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John D. Geelan

John D. Geelan

Complex Commercial Litigation Department
Head, Employment & Labor Practice

New York
T: +1 212 836 8121
F: +1 212 836 8689

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Legal Services


  • American University Washington College of Law
    JD, cum laude, 1990, Dean's Fellow, Moot Court
  • University of Notre Dame
    BA, 1986

Bar Admission(s)

  • New York


  • Bar Association of the City of New York

John D. Geelan serves as head of Kaye Scholer’s Employment & Labor Practice and is a member of the Complex Commercial Litigation Department. He is based in the firm’s New York office.

Mr. Geelan’s practice concentrates in litigation and counseling in matters relating to all aspects of the employer-employee relationship, including employment discrimination and executive compensation disputes. He has extensive experience counseling and litigating suits on behalf of financial institutions, technology clients, directors and executives relating to non-discrimination, trade secrets, non-competition agreements, employee non-solicitation matters and numerous other commercial matters.

Mr. Geelan has also defended class actions and actions brought by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and he has conducted in-house investigations regarding allegations of harassment, discrimination and employee wrongdoing.

Mr. Geelan received the Thurgood Marshall Award for his work in leading a team of Kaye Scholer lawyers in reducing a death sentence in Haney v. Alabama.

Representative Matters

  • Allied Irish Banks in ongoing commercial and employment matters.
  • Tequila Avión in numerous commercial matters, including joint venture agreements and intellectual property disputes.
  • Wheels Up, an aviation start-up, in ongoing transactional, commercial and employment matters.
  • Eni USA R&M Co. Inc., an integrated energy company, in employment matters.
  • Cyc Fitness on numerous commercial matters.
  • Juice Press LLC in various commercial matters, including transactions and trademark issues.
  • Celestica Corp. in the US Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit against claims of alleged fraud. All claims were dismissed.
  • King Street Capital in a financial restructuring matter.
  • Former CFO of a public company in the successful dismissal of a negligent misrepresentation case brought against the former CFO of a public company that went into bankruptcy due to fraud allegedly perpetrated by the company’s CEO.
  • Criterion and Wells Fargo on labor, employment and ERISA issues associated with the operation of an acquired hotel.
  • Peninsula Energy Limited in a series of definitive agreements with funds to obtain financing for a construction project.
  • J.W. Childs Associates, BAML Capital Partners and Advantage Sales & Marketing in connection with the sale of Advantage Sales & Marketing to Apax Partners for US$1.8 billion.
  • Disney Publishing Worldwide against allegations of discrimination and violation of Title VII.
  • Marquis Jet Partners Inc. in the Southern District of New York (SDNY) against monopolization claims.


Law Clerk to Honorable A. Andrew Hauk, US District Court, Central District of California, 1990-91.