July 2014

NAFUSA Update is published monthly. NAFUSA's website can be accessed directly from this newsletter. New articles are posted to the website during the month.  You may also subscribe to NAFUSA email updates, delivered to your inbox overnight, the day after any new items are posted. (Be sure to complete the two step process.) You can also follow NAFUSA on Twitter (@NAFUSAorg).

Mueller To Be Honored in Boston
Save the date: the NAFUSA annual conference will be held in Boston on October 9-11, 2014 at the Fairmont Copley Plaza. 


Registration will begin in early July and each NAFUSA member will receive an invitation via email with the registration form attached. You will be able to book your room at the Copley through this registration process, at the special conference rate of $319 a night. There is no need to contact the Copley prior to the opening of conference registration.


President Don Stern chairs the Boston Planning Committee, which includes Zach Carter, Kevin O'Connor, Bill Leone, Karen Hewitt, and Rich Rossman. In addition, Stern chairs a Boston Host Committee with Wayne Budd, Mike Sullivan, Bob Corrente, Jeff Taylor, Bill Weld, Jay Stephens and Rich Rossman. President Stern promises an outstanding program. The conference will open with Thursday morning, October 9, golf at Belmont Country Club.



Thursday evening will feature a cocktail reception at the Copley, honoring Robert S. Mueller III, who completed 12 years last fall as the sixth Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), a position he took one week prior to the September 11 attacks and held under two presidents.


Mueller was a United States Marine Corps officer, an Assistant United States Attorney in three different offices, the United States Attorney for the Northern District of California, the Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Criminal Division, and the longest-serving Director of the FBI since J. Edgar Hoover.


Mueller currently is a partner in the Washington office of WilmerHale. He holds a teaching appointment at Stanford University, and spends time in WilmerHale's West Coast offices. He also serves as Executive-in-Residence for Georgetown University. From 1993-1995, he was a partner at Hale and Dorr LLP, before the firm combined with Wilmer Cutler Pickering LLP a decade ago.


Mueller earned his law degree in 1973 from the University of Virginia School of Law, where he served on the Law Review. He received an MA in international relations from New York University in 1967, and graduated from Princeton University with an AB in 1966.


Friday and Saturday mornings will feature the usual CLE programs, with details to be announced. On Friday afternoon a boat cruise and lunch is planned in the Boston Harbor. The conference will close on Saturday evening with a closing reception and dinner.


The conference will be held on Columbus Day weekend with several offices closed on Monday, October 12. The fall is a great time in the East and a fine time to plan some extra days to watch the leaves turn.





Valukas Issues GM Internal Investigation Report

Tony Valukas photo On June 5, 2014, NAFUSA member Anton "Tony" Valukas issued his report of his internal investigation of General Motors regarding the failure of the company to fix a deadly safety defect, which is alleged to have led to at least 13 deaths.  Read the entire report here.


As a result of the investigation and report, GM dismissed 15 employees, including a vice president for regulatory affairs and a senior lawyer responsible for product liability cases. The report is expected to lead to broad changes in how GM handles vehicle safety.


Valukas was critical of the GM bureaucracy. "The Cobalt ignition switch passed through an astonishing number of committees," he wrote. "But determining the identity of any actual decision-maker was impenetrable."


The Valukas report, however, did clear Mary T. Barra G.M.'s chief executive, and Michael Millikin, the general counsel. Valukas found no evidence of a deliberate cover-up.


Valukas is the chairman of Jenner & Block LLP and served as the United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois from 1985 to 1989. He also served as the Justice Department appointed examiner of the downfall of Lehman Brothers Holdings, Inc.




Leone To Head Norton Rose Fulbright NY White Collar Practice

Bill Leone
NAFUSA member Bill Leone (Colorado 2004-2006) has been chosen to lead the white collar and government investigations practice in the New York office of Norton Rose Fulbright. Bill served as US Attorney in Colorado and led  several high profile, complex white collar investigations including the prosecution of Qwest CEO Joe Nacchio.



Norton Rose Fulbright, one of NAFUSA's sponsors, is the 3rd largest law firm in the world following the combination of Norton Rose LLP and Fulbright & Jaworski, with 55 offices around the globe, including North and South America, Asia, Europe, Africa and Australia. Bill will continue to spend time in Denver where he maintains his practice and has led the litigation group for the past three years. Bill's practice includes investigations in the energy, medical device, health care and technology sectors, as well as a portfolio of white collar cases and civil and criminal trials. 



