Drawing on more than 15 years of experience in employee benefits, Vanessa works with some of the nation's leading companies, including global insurers, airlines and financial services organizations. She provides counsel on a broad range of issues, from comprehensive, company-wide benefit plans to the individual compensation arrangements that attract and retain key personnel. She also has significant experience advising large employers and insurance companies on ACA compliance issues. Additionally, Vanessa currently serves as Eversheds Sutherland (US)'s Chief Diversity Officer.
Vanessa previously served as Legislative and Tax Counsel for a member of the U.S. House of Representatives where she specialized in financial services policy and legislation. Prior to joining Eversheds Sutherland (US), she was Legislative Counsel and Corporate Secretary for the ERISA Industry Committee (ERIC) in Washington, D.C., where she represented the benefits and compensation interests of Fortune 100 employers before Congress, the Internal Revenue Service and the U.S. Department of Labor.
Sutherland advises a private college on key aspects of a nonqualified retirement plan.
Sutherland counsels Fortune 500 companies on health reform compliance.
Sutherland advises several insurance clients on various compliance issues in the Affordable Care Act.
Awards and Rankings
Nolan fellow, Section of Taxation, American Bar Association (ABA)
Selected for inclusion in Washington, D.C., Super Lawyers (2013-2015)
Recognized by The Legal 500 United States in the area of tax: employee benefits and executive compensation
Named to The Best Lawyers in America in the area of Employee Benefits (ERISA) Law (2017)
Adjunct Professor, ERISA and Employee Benefits, Howard University Law School
Former Chair, Tax Section, National Bar Association
Former Chair, Diversity Committee, Tax Section, American Bar Association
Member, Nominating Committee, Tax Section, American Bar Association
Member, Editorial Board, The Practical Tax Lawyer
Former Member, Board of Directors, Upper Montgomery County Assistance Network