S&S Activewear (PPAI 256121, S12) – ranked the No. 2 supplier in this year’s PPAI 100 – has announced the hiring of Alaina Brooks as chief legal officer.

A 23-year veteran of the legal field, Brooks has served on executive leadership teams responsible for strategic planning, operational performance and company culture. Prior to promo, she spent 15 years in the oil and gas industry at EnLink Midstream, serving in a variety of roles, including executive vice president, chief legal and administrative officer, and secretary.

  • Throughout her career, she has provided expert guidance on a range of legal, compliance, regulatory and environmental, social and governance (ESG) matters, such as commercial transactions, litigation and corporate governance.

“I enjoy practicing law, and in particular, doing it in-house with a company as part of their business team,” Brooks says. “I’m excited to collaborate with this dynamic team, harnessing our collective expertise to navigate legal complexities and drive innovative strategies for S&S and our continued success and growth.”

ESG Specialist

Brooks has extensive experience in ESG program development, as well as sustainability measurement and reporting, which the Bolingbrook, Illinois-based supplier expects to significantly bolster its commitment to ESG initiatives.

“We’re on a mission to inspire and foster growth for our customers, employees and vendors,” says Frank Myers, CEO of S&S Activewear. “I value the breadth and depth of expertise that Alaina brings to S&S and with her as our chief legal officer, our team, business, vendors and customers will all benefit. We’re thrilled to have Alaina and know her expertise and guidance are a welcomed addition to our team.”


Legal Controversy

Brooks’ arrival at S&S Activewear comes amid a lawsuit over music in the workplace.

In June, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled that derogatory music playing at work could violate sexual discrimination laws, clearing the way for a lawsuit by eight former employees to move forward.

The lawsuit stems from an issue at the company’s Reno, Nevada, facility. It alleges that S&S permitted its managers and employees to routinely play “sexually graphic, violently misogynistic” music throughout its warehouse, creating an environment that “catalyzed” abusive behavior.

In 2021, a lower court had dismissed the case, reasoning that the music’s offensiveness to both men and women and audible throughout the warehouse nullified any discriminatory potential. The Ninth Circuit vacated that decision on two key principles:

  • Harassment, whether aural or visual, does not need to be directly targeted at a particular plaintiff in order to pollute a workplace and give rise to a Title VII claim.
  • The challenged conduct’s offensiveness to multiple genders is not a certain bar to stating a Title VII claim.

Issuing a statement on the case to PPAI Media in June, S&S Activewear said, “We strive to make our workplace both safe and inclusive for all, while ensuring our team members feel respected, fulfilled and motivated. We remain confident that the U.S. District Court will once again determine – as previously concluded in 2021 – that the plaintiff’s suit is without merit.”