Deborah Willig Speaks at National Labor-Management Conference, 'Future@Work: Reimagining the Workplace'

Firm managing partner joined panel discussion on how collective bargaining can help achieve gender equity in professional sports and beyond

PHILADELPHIA, July 22, 2022 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ — After working to secure the first-ever collective bargaining agreement for U.S. professional women soccer players, Willig, Williams & Davidson managing partner Deborah R. Willig and representatives from the National Women’s Soccer League Players Association discussed the workplace issues faced by professional athletes in a session at the 2022 National Labor-Management Conference.

Entitled “How Collective Bargaining Can Help Achieve Gender Equity in Professional Sports & Beyond,” the panel focused on the importance of collective bargaining in addressing the gender pay gap in a variety of fields. Willig joined National Women’s Soccer League Players Association (NWSLPA) President Tori Huster and AFL-CIO Vice President and Executive Director of NWSLPA Meghann Burke on the panel discussion, which was moderated by newly elected AFL-CIO President Liz Shuler.

The session was part of the annual conference organized by the Federal Mediation & Conciliation Service. Held virtually on July 12 and 13, the conference theme, “Future@Work: Reimagining the Workplace,” focused on the twin impacts of the pandemic and a challenging economy on industrial relations. The conference also highlighted Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility (DEIA) issues in the workplace and featured a side-track on federal sector unionization during the Biden administration.

Other notable sessions addressed challenges facing private, public, and federal sector workplaces, such as hiring, the “Great Resignation,” managing workplace conflict, utilization of dispute resolution processes, the effects of inflation on the U.S. workforce, and contemporary collective bargaining approaches.

The FMCS National Labor-Management Conference was founded in 1982 and is generally held biennially as a showcase of FMCS services and programs for existing and prospective management and labor clients. The event attracted hundreds of attendees from the labor relations community in its early years and eventually expanded into a multi-day conference (and series of pre-conference events) that draws upwards of 1,000 – 1,500 attendees. Learn more about NLMC 2022.

A trailblazer in the Pennsylvania legal community, Willig has devoted her career to advocating for the rights and dignity of working people. She has counseled and negotiated on behalf of labor unions that represent workers from a wide variety of professions, helping to secure some of the region’s most significant labor contracts. Over the decades, the work of Willig and her firm has benefited working people in many ways, from increasing wages and improving living standards to protecting pension and health care benefits and ensuring that rules are equitable and properly enforced.

Willig and firm attorneys Jessica Caggiano and Larry Goodman, in partnership with the National Women’s Soccer League Players Association, began collective bargaining on behalf of the players in early 2021. Negotiations continued into the new year, and on Feb. 1, 2022, the Players Association and the National Women’s Soccer League reached the first collective bargaining agreement in the history of a U.S. women’s professional soccer league. The agreement includes increased salaries, free agency components beginning in 2023, and player health and safety provisions.

About Willig, Williams & Davidson – Willig, Williams & Davidson ( is one of the largest and most respected union-side labor law firms in the United States. The firm has offices in Philadelphia, Harrisburg, and Jenkintown Pa., as well as Haddonfield, N.J., and Chicago, Ill. Founded in 1979, Willig, Williams & Davidson focuses on representing labor unions, employee benefit funds and individual working people and their families on a variety of legal fronts, including national, regional and local contract negotiations; election and campaign finance; dispute resolution through mediation, arbitration and litigation; family law matters; benefits law design and compliance issues; discrimination, overtime and unpaid wages, and other employment matters; prepaid legal services for union members; social security disability; and workers’ compensation matters in Philadelphia and beyond. Workers inspire us.

Media Contact

Sarah Larson, Furia Rubel Communications, 215-340-0480, [email protected]


SOURCE Willig, Williams & Davidson

Deborah Willig Speaks at National Labor-Management Conference,'Future@Work: Reimagining the Workplace' WeeklyReviewer

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