ABA Southeastern White Collar Crime Institute


Joe Whitley in DC
NAFUSA member Joe Whitely, shown above at the 2013 NAFUSA conference in Washington, will co-chair the program for the September 11-12, 2014 ABA Criminal Justice Section Southeastern White Collar Crime Institute. It will be held at the Chateuau Elan Inn in Brasselton, Georgia, and will feature several NAFUSA members as speakers: Bart Daniel, Rick Deane, Tom Dillard and Jack Selden.



Click here to view the program and registration information:  

ABA CJS Southeastern White Collar Crime Institute 2014 (as of June 18, 2014). 



NAFUSA Board Meets in Napa


Napa 2014
NAFUSA officers and board members met in Napa Valley on June 6-7, 2014 for their annual spring meeting. The meeting was held at the Villagio Inn and Spa in Yountville, California. As is the custom, members paid their own travel and hotel expenses.



Executive Director Emeritus Mahlon Brown and Pat Brown joined the board for the weekend, and local members Joe Russinello and Chuck Stevens, along with their wives, Moira and Ann, also attended as guests. Joe Russinello hosted a golf outing at Silverado as well.


President Don Stern reported on the early plans for the Boston conference to be held on October 9-11 at the Fairmont Copley Plaza. The Thursday evening cocktail reception will honor Bob Mueller. Registration is expected to begin in July. NAFUSA has the support of $85,000 in sponsors, with more sponsors expected. A full list of sponsors can be found on the website and in each monthly newsletter.


Executive Director Rich Rossman reported that NAFUSA has 261 active members,  including 53 life members and 20 seniors (over 70 and fully retired). Unfortunately 42 members have yet to pay their 2014 dues, which were payable February 28, 2014. The present dues structure is not sufficient to pay operating expenses, and NAFUSA relies upon its sponsors. Nevertheless, the board voted to retain the present schedule of annual dues at $150, seniors at $50 and lifetime dues at $1500. The board also voted to maintain the conference registration fees at $400 per member and $300 for a spouse. These rates have been the same for several years.


For the past three years, the executive director has been assisted by his nephew, Ken Rossman, for technical support. With Ken's support, the webpage and the newsletter have been significantly upgraded. Ken has decided to step down, and the board approved the hiring of John Steele of Denver, Colorado, as Ken's replacement. John will be a first year law student in the fall and has significant technical experience. He will continue in the IT field during the day and attend law school at night. The board is hopeful that John will establish a model we can use in the future and when he graduates law school we can find another IT consultant/law student to take his place.


President Elect Matt Orwig confirmed that the 2015 conference will be held on October 15-18 at The Phoenician in Scottsdale, Arizona. Vice President Greg Vega advised that the 2016 conference will be in San Diego.




Vaira Joins Greenblatt, Pierce, Engle, Funt & Flores

Peter Vaira NAFUSA member Peter F. Vaira (E.D. Pennsylvania, 1978-1983) joined the Philadelphia law firm of Greenblatt, Pierce, Engle, Funt & Flores (GPEFF) in March, 2014. Vaira will serve as special counsel. In announcing his joining the firm, GPEFF stated:

Peter's over 50 years of practice, during which he has handled the most complex criminal and civil matters in state and federal court, has earned him a reputation as one of the most respected attorneys in the region. Mr. Vaira is also a widely sought after arbitrator, mediator, special master, and independent hearing officer with numerous years of experience in                                                               the field of alternative                                                                dispute resolution.


Mr. Vaira will direct GPEFF's alternative dispute resolution practice while also working alongside Michael J. Engle who leads our white collar practice group. We are honored to have such a tremendously accomplished attorney practicing law with our talented team of trial lawyers.


Founded over 20 years ago as an aggressive criminal defense law practice, GPEFF  has since become an established, full-service law firm, with offices in both Pennsylvania and New Jersey.


Vaira has written many fine articles in The Legal Intelligencer. Click here The Legal Intelligencer, June 17, 2014 (1) to read his most recent, Protecting Law Firms From Increasing Cyberattacks.



Thornburgh in Hospital With Mild Stroke

 Dick Thornburgh 


According to a report in Reuters on Sunday, June 22, 2014, NAFUSA member Dick Thornburgh, a former U.S. attorney general, two-term Pennsylvania governor, and U.S. Attorney for the WD of Pennsylvania, 1969-1975, has been hospitalized in Pittsburgh.


