Press Release

NLRB Appoints Melissa Olivero ('97) as
Administrative Law Judge

September 5, 2013

Melissa Olivero ('97)Washington, D.C. -- The National Labor Relations Board recently announced the appointment of NIU College of Law alumna Melissa Olivero ('97) of Peru, IL as an administrative Law Judge in its Division of Judges.  She transferred to the Board from a similar position with the Social Security Administration.  One of only 40 such judges in the country, she has authority to docket, hear, settle, and decided unfair labor practice cases nationwide. 

The National Labor Relations Board is an independent federal agency vested with the power to safeguard employee rights to organize and determine whether to have unions as their bargaining representative.  The agency also acts to prevent and remedy unfair labor practices committed by private sector employers and unions. 

With offices in Washington, D.C., New York City, San Francisco, and Atlanta, the Division of Judges is responsible for docketing unfair labor practice cases brought by the Board’s General Counsel on charges filed by individual employees, unions, and employers.  The Division disposes of those cases by settlement or by conducting trials and issuing initial decisions, which may then be appealed to the five-member Board and thereafter to an appropriate United States Court of Appeals. 

Judge Olivero has previously served as a trial attorney with the Peoria office of the National Labor Relations Board.  She also sent several years as a criminal prosecutor in LaSalle County and in private practice in the Chicago area.  In addition, she served in the United States Army and Army Reserve as a platoon leader and company commander, attaining the rank of captain before her honorable discharge.  Judge Olivero graduated from the University of Michigan and received her law degree magna cum laude from NIU Law. 

Judge Olivero serves as the chair of the Illinois Valley Community College Board of Trustees.  She was recently appointed to the Assembly of the Illinois State Bar Association.  She is a member of the National Association of Women Judges, the Federal Administrative Law Judges’ Conference, the Judicial Division of the American Bar Association, the American Legion, and the Zonta Club of LaSalle-Peru Area. Judge Olivero resides in Peru with her husband, attorney Doug Olivero, and their two children. 

Judge Olivero receives her assignments from the Washington D.C. office of the Division of Judges and travels across the country to hear cases.  For further information about the National Labor Relations Board or to read administrative law judge decisions, please visit the Board’s website at  


For more information, contact:
Melody Mitchell
Alumni Events & Public Relations
(815) 753-9655 or