March 27, 2018

DOJ’s antitrust chief, FTC acting chair, EU commissioner among speakers at ABA Antitrust Spring Meeting

WASHINGTON, March 27, 2018 — Department of Justice Antitrust Chief Makan Delrahim, Federal Trade Commission Acting Chair Maureen K. Ohlhausen, European Union Commissioner Margrethe Vestager and a host of federal judges will be among leading competition enforcement officials from around the world headlining the American Bar Association’s 66th Annual Section of Antitrust Law Spring Meeting April 10-13 in Washington, D.C.

66th Annual Spring Meeting
Presented by the ABA  Section of Antitrust Law

April 11-13

Marriott Marquis
901 Massachusetts Ave NW
Washington, DC 20001

The Section of Antitrust Law’s Spring Meeting is the world’s largest gathering of competition and consumer protection professionals. This year’s conference will bring together more than 3,000 government enforcement officials, private attorneys, in-house corporate counsel, academics, judges, economists and business people from more than 60 countries to share knowledge about all aspects of competition and consumer protection law.

The highlight of the conference, which will feature 65 sessions, will be an Enforcers Roundtable on Friday, April 13, from 10 a.m. to noon. This gathering of leading competition authorities will include:

·        Andrea Coscelli, chief executive, Competition & Markets Authority, London

·        Makan Delrahim, assistant attorney general, U.S. Department of Justice, Antitrust Division, Washington, D.C.

·        Victor J. Domen, chair, Multistate Antitrust Task Force, National Association of Attorneys General, Nashville, Tenn.

·        Maureen K. Ohlhausen, acting chairman, Federal Trade Commission, Washington, D.C.

·        Margrethe Vestager, commissioner for competition, European Commission, Brussels

Other featured events include:

·        The Chair’s Showcase on Thursday, April 12, at 10:15 a.m. will be a retrospective on the contributions of retired Judge Richard Posner. A panel of competition experts — including Douglas H. Ginsburg, senior circuit judge, U.S. Court of Appeals, Washington, D.C. — will talk about Judge Posner’s contributions to our understanding of mergers, vertical restraints, collusion, remedies and how an understanding of economics can contribute to fashioning optimal rules of law.

·        The Section Luncheon on Wednesday, April 11, at noon will feature an introduction by Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), followed by a discussion on whether there is a need for significantly greater merger enforcement and, if so, whether antitrust goals would be achieved more effectively, as well as whether income inequality would or should be addressed.

Other program highlights include:

Agency Update with the U.S. Department of Justice” — Hear from DOJ’s Antitrust Division leadership about the latest in civil enforcement, cartel cases and policy initiatives. Speakers are: Roger P. Alford, deputy assistant attorney general; Andrew C. Finch, principal deputy assistant attorney general; Luke M. Froeb, deputy assistant attorney general; Donald G. Kempf, deputy assistant attorney general; Bernard A. Nigro, deputy assistant attorney general; and Marvin N. Price, acting deputy assistant attorney general.

Wednesday, 9-10:30 a.m.

“GDPR—Pain Points and Enforcement Risk” — The General Data Protection Regulation, which becomes effective in May, is the most sweeping change to the data protection landscape in the past 20 years. Every organization that does business in the EU or with EU citizens is impacted, and penalties for violations will be steep. This panel will discuss immediate steps companies should be taking to avoid becoming an easy enforcement target. Speakers are: Jan Dhont, Alston & Bird LLP, Brussels; Maureen Cooney, head of privacy, Sprint Corporation, Reston, Va.; Maarten Stassen, attorney, Crowell & Moring LLP, Brussels; Thomas F. Zych, attorney, Thompson Hine LLP, Cleveland.

Wednesday, 9-10:30 a.m.

“Views from the Bench—Non-Mergers” —  Antitrust laws require fact finders to engage in heavily fact-specific balancing of the harms/benefits of often complex business practices. The difficulty of such balancing has resulted in a proliferation of short-cut doctrines, including: per se rules, market share screens, standing and pleading requirements and limits on permissible inferences from certain evidence. A panel of federal judges will discuss how courts approach such cases and how this compares to other laws that require a balancing test or a determination of reasonableness. What can advocates do to more effectively present such cases before the courts? Speakers are: Bernice B. Donald, circuit judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, Cincinnati; Gene E.K. Pratter, district judge, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia; James V. Selna, district judge, U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, Santa Ana; and Claudia Wilken, senior judge, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, Oakland.

Wednesday, 10:45 a.m.-noon

“Net Neutrality: Deja Vu or a New Era?” — Net neutrality is hot news again with DOJ and FTC enforcement proposed as the salve to address broadband competition and privacy concerns. Hear a debate on critical issues including: Do we need rule-based competition policy or can rely on traditional antitrust enforcement? Can or should DOJ and FTC enforcement address non-economic policy goals, like diversity of speech? Among the speakers will be Joel Marcus, deputy general counsel for litigation, Office of the General Counsel, FTC, Washington, D.C.; Tim Wu, Columbia University Law School, New York, NY; and Christopher S. Yoo, University of Pennsylvania Law School, Philadelphia.

Thursday, 8:30-10 a.m.

“Views from the Bench—Mergers” — Hear from the federal judges who have presided over some of the most challenging and vigorously contested merger cases in the past several years as they discuss lessons and observations from the bench. Speakers are: John D. Bates and Amy Berman Jackson, both district judges from the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia in Washington, D.C.; and B. Lynn Winmill, district judge, U.S. District Court for the District of Idaho in Boise.

Thursday, 1:30-3 p.m.

“Agency Update with the FTC Bureau Directors” — Hear from D. Bruce Hoffman, Federal Trade Commission acting director of the Bureau of Competition, Thomas B. Pahlavi, Bureau of Consumer Protection and Michael G. Vita, Bureau of Economics about the latest in antitrust and consumer protection enforcement and policy initiatives.

Friday, 8:30-9:45 a.m.

A complete agenda and updated list of speakers can be found online.

There is no charge for media covering this event. To register, please contact Robert Robinson at 202-662-1097 or

ABA Legal Fact Check seeks to help the media and public find dependable answers and explanations to legal questions and issues. Go to and follow us on Twitter @ABAFactCheck.

With more than 400,000 members, the American Bar Association is one of the largest voluntary professional membership organizations in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law. View our privacy statement on line. Follow the latest ABA news at and on Twitter @ABANews.