George Mason University

News at Mason

Scalia Law School well-represented in key White House roles

March 29, 2017   /   by Buzz McClain

Several graduates and three professors from George Mason University’s Antonin Scalia Law School have been appointed to key positions in the new White House administration.

“We are proud of our alumni and faculty for being selected for these prestigious and important positions. It reinforces how our exceptional alumni and faculty are helping to shape national policy,” said David Rehr, senior associate dean and a professor at the school. 

  • Adjunct professor James McCament has been appointed deputy director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. Until Senate confirmation of the next USCIS director, McCament will serve in that capacity as well. The agency―the unit of the Department of Homeland Security that oversees lawful immigration to the United States―has 19,000 federal employees in 223 offices around the world.
  • Victoria Lipnic, who earned her law degree at George Mason in 1991, is acting chair of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Lipnic was appointed for her first term as a commissioner of the EEOC by President Barack Obama in 2010. The senate confirmed her second term in November 2015.
  • Maureen Ohlhausen, also from the class of ’91, is the acting director of the Federal Trade Commission. She began her FTC career in 1997 in the general counsel’s office before becoming an advisor to FTC commissioner Orson Swindle and serving as deputy director and director of the office of policy planning at the agency. President Obama appointed her as commissioner in 2012.
  • Thomas Pahl, an adjunct at Scalia Law School, has been appointed by Ohlhausen to serve as acting director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. Pahl has served in a number of roles at the agency, beginning in 1990. He has been assistant director of advertising practices and the division of financial practices.

In addition to the appointments of Lipnic and Ohlhausen, two Scalia Law alumni and an adjunct professor have been named to the White House Counsel’s Office, where they will serve under Donald F. McGhann II.

  • Rene Augustine, an adjunct professor at Scalia, has been named a special assistant to Donald Trump and senior associate counsel to the president. Augustine previously was associate counsel to President George W. Bush and senior counsel to the Senate Committee on the Judiciary.
  • Jim Carroll, a 1988 graduate of Mason’s law school, has been appointed as special assistant to the president and senior counsel to the president. Carroll has served as Washington counsel to the Ford Motor Company and was deputy general counsel and acting general counsel to the Treasury Department.
  • John Walk, who earned his law degree in 2008, has been named associate general counsel to the president. Walk has been an attorney-advisor at the Transportation Security Administration and worked in the Office of the General Counsel at the Department of Homeland Security.