Deborah Simpson left private practice with a prestigious New York City law firm to join the Institute for Justice in September 1997. For over two years, Deborah was the lead attorney on the Institute’s successful economic liberty case in Las Vegas challenging an unconstitutional licensing and enforcement regime that prohibited independent limousine drivers from operating. She was also part of the team litigating our economic liberty case in New York City defending the rights of commuter jitney van drivers and another New York case challenging protectionist wine shipping and advertising laws, which were ultimately declared unconstitutional by the US Supreme Court. Deborah is a long-time advocate of individual rights and has written on the abuses of civil asset forfeiture and on issues of regulatory takings and the non-delegation doctrine.
After the birth of her first daughter, Deborah shifted her focus from litigation to a more central role focusing on management and state office development. As IJ’s Vice President for State Offices and Institute Growth and Integration, Deborah managed IJ’s five state offices in Arizona, Florida, Minnesota, Texas and Washington. Now as IJ’s Chief Operating Officer she focuses her management experience on the growth and stewardship of the entire organization.
Deborah earned her law degree from New York Law School where she served as Executive Editor of the New York Law School Law Review. She received her undergraduate degree in Biology from Drew University. After law school, she clerked for Federal District Judge Edward B. Davis and Magistrate Judge Robert L. Dubé in the Southern District of Florida.
Deborah Simpson is a member of the DC, New York and New Jersey bars.