C. Colon Willoughby Partner

Colon leads the Government Investigations & White Collar Group in McGuireWoods’ Raleigh office where his practice focuses on government, regulatory and criminal investigations. He concentrates on civil and criminal investigative and enforcement matters including white collar crime, state attorney general investigations, civil investigative demands, state and federal Legislative Branch inquiries, and grand jury subpoenas. Prior to joining McGuireWoods, he was a mortgage banker and served as the elected district attorney in North Carolina’s state capital for 27 years.

As one of North Carolina’s longest serving prosecutors in the seat of state government, Colon’s investigative and litigation experience handling regulatory enforcement and corruption cases allows him to provide valued and trusted counsel to clients who are the subject of action or attention by state, federal and administrative agencies. He has represented clients in environmental, healthcare, banking, public contracting and taxation matters, and has conducted internal investigations for private and public sector entities. Colon was a member of two legislative study commissions reviewing law enforcement issues and insanity verdicts, and he served on the governor’s Task Force on Racial and Religious Violence.

Colon is a fellow in the American College of Trial Lawyers and he serves as the past president of the North Carolina State Bar. He also is past president of the Wake County Academy of Criminal Trial Lawyers and the North Carolina Conference of District Attorneys; past director of the Wake County Bar Association and the National District Attorneys Association; and a former North Carolina State Bar councilor.

Colon also is dedicated to contributing to his community. He served on the Board of Governors of Summit House Inc.; as a director of Artspace Inc.; a member of the Raleigh Rotary Club; and a director of NCLEAF. He sits on the YMCA of the Triangle’s board and is a member and elder of White Memorial Presbyterian Church.

  • North Carolina
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina

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Named to North Carolina Pro Bono Honor Society, 2020

Named to "North Carolina Super Lawyers," Criminal Defense, Super Lawyers, Thomson Reuters, 2016-2021

Order of the Long Leaf Pine

Fellow, American College of Trial Lawyers

Peter Gilchrist Award, North Carolina Bar Association 2011

Joseph Branch Professionalism Award, Wake County Bar Association 2010

James Iredell Professionalism Award, Campbell Law School 2007

  • Campbell University, JD, 1979
  • East Carolina University, MBA, 1975
  • The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, BS, Business Administration, 1973

President, North Carolina State Bar, 2019-2020

Vice President, North Carolina State Bar, 2017-2019

President, Wake County Academy of Trial Lawyers, 1984-1985

Director, Wake County Bar Association, 2010-2012

Member, North Carolina State Bar Disciplinary Hearing Commission, 2007-2012

Member, North Carolina State Bar Council

President, North Carolina Conference of District Attorneys, 1992-1993

Former member, Board of Directors, National District Attorney’s Association

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