Contact information
Address

100 Gold Street
Suite 4800
New York, NY 10038

Phone

212-306-7160

Fax

212-306-7167

MAILING ADDRESS
Peck Slip Station
PO Box 1018
New York, New York
10038-9991

Board Members & Professional Staff

OCB's Board

Susan Panepento, Chair

Susan Panepento was appointed as Chair of the Board and Director of the Office of Collective Bargaining on March 1, 2015. She has served on the Board of and been an active participant in the Association of Labor Relations Agencies and is its 2019-20 President-elect. She is also a member of the National Academy of Arbitrators. For ten years prior to her appointment as Chair, Ms. Panepento served as OCB’s Deputy Chair for Dispute Resolution functioning as the principal mediator of disputes and overseeing the arbitration process administered by the agency. She joined OCB's staff in 2001 as the Director of Representation. Ms. Panepento is a graduate of Cornell University - NYS School of Industrial and Labor Relations and Brooklyn Law School. Prior to joining OCB, Ms. Panepento practiced with the law firm Cohen, Weiss and Simon in New York City and served as a Field Examiner and Attorney with the National Labor Relations Board in Brooklyn, New York.

Al Viani, Impartial Member

For the last twenty-three years Mr. Viani has been a full-time Arbitrator and Mediator. He was formerly the Deputy Chair for Dispute Resolution at the Office of Collective Bargaining, serving as the principal mediator of disputes and overseeing the arbitration process administered by the agency (1986-1992). He has over 45 years’ experience in collective bargaining, arbitration, mediation, and fact-finding, and was the Director of Research and Negotiations for District Council 37, AFSCME (1971-1985) and President of Social Services Local 371, AFSCME (1964-1968).

M. David Zurndorfer, City Member

M. David Zurndorfer is a partner in the Labor and Employment Department at Proskauer Rose LLP, where he has represented the City's Office of Labor Relations in numerous matters. He is a graduate of Penn State University and Harvard Law School. In addition to serving as a member of the Board of Collective Bargaining, he is a member of the Board of Learning Leaders and a past member of the Labor and Municipal Affairs Committees of the City Bar Association.

Pamela Silverblatt, City Member

Pamela Silverblatt is the Vice Chancellor for Labor Relations at the City University of New York; the nation's largest urban public university. Prior to joining the City University, Ms. Silverblatt served as the First Deputy Commissioner in the Mayor's Office of Labor Relations in both Mayor Bloomberg's and Giuliani's administrations. Ms. Silverblatt's labor relations and collective bargaining experience is extensive and varied, including higher education, education, healthcare, and all facets of municipal public sector services. During her career, Ms. Silverblatt has represented both unions and management.

Carole O'Blenes, Alternate City Member

Carole O'Blenes is an optional service partner in the Labor and Employment Department at Proskauer Rose LLP, where she represented the City's Office of Labor Relations in a number of matters. She has also represented public and private employers in collective bargaining, arbitration and administrative proceedings, as well as employment litigation before the federal Courts of Appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court. Ms. O'Blenes is a graduate of Boston College and Harvard Law School. She has been a frequent speaker on labor and employment matters and was a member of the adjunct faculty of The Labor Relations Studies Program of the New York State Schoolof Industrial and Labor Relations.

Charles G. Moerdler, Labor Member

Charles G. Moerdler is the founding partner of Stroock & Stroock & Lavan's Litigation Practice. He concentrates in the areas of health care, international law, real estate, labor law, administrative law and zoning.

Born in Paris in 1934, Mr. Moerdler immigrated to the United States at the age of twelve and was admitted to the bar nine years later. Since that time he has become a prominent litigator and a civic leader. Among the may organizations which have retained Mr. Moerdler as outside general counsel are one of the largest hospitals in the country, one of the nation's largest health maintenance organizations, and a major New York City daily newspaper, for which he has also served as director. He regularly counsels Austria's largest bank in international litigation and served as Board Chairman of its U.S. subsidiary. He also acts for Austria's largest electricity and power enterprise, one of its largest realtors, and has represented other major European companies in a variety of matters. Mr. Moerdler has served as lead negotiator for numerous municipal labor unions, including the United Federation of Teachers, the Uniformed Sanitation Workers Association, and the Patrolmen's Benevolent Association. On numerous occasions he has been appointed by federal courts to serve as a Special Master for the resolution of complex issues. He has served as a private arbitrator and mediator in a variety of contexts.

Mr. Moerdler has extensive public sector experience. At age thirty, he was appointed Commissioner of Housing and Buildings of the City of New York, making him the youngest commissioner in the City's history. He served as a real estate and development consultant to New York City Mayor John Lindsay, as a member of the City's Air Pollution Control Board, and as Chairman and Commissioner of the New York State Insurance Fund. Currently, he serves as a member of the Board of Directors of the New York City Housing Development Corporation.

Peter B. Pepper, Alternate Labor Member

Peter B. Pepper is a labor consultant, playing an active role at the bargaining table, in union administration, in grievance and arbitration advocacy and training for unions in both the private and public sectors. Since 1997, Mr. Pepper has been a Lecturer in Labor Relations and Collective Bargaining at Baruch College, City University of New York. From 1999 until 2006, Mr. Pepper worked for Region 29 of the National Labor Relations Board. Prior to this, he served as a representative for the New York State Public Employees Federation and as an administrator for the trustees of U.A. Plumber's Local Number 2.

