Theodore W. Kassinger
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Theodore Kassinger counsels US and foreign clients engaged in transnational business transactions, with an emphasis on international trade and investment regulatory matters. Calling on his more than 40 years of private practice and government experience, Ted provides regulatory, public affairs advocacy, and strategic counseling advice involving diverse issues of national security and international economic policy, including compliance with export control and economic sanctions regimes, industrial security rules administered by the Defense Security Service, trade remedies, and international trade and investment agreements. Ted is recognized as a leading lawyer handling matters involving the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS).
Ted regularly works with companies across the industrial spectrum, and has particularly deep experience in advanced technology and energy sectors.
Ted joined the firm after serving as the Deputy Secretary (2004-2005) and General Counsel (2001-2004) of the US Department of Commerce. As Deputy Secretary, he was responsible for the day-to-day management of the Department’s approximately US$6.2 billion budget, 13 operating units, and 39,000 employees. The Department’s varied missions include promoting US exports, administering unfair trade laws, and negotiating and enforcing international trade agreements; serving as effective stewards of the nation’s ocean, coastal, and living marine resources; formulating technology and telecommunications policy and administering the federal radio frequency spectrum; administering the patent and trademark system; and developing and applying technologies, measurements, and standards. As the second-ranking Department official, Ted oversaw programmatic development and implementation of those missions and represented the Department in senior policymaking councils of the Administration and before Congress.
As General Counsel, Ted served as the Department’s chief legal and ethics officer. His responsibilities included determining legal positions taken by the Department in significant litigation, administrative, legislative, and policy matters; supervision of the Department’s ethics program; and management of the nearly 300 lawyers who advise and represent the Department on legal and ethics matters. Among other responsibilities, he co-chaired the Commercial Law Working Group of the United States—China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade.
Upon the conclusion of his tenure at the Commerce Department, Ted received the Secretary of Commerce’s William C. Redfield Award, the Department’s highest honor.
From 1985 to 2001, Ted practiced law with another major international law firm, following earlier service as an attorney with the US Senate Committee on Finance, the U.S. Department of State, and the US International Trade Commission.
Ted is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and of the US Department of State’s Advisory Committee on International Economic Policy. He also serves as a member of the Board of Advisers to the Dean Rusk Center for International, Comparative, and Graduate Legal Studies.
Ted regularly has been recognized by such publications as Chambers USA, Chambers Global, Super Lawyers, Law360, Euromoney, and Washingtonian as a leading practitioner in the areas of international trade and national security law.
Honors & Awards
- Recognized as a Senior Statespeople by Chambers Global in International Trade: CFIUS Experts (2023)
- Ranked by Chambers Global in International Trade: CFIUS Experts (2020-2022)
- Recognized as a Senior Statespeople by Chambers USA in International Trade: CFIUS Experts (2021)
- Recognized as one of The World’s Leading Lawyers for Business in Chambers Global (2008-2020) and Chambers USA (2008-2019)
- Recognized by The Legal 500 US for International Trade (2015-2022)
- Recommended in Trade & Customs (2018-2019); Foreign Investment Review (2019) by Who’s Who Legal
- Named an MVP in International Trade by Law360 (2015)
- Named one of the leading lawyers in Washington, DC in Super Lawyers Magazine (2015)
- Named by the University of Georgia School of Law as its 2006 Carl E. Sanders Political Leadership Scholar; recommended in The Guide to the World's Leading International Trade Lawyers (2010)
- District of Columbia
- University of Georgia, J.D., 1978: cum laude; Notes Editor, Georgia Law Review
- University of Georgia, B.L.A., 1975: Gridiron Secret Society; Blue Key Honor Society; Omicron Delta Kappa
- Council on Foreign Relations, Board of Advisors of the Dean Rusk Center for International, Comparative and Graduate Legal Studies at the University of Georgia School of Law
- “Antidumping Duty Investigations,” Law and Practice of US International Trade Regulation (1987, 1989)
- Chapters on GATT Antidumping, Procurement, Standards, and Subsidies Codes in Basic Documents of International Economic Law (CCH International and Westlaw 1990)
- “FDI in the US Expected To Accelerate, Litigation and Regulatory Risks Remain – What GC’s Should Know,” Corporate Counsel Connect Collection, co-authored with Ronald Cheng (2016)
- “Top Ten Political Law Compliance Issues for the 2012 Election,” Corporate Counsel (2011)
- “Antidumping Duty Investigations,” Law and Practice of United States International Trade Regulation, Oceana Publications (1996 update)
- “Commercial Law Reform Issues in the Reconstruction of Iraq,” 33 Ga. J. Int'l & Comp. L. J. 217 (2004)
- Representation of International Business Machines Corporation in connection with CFIUS matters involving the sale of its global semiconductor manufacturing business to GLOBALFOUNDRIES.
- Representation of International Business Machines Corporation in connection with CFIUS matters involving the sale of its x86 server business to Lenovo. At the time it was announced, this transaction was described as the largest Chinese acquisition of a U.S. technology business.
- Representation of BGI-Shenzhen, a genomic research and sequencing enterprise, in its acquisition of Complete Genomics, Inc. This transaction was the first successfully completed acquisition by a Chinese entity of a U.S. publicly traded company.
- Representation of a European multinational company in connection with CFIUS matters involving multiple acquisitions of US physical and logical access control and security equipment businesses.
- Representation of a European multinational company in connection with a range of primary and secondary U.S. economic sanctions compliance issues.
- Representation of various US and foreign private equity funds in connection with the acquisition of US portfolio companies in airport, seaports, energy, and other infrastructure management businesses.
- Representation of US and foreign defense contractors in connection with acquisitions of US defense businesses.
- Representation of a foreign semiconductor company in connection with CFIUS matters involving its acquisition of US semiconductor businesses.