Emilia McKee Vassallo


Tel 215.864.8111
Fax 215.864.8999

Emilia McKee Vassallo is a litigator who focuses her practice on white collar investigations, unfair competition disputes, and securities arbitration. Emilia represents corporations in government investigations and has advised companies cooperating with law enforcement on matters such as trade secret theft by foreign nationals and former employees. She also conducts and provides advice relating to internal investigations, such as those spurred by whistleblower complaints to federal and state agencies. Additionally, she advises and assists in training clients on FCPA compliance.

Emilia relies on her experience and broad knowledge of the law to advise grand jury clients of their rights. She provides pre-indictment and post-indictment representation on health care fraud and other allegations across industries. Additionally, she responds to subpoenas on behalf of companies and individuals.

Emilia has both defended and prosecuted unfair competition claims under the Lanham Act. She also has represented fund managers in private arbitration, before the SEC and in conjunction with DOJ investigations.

Emilia is a member of the firm's Diversity and Inclusion Council, which works closely with the Chief Diversity Officer to develop, promote, and implement key initiatives to guide the firm toward its diversity and inclusion goals and to collaborate with clients on diversity and inclusion issues of mutual interest.

Representative Matters

  • Conducted an internal investigation of a police department’s response to allegations of violations of its policies and procedures by various officers
  • Represented a global pharmaceutical company in a federal criminal investigation and prosecution relating to the theft of trade secrets by its former employees
  • Represented a company in an internal investigation involving whistleblower complaints to a state agency
  • Represented a former municipal employee before the municipality’s ethics commission

Pro Bono Experience

Emilia maintains an active pro bono practice. She is a volunteer on the Prisoner Civil Rights Panel in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. Emilia also represented an individual who was sentenced to life without parole as a juvenile in conjunction with his re-sentencing in state court, and she assisted with a Criminal Justice Act representation of a federal criminal defendant.

Judicial Clerkships

Honorable Ann Claire Williams, United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, September 2016 – September 2017

Honorable Lawrence F. Stengel, United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, September 2015 – August 2016

Judicial Externship

Honorable L. Felipe Restrepo, United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania

Professional Activities

Ballard Spahr Hiring Committee

Ballard Spahr Diversity Council

Recognitions and Accomplishments

The Best Lawyers in America "Ones to Watch," – Criminal Defense: White-Collar (Philadelphia), 2021


Co-author, "Stimulus Fraud Part 4: CARES Act Oversight Provisions and Agency Collaboration," The Legal Intelligencer, July 8, 2020

Co-Author, "Stimulus Fraud: How Agencies Investigate It and What Happens When They Find It," The Legal Intelligencer, May 26, 2020

Co-author, "$2.2T COVID-19 Stimulus Package and Fraud: Part 2, TARP’s Role," The Legal Intelligencer, May 4, 2020

Co-author, "Watch Out for Fraud Tied to $2.2T COVID-19 Stimulus Package: Part I," The Legal Intelligencer, April 23, 2020

Co-Author, "DOE Signals Renewed Commitment to Enforcement of Foreign Gift Reporting Requirements," Ballard Spahr White Collar Defense/Internal Investigations alert, February 28, 2020

Co-author, "Must Employers Accommodate Marijuana Users?" Law.com, June 29, 2015

Co-author, "Recent NLRB Grad Student Union Decisions Suggest Interest in Reviewing Brown University," Ballard Spahr Higher Education and Labor and Employment alert, March 17, 2015

Co-author, "NLRB Appears Poised To Overturn Brown University Ruling," Law360, March 26, 2015

Co-author, "NLRB Issues Significant Decision on Faculty Unionization," Ballard Spahr Labor and Employment and Higher Education alert, January 6, 2015

Co-author, "Third Circuit Decision Will Make It More Difficult for Employers To Defeat FMLA Interference and Retaliation Claims," Ballard Spahr Labor and Employment alert, September 2, 2014

Speaking Engagements

Speaker, "Criminal Antitrust Prosecutions: Who Brings Them, How to Avoid Them, and How to Deal With Them." Ballard Spahr CLE, May 12, 2020

Speaker, "The Baby/Business Balance: Pregnancy Discrimination in the Workplace," PBI CLE, June 10, 2015

Speaker, "Collective Bargaining and the Affordable Care Act," Public Employer Labor Relations Advisory Service (PELRAS) Training Conference, State College, PA, March 18, 2015

Temple University James E. Beasley School of Law (J.D. 2014, magna cum laude)
Temple Law Review, Note and Comment Editor
Order of the Coif

University of Pennsylvania (B.A. 2008, cum laude)
Member, Pi Gamma Mu Honor Society



New Jersey


U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit

U.S. Supreme Court