WASHINGTON — Wilkinson Barker Knauer LLP (WBK) is pleased to announce that Erik Jones is joining the firm as a Partner in the Washington, DC, office. Erik joins WBK with an extensive background in governmental investigations and privacy and data security, most recently serving as Senior Public Interest Counsel under Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan — his second tour of duty in the Illinois Attorney General’s office. Erik was tapped by Attorney General Madigan to lead the office’s 2018 investigation into clergy sexual abuse, and he previously served as Director of the Policy Bureau and Assistant Attorney General. In between stints, Erik was a Partner with a major Washington, DC, law firm, where he specialized in data security and privacy and helped lead the congressional investigations practice.
Erik began his career in government on Capitol Hill, serving as Deputy General Counsel and Chief Investigative Counsel to the Senate Commerce Committee and in the House of Representatives as Counsel to the Committee on Energy & Commerce and the Committee on Oversight & Government Reform. In these roles, he led congressional investigations into a range of issues, from e-commerce practices and privacy to government contracting and environmental regulations.
Erik also played a significant role in Congress’s work on data security and technology issues, taking the lead in drafting and negotiating the Restore Online Shoppers’ Confidence Act, which President Obama signed into law in 2010, as well as important parts of the Cybersecurity Act. He also pushed for the establishment of the National Institute of Standards and Technology Cybersecurity Framework, the public-private partnership for developing cybersecurity standards, and directed the first federal investigation into the privacy practices of data brokers. While in the Illinois Attorney General’s office, Erik served as Attorney General Madigan’s lead advisor on data security and privacy. In that role, he took the lead on developing investigations and legislation on a range of privacy and technology issues, including patent trolls, payroll cards and the effort to update Illinois law on data security for the first time in nearly a decade.
Erik received his J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School and his B.S. from Southern Illinois University – Edwardsville. In 2018, he was a Democratic candidate for United States Congress (IL-13) and received endorsements from the Chicago Tribune, the State Journal-Register, the Sierra Club, the League of Conservation Voters and many others.
“Erik’s extraordinary track record in privacy and cybersecurity — as well as his experience with Congressional and state Attorneys General investigations — is going to prove a critical asset to
our clients,” said WBK Managing Partner Bryan Tramont. “Erik joins Kathleen Benway and Bob Quinn as another new leader in these growing practice areas. On a personal note, Erik’s character and intellect are perfect fits for the firm — and adding another St. Louis Cardinals fan is an added bonus.”
“I’m very excited to be joining the outstanding attorneys at WBK,” said Erik. “During my nearly 15 years working at the intersection of law and technology, I have come to know many members of the WBK team. They are a talented and dedicated group, and I’m honored to have the opportunity to join them.”
Erik will be located in the firm’s Washington, DC, office and can be reached at 202.383.3411 and at EJones@wbklaw.com. Additional information about Erik can be found at www.wbklaw.com/Our_Team/Erik_Jones.
Wilkinson Barker Knauer LLP, one of the largest law firms in the nation dedicated primarily to the practice of communications and energy law, is ranked as a “First Tier” firm by Chambers USA (Telecom, Broadcast, and Satellite: Regulatory), and Legal 500 (Telecoms and broadcast: regulatory), and is the only firm to be named “Law Firm of the Year” in communications law four times by U.S. News – Best Lawyers (2012, 2014, 2018 and 2019). The firm, with offices in Washington, DC, and Denver, Colorado, advises clients ranging from global Fortune 100 companies to small start-ups in regulatory, transactional, privacy, consumer protection, intellectual property, corporate and litigation matters involving all aspects of communications and energy law, at both the state and federal levels.