John A. Ridley

Of Counsel Florham Park
Phone: (973) 549-7030
Fax: (973) 360-9831


John A. Ridley counsels clients in management-side labor and employment law. He has been involved in litigating employment and labor disputes and counseling in those areas, for more than 35 years.

John has successfully defended employers in large-scale class and collective actions involving employee and applicant claims of race, age, wage and benefits discrimination. He has argued a number of significant employment causes in the federal courts of appeal and has argued an Age Discrimination in Employment Act/Fair Labor Standards Act case in the U.S. Supreme Court.

John has written numerous articles and speaks regularly before business and professional groups. He has taught multiple seminars for the New Jersey Institute of Continuing Legal Education, including “Employment Discrimination – Pretrial to Verdict,” “Employment Law in Federal Courts,” “Trial Techniques for Employment Lawyers,” “Litigating the Employment Discrimination Case,” “Employers Beware: Workplace Violence,” and “Defending FLSA Collective Actions.” John has also spoken at the Annual Meeting of the American Bar Association, and addressed the American Employment Law Council on “Opposing Collective Actions under the FLSA.”

John is a Fellow in the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers and he has been selected for inclusion among the International Who’s Who of Management Labour and Employment Lawyers. He is recognized annually in Chambers USA Leading Lawyers of Business.

Upon graduating from law school, John served a two-year clerkship for the Hon. Lawrence A. Whipple in the federal district court in New Jersey, and then joined a Newark, N.J. law firm, where he remained for more than 30 years, prior to joining Drinker Biddle.


Chambers USA, New Jersey, Labor & Employment (2004-2016)
“Litigation Star,” Benchmark Litigation
International Who’s Who of Management Labour and Employment Lawyers
Trial Bar Award, Trial Attorneys of New Jersey (2012)

Awards Methodology (

John Ridley possesses vast trial experience, including in relation to sizable class and collective actions involving allegations of age, wage, race and benefits discrimination. Clients note his leadership skills, while peers say that he a 'great strategist' and a 'very smart lawyer.'

Chambers USA (2015)

John Ridley is seen by market sources as an 'excellent lawyer' and 'top-notch employment litigator' with a 'very good courtroom presence.' He utilizes his extensive 'knowledge of the nuances of employment law' to litigate across the full gamut of collective and class actions relating to age and race discrimination.

Chambers USA (2016)


Bar Admissions

  • New Jersey


  • University of Virginia School of Law, J.D., 1968
  • St. Peter's College, A.B., 1965

Court Admissions

  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, First Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Third Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. District Court, District of New Jersey


  • American Bar Association, Labor & Employment Law Section, Equal Employment Opportunity Committee
  • Essex County Bar Association
  • New Jersey State Bar Association, Labor & Employment Section, Executive Committee
  • Trial Attorneys of New Jersey, Board Member