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Jeffrey Houle

Jeffrey R. Houle

Partner
Co-Chair, Aerospace, Defense and Government Services Transactional practice
He offers the perfect combination of commercial sophistication, legal knowledge, and customer focus.
client quoted in Chambers USA
About

Jeff Houle, a US lawyer and English solicitor with more than 20 years of legal and business experience, has represented Fortune 500 companies and members of the Forbes 400 and has closed more than US$8 billion in transactions.

Jeff focuses on companies in the government services area, representing middle market and Fortune 500 companies in M&A matters. His clients include businesses and investors across a broad spectrum of industries, among them energy, government and defense contractors, technology, mining and mineral extraction, telecommunications, financial services, real estate, business process outsourcing, online gaming and manufacturing.

Based in Washington, DC, his experience is global in scope. He has represented clients on six continents and in more than 30 countries.

Jeff's practice includes representing public and private companies as well as underwriters in equity and debt offerings, and complex acquisition and disposition programs, such as mergers, joint ventures, tender offers and asset, and stock sales. He is experienced in organizing private domestic and offshore investment funds and representing such funds, and a diverse mix of individuals, sponsors, lead investors and placement agents in venture capital, strategic debt and equity investments, and other financing transactions. He has also served on the boards of directors and boards of advisors of numerous companies, private equity funds and investment banking firms.

Bar admissions / PROFESSIONAL QUALIFICATIONSBritish Virgin IslandsConnecticutDistrict of ColumbiaSolicitor of the Senior Courts of England and WalesMaineMassachusettsNew York
CourtsSupreme Court of the United StatesUnited States Court of International Trade
[S]ingularly the hardest-working lawyer I've ever come across.
— client quoted in Chambers USA
Engaging Jeff and the DLA Piper team to guide us through this important transaction was one of the best decisions I have made in my professional career.
— CFO, Black Diamond Networks
Education
  • O.P.M., Harvard Business School
  • P.G.D., Global Business, University of Oxford
    with distinction
    Brasenose College
    Best Dissertation Award
  • LL.M., Securities Regulation, Georgetown University Law Center

    LL.M., Taxation, Georgetown University Law Center
    Graduate Student Editor, The Tax Lawyer

    Georgetown University Law Center
    Certificate in Executive Compensation and Employee Benefits Law

    University of Oxford
    Oriel College
    Certificate in Laws of England and Wales, Oxford Institute of Legal Practice

    J.D., Western New England University School of Law

    International Business Law, University of London

    European Economic Community Law, University of Exeter
    Phi Alpha Delta

    A.B., Mathematics, Boston College
    US Army ROTC Scholarship

Awards

  • Chambers USA
    Band 3, District of Columbia Corporate/M&A & Private Equity (2017-2023)
    Chambers comments, "Jeffrey Houle is noted for his capabilities in cross-border M&A. His clients include Fortune 500 companies." Clients say, "He is the consummate professional and is available 24/7 for his clients who are going through the most meaningful financial transactions of their lives." "He has incredible depth of knowledge and client service." "Jeff has deep industry expertise which proved to be exceptionally important." "Jeff is very service-oriented and willing to find innovative solutions."
    Band 4, District of Columbia Corporate/M&A & Private Equity (2013-2016
    Band 3, Northern Virginia Corporate/M&A (2012)
  • The Legal 500 United States
    Recommended, M&A: Middle Market ($500m-$999m) (2014)
  • Recognized in the Euromoney Expert Guides: Guide to the World’s Leading Mergers and Acquisitions Attorneys
  • Named in The Best Lawyers in America, Who's Who in American Law, The International Who's Who of Mergers & Acquisitions Lawyers and other Who's Who publications
  • Rated AV (highest ranking) by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Named a Washington, DC Super Lawyer
  • Washington SmartCEO has listed him among its Legal Elite
  • Jeff is a Fellow of Harris Manchester College, Oxford University

"Having the support of Jeff Houle, Richard May and the entire DLA Piper team was essential to the success of this transaction. They were able to accomplish a complicated cross-border deal in the middle of a pandemic, worked tirelessly through the holidays with year-end deadlines, demonstrating their exceptional work ethic and deal-making prowess, and we could not be more appreciative of their efforts."
- Paul Howarth, CEO of Times Higher Education

