Mr. LaRussa is a member of the firm’s International Trade and Investment practice. He has more than 30 years of experience in the regulatory issues surrounding international trade and investment, including as Commerce Department Under Secretary for International Trade during the Clinton Administration. His practice areas include CFIUS national security reviews, international trade law, export controls and national security matters before the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, and the U.S. Departments of State, Commerce, Energy, and Defense. Mr. LaRussa uses his unique background as a former journalist, Administration official and congressional trade counsel to position clients, help them develop substantive positions, represent them in negotiations and regulatory and court proceedings, and advocate their positions before the highest levels of government. He has represented companies in the telecommunications, energy, banking, security, aerospace, mining, semiconductors, computers, steel, agriculture and transportation sectors before the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States.
During his tenure in government, Mr. LaRussa represented the United States in WTO negotiations, was in charge of administering the U.S. antidumping and countervailing duty laws and ran a global export promotion network. He also negotiated numerous agreements suspending international trade cases for the United States. Prior to his work in the Administration, Mr. LaRussa was international trade counsel to Rep. Sander Levin, an influential member of the House Ways and Means Committee who would later become its chairman, In that capacity, Mr. LaRussa ran a Congressional task force on the Uruguay Round trade negotiations and focused on issues related to the steel and auto sectors. Mr. LaRussa began his career as a journalist and editor and spent several years covering international trade, Congressional, regulatory and judicial matters. He also teaches a class on international trade and investment law at the University of Massachusetts. Mr. LaRussa has consistently been named as among the best lawyers in international trade and finance in the Best Lawyers in DC guide.
Responsible for formulating U.S. trade policy as head of the Commerce Department’s 2,300-person International Trade Administration. Priorities included promoting U.S. exports, advocating U.S. business interests abroad, enforcing laws against unfair trade practices, and ensuring compliance with trade agreements. Developed global information technology trade initiative, linking U.S. high-tech companies with opportunities in Asia and Latin America and creating an e-commerce policy dialogue with the European Union. Concluded U.S.-EU data privacy agreement and represented the United States in a range of bilateral negotiations. Played key role in gaining Congressional approval of Permanent Normal Trade Relations with China by designing rapid- response China trade compliance initiative. Represented the U.S. Commerce Department in a range of energy-related issues, including international trade in uranium. Oversaw a $300 million yearly budget.
Chief administrator of U.S. antidumping and countervailing duty trade laws. Drafted dumping and subsidy regulations implementing Uruguay Round trade agreement. Oversaw $29 million yearly budget and 300 Commerce Department professionals and staff.
Second highest-ranking official in 1,300-person global export-assistance network; one of the principal architects of Clinton Administration’s trade- promotion policies, including emerging markets initiatives in Asia and Latin America; in charge of Administration’s trade programs in Southeast Asia; established first U.S. commercial-promotion programs in Vietnam and represented Commerce in U.S.-Vietnam trade talks; conceived and established U.S. Commercial Centers for U.S. exporters in China, Indonesia, Vietnam and Brazil; oversaw redesign of global information and communications network. Mr. LaRussa was one of the Commerce Department’s point persons on NAFTA.
Developed manufacturing, trade and technology policy recommendations for new Administration.
International trade counsel for Rep. Levin, a leading lawmaker on international trade issues and one-time chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee. Staff director of House leadership task force on the GATT, which helped develop Congressional positions in the Uruguay Round trade negotiations. Staff director of Congressional task forces on NAFTA, U.S.-Japan relations and auto-sector issues.
B.A. in History, summa cum laude