Thornburgh, 81, who served as U.S. attorney general under President Ronald Reagan and President George H.W. Bush, suffered a mild stroke on Saturday, the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reported, citing Thornburgh's wife, Ginny Thornburgh.


"He is resting comfortably and receiving excellent care at UPMC Presbyterian," Thornburgh's family said in a statement released through the hospital. "He is awake, alert and looking forward to a full recovery."



Johnnie Mac Walters Dies, 94

Johnnie Mac WaltersLong time NAFUSA member Johnnie "Mac" Walters, died at his home in Greenville, South Carolina, on Tuesday, June 24, 2014. He was 94.  See the full obituary from the New York Times. He served as assistant attorney general (1969-1971) and as commissioner of Internal Revenue (1971-1973) in the Nixon Administration.


As described in his memoirs, Our Journey, published in 2011,

In 1971 embattled President Richard M. Nixon sought to use the Internal Revenue Service as a weapon to investigate and punish his "enemies." Tapes of White House conversations reveal that Nixon wanted as Commissioner "a ruthless son-of-a-bitch that he will do what he is told; that every income tax return I want to see I see; that he will go after our enemies and not go after our friends."

Attorney General John Mitchell recommended Assistant AG Johnnie Mac Walters. Apparently no one checked with Walters who was "shocked" when White House Counsel John Dean presented him with an "enemies list." Walters resisted pressure from the White House and told Secretary of the Treasury George Schultz that he could "have my job anytime he wanted it."


Walters earned his law degree from the University of Michigan Law School. He served in World War II in the U.S. Army Air Force as a navigator, flying fifty bombing missions. He was awarded a Legion of Honor award from the nation of France in 2012.


Walters is survived by his wife, Donna Hall Walters, and his sons Hilton and John Roy; and his daughters, Donna Diane Gent and Betsy Kukorowski; five grandchildren and one great-grandson. A memorial service will be held at the First Baptist Church in Greenville at 2 p.m. on July 19, 2014. 

Our Journey

NAFUSA has requested that an American flag be flown over Main Justice in Johnnie Mac's honor and presented to his family as a token of the appreciation in which he was held by his colleagues.

Johnnie Mac Walters flag
Flown over the Department of Justice on June 27, 2014, in honor of Johnnie Mac Walters

Johnnie Mac Walters flag case




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In This Issue
Mueller To Be Honored in Boston
Valukas Issues GM Report
Leone To Head Norton Rose Fulbright NY White Collar Practice
ABA SE White Collar Crime Institute
NAFUSA Board Meets
Vaira Joins GPEFF
Thornburgh Hospitalized
Johnnie Mac Walters Dies
Four Additional Sponsors Pushes 2014 Total to 100K
The month of June brought four additional sponsors for the upcoming Boston conference, bringing the total sponsorship to $100K, a new record for NAFUSA.

Gibson Dunn logo

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher joins us with a $5K contribution. Gibson is a global law firm, founded in Los Angeles in 1890. Its partners include NAFUSA members Ted Olson, Debra Yang and Chuck Stevens. 

PwC logo

PricewaterhouseCoopers joins the list again with another $5K contribution. With 180,000 people worldwide, PwC focuses on audit and assurance, tax and consulting services. 

Deloitte logo

Deloitte returns with a $5K contribution. Deloitte, with 57,000 professionals in the United States, with a focus on four key business areas- audit, financial advisory, tax and accounting.

Burns & Levinson logo

Burns & Levinson joins us with a $5K contribution. Boston-based, the firm has over 120 attorneys and offices in Providence and New York as well as several offices in Massachusetts. NAFUSA member Bob Corrente is a partner in the Providence office and is a member of the Boston Host Committee for the fall conference. 

2014 Sponsors

GreenbergTraurig logo

Affiliated Monitors logo
Perkins Coie logo
Bradley Arant Sponsor Logo
Norton Rose Fulbright logo
Forensic Strategic Solutions logo

Gibson Dunn logo
PWC logo
Deloitte logo
Burns & Levinson logo

National Association of Former United States Attorneys (NAFUSA).
Richard A. Rossman
Executive Director
27 Oakland Park
Pleasant Ridge, Michigan 48069
Phone: 248-548-8289