Melissa is the Chair of Cozen O'Connor's Emerging Data Privacy Trends practice. She represents clients in privacy and data-related class actions, multiparty, and individual litigation in federal and state courts and in arbitration, including cases involving Illinois' Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA), the Video Privacy Protection Act (VPPA), ransomware and data breach, session replay/wiretapping, pixel tracking litigation, and right of publicity cases. Melissa and her team also provide significant privacy-related compliance counseling and regulatory advice. Clients appreciate her ability to anticipate privacy-related data privacy litigation trends, and to develop creative and aggressive strategies to address them. She is a frequent and sought-after speaker on data privacy litigation, BIPA reform, and developing trends.
Melissa's experience handling BIPA cases has made her one of the leading lawyers in the rapidly developing area of biometric privacy litigation. She has argued and won some of the most significant BIPA appeals to date, garnering defense victories before the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. These landmark wins are recognized as laying the groundwork for one of the few clear paths to victory for BIPA defendants.
Prior to joining the firm, Melissa was a partner at an Am Law 200 firm, where she chaired the Biometric Privacy practice, overseeing a team of legal professionals and a caseload of over 150 BIPA class actions pending in federal and state courts.
Melissa earned her B.A. from Bucknell University and her J.D. and M.B.A. from Northwestern University. She provides input on news relevant to the state of Illinois as a member of Law360's Illinois Editorial Board.