I'm Bill Amlong, a second-career lawyer (formerly, a journalist with The Miami Herald for 18 years) . Although we primarily represent employees (including management-level employees), we also handle complex business and fraud litigation. Since 1985, I have handled approximately 100 trials and numerous appeals, and have argued successfully before the U.S. Supreme Court.
I got out of newspapering and into law school in 1982. An editor at The Miami Herald questioned my objectivity --- specifically about the Border Patrol's concertina barbed wire around the Krome Refugee Camp, and generally about my reporting from Haiti. I had been part of a generation of journalists who wanted to (and did) effect change, not just report he said/she said. Time to say, I'm outta here.
I stumbled into civil-rights litigation when, as a third-year law student and largely because of my background as a reporter, I got hired as an investigator in a prison-rights class action a case with which I stayed involved as a lawyer for 13 years after getting admitted in 1985.
I started doing employment discrimination work because of referrals that came in to my wife/partner, a former board member of the National Organization for Women and its initial Florida coordinator. No one else in Fort Lauderdale did this type of work.
Virtually overnight, we became the civil rights firm in Fort Lauderdale as much by default as anything else: the economics of the marketplace had created a vacancy in the niche for representing prison inmates and unemployed women.
We now have one of the larger plaintiff's employment law firms in Florida. Our clientele includes construction workers, corporate vice presidents, restaurant servers and physicians. I personally have tried 62 labor-and-employment or civil rights cases, handled numerous state and federal appeals and argued before the Supreme Court of the United States in the case of Faragher v. City of Boca Raton, 524 U.S. 755 (1998). A transcript and the audio of the oral argument is on-line at:
My 15 minutes of fame started in 1989 with a speech to a Boca Raton NOW chapter. That is where I met Beth Ann Faragher, a sexually harassed lifeguard whose case I won at trial, lost before the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, and eventually took to the United States Supreme Court. We won. Because this young woman (and her co-plaintiff, Nancy Ewanchew) had the stuff to literally fight City Hall, employers nationwide now must either have in place effective mechanisms to curb hostile-environment harassment or face damage awards a lot higher than the $1 Ms. Faragher got under the pre-1991 version of Title VII.
One of the most rewarding parts of the case came immediately before I began my argument at the Supreme Court: during that morning's bar admission ceremony, I moved the court to allow Ms. Faragher, by then a Colorado lawyer seated in the audience, to become a member of its bar. Chief Justice William Rehnquist swore her in.
Although I enjoy using the skills I developed as an investigative reporter in business litigation (I recently got a $1.5 million verdict against an aviation consultant who embezzled money he was supposed to be holding in escrow for my client), my wife/partner and I are die-hard 60s lefties who spend most of our energy on representing working men and women against management. I was president of the NELA Florida affiliate in 1996 through 1998, and will retire from NELA's national executive board in 2009 after four three-year terms. I am a former member of the Broward County Commission on the Status of Women, and its only-ever male chair. I also am on the board of Workplace Fairness, a 501 (C)(3) group dedicated to advancing workers' rights.
I am less of an ideologue than a fundamentalist: it is simply morally wrong for employers to cheat workers out of wages, to seek sex from someone who needs a paycheck, or to decide whom to hire, promote or (these days) lay off based on gender, national origin, sexual orientation, religion, color, age or disability status. These wrongs need remedies: our job is to get them for our clients.
