and figuring out alternative resolutions to avoid litigation. This includes counseling clients on proper management of problem/underperforming employees, creating and executing in-house training programs, and coaching managers and supervisors. She also promotes claim prevention through well-drafted employment agreements, policies, handbooks and separation agreements.
When litigation is unavoidable, Heather aggressively, but cost-effectively, defends her clients before various state and federal courts and administrative agencies.
Heather also assists clients with the difficult decisions that can arise from human resources activities, with an emphasis on risk management to prevent costly lawsuits. Companies frequently retain her to conduct on-site training seminars for managers on how to identify specific employment-related issues. She also provides onboarding training for new employees so that they fully understand the company’s expectations and obligations regarding employment law matters. She is also regularly retained to serve as outside general counsel to assist small to mid-size companies with management of their litigation risks and costs.
- Managed a nationwide integration of employees when a healthcare client acquired its largest competitor, including addressing Workers Adjustment Retraining Notification Act requirements. While the integration involved layoffs in 30+ states, a proactive approach helped the client to avoid any follow-on employment claims.
- Defended hospitality industry client in Department of Labor Wage and Hour complaint and obtained a finding of no wage and hour violations.
- Obtained dismissal with prejudice of a Family and Medical Leave Act interference claim, with no payment to former employee or her lawyer.
- Prevented the filing of hostile work environment harassment and age discrimination claims against an energy industry client by conducting a thorough investigation and providing guidance for management personnel changes and conducted substantive training for all of the facility employees.
- Resolved a disability discrimination claim for a service industry client by creatively developing a reasonable accommodation for the employee, which still met client work demands.
Heather has garnered an AV® Preeminent distinction, the highest available mark for professional excellence from Martindale-Hubbell’s Peer Review Ratings. Heather has consecutively been listed in The Best Lawyers in America® since 2006, and in 2016 the review guide named her Tampa’s Litigation – Labor and Employment Lawyer of the Year.
She has been listed in Florida Super Lawyers Magazine from consecutively since 2008. The publication also recognized her in 2011 as one of the Top 50 Female Lawyers. Florida Trend Magazine noted Heather as a Florida Legal Elite from 2005-2009, 2011 and 2013, where she ranked in the top two percent of practicing Florida Bar Members.