Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP announced on Sept. 28, 2016 that former Solicitor General Donald B. Verrilli, Jr. will join the firm to open its Washington, D.C. office. Joining Mr. Verrilli will be veteran litigator Michael B. DeSanctis and former Deputy Associate Attorney General Chad Golder.
“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to start this new chapter with Munger, Tolles & Olson,” Mr. Verrilli said. “The firm has an unparalleled reputation for solving national and international clients’ toughest problems with lean teams of the most talented lawyers in the country. That is exactly the kind of firm I want to join. It’s an honor to open their Washington, D.C. office.”
As solicitor general from June 2011 to June 2016, Mr. Verrilli argued 37 cases before the U.S. Supreme Court. President Barack Obama credited Mr. Verrilli with “winning landmark cases that moved America forward.” And Attorney General Loretta Lynch described him as a “brilliant lawyer, a devoted public servant and one of the most consequential solicitors general in American history.” Among his landmark victories were his successful advocacy in defense of the Affordable Care Act, for marriage equality, and in favor of federal preemption authority in the immigration field. Before serving as solicitor general, Mr. Verrilli served as deputy White House counsel, and previously, as an associate deputy attorney general at the U.S. Department of Justice. In those positions, he counseled the president and senior government officials on a wide range of legal issues involving national security, economic regulation, domestic policy, and the scope of executive and administrative authority.
“Don has earned an impeccable reputation in his distinguished career – both as an advocate and a counselor, navigating critical, complex and polarizing legal issues,” name partner Ronald L. Olson said. “He will now bring those exceptional abilities to bear on the problems of our clients.”
Mr. Verrilli will represent and counsel clients on multi-dimensional problems, where litigation, regulation and public policy intersect to shape markets and industries in our evolving economy. He will bring to those challenges an especially strong Supreme Court and appellate practice, and a wide range of substantive expertise. Mr. Verrilli’s experience and interests include patent and technology, content and copyright, healthcare, energy and telecommunications.
“This is our first new office in 25 years,” Co-Managing Partner Brad D. Brian said. “Opening an office in Washington, D.C. with a lawyer like Don Verrilli is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Both in private practice and government service, no one has successfully handled more high-stakes cases of nationwide significance during the past decade. From his work in bet-the-company cases like Grokster and NextWave, to his pro bono representation of death row inmates and his work as solicitor general defending the administration’s most significant policies, Don has an unrivalled track record of winning his clients’ most important cases, even when many believed that the odds were against him.”
Mr. Verrilli said, “The strengths of Munger, Tolles & Olson make it a perfect fit for the kind of practice I want to build – working with supremely talented attorneys to solve clients’ most challenging problems with high-powered legal analysis and advocacy. And it is an ideal platform for offering clients world class appellate expertise as part of that practice. This phenomenal opportunity is made all the better by doing it with two superb lawyers like Michael DeSanctis and Chad Golder.”
Mr. DeSanctis’ broad litigation practice ranges from leading jury and bench trials to arguing major appellate matters, including before the U.S. Supreme Court. He represents record companies and entertainment clients on copyright and royalty issues. Mr. DeSanctis also has extensive experience in government investigations and works with major clients in the aerospace, defense contracting and telecommunications industries. He will continue to handle a broad range of business disputes and arbitrations, both domestic and international, as well as enforcement and investigation matters. Mr. DeSanctis is also one of the country’s leading experts in election law and redistricting, a natural extension of the firm’s long pro-bono commitment to election reform.
“It is a privilege to work with Don and Chad to open Munger, Tolles & Olson’s office in Washington, D.C.,” Mr. DeSanctis said. “The firm has an extraordinary reputation and I look forward to helping build its presence on the East Coast and replicate the success of its expansion to San Francisco 25 years ago.”
“Michael’s work correlates very closely with the work we have done with our entertainment and aerospace clients for many years,” said Co-Managing Partner Sandra A. Seville-Jones. “He’s an outstanding attorney who we’ve enjoyed working with in the past. Don, Michael and Chad fit perfectly with the firm’s core commitment to exceptional talent bringing critical thinking to solving clients’ hardest problems.”
Mr. Golder spent the last seven-and-a-half years at the U.S. Department of Justice. Most recently, as deputy associate attorney general, he managed some of the most important litigation involving the United States and provided legal advice and strategic counseling to senior government officials about regulatory, litigation and public policy issues. In this role, and as counsel to the deputy attorney general at the start of the Obama administration, Mr. Golder worked on complex constitutional, statutory and administrative law issues affecting industries ranging from health care and financial services to defense and national security. Prior to serving as deputy associate attorney general, Mr. Golder served for four years as an assistant United States attorney in the Eastern District of Virginia, where he prosecuted financial fraud and public corruption cases. A former law clerk for Associate Justice John Paul Stevens of the U.S. Supreme Court and Judge Merrick Garland of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, he is a graduate of Yale University and Yale Law School.