Chris A. Wray

Former Chair, Special Matters & Government Investigations Practice Group at King & Spalding LLP

Chris A. Wray

Chris A. Wray

Former Chair, Special Matters & Government Investigations Practice Group at King & Spalding LLP

Biography

With more than two decades of experience, Chris helps clients navigate federal and state government investigations and litigation. In private practice, Chris has led investigation matters involving more than 20 different U.S. Attorneys' Offices and nearly every litigating division of the DOJ, typically also involving parallel proceedings by regulatory agencies and parallel class action or qui tam whistleblower litigation.

Chris is also called in routinely by companies and board audit and special committees to lead internal investigations, spanning a wide variety of industries and more than 30 different countries.

Prior to joining the firm, Chris served from 2003 to 2005 as the Assistant Attorney General in charge of DOJ’s Criminal Division, having been nominated by the President and unanimously confirmed by the U.S. Senate. Then the youngest ever appointed to this role, Chris oversaw the Department’s most critical investigations, prosecutions and policy development in nearly all areas of federal criminal law, including securities fraud; healthcare fraud; Foreign Corrupt Practices Act and trade sanctions violations; banking and money laundering offenses; public corruption; intellectual property piracy and cybercrime; and RICO.

As head of the Criminal Division, Chris was integral to DOJ’s response to the 9/11 attacks and played a key role in the oversight of legal and operational actions in the continuing war on terrorism. Chris also led efforts to restore integrity to the U.S. financial markets, serving on the President’s Corporate Fraud Task Force and supervising the Enron Task Force and other major national and international fraud investigations. At the conclusion of his tenure in 2005, Chris received the Edmund J. Randolph Award, the Department’s highest award for public service and leadership.

Chris previously joined DOJ’s leadership in May 2001 as Associate Deputy Attorney General and was soon appointed Principal Associate Deputy Attorney General, with oversight responsibilities spanning the full Department. From 1997 to 2001, Chris served as an Assistant U.S. Attorney in Atlanta, handling a wide variety of federal jury trials, grand jury investigations, and appeals as lead counsel.

Chris helped found the Lead Director Network, a select group of lead outside directors from many of America’s top companies, focused on improving corporate performance and earning shareholder trust through more effective board leadership.

Chambers USA, Best Lawyers in America, Who's Who and Legal 500 all rank Chris as a leading litigator in white-collar crime and government investigations. Chambers has described Chris as a “renowned heavy hitter in this space,” a "top-notch advocate who can provide counsel on the toughest issues," and one who "brings instant credibility and will give you straight answers without blowing smoke.” Similarly, Legal 500 has recognized him as “one of the best in the business” for his “excellent judgment, vast experience and responsiveness.”

Overview
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2376

Number of Awards

18

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Partner at King & Spalding LLP

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Partner at King & Spalding LLP

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Partner at King & Spalding LLP

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Partner at King & Spalding LLP

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Partner at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati PC

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Partner at King & Spalding LLP

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Partner at King & Spalding LLP

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Partner at King & Spalding LLP

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Counsel at King & Spalding LLP

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Counsel at King & Spalding LLP

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Chris A. Wray
Former Chair, Special Matters & Government Investigations Practice Group at King & Spalding LLP
Education
J.D.
Class of 1992

Located in New Haven, Connecticut, Yale Law School is one of the world’s premier law schools. It offers an unmatched environment of excellence and educational intimacy in the form of world renowned faculty, small classes, limitless opportunities for clinical training, and strong encouragement of public service. The Law School is small by design; its impact on the world is measured by its accomplished graduates and its ongoing scholarship and outreach through numerous centers and projects. For students, the experience is unparalleled. The faculty-student ratio supports a vast array of courses and opportunities for independent research and student-organized seminars. Students get practical training by representing real clients in clinics starting in their first year. Throughout, a spirit of collaboration reigns. All first-term courses are ungraded, and subsequent classes are graded honors/pass/low pass. Yale Law School is unique among law schools in that it produces leaders in all walks of life: distinguished deans and faculty members at law schools across the country and the world; industry CEOs and corporate counsels; founders of nongovernmental organizations and other nonprofit entities; entrepreneurs; government servants in federal, state, and local offices and the judiciary--just a few areas in which our alumni's talent and passion and dedication have made a difference. Among the School’s graduates are U.S. Presidents and Supreme Court Justices; and among its far-reaching projects, the Information Society Project and the China Center.

B.A., cum laude
Class of 1989

Yale University is an American private Ivy League research university located in New Haven, Connecticut. Founded in 1701 in the Colony of Connecticut, the university is the third-oldest institution of higher education in the United States.

Memberships
Executive Editor
Prior

The Yale Law Journal is published eight times a year (monthly from October through June, excluding February) by The Yale Law Journal Company, Inc. Editorial and general offices are located in the Sterling Law Building at Yale University.

Career History
Principal Associate Deputy Attorney General
Prior

The Department of Justice enforces the law and defends the interests of the United States according to the law; ensures public safety against threats foreign and domestic; provides federal leadership in preventing and controlling crime; seeks just punishment for those guilty of unlawful behavior; and ensures fair and impartial administration of justice for all Americans.

Chair, Special Matters & Government Investigations Practice Group
2005 - 2017

King & Spalding LLP is an international law firm that represents a broad array of clients, including half of the Fortune Global 100, with 800 lawyers in many offices in the United States, Europe, the Middle East and Asia. The firm also represents hundreds of clients with new ventures and mid-sized companies in emerging industries.Long-standing client relationships are one of the surest barometers of a law firm's success in meeting its clients' needs for legal services. The company's lawyers pride themselves on developing continuing client relationships that are productive, professional and collegial. The firm has handled matters in over 160 countries on six continents and is consistently recognized for the results it obtains, its uncompromising commitment to quality and its dedication to understanding the business and culture of its clients. The company was established in 1885 and it is headquartered in Atlanta, GA.

Clerk
1992 - 1993

The United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit is one of twelve regional appellate courts within the federal judicial system. The court hears appeals from the nine federal district courts in Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina and from federal administrative agencies.

Political Donations
$1,500
2016

Senator from Georgia

$1,400
2015

Senator from Georgia

Awards & Honors
2016
Best Lawyers - Best Lawyers in America
2016
Chambers USA - America's Leading Lawyers for Business, White Collar Crime & Government Investigations
2015
Best Lawyers - Best Lawyers in America
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