Joe Biden Names an Acting General Counsel for the NLRB

It has been a tumultuous time at the General Counsel’s Office for the NLRB over the last week. Within minutes after being sworn in as President, Joe Biden requested that the then General Counsel, Peter Robb, resign his position or be fired by 5:00 pm. General Counsel Robb chose the latter, responding to President Biden via email that he would not resign. General Counsel Robb stated, “I respectfully decline to resign from my Senate-confirmed four-year term appointment as General Counsel of the NLRB less than 10 months before the expiration of my term.” A few hours later, President Biden made good on his request and fired General Counsel Robb — making Robb the first NLRB general counsel to be forced out in more than half a century (in 1950 a general counsel willingly resigned at the request of incoming president Harry Truman).

Following Robb’s departure, the then Assistant General Counsel, Alice Stock, assumed the role of Acting General Counsel. Acting General Counsel Stock, however, quickly faced the same ultimatum as her prior boss as President Biden requested her resignation. She too declined to provide her resignation and was terminated effective Thursday January 21, 2021.

January 25, 2021 brought what looks to be a bit of stability to the Office of the General Counsel as President Biden has named Peter Sung Ohr as the Acting General Counsel. Mr. Ohr began his career with the NLRB in the Honolulu Sub-regional Office as a Field Attorney. In 2005, he was appointed Deputy Assistant General Counsel in the NLRB’s Division of Operations-Management. In 2011, Mr. Ohr was appointed Regional Director of the NLRB’s Chicago Regional Office where he was serving prior to his promotion.

Mr. Ohr stated, “As a career employee of the NLRB, I am especially proud to continue my work with the smart and dedicated agency staff to vigorously enforce the mission of the NLRA. I look forward to actively engaging the public to ensure workers’ fundamental rights of association at the workplace are protected to the fullest extent of the law.”