Photo of M. Nan  Alessandra
  • PRACTICE FOCUS
  • INDUSTRIES+
  • EDUCATION+
    • Loyola University New Orleans College of Law
      J.D., cum laude, 1985
    • University of New Orleans
      B.A., 1982
    • Hunter College
      1977-1978
  • ADMISSIONS+
    • Louisiana
    • Texas
    • U.S. Supreme Court
    • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
    • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana
    • U.S. District Court, Middle District of Louisiana
    • U.S. District Court, Western District of Louisiana
    • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Texas
  • CLERKSHIP+
    • Hon. A.J. McNamara, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana
M. Nan Alessandra Partner
Resident in the New Orleans office
504-584-9297  direct

Nan Alessandra helps clients in every stage of labor and employment matters. With more than 35 years of experience representing employers in the public and private sectors, Nan works with clients from counseling through litigation and arbitration. Companies rely on her to keep them compliant and manage their risks with ever-changing employment laws.

MORE

Nan Alessandra helps clients in every stage of labor and employment matters. With more than 35 years of experience representing employers in the public and private sectors, Nan works with clients from counseling through litigation and arbitration. Companies rely on her to keep them compliant and manage their risks with ever-changing employment laws.

As part of her practice, Nan also counsels clients and helps businesses before an employment decision is made to give them proper risk management techniques and discuss critical considerations to minimize potential liability. Her extensive experience in trials, arbitrations and case hearings has provided her with institutional knowledge in myriad industries in both the public and private sectors that can facilitate decision-making for her clients. Her employment and labor 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, in providing training to management, supervisory and non-supervisory personnel on employment and labor topics, including corporate compliance issues.

Nan is a member of the American Arbitration Association’s Panel of Neutrals for employment-related matters in both arbitration and mediation. She has mediated and arbitrated a wide variety of cases in the labor and employment arenas, with both single- and multi-party claimants and respondents.

Experience

  • Represented 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 on-site investigations.
  • Represented governmental entities and/or their insurers in suits alleging civil rights violations, constitutional violations and workplace harassment, discrimination and retaliation claims.
  • Drafted and designed 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.
  • Counseled employers on the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, pregnancy leave, military leave and other leave statutes, particularly as it relates to employees who have been injured or are sick and seek reasonable accommodation, leave and/or light duty.
  • Advised employers on employee wage payment issues and overtime issues relating to exempt and nonexempt employees.
  • Counseled and assisted employers on risk management tools, including implementing policies and procedures, training for management, supervisory and staff personnel on corporate compliance issues, and conducting workplace investigations.

Insights

Speaking Engagements
  • “An Overview of Employment Arbitration,” Louisiana State Bar Association CLE Seminar “Charting a Course in Unfamiliar Waters: Tips for Winning Your Case in Arbitration” (New Orleans, LA, August 2019) Speaker
  • "Turning #MeToo into #NotHere: Rethinking Anti-Harassment Training and Other Employee Misconduct," New Orleans Labor and Employment Law Breakfast Briefing (June 2018) Speaker
  • "Calm Before the Storm: Avoiding Common Mistakes Every HR Employer Should Know - Get Ready!" New Orleans Labor and Employment Law Seminar (November 2017) Speaker
  • "Top 10 Things Every Associate Should Know," Big Easy Bootcamp: Basic Training for Lawyering in New Orleans (October 2017) Speaker
  • "Mandatory Arbitration - Legal and Practical Issues from Plaintiff, Defendant and Arbitrator Perspective," Employment Law Update 2017 (August 2017) Panelist
  • Phelps Dunbar New Orleans Labor and Employment Seminar (November 2015) Speaker
  • "Basic Training for Lawyering," New Orleans Bar Association Big Easy Boot Camp (October 2015) Speaker
  • "Employment Law Update, 2015," Louisiana State Bar Association (August 2015) Speaker
  • Phelps Dunbar Mississippi Labor and Employment Seminar (August 2015) Speaker
  • "State vs. Federal Rules of Civil Procedures," Federal Bar Association (April 2015) Speaker
  • "Employment and Human Resource Issues," American Association of Port Authorities 2015 Port Administration and Legal Issues Seminar (April 2015) Speaker
  • "Rebuttal, Opening Statements, Closing Statements and Demonstrative Exhibits," New Orleans Bar Association Masters of the Courtroom (December 2014) Speaker
  • "11th Hour Ethics and Professionalism," New Orleans Bar Association (November 2014) Speaker
  • Phelps Dunbar New Orleans Labor and Employment Seminar (November 2014) Speaker
  • "Basic Training for Lawyering," New Orleans Bar Association Big Easy Boot Camp (October 2014) Speaker
  • "Basic Training for Lawyering," New Orleans Bar Association's Big Easy Bootcamp (October 2013) Speaker
  • "Best Practices in Using and Securing Modern Technology in Your Legal Practice," Association of Corporate Counsel, Louisiana Chapter (October 2013) Speaker
  • "Best Practices in Using and Securing Modern Technology in Your Legal Practice and in Litigation as In-House Counsel," ACC Louisiana Chapter and Phelps Dunbar Present a CLE Program (September 2013) Speaker
  • "Employment Law Strategies: Laugh, Learn and Litigate," Louisiana State Bar Association Annual Employment Law Seminar (August 2013) Speaker
  • "A Change Has Already Come - Complying with the ADAAA, FMLA and Other Leave Requirements," International Public Management Association for Human Resources (June 2013) Speaker
  • "Ethical Traps for the Unwary," 21st Judicial Bar Association (October 2012) Speaker
  • "Electing the Right Choices in the Labor and Employment Arena in 2012 - It's A Close Call!" New Orleans Employment Law Seminar (August 2012) Speaker
  • "Invoking the 5th Amendment in Civil Litigation," New Orleans Bar Association (March 2012) Speaker
  • "Top Ten Things Every Lawyer Needs to Know," New Orleans Bar Association Procrastinators' Program (December 2011) Speaker
  • "Litigating Employment Cases in 2011: Best Practices," Louisiana State Bar Association 23rd Annual Summer School Revisited (December 2011) Speaker
  • New Orleans Employment Law Seminar (October 2011) Speaker
  • "Duh, Winning: Charlie Sheen, Intellectual Property & Rogue Employees," New Orleans Bar Association (May 2011) Speaker
  • "New Rules of Employment Discrimination and Retaliation," 2011 Fifth Circuit Judicial Conference, San Antonio, TX (May 2011) Speaker
  • "Conducting Workplace Investigations," Hispanic National Bar Association Mid-Year Corporate Counsel Meeting (March 2011) Speaker
  • "Generational Divides in the Workplace," American Arbitration Association Webinar (December 2010) Speaker
  • "Employment Law Update," Louisiana Assisted Living Association and Home Care Association of Louisiana Annual Conference (November 2010) Speaker
  • Phelps Dunbar Mississippi Labor and Employment Seminar (August 2010) Speaker
  • "Conducting Employee Investigations in the Civil Arena: Pragmatic Considerations and Steps to Follow," Association of Corporate Counsel Louisiana Chapter (July 2010) Speaker
News

