Home » Attorneys » Gessner, John B.

John is a seasoned corporate lawyer who provides comprehensive legal guidance to growth-stage businesses, primarily in the Food & Beverage and Hospitality sectors.  Serving in an outside general counsel capacity, John advises clients on:

  • business operations and strategic planning
  • corporate formation and governance
  • employment and human resources
  • financing
  • franchising
  • liquor law issues and licensing
  • litigation
  • real estate and leasing
  • restructuring

Prior to joining Carrington Coleman, John served for more than a decade as general counsel to both national franchisees and franchisors, as well as restaurant development and management companies. Before that he represented hospitality clients in commercial and employment litigation.

John is a frequent lecturer on hospitality topics and since 2005 has been a regular participant in the Cornell University Hospitality Roundtable. He has also taught business law courses at Brookhaven Community College.


Tulane University
J.D., 1984

University of St. Thomas
B.A., summa cum laude, 1981

Court Admissions

Texas, 1984

U.S. Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit

United States District Courts for the Northern, Eastern, Southern and Western Districts of Texas


Member: Texas Bar Association

Member: Dallas Bar Association

Greater Dallas Restaurant Association

  • Board of Directors and Executive Committee, 2008-2019

Texas Restaurant Association

  • Immediate Past President, 2021
  • President, 2019-2020
  • President Elect, 2018
  • Vice President, 2017
  • Secretary, 2016
  • Board of Directors, 2009-2019
  • Executive Committee, 2010-2019

Texas Restaurant Association PAC

  • Chairman, 2010-2011, 2016-2019