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|FL||Member in Good Standing||1985||09/08/2015|
|Award name||Grantor||Date granted|
|Small Firm Practitioner of Merit Award||American Bar Association General Practice, Solo and Small Section||2004|
|Appreciation Award||National Organization for Women, Palm Beach County Chapter||2004|
|President's Award||National Employment Lawyers Association (Florida Affiliate)||1999|
|Glass Ceiling Award||National Organization for Women, Florida Chapter||1998|
|Women's Equality Day Award||National Organizartion for Women, Broward County Chapter||1993|
|Award for Outstanding Male Senior||Sigma Delta Chi Journalism Fraternity, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill||1968|
|Shareholder||The Amlong Firm||1985 - Present|
|Association name||Position name||Duration|
|National Employment Lawyers Association||National Executive Board||1996 - 2010|
|National Employment Lawyers Association (Florida affiliate)||Past President||1995 - 1997|
|American Justice Association||Member||1985 - Present|
|American Bar Association||Member||1985 - Present|
|Workplace Fairness||Board Member||N/A|
|Faragher v. City of Boca Raton||Sex harassment judgment affirmed by Supreme Court|
|Donovan v. Broward County||Internal EEO policy invalidated as retaliatory|
|Taylor v. Martell||Plaintiff's pleadings stricken for fraud on court|
|See all legal cases|
|Trial Magazine||Representing the age discrimination plaintiff||2008|
|Florida Bar Journal||Faragher v. City of Boca Raton: A Seven-Year Retrospective||2006|
|Nova Southeastern University - Shepard Broad Law Center||N/A||JD -- Cum Laude||1985|
|University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill||Journalism||AB in Journalism||N/A|
|Miami-Dade Junior College||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|American Bar Association Tort Trial & Insurance Practice Section Mid-Winter Meeting||Annual Update of Employment and Labor Law Decisions by the United States Supreme Court||2008|
|American Bar Association Section of Labor and Employment Law, Annual Meeting, Philadelphia, PA||Closing argument demonstration for mock trial||2007|
|Florida Chapter of the National Employment Lawyers Association, Fall Conference, St. Petersburg, FL||Florida State Court Discovery & Motion Practice||2006|
|National Employment Lawyers Association, Fifteenth Annual Convention, San Antonio, TX, 2004||What's My Case Worth: How to Negotiate for Maximum Value||2005|
|Florida Chapter of the National Employment Lawyers, Spring Conference, Melbourne, FL, 2004||The (Unwritten) Rules of Engagement: How it Really Works in State Courts in Florida||2005|
|Florida Chapter of the National Employment Lawyers Association, Spring Conference, Melbourne, FL||Doing Well by Doing Good: Making Money as Civil Rights Lawyers||2005|
|Stetson University/Florida Bar Five-Day Employment Law Trial Skills Workshop||Employment law trial skills||2004|
|Stetson University/Florida Bar Five-Day Employment Law Trial Skills Workshop||Employment law trial skills||2002|
|National Employment Lawyers, Thirteenth Annual Convention, Lake Buena Vista, FL||Strategies and Techniques for Effective Cross-Examination||2002|
|Stetson University/Florida Bar Five-Day Employment Law Trial Skills Workshop||Employment law trial skills||2001|
|Georgia Chapter of the National Employment Lawyers Association, Negril, Jamaica||Trial Strategies in the Mendoza, Clover Era: Plaintiffs Employment Law as Guerilla Warfare||2001|
|Florida Chapter of the National Employment Lawyers Association, Fall Seminar, St. Petersburg||Discovery: Practical Tips and Considerations: A No-Muss, No-Fuss Guide to Getting What You Need -- Even If It Might Not Be Everything You Want||2001|
|American Civil Liberties Union, ACLU of Florida Lawyers Conference, Key West, FL||2000-2001 Good, Bad and Ugly Awards: Employment Discrimination Update||2001|
|Stetson University/Florida Bar Five-Day Employment Law Trial Skills Workshop||Employment law trial skills||1997|
|Stetson University/Florida Bar Five-Day Employment Law Trial Skills Workshop||Employment law trial skills||1996|
|American Bar Association Section of Labor and Employment Law, Annual Meeting, Orlando, FL||Going for the Gold: Damages post Civil Rights Act of 1991||1996|
|Unitversity of Miami/Florida Bar Five-Day Employment Law Trial Skills Workshop||Employment law trial skills||1994|