King & Spalding today announced that former Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein joins the firm’s Washington, D.C., office as a partner on its Special Matters & Government Investigations team.
Rosenstein spent almost two decades in senior legal management and leadership positions at the U.S. Department of Justice during the administrations of Presidents George W. Bush, Barack Obama and Donald Trump, including as Deputy Attorney General (2017 to 2019) and United States Attorney (2005 to 2017). Prior to his appointment as the Department’s second-highest ranking official, he was the longest-serving Senate-confirmed U.S. Attorney in recent history.
“Rod Rosenstein is an exceptional trial lawyer, strategist and leader with unquestioned integrity and toughness,” said Robert D. Hays, Jr., chairman of King & Spalding. “His arrival underscores the firm’s longstanding commitment to effective advocacy on the most complex and highest stakes government-related matters. Our clients will benefit from the unique experience of Rod and other senior government officials working together as a team. His arrival reflects the firm’s intent to continue building leading practices led by extraordinary lawyers to serve clients on their most pressing and sensitive needs.”
With his vast prosecutorial and enforcement background, Rosenstein becomes another critical member of King & Spalding’s Special Matters & Government Investigations team, which assists clients—corporate, institutional and individual—in sensitive and reputational legal challenges, including many involving government agencies, legislative bodies or state Attorneys General. In the past two years, the firm has significantly ramped up the group with an all-star roster of former senior Justice Department officials, including former Deputy U.S. Attorney General Sally Yates, former U.S. Attorneys Zachary Fardon and John Horn, former Associate Deputy Attorney General Alicia O’Brien and former FBI Chief of Staff Zack Harmon. Other former senior officials recently joining the firm include former Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats and former General Counsel for the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) and acting USTR Stephen Vaughn.
Rosenstein said, “I worked with many current and former firm lawyers in both Republican and Democratic administrations, and I learned that some of the best lawyers in the world work at King & Spalding. When considering where to go after leaving the Department of Justice, it became clear to me why so many former government officials choose this firm. With an unparalleled depth of experience across its practice groups and a long and distinguished record of success in courtrooms, King & Spalding is a bipartisan firm that focuses on helping clients resolve complex and sensitive matters in the United States and abroad. The inclusive and collaborative culture allows every client to benefit from the broad expertise and deep insight of more than 1,100 exceptional lawyers throughout the firm’s 21 offices. I look forward to working with my new colleagues to expand the firm’s government investigations, national security and cybersecurity practices.”
As Deputy U.S. Attorney General, Rosenstein formulated and implemented Department policies and programs; coordinated interactions with the White House and other federal agencies, the Judiciary, and the Congress; interacted with state, local, and foreign government leaders; and provided supervision and direction to all Department components, including its litigating divisions and law enforcement agencies.
Rosenstein conducted complex investigations and handled litigation in trial and appellate courtrooms as Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General for the Department’s Tax Division (2001 to 2005), as an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Maryland (1997 to 2001), and as an Associate Independent Counsel (1995 to 1997).
Rosenstein started his legal career in 1989, as a law clerk to Judge Douglas H. Ginsburg of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. He first joined the Department of Justice as a trial attorney in the prestigious Public Integrity Section of the Criminal Division (1990 to 1993), before serving as counsel to the Deputy Attorney General and the Assistant Attorney General for the Criminal Division (1993 to 1995). In these and other roles, he received dozens of awards and honors for his performance. In addition, Rosenstein gained impressive trial experience while representing the United States at 23 jury trials and arguing 21 appeals in various appellate courts around the country, including the 2018 U.S. Supreme Court criminal case of Chavez-Meza v. United States, in which the Court ruled in favor of his argument.
“Rod deserves his well-earned reputation for being decisive and unflappable in extraordinary professional situations,” said Special Matters practice chair Wick Sollers. “His experiences conducting and supervising large criminal and civil litigation uniquely qualify him to counsel and defend clients facing complex investigations, lawsuits and enforcement matters. Clients will benefit from his big-picture perspective, as well as his insights from having updated, improved and formulated federal law enforcement policies on corporate and white-collar enforcement, national security, CFIUS and cyber-digital issues. King & Spalding’s Special Matters & Government Investigations team is stronger with his addition.”
Rosenstein graduated from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, with a B.S. in Economics, summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa. He earned his J.D., cum laude, from Harvard Law School, where he was an editor of the Harvard Law Review.