Dean E.Griffith

Of Counsel

Washington + 1.202.879.3412

Dean Griffith counsels clients on aviation regulatory matters, drawing on his nearly 10-year career at the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Dean's experience ranges from traditional aircraft regulation to unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), or drone, law and policy. He advises domestic and international clients on FAA safety and certification requirements, aircraft registration standards, use of corporate aircraft, airspace obstruction evaluation requirements, as well as international aviation regulations. He also assists clients with UAS regulatory compliance and operational approvals, corporate UAS policies, and review of proposed legislation and regulations.

As a regulatory lawyer in the FAA's Office of the Chief Counsel, Dean drafted safety regulations and was responsible for seeing them through the notice and comment process, including Office of Management and Budget Review. He also prepared legal interpretations and regulatory exemptions addressing air carriers, corporate aviation, helicopter air ambulance operations, and other commercial aviation matters.

Dean has deep experience and knowledge of unmanned aircraft systems law and policy. As the Chief Counsel's UAS regulatory policy team lead, he counseled agency decision makers on rulemaking, exemptions, and policy development related to unmanned aircraft. Dean advised on the creation of the "Section 333" exemption process, the UAS Pathfinder Program, and on the scope of the agency's jurisdiction to regulate drones.

Additionally, Dean served as senior advisor and acting deputy assistant administrator in the FAA's Office of Government and Industry Affairs, advising on matters concerning Congress, aviation industry groups, and other governmental organizations.

Dean is co-chair of the American Bar Association's Drone Law Committee.


  • 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.
  • Speaking Engagements

    • 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