Grace Speights is a partner in Morgan Lewis’ Labor & Employment Practice Group, resident in the Firm’s Washington Office. Ms. Speights serves as the Global Leader of Morgan Lewis’ Labor & Employment Practice Group. In that role she is responsible for managing more than 330 lawyers and other professionals around the world.
She also serves as Chair of the Firm’s Systemic Employment Litigation Practice Group. From 2008-2016, Ms. Speights served as the Managing Partner of the Firm’s Washington, D.C. Office, Deputy Practice Group Leader of the Labor and Employment Practice, and as a member of the Firm’s Partner Compensation Committee. Ms. Speights joined Morgan Lewis in 1984, after clerking for the late Chief Judge Aubrey E. Robinson, Jr., United States District Court for the District of Columbia.
Ms. Speights’ practice focuses on internal investigations, counseling and defending clients in connection with employment discrimination claims, primarily involving class action litigation, and on counseling clients regarding corporate diversity best practices. Ms. Speights has handled high profile and high stakes matters for many clients and is often called upon by clients for crisis management assistance. She also represents clients in systemic investigations and litigation brought by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). She has litigated and mediated numerous employment discrimination class actions around the country.
Ms. Speights leads the firm’s multidisciplinary workplace culture consulting team of more than 30 lawyers across offices and practices. Combining employment and workplace law experience with investigative expertise, this team helps employers effectively investigate, defend against, and develop advance plans to avoid or minimize workplace crises stemming from claims of sexual harassment.
Ms. Speights has worked with clients in the financial services, media and entertainment, sports, retail, nonprofit, and legal services industries to manage serious internal investigations, conduct workplace culture assessments, and advise on crisis management and remediation of potential workplace issues. Ms. Speights has also conducted independent investigations of allegations on behalf of special committees of boards of directors and is counseling boards of directors and high-level executives on their responsibilities in connection with providing a sexual harassment–free workplace.
In the legal services industry, Ms. Speights is recognized as the “lawyer to the law firms,” skilled in identifying trouble spots and implementing solutions, identifying areas of workplace risk for law firms before they reach the tipping point, and in defending law firms in employment related litigation.