Van Ness Feldman LLP > Washington DC, United States > Firm Profile

Van Ness Feldman LLP
United States

Industry focus > Energy regulation: oil and gas Tier 1

Van Ness Feldman LLP assists clients at every stage of the oil and natural gas infrastructure development process, including project structuring, permitting, operation and regulatory compliance. The group has experience handling enforcement and permitting proceedings before the DOE and FERC, as well as pipeline safety compliance at PHMSA. In relation to FERC, Michael Pincus and Brian O’Neill advise clients on all aspects of the siting and operation of interstate natural gas pipelines and LNG terminals. Phil Mone specializes in rate litigation; and Mona Tandon has a broader practice, handling contract negotiations and tariffs as well as assisting residential and commercial appliance manufacturers in navigating federal and state energy-efficiency regulations. Paul Korman and Susan Olenchuk are also recommended. Pincus, Mone and Tandon jointly lead the practice. All lawyers are based in Washington, DC.

Practice head(s):

Michael Pincus; Phil Mone; Mona Tandon

Other key lawyers:


The energy regulatory team at Van Ness does work for a number of interstate pipeline clients and so, has accumulated a great deal of experience that they use to each client’s advantage.’

Their work is excellent and they have good relationships within the agencies.’

The partner I worked with most in the past year was Michael Pincus. I also worked with Paul Korman, Kyle Danish and Susan Olenchuk. All of these attorneys are outstanding, knowledgeable and responsive.’

Michael Pincus is my “go-to” attorney for most matters regarding Federal Energy Regulatory Commission issues. He has a broad range of knowledge and experience. His judgment is great and FERC staff both likes and respect him.’

I call Paul Korman for extremely difficult and/or strategic issues and his advice is always spot on.’

Susan Olenchuk is my “go-to” person for PHMSA issues, where she always gives clear and helpful guidance.’

Key clients

Interstate Natural Gas Association of America

Kinder Morgan / Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company

Kohlberg Kravis Roberts

Spire STL Pipeline

Summit Midstream Partners

Global Clean Energy Holdings

American Gas Association

Cove Point LNG

Carolina Gas Transmission

Medallion Gathering & Processing

Industry focus > Native American law Tier 1

Van Ness Feldman LLP has long-standing strength in energy project development matters, particularly across midstream oil and gas for Indian tribes and Alaska Natives. The team provides comprehensive regulatory and litigation support to tribal governments and corporations, and is jointly managed by Andrew Vanderjack  in Washington DC and Maranda Compton in Denver. Economic development and environmental issues remain core areas of focus for the group and recommended contacts include DC-based Robert Conrad and Michael GoodsteinLaura Jones in Denver has experience advising tribal and non-tribal businesses on land use issues. On the West Coast, Patrick Daugherty in California handles complex civil litigation for native tribes and is singled out for tribal economic development. He also has an active pro-bono practice for American Indian communities.

Practice head(s):

Andrew VanderJack; Maranda Compton


Great technical knowledge of the field.

Patrick Daugherty, Laura Jones and Maranda Compton All three of these individuals have great competency when it comes to the field of Native American affairs and have assisted us on both research matters and amicus briefs.’

Key clients

Cherokee Nation

Doyon, LTD

Energy Keepers Inc.

Guidiville Band of Pomo Indians of the Guidiville Rancheria

Huna Totem Corporation

Kashia Band of Pomo Indians of the Stewarts Point Rancheria

National Credit Adjusters

Native American Financial Services Association

Origis Energy

The Osage Nation

Work highlights

  • Acting for Guidiville Band of Pomo Indians of the Guidiville Rancheria and several Tribal officials and employees in class action litigation brough against a tribal business in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia (Clark v. Duncan, No. 3:21-cv-242)
  • Acting for Kashia Band of Pomo Indians of the Stewarts Point Rancheria and Tribal businesses to defend the Tribal businesses and individuals associated with those businesses (including the Tribal Chairman and Tribal Council Members) in three class action lawsuits.
  • Advising the Native American Financial Services Association (NAFSA) in numerous amicus briefs filed at the United States Supreme Court, the U.S. Courts of Appeal for the First, Third, Fourth, Sixth, and Ninth Circuits, and in U.S. District Court litigation in Virginia, Montana, and Kansas.

Industry focus > Energy regulation: conventional power Tier 2

Van Ness Feldman LLP ‘s electric and hydropower practice represents a broad range of investor-owned and municipal utilities, renewable and conventional generation owners, power marketers, manufacturers and technology providers. The group is well known for its expertise in hydroelectric licensing and re-licensing matters and has experience before FERC, as well as handling environmental permitting and compliance issues before the EPA. Other areas of strength include advising on the development of new transmission projects to increase the delivery of renewable energies. Lawrence Acker is a key figure at the group, while Gary Bachman represents major client, New York Power Authority. Based in Washington DC, Joseph Nelson and Mike Swiger co-chair the practice. In January 2021, Jessica Friedman, Vincenzo Franco, Julia Scarpino Wood and Margaret Claybour departed to Rock Creek Energy Group LLP.