Memberships & Affiliations

Professional

  • American Bar Association, EEO Subcommittee
  • Federal Bar Association, New Orleans Chapter
  • Louisiana State Bar Association
  • Bar Association of the Federal Fifth Circuit
  • New Orleans Bar Association
  • State Bar of Texas
  • Jefferson Bar Association
  • American Arbitration Association, Panel of Neutrals for both Arbitration and Mediation
  • American Immigration Lawyers Association
  • Greater New Orleans Louis A. Martinet Society

Civic

  • Louisiana Hospital Association
  • United Way, Women’s Leadership Initiative Committee
  • New Orleans Regional Institute (2007)

Recognition

  • AV Preeminent Peer Review Rated, Martindale-Hubbell
  • Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business
  • Arbitration (2011-2019), Employment Law - Management (2011-2021), Litigation - Labor and Employment (2011-2021), Mediation (2011-2021), The Best Lawyers in America
  • Louisiana Super Lawyers list (2007-2020), Top 25 Women Super Lawyers - Louisiana (2007-2010, 2017-2020), Super Lawyers
  • American Bar Foundation, Fellow
  • Louisiana Bar Foundation, Fellow
  • Top Lawyer, New Orleans Magazine

Education

  • Loyola University New Orleans College of Law
    J.D., cum laude, 1985
  • University of New Orleans
    B.A., 1982
  • Hunter College
    1977-1978

Admissions

  • Louisiana
  • Texas
  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana
  • U.S. District Court, Middle District of Louisiana
  • U.S. District Court, Western District of Louisiana
  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Texas

