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Teresa counsels with respect to all real estate acquisitions, divestitures, leasing, financing and development. She has represented individuals, corporations, non-profits and governmental bodies with all aspects of real estate development including land assembly, planning, zoning, environmental and financing, including public-private partnerships. Teresa’s diverse real estate experience allows her to advise on all types of real estate transactions.

Teresa is experienced in bond transactions and has served as bond, underwriter’s, borrower’s as well as placement agent counsel. She also has experience with joint economic development zones and joint economic development districts, project labor agreements and diversity plans. She has represented private institutions and local and county governmental agencies, including municipalities, port authorities, healthcare institutions and library systems on business, financing real estate matters, construction and government relations.

She also works with clients in developing and maintaining strong relationships with local and state officials, as well as community stakeholders, to advance clients' legal and legislative matters, particularly for non-profit, real estate development and gaming industry clients.

Teresa represents small business owners on various legal matters including but not limited to contracts, employment matters, intellectual property matters, litigation and construction matters.

Teresa joined Calfee in 2011 and was named a partner in 2014. She serves as Chair of the firm’s Diversity & Inclusion Committee.

Public Service

In 2012, Teresa’s work was included in a MIT case study on University Hospitals’ Vision 2010 Program, which included a groundbreaking Project Labor Agreement regarding minority participation in University Hospitals’ major construction project, which included the construction of two new hospitals, a $1 billion project. The Project Labor Agreement has become a model for many other such projects in and outside of Ohio. The Cleveland Foundation later commissioned the MIT School of Architecture & Planning to conduct the case study. The presentation is titled “Leveraging the Power of Anchor Institutions to Build Community Wealth: A Community Forum.”

Teresa is currently serving her second four-year term as the Law Director for the City of Warrensville Heights. She previously served as the Director of Law for the City of Cleveland under Mayor Jane Campbell’s administration from 2003 to 2004. Teresa served as a member of Cleveland Mayor Frank G. Jackson’s three-person Special Commission on Missing Persons and Sex Crime Investigations, which developed 26 recommendations that were accepted by Mayor Jackson in 2011.

Honors & Recognitions

  • Cleveland-Marshall College of Law - Hall of Fame Inductee (2018)
  • Crain's Cleveland Business – Notable Women in Finance (2018)
  • Savoy Magazine - Most Influential Black Lawyer (2018)
  • Ohio’s Top 15 Business Women for 2018 by the National Diversity Council
  • YWCA Woman of Achievement (2017), YWCA Woman of Professional Excellence (2011)
  • Villa Angela-St. Joseph High School Hall of Fame – Inductee (2016)
  • Who’s Who in Black Cleveland – Honoree (2018, 2016)
  • Crain’s Cleveland Business – Woman of Note (2014)
  • CREW Cleveland Deborah R. Klausner Leadership Award (2008)
  • CBC (Cleveland Business Connects) Cover Feature Article (October 2007)
  • Kaleidoscope Magazine’s 40-40 Club


J.D., Cleveland-Marshall College of Law, Dean's List, Law Review Editor, 1992

B.A., University of Alabama, 1987



  • Bond Counsel in connection with the issuance and sale of $42MM taxable revenue parking bonds for the construction of an approximately 972-space parking garage and approximately 17,700 square feet of street-level retail and office space in Nashville, Tennessee.
  • Represent a utility provider in the acquisition, development and construction of a training center.
  • Borrower’s counsel for $15 million fiber optic conduit financing.
  • Bond and borrower counsel for $88,000,000 refunding for Ohio nonprofit corporation.
  • Bond counsel to Cuyahoga County in the issuance of $137,890,000 sales tax bonds.
  • Represent Group Plan Commission in the redevelopment of Public Square and the construction of a pedestrian and bicycle bridge, Cleveland Ohio.
  • Placement Agent’s counsel for $103 million parking facility, including construction, real estate and private placement in Tempe, Arizona.
  • Issuer’s counsel for $3.8 million senior housing facility in Trumbull County, Ohio.
  • Represent Cuyahoga County Public Library in the sale and purchase of real property for construction of new library branches.
  • Represent local housing authority in the master lease of its former headquarters as well as other transactional and real estate matters.
  • Represent lender in $45 million loan to New York’s Metropolitan Transit Authority.
  • Representation of the City of Warrensville Heights, Ohio, as its Director of Law.
  • Served as general counsel to a 501(c)(3) District Energy Company, which includes but is not limited to corporate governance, construction, financing, and labor and employment matters.
  • Represents small business owners on various legal matters including but not limited to contracts, employment matters, intellectual property matters, litigation and construction matters.
  • Served as underwriter’s counsel in connection with a $25 million student housing facility in Augusta, Georgia.
  • Served as underwriter’s counsel in connection with a $45 million student housing facility and alumni center in Jackson, Mississippi.
  • Represented the City of Cleveland in connection with a U.S. Housing and Urban Development 108 Loan and Tax
  • Incremental Financing in a leveraged New Markets Tax Credit and Historic Tax Credit transaction related to the redevelopment of the AmeriTrust building, now known as “the 9,” a $270 million project with multiple financing sources.
  • Represented the City of Cleveland in connection with a Housing and Urban Development 108 Loan, Tax Incremental Financing and other conventional lending sources in a leveraged New Markets Tax Credit and Historic Tax Credit transaction related to the redevelopment of the East Ohio Gas Company building into a mixed-used commercial development project consisting of housing, retail and parking. This is a $65 million project with multiple public and private lending sources.
  • Represented 501(c)(3) senior healthcare entity in connection with the construction and development of a new headquarters and training center using New Markets Tax Credits, a $12 million project.
  • Represented the City of Cleveland as lender in a combined New Markets Tax Credit and Historic Tax Credit transaction for the buildout of commercial office space, a $7 million transaction.
  • Represented the City of Cleveland as a leverage lender and a grantor of a Housing and Urban Development Brownfield Economic Development Grant (BEDI), as well as other city lending sources in a New Markets Tax Credit transaction for the development and construction of a commercial greenhouse located in the urban core of the city, a $16 million transaction.
  • Represented the City of Cleveland as a lender in a leveraged New Markets Tax Credit transaction for the development and construction of a Marriott Hotel, a $25 million project. Prior to acting as lender’s counsel, represented a 501(c)(3) health care institution as a property owner.
  • Served as lender’s counsel to the city of Cleveland in connection with a $30 million Housing and Urban Development loan related to financing of the Flats East Bank project, a $272 million project with more than 30 sources of financing.
  • Represented a managed healthcare company headquartered in Long Beach, California, in connection with the acquisition of a 157,000-square-foot building in Columbus, Ohio, to serve as its headquarters for its Ohio operations, a $8.5 million purchase.
  • Serving as Placement Agent counsel in a $90 million bond private placement for the construction of a parking garage in Tempe, Arizona.
  • Represented a healthcare developer in the acquisition, development and construction of a healthcare rehabilitation facility.
  • Represented developer in connection with the State of Ohio Energy Loan secured by Special Assessment to be levied by the local municipality in the event of a default.
  • Represented a large 501(c)(3) healthcare provider in connection with the acquisition, construction, development and implementation of its Vision 2010 plan, a $1 billion investment, which included the construction of five major medical facilities as well as the expansion of a number of existing facilities.
  • Represented company in the negotiation of a Project Labor Agreement with the building trade unions to ensure the company would meet its diversity goals.

