Attorney General, January 2, 2007 to January 6, 2015.
Assistant U.S. Attorney, District of Columbia, 1992-98.
State's Attorney, Montgomery County, January 1999 to January 2, 2007. Vice-Chair, Governor's Task Force on Childproof Guns, 1999. Member, State's Attorneys' Coordination Council, 1999-2007. Member, Task Force on Pedestrian Safety, Montgomery County, 2000. Member, Cease Fire Council, 2000-03; Steering Committee, Bi-County Task Force on Gang Activity, 2004. Member, Drug and Alcohol Abuse Council, Montgomery County, 2004-07. Former member, Commission on Aging, Montgomery County.
Born in Summit, New Jersey, October 30, 1962. Attended Sidwell Friends School, Washington, DC; Yale University, B.A., cum laude, 1985; University of Virginia School of Law, J.D., 1989. Former law clerk to Judge John C. McAuliffe, Court of Appeals. Admitted to Maryland Bar, 1989; District of Columbia Bar, 1990. Attorney. Associate, Howrey & Simon, 1990-92. Partner, BuckleySandler, LLP, 2015-19. Partner, Global Litigation Group and White Collar Defense and Investigation Practices, Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft, LLP, 2019-. Member, Maryland State Bar Association; District of Columbia Bar Association. Delegate, Democratic Party National Convention, 2008, 2012. President, National Association of Attorneys General, 2012-13 (executive committee, 2010-; vice-president, 2010-11; president-elect, 2011-12; co-chair, cyber privacy committee). Past vice-president, Maryland State's Attorneys' Association. Board of Directors, Jewish Community Center for Greater Washington; Jewish Foundation for Group Homes; Most Valuable Kids; Teen Court. Advisory Board, CeaseFire Maryland. Former chair, Criminal Justice Committee, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Montgomery County. Honorary Chair, Lawyer's Campaign Against Hunger. Adjunct faculty, Washington College of Law, The American University. Champion of Children Award, Victims' Rights Foundation, 2000. Hero Award, Mothers' Against Drunk Driving, 2002. Internet Keep Safe Award, iKeepSafe, 2007. Rodel Fellow in Public Leadership, Aspen Institute, 2009. Champion of Online Safety Award, Stop Internet Predators, 2009. Innovator of the Year, Daily Record, 2009. Lifelock Ultimate Award, Cyberethics, Cybersafety and Cybersecurity Conference, 2011. Married; two children.
Since he took office in 2007, Attorney General Gansler focused on environmental, consumer and public safety issues. He distinguished himself by prosecuting polluters of the Chesapeake Bay, protecting consumers from various forms of fraud, and safeguarding the public from gangs, violent crime, and the underbelly of the Internet.
Attorney General Gansler served as President of the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG). He also chaired the Democratic Attorneys General Association until becoming president-elect at the national organization. In addition, he co-chaired the NAAG cyber privacy committee, and chaired the committees on the environment, energy, and youth access to alcohol.
Safeguarding Our Environment. Attorney General Gansler secured the largest air quality settlement of its kind in the history of the United States. He also secured a Maryland history-making water pollution penalty, the largest civil penalty ever levied for an oil spill in Maryland, and the largest asbestos penalty in Maryland history. Mr. Gansler continually audited the tributaries that feed the Chesapeake Bay to identify polluters and take appropriate action.
Along with these and other significant enforcement victories against polluters, Mr. Gansler led the successful charge to have phosphates banned from dishwasher detergent, and arsenic banned from chicken feed. Moreover, he helped secure standing for environmental groups to sue polluters in State court.
Attorney General Gansler successfully championed innovative energy solutions, such as hotel-room key cards that cut the lights and automatically reduce energy consumption when an occupant leaves a hotel room, lowering hotels' energy bills in the process. He also laid the groundwork for construction of a power plant to convert 500 million pounds of chicken manure into energy, potentially keeping the single largest source of nitrogen and phosphorous out of the Chesapeake Bay, while providing Maryland farmers with an additional source of revenue. With this and similar projects, Mr. Gansler demonstrated that it is possible to protect Maryland's environment while simultaneously strengthening its economy.
Fighting for Maryland's Homeowners, Consumers & Taxpayers. While in office, Attorney General Gansler fought various forms of fraud that threaten home ownership, contribute to the ever-rising cost of health care, and undermine the financial security and well-being of Marylanders. In the fight against mortgage fraud alone, he recovered over $1 billion in relief and assistance for Maryland homeowners. He also secured nearly $100 million from fighting various other forms of fraud.
