David W. Ogden

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David Ogden
David Ogden official portrait.jpg
United States Deputy Attorney General
In office
March 12, 2009 – February 2010
President Barack Obama
Preceded by Mark Filip
Succeeded by Gary Grindler (Acting)
James M. Cole
Personal details
Born (1953-11-12) November 12, 1953 (age 62)
Alma mater University of Pennsylvania
Harvard Law School
Profession Attorney

David William Ogden (born November 12, 1953), known professionally as David W. Ogden, is the former Deputy Attorney General of the United States. An American lawyer, Ogden was a high-ranking official in the United States Department of Justice and the United States Department of Defense during the administration of President Bill Clinton.

Early life and education[edit]

Ogden is the son of Horace G. "Hod" Ogden (1925-1998), who was the first director of the Bureau of Health Education at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (and previously had worked for the United States Department of Health, Education, and Welfare), and Elaine Ogden.[1]

Ogden earned an A.B. summa cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania in 1976 and a J.D. magna cum laude in 1981 from Harvard Law School.[2] He served as an editor of the Harvard Law Review.[3] In 1981-82, Ogden worked as a law clerk for U.S. district judge Abraham David Sofaer, and in 1982-83, he clerked for U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Harry Blackmun.[2]


Ogden began his career in Washington, D.C. as an associate from 1983 until 1985 at the law firm of Ennis Friedman & Bersoff, and he served as a partner at that firm from 1986 until 1988. From 1988 until 1994, Ogden was a partner in the Washington, D.C. office of Jenner & Block. From 1994-95, he served as the Deputy General Counsel and the Legal Counsel for the United States Department of Defense. From 1995-97, he was an Associate Deputy Attorney General in the United States Department of Justice, and from 1997 until 1998, Ogden was Counselor to the United States Attorney General. From 1998-99, he was chief of staff to the United States Attorney General, and from 1999-2000, he was Acting Assistant Attorney General. From 2000-01, he was the Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Civil Division in the United States Department of Justice.[2]

Since June 2001, Ogden has been a partner at the Washington, D.C. firm Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr, co-running the firm's Government and Regulatory Litigation Practice Group.[3]

Deputy Attorney General[edit]

On January 5, 2009, President-elect Barack Obama announced he would nominate Ogden to be Deputy Attorney General.[4] Ogden's nomination was criticized by conservative groups that objected to some of his previous legal work, such as his representation of adult entertainment companies including Playboy and Penthouse.[5][6] However, the selection was praised and supported by the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights, the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association, the National Sheriff's Association, the National District Attorneys Association, Larry Thompson, Jamie S. Gorelick, Seth Waxman, the Boys and Girls Clubs of America, and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.[7] Ogden was confirmed by the United States Senate on March 12, 2009, in a vote of 65-28.[8]

On December 3, 2009, it was announced that he would be resigning his post and returning to private practice in February 2010.[9][10] According to news accounts, Ogden stepped down in part because of disagreements with Attorney General Eric Holder over management issues.[11]

Personal life[edit]

Ogden has three children; two by his first marriage. He lives with his second wife, Anne Harkavy, and children in Arlington, Virginia. Harkavy is Deputy General Counsel for Litigation, Regulation and Enforcement for the U.S. Department of Energy. [12]


  1. ^ Profile, steinhardt.nyu.edu; accessed January 26, 2015.
  2. ^ a b c Profile, martindale.com; accessed January 26, 2015.
  3. ^ a b Profile, wilmerhale.com; accessed January 26, 2015.
  4. ^ Carrie Johnson and Robert Barnes, "Solicitor General and Deputy Attorney General Named", The Washington Post, January 5, 2009.
  5. ^ Evan Perez, "Adult Entertainment: Fight Erupts Over Nominee’s Defense of Porn", The Wall Street Journal, March 12, 2009.
  6. ^ Associated Press, "Christian right challenging Obama's picks", February 5, 2009.
  7. ^ Profile, judiciary.senate.gov; accessed January 26, 2014.
  8. ^ Associated Press, Senate confirms Ogden as deputy attorney general, March 12, 2009.
  9. ^ FBI National Press Office,Deputy Director Responds to DAG David Ogden’s Announcement of Departure from Department of Justice, (December 3, 2009).
  10. ^ Carrie Johnson, No. 2 official leaving Justice Department, The Washington Post, December 4, 2009.
  11. ^ Ogden to speak at American University, mainjustice.com, March 12, 2010; accessed January 26, 2015.
  12. ^ http://energy.gov/gc/contributors/anne-harkavy
Legal offices
Preceded by
Mark Filip
U.S. Deputy Attorney General
Served under: Barack Obama

Succeeded by
Gary Grindler