About Faulkner Law

Elizabeth A. Faulkner, Esq.

Faulkner Law Offices, PLLC was founded by Elizabeth A. Faulkner in 1996. Elizabeth is an accomplished trial attorney dedicated to zealously serving her clients with compassion and courtesy. Elizabeth has been recognized by her peers and judges and has achieved the highest possible peer review rating in legal ability and ethical standards, receiving an AV Preeminent rating by Martindale-Hubbell.

Education:
Arizona State University | J.D., with honors, 1990
Northern Arizona University | B.S., Journalism, 1986

Admitted to Practice:
State Bar of Arizona, 1991
U.S. District Court, District of Arizona, 1991

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Faulkner Law Offices, PLLC was founded by Elizabeth A. Faulkner in 1996. Elizabeth is an accomplished trial attorney dedicated to zealously serving her clients with compassion and courtesy. Elizabeth has been recognized by her peers and judges and has achieved the highest possible peer review rating in legal ability and ethical standards, receiving an AV Preeminent rating by Martindale-Hubbell.

Elizabeth is a noted photojournalist, having worked for various newspapers, magazines and the Associated Press before embarking on her legal career. Once admitted to Arizona State University College of Law, she served in the distinguished position of a legal research and writing instructor to other law students. Based upon her superior academic record and writing skills, she was also appointed to the prominent position of Managing Editor for the Arizona State Law Journal. Finally, she had the great privilege and honor of studying, while on scholarship, under United States Supreme Court Justice William Brennan. Upon graduating from law school with honors, she served a prestigious clerkship in the Arizona Supreme Court with Vice-Chief Justice James Moeller. Elizabeth’s academic achievements and awards next led her to a position as an Associate at the highly respected law firm of Gust Rosenfeld, P.L.C. She practiced there from 1991 to 1996, focusing on civil litigation and appellate work, with an emphasis on employment law and insurance defense. After successfully trying numerous bench and jury trials, Elizabeth’s passion for employment law led her to form her own firm, enabling her to provide her clients with large firm service at small firm rates.

Elizabeth has authored several prominent law journal articles on trial strategy and human rights. Her dedication and drive in the area of employment law has resulted in her often being called upon to provide training and counsel to employers. She is a frequent speaker on employment-related topics, one of the firm’s areas of practice.

Besides her focus in Employment Law, which includes counseling employees and employers in discrimination law, (including sexual orientation), wage and hour law, sexual harassment, wrongful termination, executive employment contracts, personnel policies and manuals, discipline issues, trade secrets/anti-piracy and non-compete agreements, arbitration, mediation and trial work for both employees and management, Elizabeth’s practice also includes commercial/business litigation, personal injury, school and education law, insurance defense coverage, and complex construction defect litigation.

Complementing her legal practice, Elizabeth is an avid supporter of numerous non-profits and charitable organizations. She is passionate about serving the developmentally and intellectually challenged, and advocating for those who cannot speak for themselves, including homeless animals. She and her children log hundreds of volunteer hours annually through the many charities they support. Elizabeth is a strong believer in change through action, at home, in the schools and in the workplace. When she is not working, she can be found at sporting events, or on the water, swimming, sailing or scuba diving.

Education:
Arizona State University:
J.D., with honors, 1990

Northern Arizona University:
B.S., Journalism, 1986

Admitted to Practice:
State Bar of Arizona, 1991
U.S. District Court, District of Arizona, 1991

Professional Affiliations and Other Accomplishments:
Bar Memberships: State Bar of Arizona; U.S. District Court of Appeals of
Arizona; Maricopa County Bar Association; Women Lawyer’s Association;
Arizona Employment Lawyer’s Association.

Other Memberships: Member, Board of Directors, Free Arts for Abused Children of Arizona; Las Madrinas, Auxiliary for the Scottsdale Foundation for the Handicapped; and Amnesty International.

Author, Editor and Photojournalist: “The Right to Habeas Corpus, Only in the Other Americas,” American University Journal of International Law and Policy, Vol. 9, No. 3 (1994); “Using the Special Verdict to Manage Complex Cases and Avoid Compromise Verdicts,” Arizona State Law Journal, Vol. 21, No. 1 (1989); former Managing Editor for the Arizona State Law Journal; former legal writing instructor; and former photojournalist for various newspapers, magazines and the Associated Press.

