Coleman Ridley is a mediator with a wealth of experience as a litigator and public policy professional. Mr. Ridley’s two decades of advocating for a diverse range of clients across sectors and industries have honed his ability to resolve disputes without damaging relationships. Additionally, his community service and leadership development further highlight his expertise in navigating contentious situations and fostering positive outcomes.
Mr. Ridley is Of Counsel with Baker, Donelson, Bearman, Caldwell & Berkowitz, PC, in its New Orleans office in the Business Litigation Practice Group. He is an experienced litigator and governmental relations and public policy professional, with a long history of finding innovative solutions to complex problems. He draws on more than two decades as an advocate representing a broad portfolio of clients across various sectors and industries in resolving disputes.
Ridley started his career as a law clerk to the Honorable Slyvia R. Cooks (Ret.), Louisiana Third Circuit Court of Appeals, before serving as an associate attorney and then partner at Jones Walker, LLP, where he was a member of the firm’s Business and Commercial Litigation Practice Group. While at Jones Walker, he represented national corporations and local/regional companies in tax litigation, as well as general business cases, including antitrust, construction, products liability, telecommunications, and intellectual property.
From 2013 through 2022, Ridley served as managing director of the Business Council of New Orleans and the River Region. The Business Council is a nonprofit, nonpartisan public policy research and advocacy organization dedicated to improving economic conditions, living standards, and the quality of life for all residents of the Greater New Orleans region. The Business Council’s membership is comprised exclusively of presidents and CEOs of companies with a significant interest in the Greater New Orleans region. Ridley, in his capacity as managing director, collaborated with government, civic, and other business organizations, and lobbyists to tackle issues vital to the region and help advance the Business Council’s robust policy agenda. He played an instrumental role in one of the organization’s most noteworthy accomplishments: the Business Council-led resolution of the long-running dispute between the City of New Orleans and its firefighters over the management and solvency of the New Orleans Firefighters Pension & Relief Fund.
Ridley has served his community through his volunteer work with various nonprofit organizations and boards, including Crescent City Schools, City of New Orleans Civil Service Commission, and Audubon Commission. He is also a graduate of the New Orleans Regional Leadership Institute (2013) and Leadership Louisiana (2016).
"We retained Coleman Ridley for a complicated case involving multiple surgeries. Coleman handled the mediation perfectly. The adjuster, who has been through hundreds of mediations over her thirty-five years, was most impressed with Coleman’s preparation for the mediation. She remarked that his level of knowledge of the issues was extraordinary. She rarely comes across mediators so prepared and ready to tackle the issues and case with such vigor and tenacity. The mediation was successful. The client fully endorses Coleman and will hire him again in the future."