Ellen J. Messing is a partner in the Boston firm of Messing, Rudavsky & Weliky, P.C. A cum laude graduate of Harvard University and Boston University School of Law, Ms. Messing concentrates her practice in representing employees in employment litigation, including wrongful termination, discrimination, contract, sexual harassment, and federal and other public employee matters.
Recognized by her peers as a national leader among employment lawyers, she served for 15 years, including four as National Secretary, on the Board of Directors of the National Employment Lawyers Association, as cochair of NELA’s Ethics and Sanctions Committee, and co-founded NELA’s Massachusetts chapter. Elected as a Fellow of the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers in 2000, Ms. Messing also served on the Advisory Council to the American Bar Association’s Commission on Evaluation of the Rules of Professional Conduct (Ethics 2000 Commission), where she led a coalition of civil rights organizations that successfully lobbied for reform of the ABA’s Model Rule of Professional Conduct 4.2 in 2002.
That same year, she and her firm won a hard-fought decision from the Supreme Judicial Court interpreting Rule 4.2 favorably for Massachusetts plaintiffs and their attorneys. A national consultant to other employment lawyers on ethics and Massachusetts employment law, Ms. Messing authored the chapter, “The Ethical Constraints on Talking to Potential Witnesses” in the book Representing Plaintiffs in Title VII Actions; has published extensively elsewhere on employment law and ethics issues; and has chaired or co-chaired the Boston Bar Association Professional Ethics Committee, the Massachusetts Bar Association Labor and Employment Law Section, and the Massachusetts Bar Association Labor and Employment Law Section Ethics Committee. Since 2010, Ms. Messing has also served on the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System’s Ad Hoc Committee on Pattern Discovery in Federal Employment Cases.
In 2002, Ms. Messing was recognized by Boston magazine in its “Best of Boston” list of attorneys concentrating in employment law. She was similarly recognized by Massachusetts Super Lawyer in each year from 2004 to 2018, and as one of the “Top 50 Female Massachusetts Super Lawyers” in 2004, 2005, 2009, 2011, and 2012. Ms. Messing has taught law students as an adjunct faculty member at the Boston University School of Law, as well as at the University of Michigan Law School and Northeastern University School of Law teaching evidence, trial advocacy, and clinical courses. Ms. Messing was recognized as among the best attorneys in The Chambers USA America’s Leading Business Lawyers 2003-2004 Guide, selected for her skill in plaintiff’s employment and labor law. According to the Guide, Ms. Messing was described to its researchers as “smart and tough,” with an “expert plaintiffs’ practice.” She was further recognized in the 2016 Chambers USA Guide under “Labor & Employment: Mainly Plaintiffs Representation – Massachusetts” as “one of the deans of the plaintiff practice in Boston.”