"Engaging Jeff and the DLA Piper team to guide us through this important transaction was one of the best decisions I have made in my professional career"
- Chris Healey, CFO, Black Diamond Networks
 
"As a business owner who happens to be deaf, working with an innovative team that is able to easily adapt to the complexities of communication while also managing the many challenges of completing this transaction was very important to me, and DLA Piper went above and beyond my expectations in this regard"
- Robert Rice, President and Founder, BayFirst
 
"The COVID crisis struck early in our preparations to engage potential buyers. Houle and his team’s advice and guidance were spot-on throughout the course of this transaction" 
- Matt Perl, CFO, Orbis Operations

Bylines

Jeff serves on the editorial board of Gaming Law Review and is co-author of Internet Law and Regulation, Bureau of National Affairs, Inc. (8 vols.). His publications also include:

  • "Special Considerations in Mergers and Acquisitions of Government Contractors," Washington Business Journal
  • "Initial Public Offering Opportunities in the Current Market," Grant Thornton White Paper
  • "Mergers and Acquisitions: Hidden Liabilities in a Down Market," Grant Thornton White Paper
  • "Changing of the Guard: Corporate Succession Issues," The Daily Deal
  • "Securities Law Compliance - A Tangled Web: Raising Capital Over the Internet," Cyber Securities Law
  • "Raising Capital on the Internet," Washington Business Journal
  • "The Quest for Venture Capital," Triangle Business Journal
  • "Venture Capital Small Business Advisor," Baltimore Business Journal
  • "A Primer: How to Take a Private Company Public," Boston Business Journal, Florida Business Journal

Seminars

Jeff has participated as a lecturer in more than 100 symposia, courses and programs sponsored by the American Bar Association, American Law Institute, New York State Bar Association, the District of Columbia Bar Association and other organizations.

News Overview

Jeff is regularly interviewed and quoted by the text and electronic media, and his comments have been featured in such media outlets as The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, BusinessWeek, The Washington Post, Politico, Investor's Business Daily, Washington Business Journal, Washington Technology, TechCapital, and WRKO (Boston). Jeff's academic work has been cited as authoritative by the US Supreme Court.

Media Mentions

Clerk Experience

  • The Honorable US Magistrate Judge Joan Glazer Margolis, New Haven, Connecticut

Prior Experience

Jeff was the founder and former managing director of Washington Capital Ventures, LP, a distressed asset investment fund, and founder and former president of A.F.I. Investments, Inc., an investment and real estate development company. He has served as a managing partner and chair of the corporate and securities practice for an AM Law top ten law firm and was instrumental in establishing and expanding the firm's presence in greater Washington, DC, Boston and Palo Alto.

Civic and Charitable

Jeff has provided assistance to numerous charitable organizations, including the serving on the Executive Committee of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Center for Public-Private Partnerships, Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine, Legal Aid Society of the District of Columbia, National Kidney Foundation, Fight for Children and Children's National Medical Center.

Teaching Experience

Jeff has participated as a member of the adjunct faculty and lecturer at graduate business and law schools of leading universities including Georgetown University McDonough School of Business, Columbia University Business School, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, Columbia University's College of Physicians and Surgeons, Tsinghua University (清华大学), Peking University or Beida (北大), University of Maryland Robert H. Smith School of Business, Georgetown University Law Center, the Center for Law and Innovation and Albany Law School.

Memberships And Affiliations

  • The Economic Club of Washington, DC
  • The Economic Club of New York
  • YPO (Young Presidents' Organization), Board Member, Washington-Baltimore Chapter, Past Chapter Chairs, Global One Chapter, Founder and Chapter Chair, Northern Virginia Chapter
  • Association for Capital Growth
  • Founding Member, Board of Directors, Washington, DC Technology Council
  • Northern Virginia Technology Council
  • Maryland High Technology Council
  • American Bar Association, Business Law Section, Venture Capital and Private Equity Committee
  • Inter-Pacific Bar Association
  • US Chamber of Commerce, Asia Committee
  • Georgetown University Law Center Alumni Committee
  • Boston College Alumni Admissions Committee
  • Chair, Government Contractor Industry Roundtable, Harvard Club of New York City
  • Associates Board, Wolf Trap
  • Board member, George Mason University School of Business Government Contractor Institute

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