Tessa provides effective and practical solutions in complex, high-stakes corporate transactional and governance matters for both public and private clients nationwide.


With more than 35 years’ experience, Tessa supports Boards of Directors and Executive Management on internal governance matters and strategic transactions including mergers and acquisitions, private equity and venture capital investments, joint ventures and high-value, long-term customer and supplier and other partnerships such as distributorships and outsourcing arrangements. She has had a long-standing focus and frequently counsels on transactions in which FinTech and other technology and intellectual property assets are key.

Relative to all types of technology agreements, Tessa has supported clients in high value transactions focused on cloud services, data centers, hosted platforms and other software and data solutions including the purchase and sale of application development, testing, licensing and maintenance.


A sampling of the most recent significant transactions includes:

Tessa represented a large regional bank client in its negotiation and documentation of its global payments processing solution to be provided by a new vendor replacing the long-time preceding vendor.

She represented a publicly traded bank client in its acquisition of long term rights in a high-dollar strategic software solution to enable a new line of services enhancing one of the bank's existing niche customer industries.

Tessa served as counsel to the purchaser of a Netherlands-based software company in the strategic expansion of its existing suite of software products serving the residential and commercial construction industries.

She acted as counsel to a private equity fund in its $20 million investment in a company serving various large industrial and aerospace customers.

She served as outside counsel responsible for more than $35 million in a long term strategic fulfillment and transportation contract for an international retailer.

Tessa served as outside counsel to a client in the financial services industry on a multiyear strategic alliance to provide a suite of technology services in Asia Pacific.

She acted as lead local corporate counsel on a multibillion dollar merger of two publicly traded international organizations in the food manufacturing and distribution industry.

She represented a large technology provider in the payments space in its multi-million dollar, long term contract for a global solution with an international, publicly-traded customer in the travel industry.

Tessa acted as lead corporate counsel on the resolution (including ongoing supply agreements) of a high-stakes dispute among owners of a multinational group of companies that design, manufacture and distribute industrial equipment.

She was lead counsel on successive multimillion dollar transactions in which the financial industry client was deploying existing technology in innovative arrangements and new service lines with key business partners.

Tessa represented a client in completing numerous "roll-up" acquisitions of manufacturing, distribution, construction and technology companies ranging in value from several million dollars to nearly $100 million.

News & Insights

Speaking Engagements

"Tax Consideration in Structuring an M&A Transaction", M&A Boot Camp, Stinson LLP Webinar, September 2022 



Named "Lawyer of the Year - Technology Law, St. Louis Region," by Best Lawyers in America®, 2021, 2022

Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters, University of Missouri-St. Louis, 2017

Named among St. Louis’ Most Influential Business Women, St. Louis Business Journal, 2017

Best Lawyers in America®, Corporate Law, Mergers and Acquisitions Law, 2013 - Present

Missouri and Kansas Super Lawyers©, 2011, 2012, 2015 - Present

Inspiring St. Louisan Award, St. Louis County NAACP, 2013

Super Lawyers Business Edition, 2011 - 2012

University of Missouri-St. Louis Women Trailblazer Award recipient, 2010

Women’s Justice Awards Business Practitioner Honoree, St. Louis Daily Record, 2009

AV® Peer Review Rated, Martindale-Hubbell

Professional & Civic Activities

Professional & Civic Activities

University of Missouri-St. Louis Chancellor’s Council

  • Economic Development and Corporate Engagement Committee, Co-Chair
  • Chancellor’s Council Advocacy Committee, Former Co-Chair
  • Women’s Leadership Council, Founding Chair

United Way of Greater St. Louis, Board of Directors, Member

The Missouri Bar

Illinois State Bar Association

American Bar Association

Mercy Health, Mercy East Communities Board of Directors, Former Member

Mercy Foundation St. Louis Board of Directors, Founding Member and Former President

Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri, Former Board Member

Family Support Network (n/k/a Epworth), Former Board Member and President

U.S. Law Firm Group, Women’s Committee Founding Member


  • Missouri
  • Illinois


Saint Louis University School of Law, J.D., cum laude, 1987

  • Order of the Woolsack
  • Public Law Review, Articles Editor

University of Virginia, B.A., Political and Social Thought, with distinction, 1981

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