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Christopher S. Miller

Of Counsel
chris.miller@kattenlaw.com
Houston Office
p+1.713.270.3448
Overview

Christopher S. Miller has more than 30 years of experience in strategic employee and labor relations planning, workplace and employee concerns investigations, litigation and litigation management, collective bargaining, union representation campaigns, project labor agreements, and employment contracts. He has published extensively in legal and human resources management journals, and has served as a management consultant on issues of compensation and human resources strategies to numerous Fortune 100 companies.

Chris previously served as vice president of employee relations and associate general counsel at Southern Company, as well as compliance officer. In his role as human resources counsel, Chris provided strategic direction on major employment and union litigation, and provided direct legal support to human resources and senior management. He also advised on a broad spectrum of diversity and inclusion initiatives. Today, he brings that knowledge forward to advise employers on designing and implementing HR policies and mitigating risk in employment decisions, conduct workplace assessments and investigations, defend whistleblower claims, and respond to regulatory, media, and other stakeholders in crisis management settings.

In the area of compliance, he has deep experience in developing and managing pre-employment, background screening and insider risk processes, and the building and oversight of employee concerns and internal dispute resolution programs. He has successfully led major human resource, compliance and governance initiatives related to policy development, process redesign and implementation in data privacy, workforce assessment,  disaster response, corporate responsibility, governmental affairs, Davis Bacon, immigration, and diversity and process safety management.

Shown below is a selection of Christopher’s engagements.

Experience
  • National lead labor counsel to international package delivery and logistics company, including during nationwide strike.
  • Chief labor counsel and negotiator for regional grocery store chain.
  • Chief labor and employment counsel for international power generation company in all aspects of employee relations in addition to M&A negotiations in excess of $5 billion.
  • Lead counsel in coordinating and executing on legal and media responses and diversity change initiatives in race class action involving more than 3,000 putative class members. Resulted in denial of class certification; summary judgment on nine individual claims; and more than 35 major policy, process and pay equity changes.
  • Executive and legal lead on HR policy review and revision of all major HR policies for company with 26,000 employees.
  • Lead planner on negotiation and litigation strategy that capped retiree medical benefits for 26,000-employee company—including 10,000 covered by union agreements—resulting in hundreds of millions of dollars in cost reductions.
  • Seconded HR director for 200-employee industrial software design firm; responsible for HR staff, policies and practices, and recruitment of successor.
  • Lead negotiator for Fortune 200 employer with OFCCP in effort to reduce number of AAPs from more than 100 to less than 30.
  • Design and execution of hundreds of individual, small and large group severance plans and workforce reductions.
  • Legal and compliance lead on designing and implementing numerous compliance programs in information and data privacy governance, workforce screening and insider threat surveillance, governmental affairs, internal dispute resolution, workforce assessments, and safety.
  • Performance of workforce climate assessments and design of group-based compensation systems for more than 12 Fortune 500 firms in heavy industrial, consumer products, chemicals, manufacturing and services industries.
Articles
2007
Co-author, Southern Company: A Case Study in Corporate Responsibility Leadership, Vol. 3, pp. 101-128
December 1998
Author, Power Plant Acquisitions: Workforce Management from the Buyer's Perspective
1996
Co-author, Employer Administration of Severance Pay Plans: Avoiding Misrepresentation Liability On Plan Modifications, 4 (1), 66-75
July 1996
Co-author, On-Call Policies Help Avoid Overtime Pay
Fall 1995/Spring 1996
Co-author, Employment Law Implications in the Control and Monitoring of E-Mail Systems, University of Miami Business Law Journal, Vol. VI, Number 1 & 2, 95-118
December 1995
Co-author, Defamation By Conduct: Workplace Expulsion of the Terminated Employee, Georgia Bar Journal, 1(3), 16-23, 44
1990
Co-author, The Critical Role of Judicially Recognized Public Policy Against Illegal Drug Use in The Workplace, Industrial Relations Law Journal, 12(1), 153-83
Autumn 1990
Co-author, The Impact of Performance Appraisals on Age Discrimination in Employment Act Cases, Personnel Psychology, 43(3), 555-78
1984
Contributing Author, Union-Management Cooperation: Structure, Process, and Impact, W. E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research
Contributing Author, Retaliation Under the Fair Labor Standards Act, The Fair Labor Standards Act, Washington, DC: Bureau of National Affairs
Presentations
October 2008
Presenter | Southern Company: A Case Study in Corporate Responsibility Leadership | Corporate Social Responsibility in Oil, Gas, and Energy Conference
May 2007
Presenter | Addressing Legal Issues and Regulatory Risk in Pandemic Planning | Pandemic Preparedness for Utilities Conference
April and December, 1998
Presenter | Power Generation Asset Divestiture: Managing the Workforce Transition From the Buyer’s Perspective | Power Plant Divestiture & Acquisition
November 1998
Presenter | Managing Labor and Human Resource Issues in Restructuring and Transactions | Forging a Competitive Workforce Under Utility Deregulation: Human Resources Strategies for Effecting Change
December 1997
Presenter | The UPS Strike: When Bad Things Happen to Good Companies: Lessons for American Management | The Martin and Phyllis Berman Distinguished Lecture Series, Syracuse University School of Management
November 1997
Presenter | Communicating With Your Employees During Restructuring | Managing Change in a Utility Workforce Under Deregulation: Staffing, Compensation, and Benefits
Christopher S. Miller

Education

  • PhD, Syracuse University
  • JD, Syracuse University College of Law
  • MA, Syracuse University
  • BS, Syracuse University

Bar Admissions

  • Georgia
  • Texas

Court Admissions

  • US Supreme Court
  • US Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit
  • US Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit
  • US District Court, Northern District of Georgia

Memberships

  • American Bar Association, Section on Labor and Employment Law
  • Wharton Research Group
  • Atlanta Police Foundation, Crime Stopper Advisory Board
  • US Chamber of Commerce, National Security Taskforce