Crowell & Moring is bolstering its state attorneys general practice with the addition of Natalie Ludaway, former chief deputy attorney general for the District of Columbia.
Ludaway is starting at the firm on Tuesday as a partner in its Washington office. She is joining Crowell & Moring’s State Attorneys General Enforcement and Investigations practice, and the firm’s Advertising & Media group.
The firm in January launched the state attorneys general practice by hiring Michael Yaghi and Clayton Friedman, who was assistant deputy attorney general in the state of Missouri, and is the practice head.
Both were formerly with Sidley Austin, and practice in Crowell & Moring’s Orange County, Calif., office. The practice currently has more than a dozen lawyers, including regulatory lawyer Joselle Albracht, a former assistant attorney general for the consumer protection division in the state of Texas, who joined as a senior counsel.
Crowell & Moring is one of several major firms which offer legal expertise to clients facing state attorney general investigations, as well as federal and other inquiries, as state law enforcement officials increasingly flex their power on issues such as the opioid crisis, which impact their residents.
“We are seeing a growing number of investigations and enforcement actions from state attorneys general,” Philip T. Inglima, chair of Crowell & Moring, said in a statement.
“Clients need strategic guidance from experienced counsel who understand the dynamics of this specialized area and can advise on the enforcement, litigation, and regulatory aspects of AG matters.”
He said Ludaway’s background and experience “make her uniquely positioned to counsel and defend clients across the full spectrum of issues.”
Ludaway was second highest ranking in the District of Columbia’s Attorney General Office for five years, after her appointment by Attorney General Karl Racine in 2015. She oversaw multi-state and single jurisdiction investigations, and enforcement and litigation matters involving consumer protection, antitrust, civil rights, and privacy.
That included overseeing the District’s participation in multi-state litigation over opioids.
Prior to that, she worked for almost two decades, as an associate, partner, and starting in 2003, as managing member, with the law firm Leftwich & Ludaway, in Washington.
Friedman said that the arrival of Ludaway, along with Albracht, “continues our strategic growth trajectory for the practice,” which was developed as state legal influence has increased while the federal government’s oversight has receded.
Ludaway said that she planned to help clients “navigate the impact of the growing state regulatory and enforcement jurisdiction over the corporate sector.”
“As chief deputy, I’ve participated in a broad range of areas, and I’m looking forward to working with Crowell & Moring to help clients with regulations, enforcement and, if needed, litigation.”