This work produced the largest recovery in a health-care fraud investigation in U.S. history against a major pharmaceutical company that illegally marketed drugs at the expense of consumer safety. This work also led to an agreement with all major car rental companies to end usurious refueling rates, and a settlement with all four major wireless carriers requiring disclosure of the terms of cell phone insurance, potentially saving Marylanders over $40 million, and Americans over $2.4 billion.
Protecting Maryland Communities, Online & Off. Upon taking office, Attorney General Gansler established the first-ever Attorney General Gang Prosecution Unit in Maryland. Mr. Gansler co-chaired the statewide Human Trafficking Task Force and, through his role as co-chair of the Governor's Family Violence Council, he spearheaded tougher domestic violence laws.
To promote the health and safety of Maryland teens, Mr. Gansler led the effort to limit youth access to alcohol and tobacco by combating the marketing practices of alcohol and tobacco companies that target younger consumers. This work brought an agreement with two of the largest alcohol manufacturers to stop the production and distribution of alcoholic “energy” drinks, as well as an agreement with one of the largest gas station franchises in the world to curb tobacco sales to minors at its 13,000 outlets across the United States.
Attorney General Gansler established a statewide Internet safety initiative focused on school-aged children, shut down an online anonymous gossip site being used to torment young students, helped eliminate the online illegal adult services section of Craigslist, and continued to work on a nationally coordinated effort targeting sexual predators who use social networking websites to lure victims. As a result of these efforts, tens of thousands of sexual predators have been removed from social networking sites. For this work, Mr. Gansler received the Champion of Online Safety Award.
Defending & Promoting Civil Rights. As Attorney General, Mr. Gansler continued his long-standing commitment to civil rights. He created the first-ever Director of Civil Rights position in the Office of Attorney General. He set up the Working Group on Lending Practices to reform sub-prime and predatory lending practices, and the Attorney General's Task Force on Voting Irregularities to address voter suppression issues in Maryland. He also published a groundbreaking report to provide guidance on taser training protocols that now are used nationally by law enforcement, and a report to assist Maryland's institutions of higher education in legally developing and maintaining diversity. To ensure diversity of the bench, he worked for judicial election reform. For this work, as well as his successful efforts to increase diversity both in the Montgomery County State's Attorney's Office and the Office of Attorney General, Mr. Gansler was awarded the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Dream Keeper's Award.
For a legal opinion that clarifies the full faith and credit provided to valid out of state same-sex marriages that provided the underpinning for a recent Court of Appeals decision recognizing same-sex marriages from other states, and for being the first statewide elected official in Maryland to support marriage equality, Attorney General Gansler received the Ally for Equality Award.
Making a Difference. Prior to becoming Maryland's Attorney General, Mr. Gansler served for eight years as chief prosecutor in the largest jurisdiction in Maryland. Under his leadership, the Montgomery County State's Attorney's Office was the first in the country to fully implement community-based prosecution, becoming a nationwide model for effective crime-fighting programs. Mr. Gansler also launched innovative and successful programs to fight gangs, punish criminals, and protect the public, including the first domestic violence dockets and first drug courts in the County, a first-in-the-State gang prosecution unit, the first Elder Abuse Task Force in Maryland to specifically target criminals preying on seniors, and the first Internet crime unit in the State.
Prior to being elected Montgomery County State's Attorney, Mr. Gansler served as an Assistant United States Attorney. From 1992 to 1998, he prosecuted over 1,000 cases involving almost every type of crime, including public corruption, hate crimes, narcotic trafficking, sex offenses, child abuse, economic crimes, gang-related violence, and homicides.
In addition to his prosecutorial experience, Mr. Gansler practiced civil litigation as of counsel in the law firm of Coburn & Schertler, and worked for two years as an associate at Howrey & Simon. Attorney General Gansler was selected as one of 24 elected leaders from throughout the country to serve as a Rodel Fellow with the Aspen Institute.
A life-long community volunteer, Attorney General Gansler founded a lacrosse league (Charm City Youth Lacrosse) for underserved Baltimore inner-city youth. He mentored at-risk area youth, served on the Montgomery County Commission on Aging, and co-chaired the NAACP Criminal Justice Committee. For his work in establishing the lacrosse league, he received the “Innovator of the Year” award from Maryland's largest legal publication.
Mr. Gansler attended the University of Virginia School of Law and Yale University, where he graduated cum laude and was an All-Ivy, All-New England lacrosse player. He is married to Laura Leedy Gansler, a securities lawyer and noted author. He coaches both his sons, Sam and Will, in a variety of sports.
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