VOL. 122 | NO. 188 | Thursday, October 4, 2007
Memphis Law Talk
Professional Tennis Dreams Become Labor and Employment Law Reality
LANCE ALLAN WIEDOWER | The Daily News
"I'm proud of the success our firm has had in solving our clients' issues through the years."
- Thomas L. Henderson
Name: Thomas L. Henderson
Firm: Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart PC
Basics: Henderson has been named in the 2008 edition of The Best Lawyers in America.
Thomas L. Henderson is one of four attorneys in the Memphis office of Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart PC to be named in the 2008 edition of The Best Lawyers in America.
Henderson, along with Charles V. Holmes, Frederick J. Lewis and Donna K. Fischer, were named top lawyers in the area of labor and employment. The four were among 77 of the firm's attorneys across the U.S. and the U.S. Virgin Islands featured in the new edition of Best Lawyers.
Henderson has represented management in employment and labor relations matters for more than 20 years. He is a shareholder in the Memphis office of Ogletree Deakins.
Ogletree Deakins opened its Memphis office over the summer after joining forces with the Memphis labor and employment law firm Lewis Fisher Henderson & Claxton LLP.
The firm is one of the largest labor and employment law firms in the country with 32 offices representing more than half of the Fortune 50 companies in the United States, including Home Depot, Dillard's, Nissan, Dollar General and Dell Corp.
Q: What made you want to study law?
A: My dad was a lawyer who worked for the National Labor Relations Board for years before going into private practice. He always enjoyed the practice so much that I wanted to be a lawyer, too.
Q: Was it something you always wanted to do?
A: Pretty much. For a while, I thought about being a professional tennis player but an injured shoulder ended that.
Q: Where are you from?
A: I was born in Oak Ridge, Tenn. We moved to Memphis when I was 6.
Q: Where did you go to undergraduate and law school?
A: I graduated in 1981 from Christian Brothers University. I have a (bachelor's degree) in accounting. I went to the University of Memphis law school, receiving a (juris doctorate) in 1985.
Q: What brought you to Ogletree Deakins?
A: First, it was the best move for our clients. Ogletree has exceptionally talented and experienced lawyers, and tremendous resources. Our clients have already benefited immensely from the merger. Second, it was the right move for the Lewis Fisher firm. We had grown substantially from our original seven attorneys but this was a great opportunity for our attorneys to be part of an outstanding and much larger firm.
Q: What is the best part about your job?
A: Working with talented attorneys for sophisticated clients. There's something new and interesting every day in employment law.
Q: What has been your biggest challenge so far?
A: Balancing my time between work and family. I have three children, a daughter who is a freshman at Belmont (University in Nashville) and two sons, 12 and 6. Both boys are involved in sports. Making sure I'm at all the events is a challenge sometimes.
Q: What are you most proud of, personally and professionally?
A: Personally, I'm most proud of my wife, Betsy, and my children. Professionally, I'm proud of the success our firm has had in solving our clients' issues through the years.
Q: What do you do when you are not working?
A: Spend time with my family and coach baseball and soccer.