Steven Dettelbach, Northern District of Ohio
By Joe Palazzolo | July 29, 2022 3:51 pm
Steve Dettelbach (Dartmouth, Harvard Law) is nominated to replace Gregory A. White, who resigned in 2008 to become a federal magistrate judge.

Steven Dettelbach (

Steven Dettelbach (

His vitals:
  • Born in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1965.
  • Been a partner at Baker & Hostetler since 2006, splitting time between the firm’s Washington and Cleveland offices. He specializes in corporate internal investigations, as well as defending corporations and individuals in federal and state investigations and regulatory actions. Dettelbach dropped his criminal work in March 2009, apparently anticipating his return to the Justice Department. Since then, his practice has been exclusively on the civil side.
  • Was an assistant U.S. attorney in the Cleveland, assigned to the Organized Crime and Corruption Task Force from 2003 until he left for private practice. He was involved a series of high-profile corruption and fraud cases related to municipal contracting. The prosecutions — he was lead counsel (or “first chair”) in three trials -resulted in the conviction of eight defendants, including the mayor of East Cleveland, a Cleveland councilman, and the chief of staff to the mayor of Houston.
  • Served as a federal prosecutor in Maryland from 1997 to 2001, handling a wide array of federal criminal matters, from complex narcotics cases to large scale fraud and corruption matters. During that stint in Maryland, he took a detail as counsel to Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) of the Senate Judiciary Committee. He worked on criminal law policy, including the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, and DOJ oversight.
  • Joined the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division in 1992 as a trial lawyer and left as an acting deputy chief of the Criminal Section in 1997. Dettelbach specialized in involuntary servitude cases, hate crimes and complex police misconduct investigations.
  • Estimates he has tried between 25 and 45 trials to verdict, as lead counsel or co-lead counsel.
  • Received a raft of awards and commendations, including four from then-Attorney General Janet Reno.
  • Is a member of the Edward Bennett Williams Inn of Court.
  • Was an outside advisor to the Obama’s presidential transition on Justice Department-related issues and chaired the outside adviser group. He also volunteered for Obama’s presidential campaign as a member of the Government Reform and Criminal Law Policy advisory committees, and provided the campaign with legal assistance and advice.
  • Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland appointed Dettelbach to the Ohio Ethics Commission in 2008. In 2007, he served on the Governor’s Task Force on Campus Safety, Chairman, Law Enforcement Response Working Group, in the wake of the Virgina Tech shootings. (He volunteered for Strickland’s 2006 gubernatorial campaign, offering policy advice, fundraising, and assisting grassroots activities.)
  • Dettelbach lists a net worth of $902,900, with securities totalling $693,823.

Click here for his full questionnaire.


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