Dean E.Griffith

Of Counsel

Washington + 1.202.879.3412

Drawing on his nearly 10-year career at the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Dean Griffith counsels domestic and international clients on matters affecting air carriers, business aviation, and users and developers of emerging technologies. He advises on FAA safety compliance and certification, business aircraft operation, hazardous materials transportation, airspace obstruction evaluations, sales and leases of aircraft, and international aviation regulations. Dean also supports clients on topics regarding regulation of motor carriers and autonomous vehicles and represents rail and other clients in National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) investigations.

Dean has deep experience and knowledge of drone law and policy and assists clients with regulatory compliance and operational approvals, drone use policies, and analysis of proposed legislation and regulations. At the FAA, he served as the chief counsel's regulatory policy lead, counseling agency decision makers on drone rulemaking, exemptions, and policy development. He advised on the creation of the "Section 333" exemption process, the Unmanned Aircraft System Pathfinder Program, and on the scope of the agency's jurisdiction to regulate drones.

Dean is a frequent speaker on aviation topics and is co-chair of the American Bar Association's Drone Law Committee.


  • American Industrial Partners acquires RelaDyne, Inc.Jones Day advised American Industrial Partners in its acquisition of RelaDyne, Inc., a leading distributor of lubricant, fuel, and diesel exhaust fluid providing customers with integrated reliability management services for industrial and commercial businesses, from Audax Private Equity.
  • Signature Aviation purchases Vail Valley Jet Center FBOJones Day advised Signature Aviation Ltd. in the acquisition of Vail Valley Jet Center, the fixed-base operator (“FBO”) at Eagle County Regional Airport (Airport code: EGE) in Gypsum, Colorado, serving the Vail Valley.
  • VSE Corporation acquires Global Parts GroupJones Day advised VSE Corporation in the acquisition of Global Parts Group, Inc. in an all-cash transaction valued at approximately $38 million.
  • Signature Aviation sells Global Engine Services business to StandardAero for $230 millionJones Day advised Signature Aviation plc, a market-leading provider of global aviation support services, in the $230 million sale of the Engine Repair and Overhaul (ERO) business to StandardAero, a portfolio company owned by The Carlyle Group and a leading provider of maintenance, repair, and overhaul services.
  • Financial institution conducts internal investigation of notary and affiant practicesJones Day conducted an internal investigation of notary and affiant practices at a business unit of a major financial institution and advised the client on related disclosures to government agencies.
  • BBA Aviation sells Ontic for $1.365 billionJones Day advised BBA Aviation plc ("BBA") in the sale of its Ontic business to an investment fund affiliated with CVC Capital Partners for $1.365 billion.
  • NEP Group acquires SOS Global ExpressJones Day advised NEP Group in its acquisition of SOS Global Express, an independent international freight forwarding and full-service logistics company that specializes in supporting clients in broadcast, entertainment, music, and professional sports teams and leagues.
  • NEP Group acquires Aerial Video SystemsJones Day advised NEP Group in its acquisition of Aerial Video Systems, the Burbank, California-based provider of a range of HD wireless camera systems, aerial productions, and mobile audio and video RF solutions for sports, entertainment, and film clients.
  • iAero Group acquires Swift AirJones Day advised iAero Group LLC (f.k.a. Blue Skies Aerospace Group LLC), as majority shareholder of the iAero Group, in its purchase of Swift Air, the leading independent U.S. airline charter business.
  • Additional Publications

    • Fall 2020
      Committee Spotlight: Drone Law Committee, American Bar Association, The Air & Space Lawyer
    • June 2018
      Aviation Law: Incorporating Unmanned Operations, in Handbook of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (K. Valavanis & G. Vachtsevanos eds., Springer, Cham, 2018).
    • June 2015
      The Regulator’s Perspective: Integrating UAS into the National Airspace System, American Bar Association, coauthor, The Air & Space Lawyer

    Speaking Engagements

    • January 13-18, 2022
      Course Advisor & Speaker: Legal and Regulatory Aspects of Unmanned Aircraft Systems, Executive Education Program for the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority by the International Law Institute - African Centre for Legal Excellence
    • June 7, 2021
      Recent Developments, Policy Implications, and the Future of Unmanned Aerial Systems in the Geospatial Field, University Consortium for Geographic Information Science Symposium 2021
    • February 4, 2021
      Drones: Civil and Criminal Perspectives, Defense Association of New York
    • September 28, 2020
      Drone Regulatory Update – Pending Regulations and Policy Considerations, ABA Drone Law Conference
    • June 24, 2020
      Drones: Civil and Criminal Perspectives, Columbian Lawyers Association, First Department, and Brehon Law Society of New York.
    • April 23, 2020
      Drones: Civil and Criminal Perspectives, New York County Lawyers Association
    • June 25, 2019
      Public Safety Rules and Regulations, Hazmat & Drones Workshop
    • June 18, 2019
      Understanding Traffic Management: UTM 101 for Lawyers, moderator, ABA 2019 Drone Law Conference
    • June 12, 2019
      Lawyering for Drone Clients in the U.S.: Basics of Federal Drone Regulation, UTM, and Corporate Best Practices, 2019 International Conference on Unmanned Aircraft Systems
    • April 24, 2019
      Mastering Unmanned Aircraft Systems Law & Regulation, The Rossdale Group
    • February 13, 2019
      Cleared for Takeoff: Achieving the Promise of Airline Regulatory Reform, Airlines for America, International Air Transport Association Aviation Forum
    • October 25, 2018
      Aviation Hot Topics: Litigation, Regulatory, and Legislative Developments Facing the Aviation Industry, West LegalEdcenter
    • June 13, 2018
      Drone Legislation & Regulation: Shaping the Future of Drone Integration, 2018 International Conference on Unmanned Aircraft Systems
    • June 5, 2018
      UAS Regulatory Update: Where are we and where are we going?, ABA Drone Law Conference
    • February 23, 2018
      How UAS/Drones Have and Will Continue to Impact Transportation, ABA Air and Space Law Forum Update Conference