NEW ORLEANS – Loyola University New Orleans welcomes Sharonda Williams as its new General Counsel and Director of Government Affairs. As chief counsel for the largest Jesuit university in the South, Williams will tackle a range of issues, from contract review to Title IX issues and employment disputes. Williams will also help Loyola navigate intergovernmental and community issues.
“I am excited to return to my alma mater in this capacity,” Williams said. “I am looking forward to working with everyone at Loyola to further the University’s goals and mission.”
Williams, a 2001 cum laude graduate of the Loyola University New Orleans College of Law, comes to Loyola from the New Orleans office of Fishman Haygood, L.L.P., where she has served as special counsel for nearly six years, handling commercial disputes, discrimination claims, First Amendment issues, tax disputes, public bid law, intellectual property, and municipal/government issues, such as zoning, permitting, and representation before the New Orleans City Council. She also served as Orleans Parish School Board counsel for four years.
From October 2011 to November 2015, Williams served in the administration of former New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu, rising to the ranks of City Attorney after two years in office. In this role, she advised the Mayor, City Council, city departments, city boards and commissions on all legal matters, including litigation matters, civil service alcohol beverage control, risk management, public records, tax, regulatory issues, and intergovernmental negotiations.
Her career includes eight years in the firm of Sher Garner Cahill Richter Klein & Hilbert, L.L.C. where she became a litigation partner. Her work as a litigator includes representing universities in accreditation, trademark and law enforcement disputes. As a government relations representative, she has successfully led New Orleans nonprofits and leading organizations through zoning disputes, real estate development deals and various other issues.
“Sharonda has deep legal expertise, especially in contract law and employment law, and is an unflappable negotiator,” said President Tania Tetlow. “By all accounts, she is a brilliant problem solver and a true diplomat.”
Williams starts work at Loyola on July 1.