John Townsend Rich, a Goodwin retired partner, practiced primarily in the areas of professional responsibility and governmental relations (including compliance with the federal Lobbying Disclosure Act). He wrote numerous appellate briefs in federal and state courts and in the Supreme Court, including numerous Supreme Court and court of appeals amicus briefs on issues related to civil commitment, discrimination and treatment of the disabled on behalf of various groups. He counseled U.S. corporations with operations abroad about suits under the Alien Tort Statute and potential liability under treaties and customary international law and advised on antitrust issues.

As a former member of Goodwin’s Ethics Advisory Committee, Mr. Rich advised Goodwin colleagues and other firms concerning their obligations under the rules of professional conduct, conflict of interest statutes, unauthorized practice rules, and laws governing the conduct of lobbyists.

Areas of Practice
Domaines D’Expertise





Professional Activities

Mr. Rich served as secretary of the D.C. Bar and on the steering committees of the Sections on D.C. Affairs and on Courts, Lawyers, and the Administration of Justice. He served on the D.C. Bar Rules of Professional Conduct Review Committee from 2011 through 2016 and chaired the committee in his last year. He served as a member of the D.C. Bar Pro Bono Committee from 2014 to 2020. He was a member of the board of directors of the Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs from 2000 to 2009 and a trustee from 2009 to 2013. He works as a volunteer at the D.C. Bar Pro Bono Center’s Landlord Tenant Resource Center. He is a member of the American Bar Association (including the sections on Antitrust, International Law, and Litigation; the American Society of International Law; the ABA Center on Professional Responsibility; and the Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers.

Professional Experience

Mr. Rich was a partner at Shea & Gardner prior to its combination with Goodwin in 2004. He retired as a partner at Goodwin in 2013, but continued as counsel until the end of 2021. He has been a special master in an employment discrimination class action against a government agency, an adjunct professor at the Georgetown University Law Center, and an associate independent counsel. After law school, Mr. Rich spent a year at University College, Oxford.


While in law school, Mr. Rich served as Editor-in-Chief of the Yale Law Journal.

In The News









LL.B., 1969
Yale Law School
B.A., 1965
Harvard College
(magna cum laude)


1971 to 1972 U.S. Supreme Court, Honorable Harry A. Blackmun
1970 to 1971 U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, Honorable David L. Bazelon



District of Columbia
New York


U.S. Supreme Court
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia
U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland
Profile Image
Get In Touch
Our clients rely on us for world-class advisory services, counsel on complex transactional work and high-stakes litigation. Specializing in matters involving the financial, life sciences, private equity, real estate, and technology industries, we use a collaborative, cross-disciplinary approach to resolve our clients’ most challenging issues. To find out more, please contact us.


Nos équipes interviennent aux côtés de nos clients, industriels, fonds d’investissement, startups, institutions financières et dirigeants, dans le cadre de transactions et de contentieux complexes, et apportent des conseils de tout premier plan dans les secteurs financiers, des Sciences de la Vie, du Private Equity, de l’immobilier et des technologies. Nous traitons les dossiers juridiques de manière intègre, ingénieuse, souple et audacieuse pour répondre efficacement aux enjeux propres à chacun de nos clients, quels que soient la taille de l’opération et le secteur d’activité. Pour en savoir plus, contactez-nous.

Unsere Kunden verlassen sich auf unsere erstklassige Beratung, vor allem im Hinblick auf komplexe Transaktionen und High-Stakes-Prozesse. Spezialisiert auf Angelegenheiten der Finanz-, Life-Sciences-, Private-Equity-, Immobilien-und Technologie-Branchen, verwenden wir einen kooperativen und interdisziplinären Ansatz, um Fragen unserer Kunden auch in extremen Spezialsituationen einer Lösung zuzuführen. Sie wollen mehr erfahren? Kontaktieren Sie uns gerne.

Search Other Lawyers
Recherche par Pratique