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John D. Cole


  • (T) 704.338.5351
  • (F) 704.805.4730

John D. Cole is a litigator with broad experience across the spectrum of employment law and labor law.  For more than 20 years, John has represented employers of all sizes in cases throughout the eastern United States.  He has handled numerous cases involving virtually all aspects of employment law before various federal courts, federal and state administrative agencies, and the state courts of North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia.  He has also handled employment arbitration cases before AAA and FINRA.

In the area of traditional labor law, John has successfully handled union campaigns, union elections, strikes and unfair labor practice litigation before the National Labor Relations Board. He has also handled collective bargaining agreement negotiations and labor arbitrations.


  • University of Georgia School of Law, J.D., 1991
  • Washington and Lee University, B.A., magna cum laude, 1984, Omicron Delta Kappa
Bar Admissions
  • North Carolina
  • South Carolina
  • Georgia
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern, Middle and Western Districts of North Carolina
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
Civic & Professional Memberships
  • Board member, Charlotte Country Day Athletics Boosters
  • Board member, North Carolina SHRM State Council, 2011-2013, Governmental Affairs
  • Board of Advisors, Diversity Forum in Charlotte, 2010-2011
  • Board of Directors, Charlotte Area Society for Human Resource Management, 2006-2009, Governmental Affairs
  • American Foundry Society
  • State Bar of Georgia
  • South Carolina Bar
  • North Carolina Bar
  • Mecklenburg County Bar

Best Lawyers

  • "Best Lawyers in America" - Employment Law - Management, since 2013

E.E.O.C v. PROPAK LOGISTICS, INC., 746 F.3d 145 (4th Cir. 2014)

U.S. District Court
for the Western District of N.C., Asheville Division
Civil Case No.


July 28 - July 29, 2016 - American Conference Institute's (ACI's) 8th Annual Forum on Defending and Managing Employment Discrimination Litigation, Chicago, Illinois. "Joint Employer Liability in the Employment Discrimination Context: Crucial Considerations for Franchisors/Franchisees Given the Expanding Scope of Joint Employment, and Defeating Joint Employment Allegations Early in an Employment Discrimination Claim."

January 28 – 29, 2016 – American Conference Institute’s (ACI’s) 26th National Forum on Wage Hour Claims and Class Actions, Miami, Florida. “Joint Employer Liability Under the Wage and Hour Laws: The Implications of the NLRB Browning-Ferris Decision on the Wage and Hour Landscape, Mitigating Risk of Joint Employer Liability, and Defeating Joint Employment Allegations Early in Employment Litigation."

May 28, 2015 - Panel Speaker, American Conference Institute’s Wage & Hour Claims and Class Actions, “Spotlight on the Expanding Employment Relationship of Joint Employers and the Fissured Workplace”, New York, NY.

July 31 - August 1, 2014 - American Conference Institute's (ACI's) 6th Annual Forum on Defending and Managing Employment Discrimination Litigation, New York, New York. "Retaliation in Employment Law Update: Overcoming the Challenges of Defending Retaliation Claims, and the Latest Development in Dodd-Frank Whistleblower Suits."

February 6-8, 2013 - American Foundry Society National Labor and Employment Law Conference, Clearwater Beach, Florida; "EEOC Class Action Litigation: Case Law Developments in 2012 and Trends to Watch for 2013."

September 18, 2012 - Ajilon North Carolina Human Resources Conference, Raleigh, North Carolina; "EEOC Litigation Tactics and Strategy: A Battlefield Perspective."

September 20, 2012 - NCSHRM State Conference, Wilmington, North Carolina; "Key Labor and Employment Legislative Developments at the State and Federal Levels."

May 2012 - NCSHRM Day In Raleigh Legislative Forum, Raleigh, North Carolina; "Federal And State Legislative Update."

John Cole main bio photoJohn Cole outside NP photo