Thomas Lenz leads the firm’s private sector labor relations team. He is a recognized authority in all aspects of labor and employment law with noted expertise in collective bargaining and all issues pertaining to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). Mr. Lenz focuses his practice on advising, training, and developing strategies to prevent workplace issues from turning into crises or litigation for employers.

Since joining the firm in 1992, Mr. Lenz regularly counsels clients on day-to-day hiring and discipline issues; also preparing policies and contracts; supervisory training on a wide variety of issues; labor strategies for non-union clients; collective bargaining strategies and handling of grievances and arbitration matters for unionized clients; due diligence review of corporate transactions involving unionized companies; and dealing with workplace disruption caused by labor disputes, picketing, and strikes, as well as litigation related to all of these issues. In addition to being a trusted legal expert, Mr. Lenz brings a real-world perspective to help achieve each client’s goals, including time spent as a former NLRB agent, an employee in both union and non-union environments, and time spent working in a family business.

Though Mr. Lenz is an attorney in the firm’s Private Sector Labor & Employment Practice Group, he regularly works with attorneys in our other practice groups on matters that require his specific insight and areas of expertise, including his fluency in Spanish.

Mr. Lenz is licensed to practice law in California, as well as several other jurisdictions, and frequently works with clients inside and outside California.

Before joining the firm, Mr. Lenz practiced with the NLRB in Los Angeles where he investigated and tried unfair labor practice cases, ran workplace elections, and acted as an administrative hearing officer. 

Mr. Lenz serves as a Lecturer in Law at the University of Southern California, Gould School of Law. He served as Chair of the Labor and Employment Section for the California Lawyers Association (formerly the State Bar of California) during the 2017-2018 term, and he is frequently consulted by the media on a variety of workplace topics.

Honors & Recognitions

Mr. Lenz has been honored as one of the Top One Hundred Labor Attorneys in the United States by Labor Relations Institute, Inc., a leading industry information source.

Representative Matters

  • Defense of employee discharges and discipline
  • Union misconduct
  • Collective bargaining obligations
  • Bargaining under construction industry rules
  • Voter eligibility formula for workplace elections
  • Court appeals of NLRB rulings
  • Pursuit of attorney fees against the NLRB
  • Picketing, bannering, and strike activity
  • Union jurisdictional disputes
  • Prevailing wage obligations
  • Protection of employer speech rights on workplace issues

Practice Areas

News & Publications

Firm News

Events & Speaking Engagements

Mr. Lenz regularly presents seminars and training throughout California and other states. He is a frequently consulted source for reporters on labor and employment topics.  Mr. Lenz helps the State Bar’s Labor and Employment Law Section coordinate the “Your Legal Rights” program on KALW-FM (San Francisco), a weekly radio show which is broadcast state-wide on public radio and on kalw.org. Mr. Lenz has made several appearances on the show, including a summary of labor law basics in the episode "Labor Law 101," aired January 9, 2019, and a legal review in the episode "Your Legal Rights: A look back at the past year," aired February 27, 2019.

Other articles, podcasts, and news segments in which Mr. Lenz has appeared or has been quoted as a source or expert include the following: 


Mr. Lenz’s articles on labor and employment law topics have been featured in California Lawyer magazine, Construction Executive, the National Club Association’s Club Director magazine, and the Association of Workplace Investigators Journal, as well as other publications. He is a contributing editor of a leading labor law treatise, The Developing Labor Law. In 2017, Mr. Lenz was profiled by the OC Bar online and was featured in an article in Washington Lawyer Magazine.

Blog Posts


Mr. Lenz is a frequently contacted as a resource for the media.  He provides quotes and writes articles on a variety of workplace for numerous publications.  He wrote the Messages From The Chair column for the California and Employment Law Review during his term as Chair for California’s Labor and Employment Law Section.  He has made frequent appearances on the “Your Legal Rights” radio show (KALW-FM San Francisco and www.kalw.org). He has appeared on local and national broadcast media.

Community Involvement

Community & Professional

  • Associated Builders and Contractors, Bylaws & Policies Committee, Member
  • Associated Builders and Contractors, National Legislative Committee, Member
  • International Institute of Los Angeles
  • Marquette University Alumni Club of Southern California, Past President and current Board Member
  • National Club Association, Board Member and Legal Committee Chair
  • Orange County Labor and Employment Relations Association, Past President and current Board Member
  • San Gabriel Valley Economic Partnership, Board Member
  • California Lawyers Association (formerly State Bar of California) Labor and Employment Section, Chair
  • California Lawyers Association, Civic Engagement & Education Committee, Member


J.D., Louisiana State University Law School
B.A., Marquette University


  • 1988, Illinois
    1991, California
    2010, Alaska
    2010, Arizona
    2011, Oregon
    2011, Washington
    2011, District of Columbia
    U.S. Court of Appeals, D.C. Circuit
    U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
    U.S. Court of Appeals, Tenth Circuit 
    U.S. District Court, District of Alaska
    U.S. District Court, District of Arizona
    U.S. District Courts, Central, Eastern, Northern, and Southern Districts of California
    U.S. District Court, District of Colorado
    U.S. District Court, District of Oregon
    U.S. District Court, Western District of Washington
    U.S. Supreme Court
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