Michael Francisco, an accomplished litigator and recent law clerk for U.S. Supreme Court Justice Neil M. Gorsuch, has joined McGuireWoods’ Government Investigations & White Collar Litigation Department as a partner in Washington, D.C. He is one of eight former Supreme Court clerks in the firm’s litigation practices.
Francisco focuses on commercial and public policy litigation, appellate matters and strategic counseling. He clerked for Justice Gorsuch during the high court’s 2019-2020 term. Before that, he was a partner at a boutique law firm in Colorado, where he represented a range of clients including defense contractors, government officials and national business organizations in civil litigation and appeals.
Francisco served as assistant solicitor general in the Colorado Attorney General’s Office from 2013 to 2015, handling high-profile litigation before the Colorado Supreme Court, the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and the U.S. Supreme Court.
“Michael’s significant experience in complex litigation and appeals will be of great benefit to our clients,” said Dion Hayes, McGuireWoods’ deputy managing partner for litigation. “His skill and insight make him a valuable addition to the firm, and we are delighted to welcome him.”
Francisco joins a McGuireWoods practice recognized twice by Law360 as a White Collar Practice of the Year for its work representing major companies and prominent individuals in high-stakes matters.
“Michael is a proven litigator whose appellate experience and deep understanding of public policy and regulatory matters complement the strengths of our nationally recognized practice,” said Todd Steggerda, chair of the firm’s Government Investigations & White Collar Litigation Department.
With more than 60 attorneys — including former federal prosecutors and enforcement officials, former U.S. Attorneys and a Deputy Attorney General of the United States — McGuireWoods’ Government Investigations & White Collar Litigation Department has represented Fortune 100 companies and individuals in some of the most prominent and complicated matters of the past decade.
“Michael strengthens our roster of exceptional litigators in Washington and brings a unique perspective that will benefit our clients immensely,” said Todd Mullins, managing partner of the firm’s Washington office.
Francisco’s arrival follows the recent addition of Charlotte partner Jason Cowley, former co-chief of the Securities and Commodities Fraud Task Force and former chief of the Money Laundering and Asset Forfeiture Unit of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York. Cowley was the sixth former federal prosecutor to join McGuireWoods since 2018. The firm also welcomed Andrew McBride, former Associate Deputy Attorney General and Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Rodger Heaton, former U.S. Attorney for the Central District of Illinois; and Kevin Lally, who served for nearly two decades as an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Central District of California and led the office’s Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force Section; Lawrence Cameron, former Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina; and Katie Dougherty, former Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia. Michael Herring, the former Commonwealth’s Attorney in Richmond, Virginia, also joined the firm in 2019.
In addition, McGuireWoods expanded its cross-border investigations capabilities this year with the addition of London partner Francesca Titus, an accomplished white collar lawyer and barrister with deep experience in multijurisdictional investigations and criminal cases.
“McGuireWoods has a nationally renowned government investigations practice and strong litigation presence in Washington, where I can use my experience to serve clients at the highest level,” Francisco said. “I am delighted to join this pre-eminent practice and put my experience to work for clients.”
McGuireWoods ranks among the world’s leading investigations firms in the GIR 100, a guide to top cross-border investigations practices based on independent research by Global Investigations Review. The firm holds a nationwide ranking for corporate investigations and white collar criminal defense in The Legal 500 United States, a premier list of the country’s best law firms. And The American Lawyer named the firm a Global Legal Awards finalist for litigation/dispute resolution of the year.
Note: Francisco is not admitted in the District of Columbia. He is a member of the Colorado bar and has applied for admission to the D.C. bar. While he awaits admission, he is practicing under the supervision of an enrolled, active D.C. bar member.