Professional & Community

Professional & Community

Professional Involvement

  • Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association – Judicial Selection Committee (April 2018 - Present)
  • Neighborhood Progress, Inc. – Chair of the Placemaking Committee (June 2018 - Present)
  • The Cleveland Foundation – Board of Directors, Chair of the Social Impact Investment Committee, member of the Audit, Executive, Finance and Administration Committees and the Grant Making and Community Engagement Committee (2016 - Present)
  • Karamu House – Board of Directors, Chair of Governance Committee and member of Executive Committee (2017 – Present)
  • 5805 Euclid, Inc. (a.k.a. University Hospitals Women’s and Children’s Center) - Board of Directors – Member (2017-Present)
  • Downtown Cleveland Alliance – Board of Directors and Executive Committee (2017-Present)
  • In Counsel With Women – Board Member; Connections and Nominating Committees
  • National Association of Bond Lawyers – Member; Model Trust Indenture and Letter of Disclosure Counsel Committees
  • Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) – Member; Past Presidents Committee
  • Women In Public Finance – Member
  • Executive Women’s Leadership Forum – Member (2016-Present)
  • Cleveland Business Connects Magazine – Advisory Board Member (2008-2017)
  • Bluecoats, Inc. – Member (2015-Present)
  • Leadership Cleveland – Class of 2007
  • American Bar Association – Member
  • National Bar Association – Member

Community Involvement

  • The Links, Inc. (Western Reserve Chapter) – Parliamentarian (2017-Present), Financial Secretary (2015-2017)
  • Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. (Greater Cleveland Alumnae Chapter) – Member

Past Board and Community Involvement

  • Laurel School for Girls – Board of Trustees, member of the Governance and Executive Committees (2009 - 2018)
  • Cleveland Botanical Garden – Board of Directors, Chair, Committee on Governance (2011 - 2017)
  • YWCA Circle of Women Committee 
  • Jack and Jill of America Foundation (Cleveland Chapter) 
  • Village Capital Corporation 
  • Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association 
  • Black Professionals Association Charitable Foundation 
  • A Cultural Exchange 
  • Cleveland Housing Network 
  • Universal Sisters: Live Younger Longer Program – Participant
  • Cleveland Rape Crisis Center – Sing-Out! Volunteer



  • Paul J. Everson Real Estate Center 2018 Conference, Panelist, Cleveland State University (October 2018)
  • WINCleveland – “Growing Into My Big Girl Shoes” (March 2018)
  • “The Women in Industry – Featuring the female leaders who inspire our industry,” Society for Marketing Professional Services, Northeast Ohio, Cleveland, OH (September 2017)
  • “Expanding Your Business in Today's Political & Economic Climate - The Current State of Affairs & Public Policy That Impacts Your Business,” The Presidents’ Council 2017 Annual Conference, Cleveland, OH (August 2017)
  • “Is Your Financial House in Order? Or Things I Wish I Had Known When...,” Union Club of Cleveland Engaging Women’s Committee Event, Cleveland, OH (2016)
  • Panelist, Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity Tau Boule Professional Development Series
  • International Economic Development Council’s Annual Conference IGNITE Women’s Mentoring Luncheon
  • Flourish Cleveland Conference for Women in Leadership
  • Cleveland Professional 20/30 Club’s “Ladies Who Lead” Professional Women’s Forum (2015)
  • Ohio Diversity Council’s Women in Leadership Symposium (2015)
  • Keynote Speaker, Case Western Reserve University’s Black Law Students Association “Black Ties” Event (2014)
  • International Women’s Day, URS Cleveland (2014)

News & Events



Licensed In

  • Ohio

Court Admissions

  • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio
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