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Daniel S. Severson

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Daniel S. Severson litigates complex civil cases in state and federal trial and appellate courts throughout the country.  He has represented clients in a dozen certiorari and merits stage appeals at the U.S. Supreme Court and argued cases before two federal courts of appeals.  Mr. Severson successfully reinstated civil rights claims as court-appointed pro bono counsel in Shaw v. Foreman, 59 F.4th 121 (4th Cir. 2023). 

Before joining the firm in 2017, he served as a law clerk to Judge Allyson Kay Duncan on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.  He graduated cum laude from Harvard Law School, where he was Editor-in-Chief of the Harvard International Law Journal and received the Myer Dana and Etta Dana Scholarship and the Dwight D. Eisenhower Scholarship.  Mr. Severson also holds a Master in Public Policy from Harvard University and was awarded Harvard University’s Presidential Public Service Fellowship for work at the U.S. Department of Defense.  He has served as a foreign affairs analyst at the U.S. Department of State and a Fulbright Scholar in Taiwan.  Mr. Severson graduated from Bard College with degrees in political studies and French horn performance.

Publications & Presentations

The Encryption Debate in Europe, Jean Perkins Foundation Working Group on National Security, Technology, and Law, Hoover Institution, Aegis Series Paper No. 1702 (Mar. 21, 2017)

The Court and the World:  An Interview with Associate Justice Stephen G. Breyer, 57 Harv. Int’l L.J. 253 (2016)

National Security Reporting Requirements: Managing the Tension Between Secrecy and Accountability (Bobby R. Inman Award Semifinalist, Robert S. Strauss Center, University of Texas at Austin, 2016)

Note, American Surveillance of Non-U.S. Persons: Why New Privacy Protections Offer Only Cosmetic Change, 56 Harv. Int’l L.J. 465 (2015)

Electronic Surveillance: U.S. and International Laws and Practices That Limit Privacy Protections (paper presented at M.I.T. conference, April 2015)

Competing with Korea, Taiwan Bus. Topics, Sept. 2013, at 15,

International Scrutiny Helps Taiwan Advance Human Rights, Taiwan Bus. Topics, Aug. 2013, at 35,

Taiwan Offers a Model for Advancing Human Rights, East Asia Forum (Aug. 23, 2013),

Structural Realism, Power Preponderance, and the Future of Sino-American Relations (senior thesis presented at West Point conference, May 2010)

Lawfare Articles

Encryption Legislation Advances in France, Lawfare (Apr. 14, 2016, 9:02 PM),

Hollande Abandons Constitutional Amendment, Bolsters Defense, Lawfare (Apr. 8, 2016, 2:18 PM),

Taking Stock of the Snoopers’ Charter:  The U.K.’s Investigatory Powers Bill, Lawfare (Mar. 14, 2016, 12:17 PM),

The World’s Not Waiting for California:  France Moves to Enforce Decryption, Lawfare (Mar. 7, 2016, 7:00 AM),

French Constitutional Council Strikes Down Data Copying During Warrantless Searches, Lawfare (Feb. 23, 2016, 12:29 PM),

French Constitutional Amendment on Emergency Powers Moves Forward, Lawfare (Feb. 12, 2016, 10:38 PM),

France’s Extended State of Emergency:  What New Powers Did the Government Get?, Lawfare (Nov. 22, 2015, 2:38 PM),

State of Emergency:  How the Paris Attacks Expanded France’s Police Powers, Lawfare (Nov. 15, 2015, 8:41 AM),


Harvard Law School, J.D., cum laude, 2016

  • Editor-in-Chief, Harvard International Law Journal

Harvard University, M.P.P., 2016

Bard College, B.A. and B.Mus., 2010


Law Clerk, Judge Allyson Kay Duncan, U.S. Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit, 2016-2017

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