John P. Melko


John Melko focuses his practice on complex sales, acquisitions, bankruptcies and financings in the energy sector throughout the United States, as well as offshore and bluewater shipping-related issues in both foreign and domestic cases and financings.

With years of cross-border and multinational experience in a broad range of industries, John has worked across sectors including food service; oil and gas exploration, production, transportation, refining, and marketing; electric generation and transmission; renewable energy projects; blue water shipping; airlines; and retail cases and workouts. He is co-chair of Foley’s national Bankruptcy & Business Reorganization Practice and an advisory member of the firm’s Energy Sector.

He has represented:

  • Borrowers and debtors in possession
  • Creditors and creditors’ committees
  • Securitized noteholders
  • Trustees
  • Investors
  • Buyers of assets and businesses in and out of restructuring or bankruptcy settings

Throughout his career, John has helped guide clients through dislocations in those industries out of court workouts as well as chapters 7, 11 (including sub-chapter V), and chapter 15 procedures.

Awards and Recognition

  • Global M&A Network – Top 100 Restructuring Professionals (2022)
  • Best Lawyers – Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/ Insolvency and Reorganization Law Lawyer of the Year – Houston (2022)
  • The Best Lawyers in America – Litigation – Bankruptcy (2011-2024)
  • The Best Lawyers in America – Bankruptcy and Creditor Debtor Rights/Insolvency and Reorganization Law (2009-2024)
  • Lawdragon – 500 Leading U.S. and Global Bankruptcy and Restructuring Lawyers (2020, 2022)
  • IFLR1000 – Aviation, Energy & Restructuring and Insolvency (2018)
  • Chambers USA – Bankruptcy/Restructuring, Texas (2009-2023)
  • Texas Super Lawyers – Bankruptcy & Creditor/Debtor Rights (2007-2017)
  • Best Lawyers – Bankruptcy Litigation Law Lawyer of the Year – Houston (2014)
  • AV Preeminent, 5.0 out of 5 Peer Review Rated, Martindale-Hubbell, Peer Review Ratings
    • Judicial Edition, Highest possible rating in both legal ability and ethical standards (2019)


  • Member, State Bar of Texas, Business, Bankruptcy Law, and Natural Resources Sections
  • Member, American Bankruptcy Institute
  • Houston Bar Association – Bankruptcy, International, and Oil, Gas & Mineral Law Sections
  • Turnaround Management Association
  • Fellow, American College of Bankruptcy
  • Fellow, Texas Bar Foundation
  • Member, Maritime Law Association of the United States
  • Member, American Petroleum Institute, Houston Chapter
  • Member, Association for Corporate Growth, Houston
  • Member, Texas Independent Producer Organization

Presentations and Publications

  • Presenter, “When Bankruptcy Happens: Strategies, Tips, and Avoiding Pitfalls” ACC Colorado Webinar, Denver (November 9, 2022)
  • Presenter, “Carbon Capture & Storage Leases, Tax Incentives, and Emerging Issues” ACC Energy Practice Group Update, Houston, TX (September 15, 2022)
  • Presenter, “What’s My Line?  (Bankruptcy counsel, clients and other professionals behaving badly in bankruptcy)” American College of Bankruptcy – 5th and 10th Circuit Ethics Program, Park City, UT (July 29, 2022)
  • Presenter, “Carbon Capture and Storage Overview” Energy Sector Town Hall Meeting “ (June 1, 2022)
  • Presenter, “Commercial and Surety Impact Due to Recent Bankruptcies” 2022 OCS Advisory Board Workshop Program, The Woodlands, Texas (May 5, 2022)
  • Moderator, “Subchapter V Update and S.D. Tex. Bankruptcy Court Reopening Plan” Turnaround Management Association August 2021 Meeting, Houston, Texas (August 25, 2021)
  • Moderator, “Crypto Currency – Basics, Banking, Billions, and Bankruptcy” Turnaround Management Association June 2021 Meeting, Houston, Texas (June 23, 2021)
  • Moderator, “Oil & Gas 2021, What to Expect?” Turnaround Management Association Virtual Event (February 10, 2021)
  • Moderator, “Volatility in the Oilpatch: Where Did all the Value Go?” Beard Distressed Investing Conference” (December 1, 2020)
  • Moderator, “Crisis in the Oilpatch – Danger or Opportunity for Leaders and Distressed Investors?” Beard Distressed Investing Conference, New York, New York (December 2, 2019)
  • Moderator, “Shoeboxes of Receipts, LA Mega Mansions and the Unraveling of a Ponzi Scheme” Turnaround Management Association October Meeting, Houston, Texas
  • Presenter, “An Ounce of Prevention Strategies for Dealing with Potentially Insolvent Counterparties” Houston Bar Association, Oil, Gas & Mineral Section Luncheon, Houston, Texas (October 24, 2019)
18 September 2023 Honors and Awards

Foley Attorneys Named to 2023 Texas Super Lawyers

Foley & Lardner LLP is pleased to announce that 17 of its attorneys were selected for inclusion in the 2023 Texas Super Lawyers list.
17 August 2023 Honors and Awards

Foley Attorneys Recognized in 2024 Best Lawyers in America

Foley & Lardner LLP proudly announced today that 236 of the firm’s attorneys across 20 U.S. offices have received recognition in the 2024 edition of The Best Lawyers in America©.
21 June 2023 Honors and Awards

Foley Attorneys Recognized in 2023 Lawdragon 500 Leading U.S. Bankruptcy & Restructuring Lawyers

Foley & Lardner LLP is pleased to announce that six of its attorneys have been named to the 2023 edition of Lawdragon’s 500 Leading U.S. Bankruptcy & Restructuring Lawyers guide.
01 June 2023 Press Releases

Foley Earns Top Rankings in Chambers USA 2023

Foley & Lardner LLP is pleased to announce that it has again been recognized by Chambers & Partners as one of the top law firms in the country in the 2023 edition of Chambers USA, America’s Leading Lawyers for Business.
30 March 2023 Innovative Technology Insights

Key Takeaways Bank Receiverships Week Two

On Tuesday, March 21, at 5:00 p.m. CT, Foley hosted a webinar where a panel of presenters discussed the latest updates and practical considerations regarding Bank Receivership. Read our key takeaways here.
21 September 2022 Honors and Awards

Foley Attorneys Named to 2022 Texas Super Lawyers

Foley & Lardner LLP is pleased to announce that 17 of its attorneys were selected for inclusion in the 2022 Texas Super Lawyers list.