United States: McGuireWoods' Feller Takes Reins of ABA Antitrust Section
Last Updated: October 13 2014

Howard Feller, who heads McGuireWoods' Antitrust and Trade Regulation Department, is now the Chair of the American Bar Association's Section of Antitrust Law, an organization respected among competition and consumer protection lawyers worldwide.

Feller, elected last month, will chair the Section for the next year as a surge in corporate mergers and vigorous government enforcement – particularly in the healthcare, energy, financial services and consumer products sectors – create increased antitrust scrutiny and risk in the U.S. and across the globe.

"Howard Feller's 36 years as an antitrust practitioner and more than 25 years of active service in the Section of Antitrust Law leadership have well prepared and equipped him to lead it," said ABA President
William C. Hubbard.

"It's a period of heightened antitrust enforcement in the U.S. and abroad," said Feller, a partner at McGuireWoods' Richmond, Va., office, where he began his career with the firm in 1978.

The ABA's Antitrust Section is regarded internationally as the leader in antitrust law education and programs that involve top lawyers and enforcers from the United States, Canada, the European Union, Latin America, China and other nations.

The Chair's Goals

In the next year, Feller will challenge the Section to fill an even greater role as a thought leader on antitrust and consumer protection issues and practices.

"We should spend more time thinking about where the law should be and what laws or enforcement activities should be changed, and we should make more constructive suggestions in that regard," Feller said. "I have asked our committees, task forces and editorial boards to put idea leadership on the agenda of their regular monthly meetings."

Feller's Goals for ABA Antitrust Section:

  • Improve delivery of programs and publications
  • Boost membership of plaintiffs', government and consumer
    protection lawyers
  • Expand global outreach

Specifically, Feller's priorities for his term include: (1) improving the way the Section's programs and publications are delivered to members through greater use of digital video and distance learning alternatives; (2) boosting Section membership among plaintiffs' lawyers, government lawyers and consumer protection lawyers; and (3) expanding outreach to antitrust and consumer protection lawyers outside the United States to accommodate the rapid globalization of business. He also proposes that, as a leader in antitrust and consumer protection law, the Section should become more proactive in "idea or thought leadership."

Another cause special to Feller is drawing more junior lawyers into ABA leadership roles and helping them become preeminent practitioners in their own right for decades to come, particularly in antitrust law.

He discussed his priorities in depth in a Sept. 3 Q&A with Global Competition Review.

The Antitrust Section is renowned among lawyers and government enforcers universally for its high-quality programs and publications, and for its analysis and debate about competition and consumer protection law and policy. Its more than 8,000 members include about 5,000 lawyers from firms, nearly 800 from corporate counsel offices, more than 400 from government and judicial positions, and more than 1,100 from outside the United States. Its membership includes economists as well as law professors and students.

Antitrust is also among the ABA's busiest sections. Its 28 committees publish industry-leading newsletters, and they produce up to a dozen video seminars a year and more than 150 committee programs on current antitrust and consumer protection topics. The Section also produces three premier periodicals: the Antitrust Law Journal, Antitrust magazine and The Antitrust Source, an online publication. It presents around six freestanding continuing legal education conferences a year in addition to the annual Spring Meeting, which draws nearly 3,000 attendees from 60 nations and is recognized within the antitrust community as the world's best source for comprehensive CLE.

The Right Person for the Post

Feller began his law career at McGuireWoods in 1978 and has helped to build the firm's leading and growing antitrust practice. His practice focuses on antitrust litigation, civil and criminal antitrust investigations, antitrust merger investigations, and commercial litigation. He has worked with diverse industries and has deep experience conducting antitrust audits and antitrust compliance training.

"It is always nice to see hard work and determination pay off," said McGuireWoods Chairman Richard Cullen. "For years Howard has worked incredibly hard to build a successful antitrust practice and to become a national leader in the ABA. It is rewarding for all of us now to see him singled out for his dedication to the practice of law by his election by his peers to lead this powerful section. We are very proud of Howard and grateful to him for the recognition this brings to McGuireWoods."

During his career, Feller has steadily gained the respect and confidence of the clients he has served and his peers.

"Howard Feller's 36 years as an antitrust practitioner and more than 25 years of active service in the Section of Antitrust Law leadership have well prepared and equipped him to lead it," said ABA President William C. Hubbard. "In the coming year, under Howard's leadership, the Section will offer a broad range of programs, publications, and events for members and others interested in antitrust and consumer protection law."

Ilene K. Gotts, a former Antitrust Law Section chair and a partner at Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz in New York, said Feller is superbly positioned for "a very active year for antitrust enforcement and policy setting in the United States and globally."

"I cannot think of anyone who is better suited for chairing the Section in this upcoming year, given the perspective that he brings from years of private practice experience that covers the antitrust landscape broadly, including class action suits, criminal investigations, Hart-Scott-Rodino filings, counseling, compliance and audits," she said.

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