As a young boy growing up in wilds of New Jersey, Erik read about Horace Greeley. He was captivated by Greeley's famous statement, "Go West, young man." For better or worse, Erik did not finish the book; otherwise he would have known that Greeley was talking about going to the fertile plains of western Ohio. Accordingly, after suffering through a middle class upbringing, which included insulting the entire congregation of his synagogue (reform Judaism) with a speech about the evils of capitalism and the inferiority of the Buick automobile (which, in those days, was the car of upwardly aspiring families who could not yet afford a Cadillac or Mark III), and a short stint on Prince Edwards Island, Canada, Erik decided to move West. After graduating from college (Rutgers College, where he was a member of the last all-male class (which shows a definite lack of judgment on his part), he packed all of his worldly possessions in a Lark brand suitcase and took a plane to Salt Lake City, arriving in August of 1975. Prior to that time he had never been west of Iowa, and then only for a brief visit during a spring break from high school when he hitch- hiked to the Mississippi River to fill sand bags in a futile attempt to hold back the flooding waters.
Erik's voyage to Salt Lake City was precipitated either by a woman or to fulfill his lifelong desire to run a sod farm. Having graduated with a degree in History (specifically Southeast Asian History) Erik was effectively equipped to do nothing. Growing and selling sod was therefore a reasonable and relatively realistic endeavor. Erik's first few years were spent tramping around barren subdivisions in the Salt Lake Valley trying to fulfill Brigham Young's goal of making the desert bloom (which involved selling lawns to new home owners). Fortunately a down-turn in the economy put a stop to this business-oriented nonsense. Equally as fortuitous was the fact that Erik finally realized he needed to do something with his life and, on the spur of the moment applied to law school at the University of Utah.
Unlike most history and political science majors, Erik had no desire or aspiration to become a lawyer. He didn't even like to speak in front of groups and felt debating was a vastly overrated dalliance of the white upper classes. However, as further proof that we are not always in control of our destiny, he found out that he loved being a "bottom dwelling scum sucking lawyer." After graduating from law school in 1983 he went to work at Prince, Yeates & Geldzahler, and from the beginning practiced almost exclusively in the area of employment and labor law. At that time, firms either did management or labor work, and never the twain shall meet. P,Y & G worked exclusively in the former area and Erik represented such companies as Safeway, Farmer Jack, Parsons construction, and numerous other companies virtually all of whom have been purchased or merged into other entities. He handled numerous grievances arising under collective bargaining agreements, fair labor standard act matters, matters before the National Labor Relations Board, and, as the decade progressed, more and more discrimination claims.
Towards the end of the decade, undoubtedly driven by guilt brought on by the death of his socialist/nihilistic grandfather, he decided that he also wanted to start representing employees. Erik moved to Cohne, Rappaport & Segal in 1991, where he began representing employees in a countless number of industries and in virtually every area of employment law. This included, but was not limited to, discrimination cases, 1983 actions, wage and overtime claims, harassment matters, claims for pensions and benefits under ERISA. Erik continued however, to represent employers in the same areas. When asked how he could rectify such disparate representation, he responded as follows: " I believe that all people are inherently good. However some are not and as a result treat others unfairly. I view employment law as a way of trying to get both employers and employees to treat each other fairly and honestly. There are no good or bad guys; simply those who are inherently good or those who are not and those who are a bit of both. Being an employer or an employee has nothing to do with being inherently good or bad." Whatever that means, he was driven by the precept that everyone should be treated fairly.
In 2001, Erik and Lauren became excited by the possibilities inherent in developing a boutique firm which practiced solely in the are of employment law. By focusing all of their, and the firm's, energies in one direction, they would be, and are, able to make sure that both individuals and companies receive the very best representation and counsel in all aspects of the employment arena. They have since been joined by two southern wasps, which has done nothing to increase their diversity, but has further added to their collective sense of moral outrage. Erik "look[s] forward to helping employees and employers navigate the rocky shoals of the employment voyage for many years to come."