Federal Trade Commission Chairman Robert Pitofsky today announced the resignation of General Counsel Debra A. Valentine. Valentine, who joined the Commission in May 1995 from the law firm of O'Melveny and Myers, will leave the agency in April to return to partnership at her former firm.
Pitofsky said, "The FTC is a law enforcement agency which largely relies on its legal talent. Debra Valentine raised the level of lawyering to new heights during her tenure at the Commission, both in her service as head of our international operation and as general counsel. Our litigation record in competition and consumer protection matters over the last six-plus years has been stellar, in large part thanks to her leadership, intelligence, skills and balanced judgment. Debra ranks among the finest general counsels to serve at this agency. On behalf of the entire Commission, I thank her for her service and wish her the best."
Pitofsky also announced he will ask John Graubert, currently the Deputy General Counsel, to assume Valentine's duties on an acting basis following her departure.
Prior to her current role, Valentine was the Commission's Assistant Director for International Antitrust overseeing the FTC staff's dealings with competition authorities around the world and directed the staff's work with multilateral organizations such as the WTO, APEC and the OECD. Valentine joined the FTC as Deputy Director for Policy Planning. In that position, she coordinated the FTC hearings on global and innovation-based competition and played a substantial role in drafting the report "Competition Policy in the High-Tech, Global Marketplace." Ms. Valentine also was a major drafter of the revisions to the efficiencies section of the Department of Justice ("DOJ")-FTC Horizontal Merger Guidelines, issued in April 1997.
Before joining the Commission, Valentine was a partner at O'Melveny & Myers, where she specialized in complex civil litigation and regulatory matters. She also was an attorney-advisor in the Office of Legal Counsel of the DOJ from 1981 to early 1985, prior to entering private practice.