Practice head(s):

Joseph Nelson; Mike Swiger

Other key lawyers:

Lawrence Acker; Malcolm McLellan; Gary Bachman; Suzanne Keppeler


The team has a strong, pragmatic approach to FERC advocacy. It understands the types of arguments that will be compelling to the current set of FERC Commissioners and it avoids arguments that are not likely to resonate.’

Conversations with the individuals involved have been very collaborative. They are not wedded to their own ideas and add value to our ideas.’

Key clients

American Electric Power

Idaho Power Company

Long Island Power Authority

Los Angeles Department of Water & Power

New York Power Authority

NextEra Energy

Puget Sound Energy

Tennessee Valley Authority


Industry focus > Environment: regulatory Tier 2

Headquartered in Washington DC, Van Ness Feldman LLP's core strengths cut across environmental compliance, federal and state permitting, site clean-ups and internal investigations. The practice acts for a varied client roster, including major players from the oil and gas, power, manufacturing and infrastructure sectors, which often seek advice on environmental justice, air, water, land and waste regulatory and policy initiatives at the state and local level. Following changes to the Executive branch of the federal government, the firm’s recent work reflects a shift in the approach of new leadership at the Environmental Protection Agency and other federal agencies with regulatory authority affecting U.S. energy infrastructure development and operations, and federal land use and management. Regulation of stationary and mobile sources under the Clean Air Act (CAA), renewable fuel standards, and climate change matters continue to be areas of activity for the team. The latter is a key specialism for Kyle Danish , who is particularly focused on emissions trading, legislation under the CAA and corporate climate strategies. Co-chair Britt Fleming leads advice to automobile manufacturers, electric utilities and trade associations in relation to CAA and mobile-source matters. She oversees the group with Jonathan Simon , a key contact for project developers and state governmental entities, and Stephen Fotis .

Practice head(s):

Stephen Fotis; Britt Fleming; Jonathan Simon

Other key lawyers:

Kyle Danish; Gwendolyn Keyes Fleming; A. J. Singletary

Key clients

Doyon, LTD

Huna Totem Corporation

Los Angeles Department of Water & Power

Oglethorpe Power Corporation



The Chlorine Institute

The North Slope Borough

Toyota Motors North America

Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts

Government > Government relations Tier 4

Washington DC-based Nancy Macan McNally and Shannon Angielski co-lead Van Ness Feldman LLP’s government advocacy and public policy group. The practice is well regarded in the areas of federal energy, natural resources, environmental law, climate change, Native American affairs and related policy. Clients include global and industrial companies, financial institutions and investment funds, trade associations, municipalities, and state and local governments, Native American and Alaskan Native entities and advocacy coalitions, all of which trust the group to provide strategic policy guidance, and advocacy. Seattle and Washington DC are both bases for Richard Agnew, who splits their time equally between the two cities and has extensive expertise relating to federal law and permits governing energy projects.

Practice head(s):

Nancy Macan McNally; Shannon Angielski

Other key lawyers:

Richard Agnew; Jonathan Simon; Andrew VanderJack

Key clients


Clean Hydrogen Future Coalition

Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority of Louisiana

Carbon Utilization Research Council

Pacific Salmon Treaty Coalition

Sand Creek Massacre Descendants Trust


Sonoma Water

Tuolumne Utilities District

Wabash Valley Resources

Van Ness Feldman has over 40 years of focused experience solving challenges that arise at the intersection of business and government.  Through our collective knowledge and experience, we take a uniquely collaborative approach that anticipate trends, adapts to changes in political and regulatory climate, and helps clients achieve their goals.  We have built lasting relationships with industry, non-profit organizations, and government at all levels, in the inter-related areas of energy, environment, natural resources, public lands, real estate/land use, infrastructure, native affairs, and health care.

The firm is comprised of attorneys and government advocacy specialists who come from diverse backgrounds and professional experiences.  Many of our professionals have worked in the business sector or served in government at high levels, giving the firm a network of strong, bipartisan relationships with key government decision and policy makers, including leaders on both sides of the aisle in Congress, the White House, and various federal, state and local governmental agencies.

Our more than 100 professionals in Washington D.C., Seattle, the Bay Area, and Denver are renowned for providing a nationwide clientele with sophisticated, top-notch services that include:

  • Strategic business advice
  • Legal and regulatory compliance counsel
  • Legislative and policy advocacy, insight, and representation
  • Support for project development, permitting, and transactions
  • Representation in administrative proceedings, litigation, and investigations
  • A depth of knowledge that is unparalleled in our core areas of focus
Electric Joe
Electric Doug
Electric Malcolm
Hydropower Mike
Pipeline and LNG Susan
Pipeline and LNG Michael
Pipeline and LNG Mona
Environment Britt
Environment Stephen
Environment Kyle
Real estate Jay
Land use and zoning Brent
Land use and zoning Tadas
Government relations and policy Richard
Natural resources Jonathan
Native American law Maranda
Native American law Andrew
Cybersecurity & Critical Infrastructure T.C.
Environment Gwen Keyes
Litigation & Investigations Mike
Litigation Michael
Number of Partners : 50
Number of Other Fee-Earners : 57
Other Staff : 62
English (fluent)
Co-Chair : Nancy Macan McNally (202-298-1892,
Co-Chair : Douglas Smith (202-298-1902,
Managing Partner, Seattle : Jay Derr (206 623 9372,