Hanover, Md (September 4, 2018)—Major, Lindsey & Africa, the world’s leading legal search firm, today announced the placement of Justin E. Fairfax, Lieutenant Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia, as partner in the Litigation practice at Morrison & Foerster. Fairfax will separately perform his duties as Virginia Lieutenant Governor, which is a part-time role under Virginia law. The search was led by Merle J. Vaughn, Major, Lindsey & Africa’s National Law Firm Diversity Practice Leader.
Fairfax was elected Lieutenant Governor of Virginia in November 2017 and his inauguration took place in January 2018. He is only the second African-American in history, and the first in nearly 30 years since the tenure of Governor L. Douglas Wilder, to be elected to statewide office in Virginia. Fairfax, 39, has been recognized as one of the top young attorneys in the nation and a rising star in American politics. He is a prominent and highly successful lawyer, political figure, philanthropist and a proud husband, father and community leader. In 2013, at the age of 34, Fairfax was awarded the National Bar Association’s “Nation’s Best Advocates Award,” which recognizes 40 top attorneys nationwide under the age of 40. He most recently served as a top commercial and white-collar criminal litigator in another prestigious law firm in Northern Virginia, which he departed in January 2018 to focus on his duties as Lieutenant Governor during his first General Assembly session.
He previously served as an Assistant United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia in the Major Crimes and Narcotics Unit of the Alexandria Division. During his tenure as a federal prosecutor, he was appointed to serve as the Deputy Coordinator of the Northern Virginia Human Trafficking Task Force. Prior to his service as a federal prosecutor, he worked as a litigator in Washington, D.C., following his stint as a federal law clerk to United States District Court Judge Gerald Bruce Lee in the Eastern District of Virginia, Alexandria Division.
Fairfax attended Columbia Law School where he was selected to be a member of the Columbia Law Review and earned his Juris Doctorate in 2005. He also attended Duke University where he graduated in 2000 with a degree in Public Policy Studies and was selected as the class graduation speaker for the Duke University Sanford School of Public Policy. Fairfax went on to serve a three-year term on the Duke University Board of Trustees and is currently serving his third three-year term on the Board of Visitors of the Duke University Terry Sanford School of Public Policy.
“Justin’s dedication to public service, coupled with his astute legal mind and outstanding credentials, made him a highly sought-after candidate,” said Merle Vaughn. “I have no doubt that his unique background and innate ability to forge strong personal connections will allow him to make a significant contribution to Morrison & Foerster.”