Steptoe & Johnson
|Steptoe & Johnson LLP|
|Headquarters||1330 Connecticut Avenue NW
|No. of offices||9|
|No. of attorneys||500|
|Major practice areas||General practice|
|Key people||Roger Warin, Phil Malet|
|Date founded||Washington, D.C. (1945); Phoenix (1987); Los Angeles (1997); London (2001); Brussels (2002); New York (2005); Century City (2006); Chicago (2007); Beijing (2010)|
|Founder||Philip Steptoe, Col. Louis A. Johnson|
|Company type||Limited liability partnership (LLP)|
Steptoe & Johnson LLP is an international law firm recognized for representation of clients before governmental agencies, advocacy in complex litigation and arbitration, and advice in guiding business transactions. The firm has 500 lawyers in offices in Beijing, Brussels, Century City, Chicago, London, Los Angeles, New York, Phoenix, and Washington, D.C..
Philip Steptoe and Col. Louis A. Johnson, classmates from the University of Virginia School of Law, formed Steptoe & Johnson in 1913 in Clarksburg, WV. In 1928, Steptoe & Johnson opened an office in Charleston, WV, to meet the expanding legislative and regulatory work available in the state capital. Meanwhile, Col. Johnson helped found the American Legion, bringing national prominence to himself and the firm when he served as the organization’s commander in the mid-1930s. President Franklin D. Roosevelt appointed Col. Johnson deputy secretary of war in 1937.
After leaving the Roosevelt administration, Col. Johnson opened the Washington D.C. office of Steptoe & Johnson in 1945. Shortly thereafter, Col. Johnson was again tapped for public service, this time by President Harry S. Truman, for whom he served as secretary of defense until 1950.
The firm’s Washington office grew quickly under Col. Johnson’s influence. Among its first clients were the members of the growing airlines industry, as well as pipelines, railroads, and foreign companies whose assets had been seized during World War II. In assisting these clients, Steptoe became known as a prominent firm in regulatory law, tax, and international trade.
In 1980, the firm began a period of growth, starting with the amicable separation of the Washington and West Virginia offices. The West Virginia firm known as Steptoe & Johnson PLLC is still based in Clarksburg, WV.
In 1987, a combination of client needs and business opportunities led to the opening of a Steptoe office in Phoenix. Since 1997, the firm has opened offices in Los Angeles (1997); London (2001); Brussels (2002); New York (2005); Century City, CA (2006); Chicago (2007); and Beijing (2010).
The firm’s attorneys have continued Col. Johnson’s tradition of government service, with dozens of Steptoe attorneys having served in high-level government positions. The firm is committed to pro bono service and community involvement.
Steptoe’s main areas of practice include Litigation, Business Solutions, Regulatory and Industry Affairs, International, and Technology. According to Chambers and Partners, Steptoe offers leading practices in the following areas: international trade, telecommunications and internet/e-commerce, intellectual property, energy and natural resources, transportation, major litigation (including insurance coverage, toxic tort, employment, and general commercial litigation), antitrust/competition, corporate transactions, tax planning and litigation, pension benefits, and white-collar criminal investigations.
The firm’s attorneys also contribute to pro bono matters in the following areas:
- Civil Liberties and Civil Rights
- Community Economic Development
- The Elderly
- Family Law
- Housing and Homelessness
- Human Rights
- Not-for-Profit Corporations
Steptoe’s public service activities have been honored by the District of Columbia Bar, the National Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, the Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs, the Children’s Law Center, the Washington Legal Clinic for the Homeless, the Arizona Foundation for Legal Services and Education, the Washington Council of Lawyers, the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, the Volunteer Lawyers’ Project, the Public International Law & Policy Group, the Washington Area Lawyers for the Arts, the Service members’ Legal Defense Fund, and the Solicitor’s Pro Bono Group in London.
Recent Awards & Rankings
- The World Finance Legal Awards have named Steptoe and Johnson LLP as the Best Energy Team (US) (2011)
- Best Lawyers named Steven Brose the Washington, DC Natural Resources Law Lawyer of the Year and Mark Silverman the Washington, DC Tax Law Lawyer of the Year (2013)
- Best Lawyers ranked 77 Steptoe attorneys (2013)
- Chambers UK ranked eight practice areas and seven attorneys (2013)
- Chambers Global ranked 10 practice areas and 20 attorneys (2012)
- Chambers USA ranked 51 attorneys and 18 practice areas (2012)
- Chambers Europe ranked Steptoe a leading firm, and James Searles a leading individual, in International Trade/WTO (Europe-wide); and a leading firm in Belgium for environment: regulatory (Darren Abrahams) and International Trade/WTO (James Searles) (2012)
- Chambers Asia ranked three practice areas and four attorneys (2012)
- Legal 500 US recognized 21 attorneys and eight practice areas (2009)
- Legal 500 UK ranked 10 practice areas (2012)
- Legal 500 Europe, Middle East & Africa (2009)
- Legal Experts: Europe, Middle East & Africa ranked four attorneys (2012)
- Legal Experts UK Edition ranked twelve attorneys (2012)
- Super Lawyers ranked 58 US attorneys (2012)
- Washingtonian magazine named nine Steptoe attorneys Top Lawyers and Reid Weingarten as one of “30 Stars of the Bar” (2011-12)
- Legal Times selected Brian Heberlig as a top “40 under 40” rising legal star (2009)
- David Roll has been named a Purpose Prize Fellow, an honor for social entrepreneurs over 60 who are using their experience and passion to take on society’s biggest challenges (2009)
- Working Mother Media and Flex-Time Lawyers named Steptoe a “Best Law Firm for Women” (2009)
- Human Resources Executive named Paul Ondrasik a Top Ten ERISA Attorney in the US (2009)
- Steptoe's Firm History
- Steptoe's Honors & Rankings
- Lex Mundi
- Organizational Profile at the National Law Review