Avi S. Garbow is a partner in the Washington, D.C. office of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher. He is a Co-Chair of the Environmental Litigation and Mass Tort Practice Group, and a member of the White Collar Defense and Investigations, Administrative Law and Regulatory, and Crisis Management Practice Groups. He joined the firm after serving as General Counsel at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Mr. Garbow was nominated by President Obama, confirmed with the unanimous consent of the Senate, and was EPA's longest-serving General Counsel, from 2013 through 2017. Before assuming that position, he served as EPA Deputy General Counsel, held positions in EPA's enforcement office, and was a distinguished federal prosecutor at the U.S. Department of Justice.
Honored by the National Law Journal as an Energy and Environmental Trailblazer in 2017, Mr. Garbow has extensive experience in the development, implementation and enforcement of environmental regulations under nearly all major environmental statutes. His practice focuses on environmental compliance, internal investigations and enforcement proceedings, litigation defense and crisis management. In addition, Mr. Garbow provides strategic counseling on matters relating to climate change and sustainability, helping clients in a wide range of industries identify and maximize business opportunities arising from changing environmental and regulatory landscapes.
Mr. Garbow's tenure as EPA's General Counsel occurred during the most advanced efforts of the federal government to address climate change, both domestically and internationally. While serving as EPA General Counsel, Mr. Garbow twice led the EPA delegation to the U.S.-China Strategic & Economic Dialogue and participated in the U.S.-China Climate Change Working Group.
Mr. Garbow successfully managed one of the most active regulatory and defensive litigation dockets among large federal agencies. Under his leadership, EPA's Office of General Counsel was recognized – for the first time ever – by The Legal 500 U.S. as the Best In-House Team for Environment in 2014 and in 2015, and was selected for its GC Powerlist, with The Legal 500 remarking that "under the inspired leadership of Avi Garbow, the dedication that the team shows sets it apart from all others in the field." He also spearheaded significant engagement with State Attorneys General, and he helped to found the EPA/Environmental Council of States Legal Network.
Earlier in his career, Mr. Garbow served as a prosecutor in the Justice Department's Environmental Crimes Section, was appointed as a Special Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Eastern District of Virginia, and held positions in EPA's Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance.
Mr. Garbow received his Juris Doctor from the University of Virginia School of Law, where he received the Robert F. Kennedy Award for Public Service. He received a Masters Degree in Marine Affairs from the University of Virginia Graduate School of Arts & Sciences.