Shirley A. Kaufman, Esq. (Of Counsel)

Shirley, an Arizona native, received her undergraduate degree, summa cum laude, from Arizona State University, and several years and several children later decided to pursue her law degree at her alma mater. Based on her academic excellence, she was asked to serve as a research and writing instructor as a second year law student, an assignment usually reserved for top-performing third year students.

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Shirley, an Arizona native, received her undergraduate degree, summa cum laude, from Arizona State University, and several years and several children later decided to pursue her law degree at her alma mater. Based on her academic excellence, she was asked to serve as a research and writing instructor as a second year law student, an assignment usually reserved for top-performing third year students. Shirley also was welcomed on the Law Journal editorial staff as a second year student, an honor based on academic achievement. In her final year in law school, Shirley’s peers on the Law Journal elected her Editor In Chief, the highest and most demanding position. While in law school, Shirley also captured an internship on Capitol Hill working for Senator Dennis DeConcini, then-chairman of the committee on Patents and Trademark. The Senator recognized Shirley’s interests extended past intellectual property and allowed her to delve into other areas, including writing several speeches for him.

Shirley graduated from law school with honors, gaining entry to the Order of the Coif. Following graduation, Shirley postponed her plans to join the prestigious Phoenix firm of Brown and Bain for a year in order to accept a coveted clerkship on the Federal Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit (Judge William Canby), an experience Shirley describes as an intense but glorious launch to a legal career. As an Associate at Brown and Bain and as was typical, Shirley had several areas of legal focus, but by the time she was elected Partner, she knew Labor and Employment law was her calling. Shirley served her company clients as a counselor, drafting and implementing policies and procedures to ensure compliance and avoid legal disputes, but when disputes did arise she also handled mediations, arbitrations, civil litigations and appeals. Shirley also represented individuals with claims relating to discrimination, harassment, wage and hour errors, wrongful termination, contract violations, FMLA and other benefit denials.

One of Shirley’s clients, America West Airlines, enticed her away from private practice and into its ranks as Senior Director of Legal Affairs. As one of only three lawyers at the 14,000 employee airline, Shirley handled an exhaustive range of legal issues though her prominent role was oversight of all employment law issues including handling agency charges and hearings and overseeing all litigations. Within two years of joining America West, Shirley was promoted to Vice President of Labor and Employment, the highest company “people” position, with global responsibility for compensation design, recruiting, benefits design and administration, executive compensation, compliance with all employment related state/federal/foreign laws, policy development and related training programs. On the labor front, Shirley assumed the lead negotiator role on four agreements and had oversight of outside counsel for the remaining open contracts; she also had inherited a massive backlog of grievances, and, by bundling and creatively negotiating, Shirley successfully and economically reduced the open grievances to a handful of current filings.

More recently, Shirley moved to the East, working for a major US government contractor, Raytheon, in its efforts to divest itself of one of its many subsidiaries, in this case a small air carrier. Shirley’s role was to bring the Human Resources functions into full compliance and to negotiate a first labor contract with one of the bargaining units while a buyer could be found. Following intense due diligence and the resulting successful sale of the subsidiary, Shirley joined another US government contractor, National Air Cargo and Airlines, as its Vice President, Human Resources and Ethics and Compliance. Shirley had ultimate responsibility for all HR functions globally, including implementing practices that ensured all of the expanded HR compliance requirements US government contractors face were fully honored; as a result, National passed all government audits with a clean bill. The global workforce employed by National allowed Shirley to use her expertise in issues relating to expatriate and foreign national employees.

Recently returning to her beloved Arizona, Shirley has joined her law school colleague, Elizabeth Faulkner, as Of Counsel at Faulkner Law Offices and will to continue to focus on employment law as a counselor and advocate. Shirley also is reengaging with her community. As a former Board Member for the Arizona Opera Company, Shirley now spends uncountable hours as a volunteer for the Opera. Shirley also has been honored to be a Big Sister to several wonderful girls in the Valley Big Brothers Big Sisters Program, and is looking forward to adding one more Little Sis to her family. To relax, Shirley ties on her tennis shoes and runs a half or full marathon somewhere around the globe.

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