Melissa S. Woods joined the firm as of counsel in 2018 and became a partner in 2020. Ms. Woods specializes in litigating labor and employment law matters before governmental agencies, and state and federal courts, on behalf of unions and individual employees. She also represents unions in employer bankruptcy proceedings.
Ms. Woods leads the firm’s sexual harassment prevention practice, where she shares her extensive experience investigating allegations of discrimination and harassment, providing legal and strategic advice on policy matters, and creating and conducting discrimination and harassment prevention training.
In 2019, Ms. Woods was inducted as a fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers, an organization that recognizes those who have distinguished themselves in the field and, in 2020 she was recognized by Lawdragon to be one of the 500 leading plaintiff employment lawyers in the country.
Prior to joining CWS, Ms. Woods provided advice and counsel on various labor and employment related issues at the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, the Civil Rights Bureau of the NYS Attorney General’s Office, and another union-side labor law firm in New York City. Most recently, Ms. Woods was the Deputy Commissioner and General Counsel at the New York City Commission on Human Rights.
Ms. Woods is a member and former Co-Chair of the Equal Employment Opportunity Committee of the American Bar Association’s Labor and Employment Law Section, former Board Member of the AFL-CIO Lawyers Coordinating Committee and a former Trustee of Wesleyan University.
Ms. Woods graduated with honors from Wesleyan University, and received her law degree from George Washington University School of Law.