Steven D. Gordon

Steven D. Gordon

Holland & Knight LLP

Recognized since 2005

Washington, District of Columbia

Practice Areas

Commercial Litigation

Criminal Defense: White-Collar

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Steven D. Gordon practices in the areas of white collar crime and complex civil litigation. He has been lead counsel in more than 100 trials, both jury and non-jury, in federal and state courts. He has argued appeals in most of the federal circuit courts and in the United States Supreme Court.

White Collar Defense

Mr. Gordon represents individual and corporate clients who are being investigated by inspector generals or other federal and state authorities. He defends clients who are under grand jury investigation or who have been charged with criminal offenses and face trial. He has represented clients on a wide variety of alleged offenses, ranging from conflicts of interest to economic espionage to conspiracy and fraud. Many of his cases involve suspected fraud, waste, or abuse with respect to federal contracts or programs, a topic on which he has written and lectured. He advises corporate clients on compliance programs, conducts internal investigations and counsels on issues regarding disclosure of misconduct to federal authorities.

False Claims Act; Suspension and Debarment

Mr. Gordon has substantial experience in defending federal government contractors and program participants against civil False Claims Act suits brought by the Department of Justice or by whistleblowers. He also has represented numerous clients facing suspension or debarment from participating in federal contracting or other federal programs. He has litigated debarment cases in federal courts up to the Supreme Court.

Civil Litigation

Mr. Gordon engages in a wide variety of civil and commercial litigation, often against the federal government.

  • represented two Indian tribes in multi-million-dollar breach of trust suits against the U.S. government in the Court of Federal Claims
  • effectively challenged a major HUD program initiative by litigating six separate suits in five federal district and three federal appeals courts around the country
  • in recent years has tried several cases involving alleged misappropriation of trade secrets
    Appeals Mr. Gordon has argued numerous appeals involving both civil and criminal cases. Published appellate decisions in cases handled by Mr. Gordon include the following:

    • Jicarilla Apache Nation v. U.S., 131 S.Ct. 2313 (2011)
    • Darby v. Cisneros, 509 U.S. 137 (1993)
    • Jicarilla Apache Nation v. Department of Interior, 613 F.3d 1112 (D.C. Cir. 2010)
    • In re U.S., 590 F.3d 1305 (Fed. Cir. 2009)
    • Fabi Construction Co. v. Secretary of Labor, 508 F.3d 1077 (D.C. Cir. 2007)
    • Escobar v. Gonzales, 417 F.3d 363 (3d Cir. 2005)
    • U.S. v. Chen, 393 F.3d 139 (2d Cir. 2004)
    • Shoshone Indian Tribe v. U.S., 364 F.3d 1339 (Fed. Cir. 2004)
    • U.S. v. Dolah, 245 F.3d 98 (2d Cir. 2001)
    • U.S. ex rel. Lamers v. City of Green Bay, 168 F.3d 1013 (7th Cir. 1999)
    • U.S. v. Service Deli, Inc., 151 F.3d 938 (9th Cir. 1998)
    • U.S. v. York, 112 F.3d 1218 (D.C. Cir. 1997)

      Before entering private practice, Mr. Gordon prosecuted crimes for 10 years as an Assistant United States Attorney in the District of Columbia, and served as Chief of the Felony Trial Division. After graduating from law school, he served as a Law Clerk to the Honorable William J. Holloway, Jr. of the United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit.

      Representative Engagements

      • defending government contractors in Inspector General investigations regarding possible fraud or misconduct
      • representing companies with respect to criminal antitrust investigations
      • representing a construction company with respect to a state grand jury investigation into alleged bribery of state officials
      • defending a high tech company performing classified government work with respect to a federal grand jury investigation regarding alleged theft of a competitor's trade secrets
      • representing a senior government official with regard to an Inspector General investigation into potential ethics violations
      • representing a partner in a national accounting firm with respect to a high profile federal investigation of abusive tax shelters
      • representing clients with respect to suspension and debarment actions brought by the Army and HUD
      • defending a client against a "bet the company" civil suit for alleged misappropriation of trade secrets
      • protecting a major pharmaceutical company's trade secrets and proprietary data by intervening in the government's suit against tobacco companies and persuading the trial court to reject disclosure proposed by special master
      • suing the federal government on behalf of an Indian tribe for mismanagement of the tribe's oil and gas resources
      • suing the federal government on behalf of another tribe for improper investment of the tribe's trust accounts
      • representing a corporation in a major arbitration regarding breach of duties under an LLC operating agreement


  • 800 Seventeenth Street N.W., Suite 1100
    Washington, DC 20006


  • Swarthmore College, BA, graduated 1971

Bar Admissions

  • United States, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
  • District of Columbia, The District of Columbia Bar


  • American Bar Association - Member
  • Assistant U.S. Attorneys Association - Board

Recognized in The Best Lawyers® in America 2023 for work in:

  • Commercial Litigation
  • Criminal Defense: White-Collar

Special Focus

  • Civil and Criminal
  • Government Investigations
  • Qui Tam/False Claims Act


  • Phi Beta Kappa
  • Corporate Counsel Edition, Super Lawyers magazine, September 2009
  • Washington, D.C. Super Lawyers magazine, 2009-2010, 2013

Other Court Admissions

  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
  • U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland
  • U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin
  • U.S. Court of Federal Claims

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