John A. Morrison

Shareholder || Atlanta, New York City

Mr. Morrison is the team leader of the firm’s executive compensation practice. His practice encompasses all aspects of executive compensation and employee benefits, focusing on the design and analysis of executive compensation arrangements and related corporate governance and disclosure matters.  Mr. Morrison also has extensive experience advising on executive compensation and employee benefit issues in connection with mergers and acquisitions; corporate restructurings; and financings, including change of control and retention agreements and golden parachute excise tax mitigation strategies.

Prior to joining Ogletree, Mr. Morrison practiced in New York for more than 20 years, the last 14 years with Shearman & Sterling LLP.

Mr. Morrison has extensive experience advising multinational public companies and private companies, and tax exempt organizations on a wide range of executive compensation matters, including:

  • The design, implementation and tax structuring of executive compensation arrangements, including short and long-term incentive arrangements (cash and equity based); deferred compensation and supplemental executive retirement arrangements (including related insurance arrangements); change of control protections; employment, consulting and termination arrangements; and restrictive covenant agreements.
  • Tax and regulatory compliance matters, including federal and state withholding taxes; IRC Section 409A; IRC Section 162(m); IRC Section 280G; IRC Section 83(b); and IRC Section 4960.
  • Advising Boards, compensation committees and management on corporate governance and fiduciary matters, including Sarbanes-Oxley, Dodd Frank, developing governance policies and internal controls; preparing governing documents for Boards and compensation committees; and advising on developing “best practices”.
  • Design and implementation of non-employee director compensation arrangements.
  • Development and preparation of executive compensation and benefits related disclosure in public filings, including proxy statements; annual and quarterly reports; and other periodic filings.
  • Cross border compensation matters, such as global incentive compensation arrangements, including compliance aspects under U.S. tax and employment laws; employment, consulting and severance arrangements; and global mobility matters.
  • Advising management and private equity fund managers on the design and implementation of compensation arrangements, including carried interest and other forms of manager and investment professional participation in private equity funds.
  • Audits and inquiries from government regulators.


Learn more about John A. Morrison


  • J.D., magna cum laude, New York Law School, 1990
  • B.A., State University of New York at Stony Brook, 1983

Admittance to Practice

  • New York
  • Georgia


  • Ogletree Deakins Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation Symposium  - "Handling High Rollers: Best Practices for Drafting Executive Compensation Agreements " - Las Vegas  - April 30, 2019
  • Ogletree Deakins Workplace Strategies Seminar - "Tax Facts: How Recent Reforms Affect Employer-Provided Benefits" - Phoenix - May 10, 2018
  • Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation Symposium - "An Expat Case Study" - Phoenix - May 9, 2018
  • Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation Symposium - "Incentive Compensation Plan Tune-Up" - Phoenix - May 9, 2018
  • Labor and Employment Counsel Exclusive - "From Hello to Goodbye: Top Executive Compensation Issues" - Boca Raton - November 9, 2017
  • Ogletree Deakins Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation Symposium - "Managing Employees in Latin America" - Austin - March 23, 2017
  • Ogletree Deakins Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation Symposium - "Top 10 Tips and Pitfalls in Designing Incentive Compensation Plans" - Austin - March 23, 2017
  • Ogletree Deakins Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation Symposium - "Structuring an International Assignment" - Chicago - May 4, 2016
  • Association of Corporate Counsel - "Potential Pitfalls: Entertainment and Sports Contracts Impacted by IRC Section 409A and Securities Laws" - July 16, 2013
  • Ogletree Deakins Workplace Strategies - "Developing an Executive Mobility Strategy" - New Orleans - May 9, 2013
  • Immigration Law Briefing - "Global Mobility - International Employment and Labor Law Issues" - Atlanta - November 8, 2012
  • Member of the New York Law School Law Review

Insights by John A. Morrison