An experienced litigator, John Shahdanian has argued and won cases in both federal and state courts, as well as in arbitration and state administrative tribunals. John’s reach extends from the public to the private sector, claiming high-ranking government officials and corporate C-suite officers among his clients.

John is also a trusted advisor throughout the legal community. As one of only 42 Trustees of the New Jersey State Bar Association, John’s peers have entrusted him to help the organization carry out its mission and enhance the practice of law in the Garden State. He serves as Trustee and co-chair of the Labor & Employment Law Section of the Bergen County Bar Association.

Likewise, John actively gives back to his neighborhood community; he was voted onto the Old Tappan Board of Education in 2016 and served as a coach for numerous youth sports teams in Old Tappan, where he and his family live.

Labor & Employment

As Chair of the firm’s Labor & Employment group, John provides counsel to employers about day-to-day business operations and staff management as well as complex matters related to discrimination claims, disability claims, sexual harassment, whistleblowing, noncompete clauses, wage and hour, family leave, and private sector labor law.

In addition, John provides important training programs for clients on human resources issues including anti-discrimination, sensitivity training, and diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI). He also works closely with management and HR on drafting a range of employment policies for both corporate and municipal clients.

Government Representation

John additionally serves as co-chair of the firm’s Government Representation group, which includes municipal law and public contracting. John is frequently called upon by the towns of Teaneck, Hackensack, Bergenfield, Maywood, and New Milford for municipal matters. John also counsels the Bergen County Utilities Authority, the Office of the Bergen County Prosecutor and serves as Special Counsel for the counties of Bergen and Passaic.

Professional Activities

  • Trustee, Labor & Employment Section, New Jersey State Bar Association, 2017-present
  • Executive Committee, New Jersey State Bar Association, Labor and Employment Law Section, 2007-present
  • Treasurer, Executive Committee, New Jersey State Bar Association, Labor and Employment Law Section, 2019-present
  • New Jersey State Bar Association’s Putting Lawyer First Task Force – co-chair, Malpractice Subcommittee, 2022-present
  • Co-chair, New Jersey State Bar Association, Legislative Committee, 2019-2021
  • Co-chair, New Jersey State Bar Association, Judicial Administration Committee, 2021-present
  • Master, Sidney Reitman Employment Law Inn of Court, 2008-present
  • President, Seton Hall University School of Law Alumni Council, 2017


  • Co-Author, “Implicit Bias: Considerations for Employers to Avoid Liability Stemming From its Impact,” New Jersey Lawyer Magazine, June 2023

Speaking Engagements

  • Panelist, “DEI Futures: Doing the Work and Breaking Through,” NJ State Bar Association, January 2024
  • Presenter, “Hot Topics in Local Government Law,” NJ State Bar Association, July 2023
  • Presenter, “CEPA – the Conscientious Employee Protection Act,” NJ State Bar Association 2023 Labor & Enployment Summer Institute, July 2023
  • Moderator, “Genocide, Human Rights Law and Justice: Lessons from the Armenian Genocide,” New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education, April 2023
  • “What Labor and Employment Attorneys Need to Know About ‘Quiet Quitting’ – The Latest TikTok Trend,” New Jersey State Bar Association Fall Conference, November 2022
  • Moderator, “The Post-Pandemic Impact of Covid on New Jersey Employment and Labor Law,” New Jersey State Bar Association, Employment and Labor Law Section, October 2022
  • Moderator, “How to Draft More Effective and Efficient Retainer Agreements,” New Jersey State Bar Association, April 2022
  • “How to Take Deposition in a Sexual Harassment Case,” Sidney Reitman Employment Law Inn of Court, 2008
  • “CEPA Update 2008: The Basics and Things to Come,” New Jersey Institute for Continuing Legal Education, 2007
  • “Handling a Sexual Harassment Case,” National Employment Lawyers Association, 2006
  • “How to Handle a Restrictive Covenant Case,” Sidney Reitman Employment Law Inn of Court, 2005
  • “How to Handle Employee Complaints,” Hudson Inn of Court, 2005

Media Mentions

  • Law360, “State ABC Wage Law Tests Face Fights, High Court Reviews,” August 8, 2023
  • Bloomberg Law, “LGBTQ+ Worker Rights Battle to Heat Up Post-Fifth Circuit Ruling,” June 23, 2023
  • Law360, “NJ High Court To Consider Worker Classification Scope,” January 5, 2022


  • Hon. Thomas P. Olivieri, J.S.C./Hon. Barbara A. Curran, 1997-1998