Roscoe Jones Jr. is a counsel in the Washington, DC office and co-chair of the firm’s Public Policy Group. He is also a member of the firm’s Congressional Investigations, White Collar Defense and Investigations, and Privacy, Cybersecurity, and Data Innovation practice groups.
Mr. Jones has almost a decade of Capitol Hill experience advising three U.S. Senators and a member of Congress and political experience in the executive branch. Drawing upon that experience, Mr. Jones’s practice focuses on promoting and protecting clients’ interests before the U.S. Congress and the Administration, including providing a range of public policy services to clients such as strategic counseling, advocacy, coalition building, political intelligence gathering, substantive policy expertise, legislative drafting, and message development. He also advises on congressional investigations, internal corporate investigations, and other government investigations, as well as helping clients respond to major crises involving multiple government agencies and branches.
Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Jones served for almost a decade in senior-level roles on Capitol Hill, most recently as Chief of Staff to U.S. Representative Abigail Spanberger, as Legislative Director to U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein, as Senior Counsel to U.S. Senator Cory A. Booker, and as Counsel, and later Senior Counsel, on the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee for then-Chairman Patrick Leahy.
During his Capitol Hill tenure, Mr. Jones advised on the confirmations of three Supreme Court Justices and three Attorneys General along with dozens of nominations to federal courts and the Department of Justice, assisted with oversight and investigations of the Department of Justice and White House, and advised on several bills that were enacted into law, including the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act and Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act, which led to the passage of the First Step Act.
Mr. Jones served in several roles at the U.S. Department of Justice. He was an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Western District of Washington’s Criminal Division, Special Assistant U.S. Attorney in the District of Columbia, and an attorney in the Appellate Section of the DOJ Civil Rights Division. He served as Special Counsel to then-Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights Tom Perez, where he helped oversee the Civil Rights Division’s legislative initiatives and directed the Division’s response to congressional investigations.
Mr. Jones graduated with high honors from Stanford University, and received a J.D. from the University of Virginia Law School, where he was Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Social Policy & Law and co-founder of the Law School’s Center for Race & Law. Mr. Jones clerked for Judge Carl E. Stewart on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit and Judge Alexander Williams, Jr., on the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland. Early in his career, he served as the Francis D. Murnaghan, Jr., Appellate Advocacy Fellow at the Public Justice Center. He has been published in the Harvard Law & Policy Review.
In 2021, Mr. Jones was selected as a “Rising Star” by the National Law Journal and named to the National Black Lawyers “Top 100” list. Previously, in 2017, he was named as a Stennis Fellow on Capitol Hill, a bipartisan leadership development program for select senior-level congressional staff to explore ways to improve the effectiveness of congressional staff. In 2016, Mr. Jones was honored as a Wasserstein Public Interest Fellow at Harvard Law School, which recognizes exemplary lawyers who have distinguished themselves in public interest work.
Mr. Jones has been appointed a Visiting Lecturer in Law at the Yale Law School for the fall of 2021, where he will teach a seminar on criminal justice reform policy entitled “Mass Incarceration.” He has taught administrative law and policy-oriented seminars at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, University of Michigan Law School, Georgetown University Law Center, George Washington University Law School, University of Washington Law School, and the Daniel J. Evans School of Public Policy & Governance.
Mr. Jones is active in his community. He is the Secretary and Executive Committee member of the national board of the American Constitution Society, the nation’s leading progressive legal organization, with more than 200 student and lawyer chapters in almost every state and on most law school campuses. He also serves as a national board member of the following organizations: Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, a nonprofit formed in 1963 at the request of President John F. Kennedy to enlist the private bar’s leadership and resources in combating racial discrimination; The Medgar and Myrlie Evers Institute, the official organization dedicated to advancing the social justice legacy of Mississippi civil rights heroes Medgar Evers and Myrlie Evers; Stanford Athletic Board, which supports the Stanford University athletic department programs; and the Stanford National Black Alumni Association.
He is a member of The Aspen Institute’s Society of Fellows and the American Bar Association. He serves on the University of Virginia Law School’s Black Law Alumni Engagement and Reunion Planning Committee. He also is a Stanford University alumni volunteer interviewer.
He is a member of the firm’s Political Action Committee.
Mr. Jones is a member of the bars of the State of Maryland and District of Columbia and admitted to practice before the United States Courts of Appeal for the Fourth, Ninth, and Eleventh Circuits.
Recent Representation Highlights Include:
- Advised companies on Congressional actions on the landmark infrastructure legislation;
- Counsel for a software service company seeking to create and run a coalition for legislative advocacy;
- Counsel for victims of the 1998 terrorist bombings of two American embassies in Kenya and Tanzania who prevailed in Congress passing legislation to finalize the historic bilateral agreement between the US and Sudan providing justice to families of those injured and killed in the attacks;
- Counsel for manufacturer seeking appropriations funding from Senate and House Appropriations Committees with respect to specialty first-responder vehicle funding;
- Counsel for major hospital seeking appropriations funding from House and Senate Appropriations Committees with respect to hospital infrastructure funding; and
- Provide strategic counsel to dozens of high-level company executives on congressional and Executive Branch responses to COVID-19 and companies’ eligibility for COVID-19 relief. Team won the Frank Wheat Pro Bono Award.