Clerkships

  • Hon. A.J. McNamara, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana
  • Represented 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 on-site investigations.
  • Represented governmental entities and/or their insurers in suits alleging civil rights violations, constitutional violations and workplace harassment, discrimination and retaliation claims.
  • Drafted and designed 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.
  • Counseled employers on the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Family and Medical Leave Act, pregnancy leave, military leave and other leave statutes, particularly as it relates to employees who have been injured or are sick and seek reasonable accommodation, leave and/or light duty.
  • Advised employers on employee wage payment issues and overtime issues relating to exempt and nonexempt employees.
  • Counseled and assisted employers on risk management tools, including implementing policies and procedures, training for management, supervisory and staff personnel on corporate compliance issues, and conducting workplace investigations.
Speaking Engagements
  • “An Overview of Employment Arbitration,” Louisiana State Bar Association CLE Seminar “Charting a Course in Unfamiliar Waters: Tips for Winning Your Case in Arbitration” (New Orleans, LA, August 2019) Speaker
  • "Turning #MeToo into #NotHere: Rethinking Anti-Harassment Training and Other Employee Misconduct," New Orleans Labor and Employment Law Breakfast Briefing (June 2018) Speaker
  • "Calm Before the Storm: Avoiding Common Mistakes Every HR Employer Should Know - Get Ready!" New Orleans Labor and Employment Law Seminar (November 2017) Speaker
  • "Top 10 Things Every Associate Should Know," Big Easy Bootcamp: Basic Training for Lawyering in New Orleans (October 2017) Speaker
  • "Mandatory Arbitration - Legal and Practical Issues from Plaintiff, Defendant and Arbitrator Perspective," Employment Law Update 2017 (August 2017) Panelist
  • Phelps Dunbar New Orleans Labor and Employment Seminar (November 2015) Speaker
  • "Basic Training for Lawyering," New Orleans Bar Association Big Easy Boot Camp (October 2015) Speaker
  • "Employment Law Update, 2015," Louisiana State Bar Association (August 2015) Speaker
  • Phelps Dunbar Mississippi Labor and Employment Seminar (August 2015) Speaker
  • "State vs. Federal Rules of Civil Procedures," Federal Bar Association (April 2015) Speaker
  • "Employment and Human Resource Issues," American Association of Port Authorities 2015 Port Administration and Legal Issues Seminar (April 2015) Speaker
  • "Rebuttal, Opening Statements, Closing Statements and Demonstrative Exhibits," New Orleans Bar Association Masters of the Courtroom (December 2014) Speaker
  • "11th Hour Ethics and Professionalism," New Orleans Bar Association (November 2014) Speaker
  • Phelps Dunbar New Orleans Labor and Employment Seminar (November 2014) Speaker
  • "Basic Training for Lawyering," New Orleans Bar Association Big Easy Boot Camp (October 2014) Speaker
  • "Basic Training for Lawyering," New Orleans Bar Association's Big Easy Bootcamp (October 2013) Speaker
  • "Best Practices in Using and Securing Modern Technology in Your Legal Practice," Association of Corporate Counsel, Louisiana Chapter (October 2013) Speaker
  • "Best Practices in Using and Securing Modern Technology in Your Legal Practice and in Litigation as In-House Counsel," ACC Louisiana Chapter and Phelps Dunbar Present a CLE Program (September 2013) Speaker
  • "Employment Law Strategies: Laugh, Learn and Litigate," Louisiana State Bar Association Annual Employment Law Seminar (August 2013) Speaker
  • "A Change Has Already Come - Complying with the ADAAA, FMLA and Other Leave Requirements," International Public Management Association for Human Resources (June 2013) Speaker
  • "Ethical Traps for the Unwary," 21st Judicial Bar Association (October 2012) Speaker
  • "Electing the Right Choices in the Labor and Employment Arena in 2012 - It's A Close Call!" New Orleans Employment Law Seminar (August 2012) Speaker
  • "Invoking the 5th Amendment in Civil Litigation," New Orleans Bar Association (March 2012) Speaker
  • "Top Ten Things Every Lawyer Needs to Know," New Orleans Bar Association Procrastinators' Program (December 2011) Speaker
  • "Litigating Employment Cases in 2011: Best Practices," Louisiana State Bar Association 23rd Annual Summer School Revisited (December 2011) Speaker
  • New Orleans Employment Law Seminar (October 2011) Speaker
  • "Duh, Winning: Charlie Sheen, Intellectual Property & Rogue Employees," New Orleans Bar Association (May 2011) Speaker
  • "New Rules of Employment Discrimination and Retaliation," 2011 Fifth Circuit Judicial Conference, San Antonio, TX (May 2011) Speaker
  • "Conducting Workplace Investigations," Hispanic National Bar Association Mid-Year Corporate Counsel Meeting (March 2011) Speaker
  • "Generational Divides in the Workplace," American Arbitration Association Webinar (December 2010) Speaker
  • "Employment Law Update," Louisiana Assisted Living Association and Home Care Association of Louisiana Annual Conference (November 2010) Speaker
  • Phelps Dunbar Mississippi Labor and Employment Seminar (August 2010) Speaker
  • "Conducting Employee Investigations in the Civil Arena: Pragmatic Considerations and Steps to Follow," Association of Corporate Counsel Louisiana Chapter (July 2010) Speaker
News

Professional

  • American Bar Association, EEO Subcommittee
  • Federal Bar Association, New Orleans Chapter
  • Louisiana State Bar Association
  • Bar Association of the Federal Fifth Circuit
  • New Orleans Bar Association
  • State Bar of Texas
  • Jefferson Bar Association
  • American Arbitration Association, Panel of Neutrals for both Arbitration and Mediation
  • American Immigration Lawyers Association
  • Greater New Orleans Louis A. Martinet Society

Civic

  • Louisiana Hospital Association
  • United Way, Women’s Leadership Initiative Committee
  • New Orleans Regional Institute (2007)
  • AV Preeminent Peer Review Rated, Martindale-Hubbell
  • Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business
  • Arbitration (2011-2019), Employment Law - Management (2011-2021), Litigation - Labor and Employment (2011-2021), Mediation (2011-2021), The Best Lawyers in America
  • Louisiana Super Lawyers list (2007-2020), Top 25 Women Super Lawyers - Louisiana (2007-2010, 2017-2020), Super Lawyers
  • American Bar Foundation, Fellow
  • Louisiana Bar Foundation, Fellow
  • Top Lawyer, New Orleans Magazine