Joseph D. West

Partner at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP

Joseph D. West

Joseph D. West

Partner at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP


Joseph D. West is a partner in the Washington, D.C. office of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher and former Co-Chair of the firm’s Government Contracts Practice. For almost 40 years, Mr. West has concentrated his practice on contract counseling, compliance/enforcement, and dispute resolution. He has represented both contractors (and their subcontractors, vendors and suppliers) and government agencies, and has been involved in cases before various United States Courts of Appeals and District Courts, the United States Court of Federal Claims, numerous Federal Government Boards of Contract Appeals, and both the United States Government Accountability Office and Small Business Administration.

Industries Served

* Aerospace and Defense
* Information Technology
* Professional Services
* Banking and Financial Institutions
* Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices
* Telecommunications
* Construction and Engineering

Areas of Particular Expertise

Compliance and Enforcement

* Worked on numerous internal investigations occasioned by corporate reviews, whistleblowers, and government enforcement elements
* Handled dozens of “mandatory disclosure” matters before numerous agency Inspectors General; published the initial Briefing Paper on the subject
* Defended Civil False Claims Act charges brought by qui tam relators and the Department of Justice
* Developed compliance programs for corporate clients and conducted corresponding training

Suspension and Debarment

* Successfully represented clients in various industries (e.g., defense, telecommunications, construction, and pharmaceutical manufacturing) in formal suspension and/or debarment proceedings and in their continuing relationships with agency debarment officials

National Security Issues

* Advised numerous companies as to dealing with foreign investment in U.S. companies, including filings with the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS)
* Worked closely with companies in satisfying the requirements of the National Industrial Security Program (NISP) driven by foreign investments or acquisitions
* Well-versed (and published) in matters involving the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) and International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR)

Dispute Analysis, Avoidance and Resolution

* Extensive work in claims analysis, development, negotiation and resolution by litigation if necessary
* In-depth experience in all types of ADR

Contract Award Disputes

* Litigated (for both plaintiffs and defendants) numerous award challenges in Federal Courts and before the Government Accountability Office
* Wrote several articles and lectured extensively on the government’s use of Past Performance Information as the most significant non-price evaluation factor in the source selection process


* Spent over three years working on largest default termination in Government Contracts history
* Successfully negotiated and litigated numerous default and convenience termination disputes

International Projects

* Provided contract expertise on project finance disputes in numerous countries
* Worked with international arbitration partners on major construction disputes under ICSID and UNCITRAL rules

Prime-sub Issues

* Worked with clients to negotiate all types of subcontract, vendor and supplier agreements
* Litigated disputes arising out of subcontracts and teaming agreements

Representative Client/Matters

* CH2M Hill

* Represented the company in connection with Air Force, EPA an GSA contracts
* Cisco Systems, Inc.

* Represented the company in connection with government enforcement actions against some of its resellers.
* DynCorp International

* Represented the company in an ASBA appeal rising out of an Air Force contract
* Fluor Corporation

* Represented the company in connection with internal reviews of several projects
* Represented the company with respect to contract disputes in Afghanistan.
* Bank of New York Mellon Corporation

* Represented the Bank with respect to its agreements with the Department of the Treasury to provide cash management services
* Newport News Shipbuilding and Drydock Company

* Represented the shipyard in litigation involving the Los Angeles class submarines, LNG Tankers, and Ultra-Large Crude Carriers
* Northrop Grumman

* Represented the company in a dispute with major subcontractors over the design and development of the B-2 stealth bomber
* Parsons Corporation

* Represented Parsons Infrastructure and Technology Group with respect to contracts with the U.S. Air Force
* U.S. Navy

* Represented the U.S. Navy in the largest default termination in Government Contracts history; led a team that devoted 20-lawyer years annually to this effort for almost 4 years
* U.S. Postal Service

* Represented the USPS in defending its award of a $7 billion contract to Federal Express to carry Express and Priority mail
* Wyeth (formerly American Home Products)

* Provided Government Contracts expertise to a multi-disciplinary team that worked with the Secretary of Health and Human Services on anti-terrorism issues


* Juris Doctor (with high honors), February 1977, George Washington University

* Editor, The George Washington Law Review
* Member, Order of the Coif
* Bachelor of Civil Engineering (magna cum laude), May 1971, Villanova University

* Member, Tau Beta Pi and Chi Epsilon (Engineering Honoraries)