- Counsel for social media company in an investigation and congressional hearing by the House Energy and Commerce Committee on extremism and misinformation;
- Counsel for company under investigation by House Financial Services Committee;
- Counsel for social media platform with respect to Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on alleged bias and Communications Decency Act, Section 230 protections;
- Counsel for health care corporation in congressional investigation into billing practices; and
- Counsel for Fortune 500 company in congressional investigation into its marketing practices.
- Represent special litigation committee of the board of a Fortune 500 company in an investigation of shareholder derivative claims regarding board oversight of company compliance program; and
- Representation of a client in connection with a FCPA due diligence review.
Pro Bono Representations
Mr. Jones maintains an active pro bono docket and has been a member of teams that received the firm’s 2021 Frank Wheat Team Pro Bono Award for demonstrated leadership in their pro bono work.
- Counsel for the national bar association in support of programming on police reform practices;
- Counsel for a national civil rights organization supporting a high-profile Biden Justice Department nominee successfully through the Senate confirmation process;
- Counsel for national civil rights nonprofit in advocating for passage of comprehensive police reform legislation in the US Senate;
- Counsel for a national law enforcement association in drafting a comprehensive, landmark report on police reform policy solutions;
- Counsel for a major bar association conducting a police reform convening with Members of Congress;
- Counsel for a prominent law school drafting a criminal justice reform model legislation;
- Advised civil rights nonprofit on Congressional efforts to pass COVID-19 legal aid relief funding;
- Counsel for an ICE detainee in a federal facility during the COVID-19 crisis advocating for federal and state lawmakers to respond. Detainee was moved from the facility and team received the Frank Wheat Award;
- Counsel for immigration reform organizations seeking a model draft legislation under Colorado state law to alter medical licensing requirements for refugees;
- Counsel for an individual seeking deportation relief from the Administration with assistance from Members of Congress;
- Prepared an individual to testify at a hearing before the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Courts, Intellectual Property, and the Internet; and
- Counsel for civil rights nonprofit seeking to draft federal civil rights legislation.
Recent Speaking Engagements
- Speaker, “UVa Law Review Faculty Luncheon to welcome new Law Review members,” University of Virginia Law School, August 2021
- Speaker, “Boardroom to the Classroom: A Conversation with Roscoe Jones, Jr.” American Constitution Society, July 2021
- Speaker, “Juneteenth Commemoration,” for a leading tech company, June 2021
- Moderator, “What’s At Stake: Voter Suppression,” Medgar and Myrlie Evers Institute, June 2021
- Moderator, “Government Practice Group,” American Constitution Society, June 2021
- Panelist, “Practice Group Series: Congressional Investigations,” Gibson Dunn internal webcast, June 2021
- Panelist, “General Counsel Briefing on Biden Administration Trade Policy,” Gibson Dunn webcast, June 2021
- Panelist, “Diversity Panel,” Gibson Dunn New Lawyers Academy, May 2021
- Speaker, “Federal Legislative Landscape,” Bay Area Council, Housing Committee, April 2021
- Panelist, “Virtual Washington, DC week,” Bay Area Council, April 2021
- Speaker, “ACS Student Convention,” American Constitution Society, March 2021
- Panelist, “Leveraging Your Network,” Stanford National Black Alumni Association Office Hours, March 2021
- Panelist, “COVID-19 Relief for Restaurants and Food Service Businesses,” Gibson Dunn webcast, March 2021
- Panelist, “Leverage Your Network,“ Stanford National Black Alumni Association, February 2021
- Panelist, “White Noise: Movie Screening and Panel on the Rise of White Nationalism,” Georgetown University Law Center’s American Constitution Society chapter, February 2021
- Panelist, “Racial Equity in Education Policy,” Missouri and Kansas Education Policy Fellowship Program, Institute for Educational Leadership, February 2021
- Panelist, “Police Reform Priorities for the 117th Congress,” Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights, Capitol Hill Staff Briefing, December 2020
- Panelist, “Congressional Investigations and Oversight Post-Election,” Gibson Dunn webcast, December 2020
- Panelist, “What’s Next?: The Legislative and Policy Landscape After the 2020 Election,” Gibson Dunn webcast, December 2020
- Speaker, “Federal Government Lawyering,” Columbia University Law School, November 2020
- Panelist, “Trends in Government Investigations into Foreign Influence in the Private Sector: A Discussion of FARA and Related Provisions,” Gibson Dunn Webcast, October 2020
- Speaker, “Public Service,” New York University Law School, The Arthur Garfield Hays Civil Liberties Program, October 2020
- Speaker, “Law and Public Service Program,” University of Virginia Law School, October 2020
- Speaker, “Proposed Police Accountability Board,” City of Geneva City Council, September 2020
- Panelist, “Heightened Risks of Parallel Investigations,” American Bar Association National Conference, August 2020
- Panelist, “Racial Inequality, Police Reform, and Allyship,” Asian American Bar Association of Greater DC and Asian Pacific American Bar Association, June 2020
- Speaker, “Juneteenth 2020 Commemoration,” Lincoln Heritage Museum, June 2020
- Panelist, “Federal Government Response to COVID-19: Emergency Federal Measures,” Gibson Dunn webcast, March 2020
- Panelist, “View from the Hill,” Washington University at Brookings, Executive Education Conference, February 2020
- Panelist, “Legislative Negotiation Roundtable,” Association of American Law Schools Annual Conference, January 2020