The Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA) announced that on December 11, 2017, Colleen Duffy Kiko was sworn in as FLRA Chairman and Authority Member; Ernest DuBester was sworn in for a third term as an Authority Member; and James T. Abbott was sworn in for a first term as an Authority Member. This follows their unanimous confirmation by the U.S. Senate on November 16, 2017. Today’s Presidential appointments complete the membership of the FLRA’s Authority component, which lacked a full complement of Members since January 3, 2017.
Chairman Kiko returns to the FLRA after serving as its General Counsel from 2005 to 2008, having been nominated to that position by President George W. Bush and unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate. She also worked at the FLRA’s predecessor agency, the Labor Management Services Administration of the Department of Labor (DOL), and, when the FLRA opened its doors on January 1, 1979, Chairman Kiko began work in the Washington Regional Office investigating unfair labor practices. Most recently, Chairman Kiko served as one of the three permanent Judges of the DOL’s Employees’ Compensation Appeals Board (ECAB), a position to which she was appointed in March of 2008. She previously served as an ECAB Judge from 2002 through 2005. Chairman Kiko has also served in the Justice Department as an attorney advisor in the Civil Rights Division and as a Special Assistant to the U.S. Attorney, Eastern District of Virginia, in Alexandria, Virginia; as an associate counsel to the House Judiciary Committee, Subcommittee on Civil and Constitutional Rights; and in the private practice of law. She holds a J.D. from Antonin Scalia Law School and a B.S. degree from North Dakota State University. Ms. Kiko lives in Virginia with her husband, Phil. They have four children and four grandchildren.
Member DuBester has served as an FLRA Member since August 2009. He was initially appointed and re-nominated by President Barack Obama, re-nominated again by President Donald Trump, and unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate to all three terms. He also served as FLRA Chairman from January to November of 2013, and for a second time in January of 2017. Member DuBester was previously nominated by President Clinton and served as Chairman and Member of the National Mediation Board (NMB) from 1993 to 2001. Subsequently, he served as a staff mediator with the NMB. Member DuBester has over 40 years of experience in labor-management relations. He began his career at the National Labor Relations Board, serving as counsel to former Chairman and Member John Fanning. He also served as a Union attorney with the firm of Highsaw & Mahoney, and as legislative counsel to the AFL-CIO. He previously taught collective bargaining and arbitration at the Catholic University of America School of Law. In addition, Member DuBester served as Professor and Director of the Dispute Resolution Program at George Mason University School of Law (now Antonin Scalia Law School). During his time at the Law School, he also worked as an arbitrator and mediator of labor and employment matters, including many federal-sector cases. Member DuBester received his undergraduate degree from Boston College, his law degree from the Catholic University of America School of Law, where he was Recent Developments Editor of the Law Review, and his Masters of Law in Labor Law from the Georgetown University Law Center. He is married to Karen Marie Kremer.
Member Abbott served as the Senior Executive Service (SES) Chief Counsel to three Chairmen of the Authority – Patrick Pizzella, Thomas Beck, and Dale Cabaniss. Before joining the FLRA, Member Abbott served as Deputy General Counsel for the Congressional Office of Compliance (2004 to 2007), where he led the investigation and prosecution of alleged violations of labor, employment, and safety and health laws within the Legislative Branch. Member Abbott earlier distinguished himself in various positions within the
Department of Defense, where he served as the Senior Associate District Counsel for Personnel and Ethics, Defense Contract Management Agency, in Los Angeles, California; Chief Counsel, Corpus Christi Army Depot, U.S. Army Materiel Command, Corpus Christi, Texas; and Senior Labor Counsel, HQ Depot Systems Command, U.S. Army Materiel Command, Chambersburg, Pennsylvania. Member Abbott received his J.D. from Temple University’s Beasley School of Law in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and was a Magna Cum Laude graduate of Malone University in Canton, Ohio, where he earned degrees in History and Religion and Philosophy. He lives in Oakton, Virginia, with his husband, Daniel Gri, and their two sons. He was a speaker at the Society’s 2017 Annual Symposium.