Overview

Designated Best Lawyers’ “2016 Lawyer of the Year” in Labor Law-Management in Cleveland and named to the Top 100 Ohio Super Lawyers, Keith is nationally recognized as a respected advocate and a trustworthy neutral. His practice focuses on employment law and business law, as well as mediation and arbitration cases around the nation. Keith is a Past President of the Ohio State Bar Association and a Past Chairman of both the Labor Law Section and the ADR Committee of the Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association.

Keith is a recognized advocate for small business, having served as Chair of both the Council of Smaller Enterprises and the National Small Business Association. He has testified before the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives Committees, as well as the Ohio General Assembly, in support of small business positions.

Practices

    • Special Appellate Counsel before Administrative Review Board in Sarbanes-Oxley whistleblower case for Fortune 500 Company.
    • Argued in Supreme Court of Ohio on behalf of Ohio Management Lawyers’ Association in Bickers v. Western Southern Ins. Co., in which the Court rejected public policy claim for termination during workers’ compensation leave.
    • Represented defendant seller, a Fortune 100 corporation, in an arbitration hearing and commercial case involving the sale of a line of business. Claim was $55 million; lowest demand $14 million; award $6 milion, plus prejudgment interest.
    • Kimberly Miller v. Denny’s Restaurants, Inc. – Sexual harassment, retaliation case tried to defense jury verdict in U.S. District Court, Northern District of Ohio, Judge Donald Nugent.
    • Fred Buelow v. Vocational Guidance Services – Whistleblower retaliation/public policy case in Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas, Ohio, Judge Kenneth Callahan. Summary judgment obtained and upheld on appeal.
    • Brenda Dunn v. National Interstate Insurance Co. – Pregnancy discrimination, retaliation claim by terminated Vice President, tried to defense jury verdict in Court of Common Pleas of Cuyahoga County, Ohio, Judge Ralph McAllister.
    • Ivan Iricanin v. Morrison Knudsen Corporation – Claim for discrimination based upon diagnosis of cancer. Tried (after plaintiff’s death) to defense jury verdict in Court of Common Pleas of Cuyahoga County, Ohio, Judge George McMonagle.
  • Education

    • Yale Law School, J.D., 1974
    • Eli Broad College of Business, Michigan State University, M.A., 1972
    • Michigan State University, B.A., with High Honors, Phi Beta Kappa, 1971

    Admissions

    • Supreme Court of the U.S.
    • State of Ohio
    • State of California
    • U.S. Court of Appeals, Sixth Circuit and Eleventh Circuit
    • U.S. District Court, Northern District of Ohio, Southern District of Ohio, Northern District of California, Central District of California, and Southern District of California
  • Professional Affiliations

    • Regulatory Fairness Board - Region V Representative (2018)
    • Ohio State Bar Association—Past President (2005), Council of Delegates
    • Ohio State Bar Foundation—Past President (2011)
    • California Bar Association, Labor and Employment Section—Member
    • Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association—Member-Ethics and Professionalism Committee; Past Board Member; Past Chair-ADR Committee; Past Chair-Labor Section; Past Chair-Golden Age Committee; Past Chair-Hospice Lawyer Volunteer Committee
    • American Bar Association—Member-Litigation Section, Labor and Employment Section, ADR Section; Past Member of House of Delegates
    • American Arbitration Association—Employment and Commercial Panelist; Mediator; Past Chair of Advisory Group
    • American Bar Foundation—Life Fellow
    • Ohio State Bar Foundation—Distinguished Life Fellow; Past Board of Trustees; Past President
    • Governor George Voinovich’s Workers’ Compensation Health Care Quality Advisory Council—Member (1997-1998) (Developed Managed Care System for Workers’ Compensation System)
    • Cleveland Leadership Center, Leadership Cleveland (Class of 2002)

    Community Involvement

    • The Salvation Army, Greater Cleveland Services—Advisory Board; Past Chair
    • Council of Smaller Enterprises (“COSE”)—Past Chair
    • Greater Cleveland Partnership—Government Advocacy Committee; Past Board Member; Past Executive Committee; Past Finance Committee
    • National Small Business Association—Chair-Health and Human Services Issue Committee; Past Organization Chair
    • Fund For Our Economic Future—Funders Committee

    Firm Involvement

    • Founding Partner—Frantz Ward LLP
    • Honoree of the 2017 C-Suite Award in the category of General Counsel for work as Board Counsel for Vocational Guidance Services – Crain’s Cleveland Business (2017)
    • Named Best Lawyers’ “Lawyer of the Year” in Cleveland in Labor-Law Management (2016)
    • Named to the Ohio Super Lawyers list (2004-2018)
    • Named to The Best Lawyers in America in the areas of Employment Law-Management; Labor Law-Management; and Litigation-Labor and Employment (2006-2019)
    • Named to Chambers USA: America’s Guide to Leading Lawyers for Business in the area of Labor and Employment (2005-2015)
    • AV Preeminent Peer Review Rated—Martindale-Hubbell
    • Named Small Business Advocate of the Year—The National Small Business Association (2014)
    • Named to the list of Outstanding Lawyers in Cleveland—Inside Business (2001-2008)
    • Recipient of the “William Booth” Award—The Salvation Army of Greater Cleveland (2016)
    • Recipient of the “Others” Award—The Salvation Army (2007)
    • Named Volunteer of the Year—Vocational Guidance Services (1985; 1986)
    • Named Outstanding Volunteer—National Hospice Organization (1982)
    • Named in “Who’s Who in America”
    • Named in “Who’s Who in American Law”
    • The Village Foundation—Past President
    • Bay’s Investment In The Future—Member
    • Hospice Council for Northern Ohio—Member
    • "Avoid Jumbo Size Problems: Bitcoin/Blockchain," Frantz Ward Labor and Employment Law Seminar, Cleveland, OH (May 2018)
    • "Prevailing Wage Law in Ohio: The History and Overview of Ohio & Prevailing Wage Law," Mechanical Contractors Association, Akron, OH (June 2017)
    • “Watch Out for Hidden Traps When Investigating Your Workforce,” Frantz Ward Labor and Employment Law Seminar, Cleveland, OH (May 2017)
    • “Prevailing Wage,” Mechanical & Plumbing Industry Council (MAPIC), Cleveland, OH (January 2017)
    • “DOL’s New Overtime Rules,” Council of Smaller Enterprises, Webinar (June 2016)
    • “The Clown Car: How Many Regulations Can the DOL Pack In?” Frantz Ward Labor and Employment Law Seminar, Cleveland, OH (April 2016)
    • “Rambo Litigation Tactics,” National Business Institute, Independence, OH (September 2015)
    • “NLRB Handbook Policy Rules,” OSBA Labor and Employment Law Section, NLRB Region 8 & Region 9 Seminar and Webinar (April 2015)
    • "Family & Medical Leave Act: Recent Developments," Lorman Education Services, Independence, OH (March 2014)
    • "Human Resource Law - Wage & Benefit Issues," National Business Institute, Cleveland, OH (November 2013)
    • "The Birth of the Affordable Care Act," Syracuse, NY (September 2013)
    • "Navigating the Affordable Care Act from an Employer's Perspective," ALFA International, Pittsburgh, PA (June 2013)
    • “Non-Compete Agreements for Tech Startups,” Youngstown Business Incubator, Youngstown, OH (April 2013)