Contact Information

Direct: 650.443.5103

Robert D. Thomas

Senior Attorney

Rob represents both employers and executives in employment counseling and transactions. He specializes in employment agreements, executive compensation, stock options, and other equity arrangements, protection of trade secrets, restrictions on competition, terminations, and general employment counseling.  His employment counseling focuses on compliance and litigation avoidance, including potential harassment and discrimination claims, wage and hour and compensation disputes, reasonable accommodations and leaves of absence, and severance and termination issues.

Rob appears before administrative agencies, including the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the California Civil Rights Department (formerly the DFEH) and the California Labor Commissioner (or DLSE) and the California Employment Development Department.  He received Martindale-Hubbell’s highest rating (“AV”).

Representative Matters

  • Represented employer in response to an employee’s racial harassment claim and the termination of the employee’s supervisor.
  • Represented a technology company in the settlement of an overtime claim by one of the early stage employees.
  • Represented employer when an employee claimed that she had been sexually harassed by an important customer.
  • Represented employers in response to a sexual harassment and discrimination claims.
  • Represented employers in companywide layoffs and restructurings.
  • Represented employers in terminations and in the post-termination claims by the employees.
  • Represented employers in hiring, compensation, and equity grant issues.
  • Represented employers on leave and reasonable accommodation issues.
  • Represented an employer when a senior employer left to form a competing business and started soliciting employees and customers.
  • Represented executives who were hired as CEO or other senior executive positions at public companies, venture-financed private companies, companies owned by private equity firms, partnerships, and other private companies.
  • Represented executives in the negotiation of separation agreements, resulting from their termination without cause or resignation for good reason.
  • Represented executives and entrepreneurs who left their employer to join or start a competing company.
  • Represented the executives at companies in a merger or acquisition, regarding the negotiation of their employment agreements and non-competition agreements and regarding compliance with their non-competition agreements.


Rob is currently the author of Chapter 8 (Compensation and Equity Programs) of CEB’s Drafting Employment Documents for California Employers.  He has also been a contributing author of Matthew Bender’s California Employer’s Guide to Employee Handbooks and Personnel Policy Manuals and the Employers Group’s California Wage and Hour Guide.

Bar Admission

  • California, 1993


  • The University of California, Hastings
    College of the Law
    J.D. 1993
    Magna Cum Laude
    Order of the Coif
    Judicial Extern for Justice Armand Arabian of the California Supreme Court
  • University of California, Los Angeles
    B.A. 1984 (English)
    Volunteer Activities

Rob is an active member of the legal and local community. He has chaired both the Labor & Employment Executive Committee and the Education Committee of the Santa Clara County Bar Association. He has also served on the Coyote Point Museum’s Board of Trustees and the Town of Woodside’s Recreation Committee.


Rob is also an adjunct professor at Menlo College where he teaches a course on employment law.  He also teaches a class at University of California San Francisco on employment contracts.

Prior to attending law school, Rob served as an Officer in the United States Navy, where he was an engineering officer aboard a submarine.