American Society of Employers (ASE) Holds Inaugural AA/EEO Diversity Conference – High Level Speakers Present – Harassment a Key Topic

The American Society of Employers (ASE), one of the nation’s oldest and largest employer associations, held its inaugural the AA/EEO & Diversity Conference.

Just over 100 HR professionals attended the conference on November 15th. Victoria Lipnic, Acting Chair, U.S. Employment Opportunity Commission, opened the conference. Commissioner Lipnic discussed the 2017 EEOC Performance Report, the efficiencies of the agency’s new online intake system, and the dramatic reduction of the backlog of cases. Acting Chair Lipnic also stated that sexual harassment charges are growing fast and they’ve seen a significant uptick in the amount of web page visits to guidelines surrounding harassment. Later in the day, Gail Cober, Director of Detroit’s EEOC Field Office, presented on Retaliation in the Workplace. She stated that retaliation is the most frequently alleged basis of discrimination and has doubled since 1998.

Other key speakers included Anne-Marie Vercruysse Welch, Member, Clark Hill, who covered how harassment has been a hot issue in the workplace and how to combat it; Candee Chambers, Executive Director at DirectEmployers, who gave an OFCCP update and discussed how the current leadership vacuum is allowing OFCCP to continue to pursue cases as it had under the Obama administration; Susan DeClercq, Assistant U.S. Attorney, and Michelle P. Crockett, Principal and Director of Professional Development, Miller Canfield, discussed topics related to the Department of Justice including USERRA, immigration, ADA, and Title Vll; Annette Tyman, Partner, Seyfarth Shaw, covered the quickly changing landscape of pay disparity laws followed by Patrick Nooren, Executive Vice President, Biddle Consulting Group, provided methodology to identify pay disparity; Bill Osterndorf, President of HR Analytics, covered local and state affirmative action requirements; David Goldstein, Shareholder, Littler Mendelson, discussed how much has and hasn’t changed since the OFCCP implemented the Internet Applicant Rule in 2006; Tiffany Buckley-Norwood, Principal, Jackson Lewis, spoke on the issues arising from the intersection of the ADA, Workers Compensation, and FMLA; and Haven Cockerham, President, Cockerham and Associates, focused on diversity and inclusion framework that participants can implement at their employers.

The day ended with John Fox, Partner at Fox, Wang & Morgan, P.C., who presented leading edge thinking around OFCCP’s current approach to statistical analysis and provided pointers on how to be proactive in compliance.

“ASE was very pleased with the turnout for this new event. The caliber of speakers sets this conference apart from many others. Attendees were very engaged and left with the most up to date federal and state compliance updates,” stated Mary E. Corrado, ASE President and CEO.

For information on future ASE events, please visit

About the American Society of Employers (ASE) – a Centennial Organization
The American Society of Employers (ASE) is a not-for-profit trade association providing people-management information and services to Michigan employers. Since 1902, member organizations have relied on ASE to be their single, cost-effective source for information and support, helping to grow their bottom line by enhancing the effectiveness of their people. Learn more about ASE at