• PRACTICE FOCUS+
  • INDUSTRIES+
  • EDUCATION+
    • Loyola University New Orleans College of Law
      J.D., cum laude, 1985; Loyola Law Review
    • University of New Orleans
      B.A., 1982
    • Hunter College
      1977-1978
  • ADMISSIONS+
    • U.S. District Court, Western District of Louisiana
    • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Texas
    • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana
    • U.S. Supreme Court
    • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
    • U.S. District Court, Middle District of Louisiana
    • Louisiana
    • Texas
  • CLERKSHIP+
    • Law Clerk to the Hon. A.J. McNamara, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana
  • LANGUAGES SPOKEN+
    • French

M. Nan Alessandra

Partner

  • New Orleans

    504-584-9297 office

  • Houston

    713-626-1386 office

  • Resident in the New Orleans office

Nan Alessandra represents employers in both the public and private sectors in the defense of discrimination, harassment and retaliation claims for age, gender, disability, race, religion, national origin and other protected categories. Her litigation experience includes the defense of EEOC and other administrative charges filed in federal and state agencies, as well as defense of legal claims filed in court and in arbitration. She has also represented clients on a variety of human resource and risk management issues, in developing policies and procedures, and providing training to management and personnel on employment and labor topics, including corporate compliance issues. Ms. Alessandra’s experience involves many different industries including gaming, hospitality, maritime, oil and gas, financial institutions, educational institutions, state agencies, municipalities, federal contractors and subcontractors, manufacturing companies, chemical companies and health care organizations.

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Nan Alessandra represents employers in both the public and private sectors in the defense of discrimination, harassment and retaliation claims for age, gender, disability, race, religion, national origin and other protected categories. Her litigation experience includes the defense of EEOC and other administrative charges filed in federal and state agencies, as well as defense of legal claims filed in court and in arbitration. She has also represented clients on a variety of human resource and risk management issues, in developing policies and procedures, and providing training to management and personnel on employment and labor topics, including corporate compliance issues. Ms. Alessandra’s experience involves many different industries including gaming, hospitality, maritime, oil and gas, financial institutions, educational institutions, state agencies, municipalities, federal contractors and subcontractors, manufacturing companies, chemical companies and health care organizations.

Ms. Alessandra is a member of the American Arbitration Association’s Panel of Neutrals for employment related matters in both arbitration and mediation. She has participated in a range of mediations and arbitrations as a mediator, arbitrator and advocate. As part of her mediation and arbitration experience, she has mediated and arbitrated a wide variety of cases in the labor and employment arenas, with both single and multi-party claimants/respondents.

As part of her trial and arbitration practice, Ms. Alessandra has adjudicated cases at both the bench and jury trial levels in federal and state courts and arbitrated a variety of labor and employment-related claims. Ms. Alessandra has also represented clients in contractual disputes and has an active counseling/advisory practice involving all aspects of labor and employment.

Prior to going into private practice, Ms. Alessandra was a federal judicial law clerk upon graduation from law school and was a judicial extern for a federal judge during her last year of law school.

Experience

Ms. Alessandra’s litigation, arbitration, administrative claim and risk management defense has spanned more than 25 years and includes the following:

  • Representation of both private and public employers and insurers in all facets of employment and labor-related matters, from counseling and advising to defense of administrative and judicial complaints of harassment, discrimination and retaliation. Also assists in compliance issues related to affirmative action policy and in oversight of Office of Federal Contract Compliance Program’s audits and onsite investigations.
  • Representation of governmental entities and/or their insurers in suits alleging civil rights violations, constitutional violations and workplace harassment, discrimination and retaliation claims.
  • Drafting and design of employment policies and procedures covering myriad employment and labor issues such as family and medical leave, workplace harassment, safety policies, compensation policies, military leave, etc. and employment-related agreements. 
  • Counsel employers on the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, pregnancy leave, military leave and other leave statutes, particularly in so far as it relates to employees who have been injured or sick and seek reasonable accommodation, leave and/or light duty.
  • Counsel employers on employee wage payment issues and overtime issues relating to exempt/nonexempt employees.
  • Counsel and assist employers on risk management tools, including implementing policies and procedures, training for management, supervisory and staff personnel on corporate compliance issues.
  • Litigation, including extensive bench and jury trial experience in labor and employment-related matters in federal and state courts. 
  • Arbitration and mediation, including extensive experience as both advocate and neutral in numerous labor and employment-related matters, including those involving multi-party claims and counterclaims. 

