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Transportation BNSF general counsel joins Thompson & Knight

BNSF general counsel joins Thompson & Knight

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Robert Francis
Robert Francis
Robert is a Fort Worth native and longtime editor of the Fort Worth Business Press. He is a former president of the local Society of Professional Journalists and was a freelancer for a variety of newspapers, weeklies and magazines, including American Way, BrandWeek and InformatonWeek. A graduate of TCU, Robert has held a variety of writing and editing positions at publications such as the Grand Prairie Daily News and InfoWorld. He is also a musician and playwright.

Charles W. Shewmake, who for eight years has been vice president and general counsel at Fort Worth-based BNSF Railway Corp., has joined Thompson & Knight LLP as partner in the trial practice group.

“Charles brings a wealth of legal and transportation industry experience from his nearly 30 years at BNSF,” said Greg W. Curry, the firm’s trial practice leader.

“While Charles has a breadth of expertise in many areas of law, he will focus his practice at Thompson & Knight on employment and labor law, commercial litigation, regulatory law, and environmental litigation,” said Curry. “I have had the pleasure of knowing Charles as a friend and client for many years. Now, I look forward to working with him in his new role.”

Shewmake focuses his practice on labor and employment, regulatory matters, commercial litigation, and environmental litigation. His experience also includes complex shareholder litigation, antitrust litigation, personal injury litigation, and commercial arbitration, as well as emergency response management.

Beginning as an intern at BNSF in 1988, Shewmake held various positions at the company, including handling and supervising numerous labor and employment matters; overseeing and coordinating BNSF’s State Government Affairs team with responsibility for state legislative and political activities in 28 states; environmental litigation; and labor law. In 2008, he was named vice president and general counsel with responsibility for casualty litigation, safety related legal matters, labor and employment law, and certain environmental legal matters.

He received an Advanced Management Program degree from Harvard Business School in 2007, a J.D. from Texas Tech University School of Law in 1990, and a B.A. in Business Administration from University of Texas at Arlington in 1987.

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