Melissa is a former deputy managing partner for industry teams. Prior to this role, she was a member of the firm's eight-person Executive Committee, the firm's board of partners and chairman of McGuireWoods' complex commercial litigation department.
She was the first woman to serve as an office managing partner and founded the McGuireWoods’ Women’s Business Development Committee, now known as McGuireWoods' Women's Leadership Forum, and served as its first chair. She has served as chair of the Nominating Committee for McGuireWoods’ Board of Partners and served on the firm’s Associate Committee.
Melissa focuses her practice on litigating complex commercial cases including shareholder matters, lender/borrower relationships, energy, construction, commercial leasing, real estate, land use, zoning and all manner of business disputes. She has also litigated eminent domain cases in Virginia and Maryland on behalf of water, sewer, natural gas and electrical utility companies. Over the past 29 years, she has litigated in state and federal courts throughout the United States. She also has extensive experience in handling the arbitration of all types of commercial disputes. In addition to litigation, she drafts and negotiates contracts related to commercial development, design and construction, including architectural, project management and general contractor agreements.
Campaign Chair, George Mason University Antonin Scalia Law School
Committee Member, Virginia Vine – benefitting the V Foundation for Cancer Research
Member; Board of Governors, 2012-2015; Past Chair, Construction and Public Contracts Section; Past Board Member, Commercial Litigation Section; Virginia Bar Association
Past Member, Fairfax County Superintendent of School Business and Industry Advisory Council
Past Board Member, Fairfax Bar Foundation
Member, Board of Directors, Women's Advisory Board, Girl Scouts of the National Capital Area
Advisory Board, National Association of Law Placement (NALP)
Selected for The Best Lawyers in America, 2013-2020, Litigation, Construction
Selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America, 2016 Spring "Women in the Law" Business Edition
AV Rated, Martindale-Hubbell
Named to "Washington DC's Leader in the Law," The Washington Post, 2012
Named to "Legal Elite," Virginia Business, 2007-2009, 2011
Named to "Virginia Super Lawyers," Business Litigation, Construction Litigation, Real Estate, Super Lawyers, Thomson Reuters, 2007-2019
Named to "Washington, D.C. Super Lawyers," Business Litigation, Construction Litigation, Real Estate, Super Lawyers, Thomson Reuters, 2007-2017
Named to "Leader in the Law," Virginia Lawyers Weekly, 2010
Named "Top Washington Real Estate Litigation Lawyer," Washington Business Journal, 2008
Finalist, "Top Washington Lawyers," Washington Business Journal, 2007
Appointed faculty member for Virginia State Bar Harry L. Carrico Professionalism Course, 2008