Douglas W. Smith

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Doug Smith represents clients on regulatory matters before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and the Department of Energy (DOE). He also provides advice on climate change, energy technology, and renewable energy policy.

As General Counsel of the FERC from 1997 to 2001, Doug played a lead role in Commission policy initiatives on electricity, natural gas rates, pipeline certificates, and hydropower licensing reform. As Deputy General Counsel for Energy Policy at DOE, he played significant roles in Departmental initiatives on electricity restructuring, the Climate Challenge program, and new energy efficiency standards.

Doug speaks frequently at conferences on energy regulatory issues. Doug has also been on the adjunct faculty at the George Washington University Law School, where he most recently taught a class on Energy and the Environment.

Doug serves as Co-Chair of Van Ness Feldman.

  • Experience
    • Advises regulated companies on FERC rulemaking and policy matters.
    • Represents electricity clients in FERC rate matters.
    • Represents clients on FERC review of mergers and acquisitions in the electricity sector.
    • Assists clients with regulatory due diligence on energy projects and transactions.
    • Represents regulated entities on FERC audits and investigations.
    • Assists clients with regulatory compliance and training programs.
    • Represents equipment manufacturers on energy efficiency regulation before DOE.
    • Provides strategic advice on clean energy and climate change policy for energy companies, manufacturers, and other clients.
    • Works with think tanks to pursue innovative energy and environmental policies.
  • Professional Affiliations

    American Bar Association

    D.C. Bar Association

    Energy Bar Association

  • Awards & Honors
    "Best Lawyers in America" by Best Lawyers
    Energy Law, 2013-2021
    Chambers Global
    Electricity, 2009-2018
    Chambers USA
    Energy: Electricity (Regulatory and Litigation), 2005-2020
    Legal 500 - Recommended Attorney
    Energy Regulation - Conventional Power, 2019-2020
  • Government Service

    Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

    General Counsel, 1997-2001

    U.S. Department of Energy

    Deputy General Counsel for Energy Policy, 1995-1997
    Associate General Counsel for Energy Policy, 1995
    Assistant General Counsel for Legal Policy and Analysis, 1994-1995

    U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit

    Judicial Law Clerk to the Honorable Judge Walter K. Stapleton,  1986-1987

  • News & Presentations
  • Thought Leadership


Massachusetts Institute of Technology J.D., 1986
Editor-In-Chief, Yale Journal on Regulation

Yale Law School S.B., 1981