The National Labor Relations Board late today announced that President Obama has named veteran NLRB attorney Lafe Solomon to serve as Acting General Counsel. The designation is effective Monday, June 21, 2010 — the day after the recently announced resignation of current General Counsel Ronald Meisburg becomes effective.
The Board’s announcement notes:
Mr. Solomon, who began his agency career as a field examiner in Seattle in 1972, directed the NLRB’s Office of Representation Appeals for the past decade. Previously he served in various positions on the General Counsel and Board side of the agency, including as staff attorney to 10 Board members. (The Board members were Don Zimmerman, Donald Dotson, Jerry Hunter, John Higgins, James Stephens, Mary Cracraft, John Raudabaugh, William Gould, Sarah Fox and Wilma Liebman). He earned a B.A. degree in Economics from Brown University and a J.D. from Tulane University.
Longtime observers of the NLRB will note that the Members named above for whom Mr. Solomon has served are fairly evenly split between Republicans and Democrats.
We know what at least one current Board Member thinks of Mr. Solomon via LinkedIn. While a partner at Creighton, Pearce, Johnsen & Giroux, current Member Mark Gaston Pearce described Mr. Solomon as an “outstanding and efficient director of a very busy and detail oriented Unit of the National Labor Relations Board”.
Mr. Solomon comes into his position just as the Board will be trying to figure out how to address the numerous possible Orders it will find vacated and remanded in the wake of last week’s SCOTUS decision in New Process Steel. General Counsel Meisburg’s term was set to expire in August 2010 — around the same time as the term of sole Republican Member Peter Schaumber. With two Republican seats to be open, two Democrats sitting temporarily via recess appointment, and the GC position to be filled permanently, we might look for the White House and Senate to approach a comprehensive compromise to obtain Senate confirmation on all these positions sometime in the late Summer or early Fall.