In June 2006, Mr. Pepper was re-elected to a second term as National President of the Workmen's Circle/Arbeter Ring. He has served on the Board of the Forward Association, the publisher of the Forward newspapers, and several other not-for-profit organizations.
Mr. Pepper holds a Masters of Science degree in Industrial and Labor Relations from Cornell University / Baruch College, City University of New York, where he graduated with honors, and a Bachelor of Business Administration from Baruch College, City University of New York.

OCB's Staff

Steven Star

Steven Star is Deputy Chair & General Counsel. Prior to joining OCB, Mr. Star was a partner at the law firm Meyer, Suozzi, English & Klein, P.C., practicing labor and employment law. He has served as a panelist at seminars for the New York State Bar Association and the American Bar Association, speaking on topics covering both public and private sector labor law and corporate investigations. Mr. Star is a graduate of Cornell University, School of Industrial and Labor Relations, and Case Western Reserve University, School of Law. Mr. Star has also worked for a political consulting firm, as a labor organizer, and as a legal intern at the Legal Aid Society’s Criminal Defense Division in Queens, NY, and its Civil Division in Maui, HI. He grew up in Queens, NY, and lives in Brooklyn with his wife and two boys.

Monu Singh

Monu Singh joined OCB as the Deputy Chair of Dispute Resolution in August 2015. In this role, she oversees dispute resolution procedures relating to grievance arbitration and contract negotiations. She also administers the agency's arbitration process. Prior to joining OCB, she was the Director of Labor Relations at MTA Long Island Rail Road. Ms. Singh holds a BA with honors from Villanova University and is a graduate of Rutgers School of Law - Newark.

Abigail R. Levy

Abigail R. Levy is Deputy General Counsel (Litigation) and serves as OCB's Executive Secretary. She joined OCB as a Trial Examiner in February 2011. She received her B.A., cum laude, from the University of Pennsylvania and her J.D. from Fordham University School of Law. Prior to joining the OCB, Abby was an associate at both union-side and management-side law firms in New York City, where she practiced labor law and ERISA and employee benefits law, and performed litigation.

Karine Spencer

Karine Spencer is Deputy General Counsel and Director of Representation. She is also the Information Officer. Ms. Spencer joined OCB in 2003 as a Trial Examiner. Previously, she was a litigation associate at Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe and at a labor and employment boutique. She received a B.A. from McGill University and a J.D. from New York University School of Law.

Melissa Trasky

Melissa Trasky is the Senior Trial Examiner and the Director of Administration for OCB. She joined OCB in 1997 as a Trial Examiner and became the Director of Administration in 2010, overseeing the agency's finances and its personnel administration. She is an adjunct professor at New York University, where she has taught Business Law since 2004. She also serves as the President of the Board of Directors at Norte Maar for Collaborative Projects in the Arts, a non-profit arts organization and gallery based in Brooklyn. Additionally, she serves on the Board of Directors of the Forest and Highland Park Trust.

Melissa went to Hofstra University School of Law, where she wrote for the Labor Law Journal. Prior to joining OCB she was a litigation associate in a law firm in New York.

Kasey L. Baker

Kasey L. Baker joined OCB as a Trial Examiner in March 2012. She received her B.A. from Fordham University at Lincoln Center and her J.D. from Northeastern University School of Law. Prior to joining the OCB, Kasey was a Labor Relations Advisor in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts' Office of Employee Relations. She also completed full-time legal internships with a union-side law firm in Washington, D.C., the Massachusetts Division of Labor Relations, the Labor Bureau of the NYS Attorney General's Office, and a judicial internship with the Honorable R. Marc Kantrowitz of the Massachusetts Appeals Court.

Kyle Brewster

Kyle Brewster joined the Office of Collective Bargaining in July 2020. Prior to joining OCB, he was a judicial law clerk at the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Administrative Law Judges. Mr. Brewster is a two-time Peggy Browning Fellow, having completed legal fellowships with AFSCME’s Office of General Counsel and O’Donoghue & O’Donoghue LLP. Additionally, he completed internships with the National Labor Relations Board’s Appellate and Supreme Court Litigation Branch, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of the Solicitor, and the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions. He received his B.S. from Cornell University’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations, and his J.D. from the Georgetown University Law Center where he was a Public Interest Fellow.

Kimberly Nosek

Kimberly Nosek joined the Office of Collective Bargaining as a Trial Examiner in 2013. She received her B.S. from Cornell University's School of Industrial and Labor Relations, and her J.D. from Brooklyn Law School where she served on the Executive Board of the Moot Court Honor Society. Prior to joining the OCB, Ms. Nosek completed a Public Service Fellowship at the New York State Department of Labor Office of Special Counsel, interned at multiple New York City agencies, and worked as an associate at a global human resources consulting company

Jake Stevens

Jake Stevens joined OCB is a Trial Examiner in July 2020. Prior to joining OCB, Mr. Stevens was an associate at the law firm of
Eisner Dictor & Lamadrid, practicing labor and employment law. Mr. Stevens has also served as a pro bono scholar at Make the Road New York, and worked at Cohen, Weiss & Simon LLP, Meyer, Suozzi, English & Klein, P.C., and NYSUT. He received both his B.A. and his J.D. from New York University.

Brain Zapert

Brian Zapert joined the Office of Collective Bargaining in January 2022. He received his B.A. from Syracuse University and his J.D. from Brooklyn Law School where he completed internships at the NLRB’s Manhattan Regional Office and various New York State and City agencies. Prior to joining the OCB, Mr. Zapert worked as a trial attorney for the New York City Office of Corporation Counsel.