Hogan Lovells bolsters Transportation Law practice with Google X hire Laura Ponto

Washington, D.C., 25 April 2018 – Global law firm Hogan Lovells announces that Laura Ponto, former head of public policy and regulatory affairs at Google X’s Project Wing – the technology giant’s drone industry venture – has joined the firm as counsel in its Washington, D.C. office.

Ponto joins the firm’s Government Regulatory practice group, where she will focus on aviation, unmanned aviation systems (UAS, or drones), and other forms of emerging technology in the transportation sector. Her experience in matters involving administrative law, regulatory compliance and enforcement, litigation, and policy will significantly add to the firm’s capabilities.

Ponto began her career in the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Office of General Counsel, and then spent more than a decade in the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) Office of Chief Counsel. In these roles, she represented the DOT, FAA, and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in key litigation and enforcement actions. She regularly advised the White House, U.S. Senate, and House of Representatives on issues related to transportation policy, safety, and security, ultimately serving as counsel to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation. Ponto also served as Special Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia.

Commenting on Ponto’s arrival at the firm, Bob Cohn, Chair of the firm’s global Aviation practice, said, “We are very excited to have Laura join our Washington D.C. office, where her background and proven ability will further enhance our top rated aviation regulatory practice. Laura’s depth of experience will be very useful to our transportation clients.”  

“Laura’s addition to our team is a major coup,” added Lisa Ellman, chair of the firm’s global UAS practice. “She is an established leader in the development of the legal environment around the use of drones and a well-known presence in the industry.”

Ponto is a 2006 magna cum laude graduate of Florida State University College of Law. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Minnesota State University (also magna cum laude) in 1999 and Master of Arts in Sociology and Social Policy (summa cum laude) from San Diego State University in 2003.

About Hogan Lovells

Hogan Lovells is a leading global legal practice providing business-oriented legal advice and high-quality service across its exceptional breadth of practices to clients around the world.

“Hogan Lovells” or the “firm” is an international legal practice that includes Hogan Lovells US LLP and Hogan Lovells International LLP. For more information, see www.hoganlovells.com.


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