Jody Calemine is senior fellow and director of labor and employment policy at The Century Foundation, which prioritizes worker power, employment and retirement security, inclusive manufacturing and job training, and worker supports and benefits such as unemployment insurance.

A labor lawyer by profession, Jody previously served as general counsel and then chief of staff at the Communications Workers of America (CWA), an international labor union representing 700,000 workers in telecommunications, media, tech, airlines, manufacturing, and the public sector, from 2014 to 2023. As general counsel, he was in charge of managing the union’s legal strategy, including coordinating litigation in the successful 40,000-person strike at Verizon from Virginia to Massachusetts in 2016, overseeing groundbreaking litigation to fight employment discrimination, and pursuing challenges to anti-worker state laws.

From 2003 to 2014, Jody worked for the U.S. House Education and Labor Committee in various roles, including deputy director of labor policy, general counsel, and staff director. On Capitol Hill, he helped enact legislation such as the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, the Minimum Wage Act of 2007, and the Affordable Care Act. He helped shepherd the Employee Free Choice Act and various health and safety measures through the House of Representatives and managed oversight of federal labor agencies. As staff director, he coordinated both labor and education policy.

Jody began his law career by conducting labor arbitrations, pursuing unfair labor practice charges, and advising organizing campaigns for the Communications Workers of America directly after law school and handling public sector labor matters for the union-side firm of Zwerdling, Paul, Liebig, Kahn and Wolly, including leading collective bargaining and arguing before federal judges and the Virginia Supreme Court.

A native of West Virginia and a graduate of a rural Virginia public high school, Jody obtained his bachelor’s degree in philosophy and American government with high distinction from the University of Virginia and his juris doctor from the University of Virginia School of Law, where he helped lead a union organizing and living wage campaign and received the Robert Bellamy Labor Law Scholarship and the Earl K. Shawe Labor Relations Award.