Professional Affiliations

* Member, American Bar Association Public Contract Law and Litigation Section (Vice Chair of the Public Contract Law Section’s Pro Bono Committee from 1999 – 2002, Vice Chair of that Section’s Acquisition Reform and Emerging Issues Committee from 2006 2008, and Co-Chair of the Section’s Debarment and Suspension Committee from 2009 – 2012)
* Member, American Bar Association Forum on the Construction Industry (Member of the Forum’s Governing Committee from 2008 – 2011; Chair of the Forum’s Steering Committee of Division 1 (Dispute Avoidance and Resolution) from 2002 – 2004)
* Co-Chair, Steering Committee of the Government Contracts and Litigation Section, District of Columbia Bar (2004 – 2006)
* Member, Board of Governors of the Construction Law and Public Contracts Section, Virginia State Bar (1997 – 2003)
* Fellow, American College of Construction Lawyers (1999 – present); member of the College’s Board of Governors (2014 – present)
* Member, Advisory Board of Thomson/Reuters/West’s The Government Contractor (formerly owned by Federal Publications, Inc.)
* Member, Society of Corporate Compliance and Ethics
* Member of, and Certified as a Professional Contract Manager by, the National Contract Management Association

Honors and Awards

* Awarded a Peer Review Rating of “AV Preeminent” by Martindale-Hubbell for 26 consecutive years (1991-2017)
* Named by The Legal Times as one of the D.C. Area’s Top Twelve Federal Procurement Attorneys (“Leading Lawyers” series; November 1, 2004)
* Recognized as one of the top twenty-five government contracts lawyers nationwide in the 2005 – 2016 editions of Chambers USA – America’s Leading Business Lawyers
* Chosen by The Washington Business Journal as the city’s “Top Government Contracts Lawyer” in its 2006 Top Washington Lawyers edition
* Ranked as one of the leading construction lawyers in both the inaugural (2003) and all subsequent (2004 – 2017) editions of Chambers USA – America’s Leading Business Lawyers
* Recognized by Washington DC Super Lawyers in the Government Contracts practice area for 10 consecutive years (2007 – 2016), and as one of the “Top 100” Washington, DC lawyers across all practice areas in 2007 and 2016
* Named in December 2009, 2011, 2013, 2015 and 2017 as one of Washington’s “Top Lawyers” in Government Contracts law by The Washingtonian magazine

Representative Professional Writings

* “Federal Government Reviews of Contractor Past Performance,” the Journal of

RelSci Relationships


Number of Boards


Number of Awards


RelSci Relationships are individuals Joseph D. West likely has professional access to. A relationship does not necessarily indicate a personal connection.

Partner at Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP

Relationship likelihood: Strong

Chair, International Construction Projects Group at Borden Ladner Gervais LLP

Relationship likelihood: Strong

Of Counsel at McDonald Hopkins LLC

Relationship likelihood: Strong

Partner at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP

Relationship likelihood: Strong

Co-Chair, Electronic Discovery & Information Law Practice Group at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP

Relationship likelihood: Strong

Co-Chair, Electronic Discovery & Information Law Practice Group at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP

Relationship likelihood: Strong

Co-Chair, Securities Litigation Practice Group at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP

Relationship likelihood: Strong

Co-Chair, Mergers & Acquisitions at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP

Relationship likelihood: Strong

Co-Chair, Real Estate Investment Trust Practice at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP

Relationship likelihood: Strong

Co-Chair, Labor & Employment Practice Group at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP

Relationship likelihood: Strong

In The News
Los Angeles Times (6+ months)
June 4, 2013
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Joseph D. West
Partner at Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP
Juris Doctor with High Honors, Order of the Coif
Class of 1977

Since enrolling its first class in 1865, The George Washington University Law School has produced some of the finest minds across the spectrum of legal scholarship. That tradition continues today, as GW Law graduates use the knowledge and skills they gain here to influence the critical legal conversations of our times.

Bachelor of Civil Engineering, magna cum laude, Chi Epsilon, Tau Beta Pi
Class of 1971

Villanova University is a private university located in Radnor Township, a suburb northwest of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in the United States. Named for Saint Thomas of Villanova, the school is the oldest Catholic university in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Founded in 1842 by the Order of Saint Augustine, the university traces its roots to old Saint Augustine's Church, Philadelphia, which the Augustinian friars founded in 1796, and to its parish school, Saint Augustine's Academy, which was established in 1811.


American Bar Association provides legal services. It provides law school accreditation, continuing legal education, legal information and other services to assist legal professionals. The firm has members which include judges, court administrators, law professors, and non-practicing attorneys. The company was founded on August 21, 1878 and is headquartered in Chicago, IL.


The National Contract Management Association (NCMA), founded in 1959, is the world’s leading professional resource for those in the field of contract management. The organization, which has over 22,000 members, is dedicated to the professional growth and educational advancement of procurement and acquisition personnel worldwide. NCMA strives to serve and inform the profession it represents and to offer opportunities for the open exchange of ideas in neutral forums.

Career History

Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP provides legal services. The firm provides services in areas such as labor, employment, entertainment & media law, toxic torts and other environmental matters. Its clients include commercial & investment banks, government entities, individuals and startups. The company was founded in 1890 and is headquartered in Los Angeles, CA.

Boards & Committees
Member, Board of Governors
2014 - ?
Awards & Honors
Washingtonian Magazine - Top Lawyers, Government Contracts
Washingtonian Magazine - Top Lawyers, Government Contracts
Admitted to District of Columbia Bar
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