For nearly 30 years, Kirk Turner has represented companies and management exclusively in all aspects of labor and employment law, with a specific emphasis on litigation before federal and state courts, regulatory and administrative agencies, and in arbitration matters. He has particularly extensive experience defending employers in discrimination, harassment and civil rights matters, and routinely represents management in proceedings before the National Labor Relations Board, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Department of Labor, and Occupational Safety and Health Administration.
Kirk serves as leader of the firm’s Labor and Employment Group, one of the largest of its kind in the region.
As part of his comprehensive labor and employment practice, Kirk draws upon his decades of courtroom experience to provide preventive counsel and training to corporate clients in the areas of employment claim prevention and legal compliance with a myriad of federal and state laws. He frequently counsels employers and their management in connection with internal investigations, wage and hour law, employment agreements, discipline and termination decisions, reductions in force and severance agreements, employee handbooks and the enforcement of company policies, protection of employees’ civil rights, workplace health and safety issues, employee leave, business-based immigration, unemployment, disability benefits, workers’ compensation discrimination, labor-management relations, and union avoidance strategies.
Kirk has represented a large number of franchised automobile dealerships, including dealerships representing Ford, Chevrolet, Toyota, Honda, Lincoln-Mercury, Jaguar, Volvo, Hummer, Acura, Mercedes-Benz, Infiniti, Nissan, Lexus, Audi, Land Rover, Saab, Smart, Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Volkswagen, Saturn, Cadillac, Kia, Pontiac and GMC. Kirk served for nine years as the Executive Director of the Tulsa Automobile Dealers Association, an affiliate of the National Automobile Dealers Association, providing regular updates to members on current legal, legislative and regulatory developments. Kirk is a member of the National Association of Dealer Counsel, a nationwide professional organization of attorneys who represent automobile and other vehicle dealers.
Kirk’s client list includes employers from virtually every major industry across the country. His experience in defending thousands of cases over his career makes Kirk a valued partner in helping clients navigate through and obtain successful results in litigation and other employment-related challenges.
In addition to his private practice, Kirk has served in leadership positions for a significant number of professional industry groups on a local, state and national level. He previously served on the board of directors for the Tulsa Area Human Resources Association (TAHRA) for two decades, served was the organization’s president in 2002-2003, and currently serves as its general counsel. He served five terms as the vice president of legislative affairs and general counsel for the Oklahoma State Council for Human Resource Management, an affiliate of the Society for Human Resource Management, and is a past board member of the Tulsa Equal Employment Opportunity Coordinators’ Association. Kirk has served on the State Chamber of Oklahoma’s Human Resources Committee and Legislative Affairs Committee, been a member of the National Employee and Labor Relations Committee for the Society for Human Resource Management, and has served as general counsel for the Tulsa Better Business Bureau. He currently serves as general counsel for WorkForce Tulsa.
Kirk’s achievements have earned him inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America (employment law–management; labor law–management; labor and employment litigation), Oklahoma Super Lawyers (“Top 50 Oklahoma Lawyers”), and Chambers USA Guide to America’s Leading Lawyers for Business, where he has been recognized for his “impressive litigation practice” as well as his specialized knowledge of labor and employment issues affecting the motor dealership industry.
Prior to joining McAfee & Taft, Kirk served as a director and the leader of the Labor & Employment Law Group at Newton, O’Connor, Turner & Ketchum, a law firm he co-founded in 1995.Download Bio (PDF)
Honors and Awards
- Listed in the Chambers USA Guide to America’s Leading Lawyers for Business
- Named a “Labor & Employment Star – South” by Benchmark Litigation
- Consistently selected by peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America (employment law—management; labor law—management; labor and employment litigation)
- Regularly listed in Oklahoma Super Lawyers
- Named to Oklahoma Super Lawyers’ list of “Top 50 Lawyers”
- Rated AV Preeminent by Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Ratings
- Honored with the Oklahoma State Council for Human Resources Management Excellence Award (2007)
- Honored with the Tulsa Area Human Resources Association’s Excellence award (2003)
- Honored with the Tulsa Area Human Resources Association’s President’s Award (2001)
Professional Organizations and Memberships
- Tulsa County Bar Association (Labor & Employment Law Section)
- Oklahoma Bar Association (Labor & Employment Law Section)
- Arkansas Bar Association (Labor & Employment Law Section)
- American Bar Association (Labor & Employment Law Section)
- Tulsa Area Human Resources Association (General Counsel and Former Board Member)
- Tulsa Equal Employment Opportunity Coordinators’ Association (Former Board Member)
- Oklahoma State Council for Human Resources Management (Former Legislative Affairs Director and General Counsel)
- Society for Human Resource Management (National Employee and Labor Relations Committee)
- Tulsa Automobile Dealers Association (Former Executive Director and General Counsel)
- National Association of Dealers Counsel
Civic Involvement and Leadership
- Metro Tulsa Chamber of Commerce, Board of Advisors
- Metro Tulsa Chamber of Commerce, Labor and HR Advocacy Task Force/OneVoice
- Better Business Bureau of Tulsa (Former General Counsel)
- WorkForce Tulsa (General Counsel)
- State Chamber of Oklahoma (Member, Human Resources Committee and Legislative Affairs Committee)