Having led American and Iraqi soldiers in combat for nearly three years, Tod Stephens now guides businesses in resolving security, government contract and litigation challenges. His unique background as a U.S. Army combat infantryman and an experienced courtroom attorney allows him to creatively solve clients’ complex and sensitive problems.
Industrial Security and Security Clearance Law
Within the defense, intelligence, aerospace and government services industries, Tod advises in-house counsel, Facility Security Officers (FSOs), corporate directors and business owners in navigating their complex regulatory obligations. Tod regularly represents clients during their interactions with the Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency (DCSA, formerly DSS), the Defense Office of Hearings and Appeals (DOHA), the Department of Defense Consolidated Adjudications Facility (DoD CAF), the Department of Energy (DOE, including NNSA), the Department of Homeland Security (DHS, including CBP), the State Department (DOS), and the Intelligence Community organizations (including NSA, NGA and NRO).
Mindful of the bottom line, Tod helps contractor companies efficiently obtain and maintain necessary facility clearances (FCLs), security clearances (PCLs), and other government authorizations. He assists large and small contractors on the administration of compliant insider threat programs and the mitigation of risk from the government’s Continuous Evaluation (Vetting) programs, including incident and adverse information reporting. In addition to routinely helping cleared companies with the mitigation of foreign ownership, control or influence (FOCI) and the related planning requirements, Tod regularly advises companies on the National Industrial Security Program Operating Manual (NISPOM), Security Executive Agent Directives (SEADs), and agency-specific regulations, including when cleared facilities are reorganized, bought or sold.
When a company’s trustworthy leaders and key employees face security clearance revocation or denial, Tod calls upon his deep experience in mitigating government security concerns to seek favorable adjudication at administrative hearings, personal appearances and appeals across the country. He has favorably resolved security clearance issues for hundreds of trustworthy individuals, including cases about every Adjudicative Guideline, at nearly every government agency, and in almost every state.
Tod represents established and new government contractor companies in resolving bid protests, appeals and disputes at the Government Accountability Office (GAO), the U.S. Court of Federal Claims (COFC) and the Small Business Administration (SBA). Tod guides potential bidders, awardees and unsuccessful offerors in analyzing potential protest grounds, making strategic filing decisions, and proceeding when advisable in pre-award and post-award protests, including as an intervenor.
Tod routinely guides businesses in regulatory compliance and risk mitigation during government subcontracting and prime contract novation. He often advises companies on strategic teaming agreements, mentor-protégé program approvals and joint venture formation. Tod leads careful planning of bid eligibility and set-aside limitations, including contractor size, status, and affiliation. Companies frequently consult with Tod on mergers and acquisitions involving government contracts, especially when those contracts are classified or represent key assets of the company.
Conversant in the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) and the Defense Supplement (DFARS), Tod often supports contract managers, business developers and in-house counsel in evaluating new contracting opportunities and fixing existing contract issues. Focused on risk mitigation and efficient compliance controls, Tod helps both business and legal professionals resolve flow-down, certification, qualification and reporting challenges to avoid disputes with government customers.
Tod is also an experienced federal and state courtroom litigator who represents companies and business owners in contract, corporate, and employment litigation. He has resolved complex cases in many industries, including aerospace, construction, employment and insurance, counting both bench and jury trials.
- Washington University School of Law (J.D.)
- Washington University Law Review
- Washington University - Olin Business School (M.B.A.)
- United States Military Academy - West Point (B.S.)
- Distinguished Cadet
- U.S. Court of Federal Claims
- U.S. Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit
- U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Missouri
- U.S. District Court, Southern District of Illinois
- U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin
- Military Order of the Purple Heart
- Veterans of Foreign Wars
- NCMS, the Society of Industrial Security Professionals
- ASIS International
- The Missouri Bar
- Illinois State Bar Association
- Law360 Aerospace and Defense Editorial Advisory Board (2020)
Charitable and Civic Involvement
- The Snow Foundation (Board of Directors)
Before earning his MBA and law degree, Tod fought in Iraq for three years as a U.S. Army infantry officer, earning the Bronze Star for Valor, the Purple Heart, three Bronze Stars, the Combat Infantryman Badge, the Combat Action Badge and several other commendations. He led American and Iraqi soldiers in direct ground combat on a near-daily basis, and he advised Iraqi Army generals on operational and leadership matters. Tod is Airborne Ranger qualified, served on active duty for nearly eight years and remains a major in the individual reserves.