Insights

Speaking Engagements
  • New Orleans Labor and Employment Law Seminar (November 2017)
  • Employment Law Update 2017 (August 2017)
  • Presenter, Phelps Dunbar New Orleans Labor and Employment Seminar (November 2015)
  • Co-Presenter, "Basic Training for Lawyering," New Orleans Bar Association Big Easy Boot Camp (October 23, 2015)
  • Presenter, "Employment Law Update, 2015," Louisiana State Bar Association (August 21, 2015)
  • Presenter, Phelps Dunbar Mississippi Labor and Employment Seminar (August 2015)
  • Co-Presenter, "State vs. Federal Rules of Civil Procedures," Federal Bar Association (April 22, 2015)
  • American Association of Port Authorities 2015 Port Administration and Legal Issues Seminar (April 2015)
  • Co-Presenter, "Rebuttal, Opening Statements, Closing Statements and Demonstrative Exhibits," New Orleans Bar Association Masters of the Courtroom (December 11, 2014)
  • Presenter, "11th Hour Ethics and Professionalism," New Orleans Bar Association (November 12, 2014)
  • Presenter, Phelps Dunbar New Orleans Labor and Employment Seminar (November 2014)
  • Co-Presenter, "Basic Training for Lawyering," New Orleans Bar Association Big Easy Boot Camp (October 24, 2014)
  • Speaker, "Basic Training for Lawyering," New Orleans Bar Association's Big Easy Bootcamp (October 18, 2013)
  • Co-Presenter, "Best Practices in Using and Securing Modern Technology in Your Legal Practice," Association of Corporate Counsel, Louisiana Chapter (October 10, 2013)
  • ACC Louisiana Chapter and Phelps Dunbar Present a CLE Program: "Best Practices in Using and Securing Modern Technology in Your Legal Practice and in Litigation as In-House Counsel" (September 2013)
  • Co-Presenter, "Employment Law Strategies: Laugh, Learn and Litigate," Louisiana State Bar Association Annual Employment Law Seminar (August 23, 2013)
  • Co-Presenter, "A Change Has Already Come - Complying with the ADAAA, FMLA and Other Leave Requirements," International Public Management Association for Human Resources (June 10, 2013)
  • Presenter, "Ethical Traps for the Unwary," 21st Judicial Bar Association (October 10, 2012)
  • New Orleans Employment Law Seminar (August 2012)
  • Co-presenter, "Invoking the 5th Amendment in Civil Litigation," New Orleans Bar Association (March 9, 2012)
  • Presenter, "Top Ten Things Every Lawyer Needs to Know," New Orleans Bar Association Procrastinators' Program (December 27, 2011)
  • Presenter, "Litigating Employment Cases in 2011: Best Practices," Louisiana State Bar Association 23rd Annual Summer School Revisited (December 15, 2011)
  • New Orleans Employment Law Seminar (October 2011)
  • Co-Presenter, "Duh, Winning: Charlie Sheen, Intellectual Property & Rogue Employees," New Orleans Bar Association (May 18, 2011)
  • Co-Presenter, "New Rules of Employment Discrimination and Retaliation," 2011 Fifth Circuit Judicial Conference, San Antonio, TX (May 4, 2011)
  • Presenter, "Conducting Workplace Investigations," Hispanic National Bar Association Mid-Year Corporate Counsel Meeting (March 2011)
  • Co-Presenter, "Generational Divides in the Workplace," American Arbitration Association Webinar, (December 7, 2010)
  • Presenter, "Employment Law Update," Louisiana Assisted Living Association and Home Care Association of Louisiana Annual Conference (November 3, 2010)
  • Presenter, Phelps Dunbar Mississippi Labor and Employment Seminar (August 2010)
  • Presenter, "Conducting Employee Investigations in the Civil Arena: Pragmatic Considerations and Steps to Follow," Association of Corporate Counsel Louisiana Chapter (July 16, 2010)
News

Memberships & Affiliations

  • Louisiana State Bar Association
  • State Bar of Texas
  • Bar Association of the Federal Fifth Circuit
  • Federal Bar Association, New Orleans Chapter
  • New Orleans Bar Association
  • American Bar Association, EEO Subcommittee
  • Jefferson Bar Association
  • Fellow, American Bar Foundation and Louisiana Bar Foundation
  • New Orleans Regional Institute (2007)
  • American Arbitration Association, Panel of Neutrals for both Arbitration and Mediation
  • American Immigration Lawyers Association
  • Louisiana Hospital Association
  • United Way - Women’s Leadership Initiative Committee
  • Greater New Orleans Louis A. Martinet Society

Recognition

  • Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business
  • New Orleans Magazine - Top Lawyers: Labor and Employment Law
  • AV® Preeminent Peer Review Rated by Martindale-Hubbell
  • The Best Lawyers in America© - Employment Law - Management, Litigation - Labor and Employment, Mediation
  • Louisiana Super Lawyers (Top 25 Women Super Lawyers, 2017)