John attended Nicholls State University, where he was the starting point guard and captain of the basketball team. Balancing athletics with academics, he graduated magna cum laude from the College of Business Administration in 1976. He then attended LSU Law School, where he was elected to the Moot Court Board. He graduated in 1978 and was later inducted into the Hall of Fame.
John has served in almost every capacity possible in the field of civil practice. He has practiced both as a civil defense attorney and as a plaintiff's attorney, earning the unusual distinction of serving on both the Louisiana Association of Defense Counsel Board of Directors and the Louisiana Trial Lawyers Association Board of Governors. He is a member of many professional organizations, including the prestigious American College of Trial Lawyers. John previously taught as an Adjunct Professor of Law at LSU. He has served as a Special Master and Court-Appointed Mediator in federal and in state court. For instance, the federal court (The Honorable Carl J. Barbier) in the Deepwater Horizon case chose him to recommend a plan to allocate a settlement totaling $2.3 billion, and then appointed him as Special Master to allocate the common benefit fee; the federal court (The Honorable Eldon E. Fallon) in the Chinese Drywall litigation appointed him as Special Master to implement the class settlement; and the federal court (The Honorable Jesse M. Furman) appointed him as Special Master to implement the settlement in the General Motors LLC Ignition Switch litigation, a case which John had previously mediated. Finally, the Louisiana Supreme Court appointed him to serve as a Judge Pro Tempore.
Although John continues to try select cases, his principal focus today is as a mediator. He is recognized as one of the leading and most sought-after mediators in the region, and in fact he has mediated numerous cases throughout the country. In addition to being a partner in Perry, Balhoff, Mengis &Burns, John is a founding member of and partner in Perry Dampf Dispute Solutions, one of the leading Alternative Dispute Resolution firms in the area. If you would like to schedule a mediation with John, contact Liz Melancon (direct telephone line: 1-225-448-5955; email: firstname.lastname@example.org).