Our next DEFining Moments spotlight is on Neil Brunetz, of counsel at Drew Eckl & Farnham. Brunetz specializes in all aspects of civil litigation matters under OSHA and other government agencies, including personal injury, wrongful death, workers’ compensation, construction and more.
Brunetz holds bar admissions in both Georgia and Tennessee and is a member of the State Bar of Georgia, United States District Court for the Eastern and Middle Districts of Tennessee and the Northern District of Georgia. With 20 years of experience in bench and jury trials, he has represented both plaintiffs and defendants in the state courts of Tennessee and Georgia, federal courts and a diverse appellate practice. Recently, Brunetz has been working towards launching an OSHA safety program and representation package, geared toward smaller companies without in-house legal guidance. The program aims to integrate health and safety protocols into companies’ routines and in an effort to protect them from avoidable OSHA violations.
After graduating from University of Tennessee College of Law in 2001, Brunetz gained experience in several areas of civil litigation, including working as outside general counsel for a technology company. There, he assisted in negotiating and finalizing NDAs, SaaS agreements and technology development agreements. In 2019, he made the leap to join Drew Eckl & Farnham where he connected with Matthew Nanninga, a partner at the firm, who quickly became a close mentor and friend.
One of Brunetz’ key DEFining moments at Drew Eckl & Farnham has been overseeing the implementation of COVID-19 office requirements and responses that adhere to CDC guidance and OSHA regulations, and also educating the firm on strategy and protocol over the past year and a half. Given Brunetz’ specialized expertise in OSHA enforcement, he has had the opportunity to work with people across all practice groups and seniority levels, which has been a major career differentiator for him. Brunetz credits every member of the firm, at a partner level or otherwise, in helping guide him throughout his time so far with Drew Eckl & Farnham. He also credits many of his career successes to the relationships he’s made along the way. After 20 years in the legal world, he still enjoys coming to work every day, which he considers another important DEFining moment.
When asked his biggest piece of advice to new attorneys, Brunetz says to interact with as many people as you can and take advantage of every opportunity that is presented.
“It’s important to establish relationships with everyone in the office. From lawyers and paralegals, to records and marketing departments – interact with everyone you can, not just the attorneys, because you never know what you might learn,” says Brunetz. “It’s also important to jump on every big opportunity that comes your way. Taking full advantage of these new opportunities provides even more experience to learn and perfect your craft.”
Neil Brunetz has experience working as an outside general counsel for a technology company assisting the company in negotiating and finalizing NDAs, SaaS agreements and technology development agreements as well as many other aspects of the company’s business. His legal experience also includes courtroom representation of clients in civil litigation matters, including personal injury, wrongful death, workers’ compensation, construction, contract, commercial disputes, and malpractice actions. He represents employers in defense of claims in front of OSHA and Other government agencies. Neil has bench and jury trial experience on behalf of both plaintiffs and defendants in state courts in Tennessee and Georgia and federal courts as well as a diverse appellate practice.
Drew Eckl & Farnham’s blog series, “DEFining Moments,” highlights attorneys and the pivotal moments that have shaped their careers, the lessons they’ve learned along the way and the advice they have for young associates beginning their legal careers.