Melissa serves as the Employment and Labor Relations practice group lead for the Indianapolis office. She focuses her practice on employment law, with a particular emphasis on prevention and defense of employment-based litigation. She has represented governmental and private clients in workplace discrimination litigation, policy formulation, and employment-related investigations. Melissa routinely advises clients on issues surrounding employment-related agreements and restrictive covenants, best practices in hiring, discipline and terminations, reductions in force, wage and hour matters, employee compensation, medical leave, and accommodations. Melissa also negotiates employment-based contracts and issues in connection with mergers and acquisitions and other strategic transactions. She also frequently provides clients with in-house training on workplace best practices, harassment, medical leave, and conducting internal investigations. Melissa is recognized as one of the "Ones to Watch" by Best Lawyers in America® for trusts for litigation - labor and employment and as a Rising Star by Indiana Super Lawyers for employment and labor. She was also selected as the winner in the law category at the 2021 Best & Brightest Awards.
Melissa is a member of Taft’s COVID-19 Evolving Workplace Task Force. She regularly advises clients on employment-related issues surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, including terminations and temporary layoffs, the WARN Act, the paid leave provisions of the Families First Coronavirus Relief Act, medical accommodations, and employee safety and return-to-work best practices and policies. She also provides training and guidance to executive-level and supervisory employees with respect to the prevention and management of COVID-19-related issues in the workplace.
Melissa’s practice also includes representing universities in employment matters and student affairs, including discrimination, harassment, student misconduct, breach of contract, and tenure. She also conducts internal investigations for schools and athletic departments.
In addition to her employment practice, Melissa has extensive experience with complex commercial litigation matters and business disputes. She also has significant experience managing large scale electronic discovery matters.
Melissa is also heavily involved in the Indianapolis community. She currently serves as Chair of the Board of Directors for the Marion County Commission on Youth (MCCOY) and is a member of the American Red Cross Young Professionals Board.
Melissa earned her J.D., magna cum laude, from Valparaiso University School of Law, where she was a member of the Valparaiso University Law Review and served as a law clerk for the Honorable Andrew P. Rodovich in the Northern District of Indiana federal court. She graduated from Marquette University, cum laude, with degrees in economics and political science.
Recipient, Indy's Best & Brightest Awards, Law Category Winner (2021)
Honoree, Indiana Super Lawyers Rising Stars
Honoree, Ones to Watch, Best Lawyers in America® (2021)
All Service Areas
- Valparaiso University School of Law (2011)
- Marquette University (2008)
- Federal - Northern District of Indiana
- Federal - Southern District of Indiana
- State - Indiana
- Indianapolis Bar Association
- Indiana State Bar Association
- MCCOY (Marion County Commission On Youth)
- American Red Cross
Member, Young Professionals Board
- Crossroads Education Foundation