M. Karen Thompson, a member of the Somerville law firm Norris McLaughlin, P.A., was elected on October 24, 2008 to the Board of Directors of the New Jersey Audubon Society for a three-year term. A resident of Warren, Thompson is an avid birder who has traveled the world extensively with her husband, Bill Boyle, in pursuit of their mutual hobby. She is keenly interested in conservation issues and the preservation of New Jersey’s natural resources.
The New Jersey Audubon Society (NJAS) is a privately supported, not-for-profit, statewide membership organization. Founded in 1897, it is one of the oldest independent Audubon societies. The NJAS fosters environmental awareness and a conservation ethic among New Jersey citizens; protects the state’s birds, mammals and plants, especially endangered and threatened species; and promotes preservation of New Jersey’s valuable natural habitats. It maintains stewardship of 34 sanctuaries throughout the state, and conducts its programs through ten staffed facilities. The objectives of NJAS are implemented by its professional staff under the leadership of its Executive Director and supervision by an elected, voluntary Board of Directors. (For more information, please visit the NJAS website at www.njaudubon.org.)
Professionally, Thompson has been certified by the New Jersey Supreme Court as a Civil Trial Attorney since 1987. She has extensive experience in litigating complex corporate and commercial litigation. She has defended both Fortune 50 and Fortune 500 companies in a broad range of matters, primarily divided between products liability defense and employment litigation. She regularly defends equipment manufacturers, chemical and pharmaceutical companies in products liability actions. On the employment side, she defends management against claims of wrongful discharge, violation of whistleblowers’ statutes, and all forms of discrimination and harassment, in both state and federal courts, and administrative agencies.
Thompson was named a Super Lawyer in Business Law in 2008 and was listed in the Labor and Employment Law section of The Best Lawyers in America 2007 through 2009. She was named among the Outstanding Women in Somerset County by the Commission on the Status of Women for her leadership in a variety of legal and political organizations. She has been a member of the New Jersey Supreme Court Advisory Committee on Judicial Conduct since 1998. She also served as a Commissioner of the New Jersey State Commission of Investigation from 1995-2001. She is Chair of the Steering Committee of the NMM Women’s Forum, which group she was instrumental in establishing at the firm.
Prior to joining the firm, Thompson served as a law secretary to the Honorable Morton I. Greenberg, Superior Court of New Jersey, Chancery Division. She received her J.D. from Rutgers University in 1978 and her B.A., magna cum laude, from Monmouth University in 1974. She is admitted to the New Jersey and New York Bars, the United States Supreme Court, the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, and the United States District Courts in New York and New Jersey.