Joyce E. Kitchens began her legal career as a staff attorney for the Department of Veterans’ Affairs and was promoted to Assistant District Counsel of the Atlanta (Georgia) District. She represented the agency in employee appeals before the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB), Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA).
Ms. Kitchens left the VA for private practice, and is a founding member of Kitchens New Cleghorn, LLC, where she has engaged in a varied litigation practice, including multiple business and corporate employment issues, representing employers and employees. She has authored and reviewed covenants not to compete, employment contracts, and severance agreements and releases. She has served as labor and employment counsel to public and private employers. She currently serves as labor & employment counsel for several municipalities in the Greater Atlanta area.
Ms. Kitchens has served as a mediator, arbitrator, and court-appointed Guardian Ad Litem. She is a frequent speaker for continuing legal education seminars. She was an Adjunct Faculty member for Emory University School of Law 1996-2000. She was the National President of the Federal Bar Association 2003-04, and currently serves as the President of the Federal Bar Building Corporation.
She authored the book, A Federal Sector Guide to the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA) and Veterans Employment Opportunity Act (VEOA), Dewey Publications, 2012. She has also authored a number of professional articles, including Alternative Dispute Resolution in Federal Court, Federal Civil Practice, April 22, 1999; Developing/Protecting the Record for Appeal, Federal Appellate Practice, May 31, 1996; Attorneys’ Fees Petitions under Fee Shifting Statutes, Federal Practice and Procedure, April 28, 1995; ERISA & the Moench Presumption May 2, 2013; Alternative Dispute Resolution in the Federal Sector, April 15, 2014; Cutting Edge Cases in Federal Employment Law Litigation: A View from the Bench & Bar September 5, 2014, (co-authored with Katherine Gonzalez Valentin).
Ms. Kitchens is listed in the Martindale-Hubbell Bar Directory of Pre-Eminent Lawyers, International Who’s Who of Professionals, and Who’s Who of American Women.
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USERRA/VEOA Deskbook is a comprehensive compilation of the statutes, regulations, and case law governing the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act and Veterans Employment Opportunity Act. Major topics include legislative history; purpose; coverage; discrimination and retaliation; return to duty; rights, benefits, and obligations of covered individuals; the roles of the Department of Labor and Office of Special Counsel; appeals to the Merit Systems Protection Board and appealable actions; and judicial review. (more details)