Melissa is a counsel attorney in the St. Louis office of Ogletree Deakins. She represents and counsels clients in a variety of employment-related matters in both state and federal court, as well as before numerous administrative agencies such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and Missouri Commission on Human Rights. Melissa has substantial litigation experience including both jury and bench trials, and appellate experience in state and federal appeals. She has also conducted and supervised internal investigations related to allegations of discrimination and harassment, and has created and presented employer-sponsored programs to prevent discrimination and harassment in the workplace.
Insights by Melissa M. Pesce
On August 26, 2022, Chief U.S. District Judge Matthew Brann for the United States District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania dismissed a putative class action representing approximately 100 healthcare company employees brought against their employer, Geisinger Clinic. In the suit, the employees challenged their employer’s policy requiring employees to either be vaccinated for COVID-19 or agree to regular testing and quarantining. In dismissing the complaint, the court rejected the employees’ religious discrimination, constitutional, and state law claims, calling the employees’ evidence “a collection of distorted statements and anti-vaccine hocus-pocus.”