Damara Chambers, a leading CFIUS and trade controls lawyer, advises clients on cross-border investment, international trade, and national security matters. She co-leads Latham’s CFIUS & US National Security Practice.
Ms. Chambers advises foreign and domestic clients on complex US national security regulatory issues involving:
- Reviews conducted by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS)
- Facility security clearances and the mitigation of foreign ownership, control, or influence (FOCI)
- US export controls
- US economic sanctions
Ms. Chambers has extensive experience representing clients in all aspects of national security reviews before CFIUS. She has represented clients in a variety of landmark CFIUS matters and brings experience in negotiating some of the most significant national security agreements with the US government.
In her national security practice, Ms. Chambers also counsels clients on obtaining facility security clearances, adjudicating FOCI, and negotiating FOCI mitigation agreements with the Department of Defense’s Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency (DCSA), the Department of Energy, and other cognizant security agencies under applicable national industrial security regulations. She also advises clients regarding negotiating, implementing, and complying with various types FOCI mitigation instruments.
In her export controls and sanctions practice, Ms. Chambers advises companies on:
- Compliance with the Export Administration Regulations (EAR), the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), and nuclear export controls administered by the Department of Energy and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC)
- Economic sanctions administered by the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC)
- Import and licensing requirements imposed by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF)
She also frequently advises on export control and economic sanctions issues in mergers, acquisitions, and divestitures.
Ms. Chambers frequently speaks and writes on CFIUS and trade controls topics.
Ms. Chambers also represents clients in federal court litigation and maintains an active pro bono practice. Her work includes advising clients in victim compensation, interpleader actions, and immigration matters.
Ms. Chambers has earned widespread recognition for both her commercial and pro bono work. She has consistently been ranked in Chambers USA and Chambers Global for her work on CFIUS and FOCI matters. Her honors also include being named a Top Advisor by Foreign Investment Watch in 2020 and 2021 and a 2015 Pro Bono Publico Award honoree by the Legal Aid Society.
Ms. Chambers began her legal career as a law clerk to Judge Juan R. Torruella on the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit.
Prior to entering the practice of law, Ms. Chambers served as a US Navy Officer in the Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program. She has held other positions within the federal government as well, including Special Assistant to the Secretary of Energy and Legislative Fellow with the US Senate Committee on Finance.
Ms. Chambers’ experience includes representing:
CFIUS and FOCI
- Abu Dhabi National Energy Company (TAQA) before CFIUS in the acquisition of a tolling arrangement in the electric power industry*
- Advent International and Oberthur Technologies in securing CFIUS and FOCI approval for the US$2.6 billion acquisition of Safran’s Identity and Security solutions business*
- Align Aerospace Holding before CFIUS in its US$220 million acquisition by a subsidiary of Aviation Industry Corporation of China (AVIC), the Chinese state-owned aerospace and defense company*
- BAE Systems before CFIUS in multiple acquisitions, including the Intelligence Services Group of L-1 Identity Solutions*
- The Carlyle Group in multiple transactions, including its US$1.9 billion sale of Standard Aero and Landmark Aviation to Dubai Aerospace Enterprise*
- China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) in separate multi-billion dollar investments in Eagle Ford and Niobrara shale oil and gas lease properties held by Chesapeake Energy*
- Dassault Systemes in its US$750 million acquisition of Accelrys*
- Elbit Systems in multiple acquisitions, including Universal Avionics and M-7 Aerospace*
- Energy Future Holdings in its US$1.245 billion investment in Oncor Electric Delivery Company by an investor group led by Canadian and Singaporean investors*
- Enstrom Helicopter Corporation before CFIUS in its acquisition of Chongqing Helicopter Investment, a company owned by Municipality of Chongqing, China*
- GKN in securing CFIUS, FOCI, and State Department approvals for its US$11 billion takeover by Melrose Industries*
- GLOBALFOUNDRIES, a subsidiary of Mubadala Development Company, in securing CFIUS and FOCI approval for its acquisition of the IBM Microelectronics Division, valued at more than US$1 billion*
- Oregon Steel in its US$2.3 billion acquisition by Evraz Group*
- Nexen before CFIUS in its US$15 billion acquisition by CNOOC*
- Pioneer Natural Resources’ sale of interest in Wolfcamp Shale leaseholds to SinoChem Corp*
- Prysmian S.p.A. in its acquisition of Draka Holdings*
- Publicis Groupe S.A. and Sapient Corporation in securing CFIUS and FOCI approval for Publicis’ acquisition of Sapient for US$3.7 billion*
- Renesas Electronics in securing CFIUS and State Department approval for its US$6.7 billion acquisition of Integrated Device Technology*
- Rolls-Royce on various CFIUS and FOCI matters, including the acquisition of R.O.V. Technologies by Rolls-Royce’s technical services subsidiary, R. Brooks Associates*
- Schneider Electric in securing CFIUS and related US national security regulatory approvals in connection with the sale of its industrial software business to UK-based AVEVA Group and the acquisition by Schneider Electric of a majority interest in AVEVA Group in a transaction valued at approximately US$3.88 billion*
- Singapore Telecommunications Limited (Singtel) in securing CFIUS and FOCI approvals for its US$180 million acquisition of Trustwave Holdings*
- Stanley in security CFIUS and FOCI approvals for its US$1 billion acquisition by CGI Group*
- Takata before CFIUS and the State Department in the US$1.6 billion acquisition of its assets out of bankruptcy by Ningbo Joyson Key Safety Systems*
- Temasek Holdings in various matters, including investment in Merrill Lynch*
- Virgin Galactic in an investment by Aabar Investments PJSC*
- WGL Holdings, owner of the regulated natural gas utility Washington Gas, on CFIUS in the US$6.4 billion sale of WGL Holdings to AltaGas*
- WS Atkins in securing CFIUS, FOCI, and State Department approvals for its US$2.75 billion acquisition by SNC Lavalin*
- Various non-US pension funds and government-owned investors on CFIUS and related US national security approvals in acquisitions of major energy assets and other US companies*
- A leading global healthcare company in securing CFIUS approval for various transactions, including the sale of certain vaccine businesses to non-US buyers, and other life sciences transactions*
- A multinational engineering and project management company before CFIUS and the Departments of Energy and State in connection with CFIUS, FOCI, and ITAR approvals in its acquisition of a Canadian company*
- Various companies on FOCI mitigation arrangements and compliance with national industrial security regulations including the National Industrial Security Program Operating Manual (NISPOM)*
- Various companies with respect to compliance with CFIUS mitigation agreements and commitments*
- A major defense contractor on internal investigation regarding compliance with national industrial security regulations and the NISPOM*
Export Controls and Economic Sanctions
- Various clients in developing their compliance programs including policies, procedures, manuals, and technology control plans relating to international trade controls compliance*
- Various companies in navigating export control classification, licensing, and compliance issues*
- A major US aerospace manufacturing company in an internal investigation on export control matters and the design and implementation of corrective compliance measures*
- A global defense electronics company with an audit of its ITAR compliance program*
- A US defense company in conducting a diligence assessment of compliance with the Export Administration Regulations, ITAR, sanctions, and anti-boycott regulations in connection with its sale to a European acquirer*
- Various clients regarding Iran sanctions issues*
- A major multinational nuclear energy company regarding nuclear export licensing and compliance issues involving the NRC and Department of Energy*
- Various multinational companies on nuclear export controls and change of control requirements in connection with mergers and acquisitions*
- A foreign nuclear research and development institute regarding US nuclear cooperation issues*
- A major multinational corporation in navigating ATF regulatory requirements related to importer registrations and Federal Firearms Licenses*
*Matter handled prior to joining Latham