Karen Elizabeth Christian

Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP

Karen brings her background to bear to advise clients in congressional investigations and related oversight. She helps them develop a comprehensive strategy that addresses parallel civil, criminal, state attorneys general, inspector general, Government Accountability Office and other regulatory investigations. She also lends her experience to formulate defensive and/or affirmative corresponding legislative strategy and to address a broad range of regulatory issues.

In her role as general counsel to the Committee, Karen oversaw and ran some of the most high-profile, complex congressional investigations of the last decade. Karen also managed all facets of the Committee’s legislative process and advised the Committee Chairman and Staff Director on all legal matters, including ethics, procedure and  legislative proposals, as well as matters relating to Committee investigations. Prior to this role, Karen served as chief counsel to its Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations.

She worked closely with key stakeholders, including the:

  • Chairman and subcommittee chairmen
  • Staff Director, Deputy Staff Director and chief counsel of all of the subcommittees
  • Staff for leadership of the House, including those for the Speaker, Majority Leader and Majority Whip
  • General counsel for other committees, including Judiciary, Oversight and Government Reform, Ways and Means, Financial Services, Science, Space and Technology, Armed Services and the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence.

In an earlier role as chief counsel to the Subcommittee, Karen was responsible for briefing members on investigations and preparing them for hearings. In the course of her work, she developed, and now maintains, close working relationships with members and committee staff on both sides of the aisle. Karen has a deep understanding of members’ thinking and purpose when conducting congressional investigations, including their questioning strategy at public hearings.

Karen previously worked as counsel to the House Committee on House Administration, advising on campaign finance and election reform matters. Before that, she worked in private practice as a federal law clerk, and as a legislative and staff assistant to an Ohio member of Congress.


  • Counsels clients who may find themselves subjects of congressional probes or who are contending with potential associated regulatory, legislative or litigation challenges.
  • Spent nearly 13 years conducting and overseeing congressional investigations.
  • Served as former general counsel of the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce and chief counsel to the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations.

Representative Work:

  • Briefed the chairman and Committee members on legal, ethical and policy matters, in particular, the use of compulsory process to secure cooperation with the Committee’s oversight requests.
  • Drafted, developed and vetted legislation; managed Committee markups, including advising the chairman on procedure during the process; and coordinated with the House leadership to ensure that Energy and Commerce legislation was scheduled for floor consideration.
  • Was responsible for negotiating jurisdictional conflicts with other House committees and managing conference committees for which Energy and Commerce members were conferees.
  • Advised on regulatory and policy issues under the very broad jurisdiction of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, including consumer protection, health care/Food and Drug Administration, energy/Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, environmental, telecommunications and cybersecurity.
  • In her earlier role as chief counsel for the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, spearheaded all Committee investigations, including:
    • Fungal meningitis outbreak due to contaminated drugs
    • Comprehensive review of mental health care and treatment, including federal programs related to mental health and serious illness
    • The opioid addiction epidemic
    • The Environmental Protection Agency’s consideration of carbon capture technologies in developing greenhouse gas emissions standards for new power plants.
    • General Motors ignition switch safety failures
    • Department of Energy Loan Guarantee Program, including the failed loan guarantee to Solyndra
    • Implementation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, including the failed launch of HealthCare.gov.


  • J.D., The Ohio State University College of Law, with honors, 2001
  • B.A., Ohio University, magna cum laude, 1996


  • U.S.D.C., District of Columbia

Bar Admissions:

  • District of Columbia
  • Virginia


Rate : $$$

What types of cases Attorney Karen Elizabeth Christian & Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP can handle?
Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP can handle cases related to laws concerning Litigation, White Collar Crime, Health Care, Privacy, Government, Energy Utilities & Environmental. We manually verify each attorney’s practice areas before approving their profiles and reviews on our website.
Where is Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP located?
Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP is located at 1564, 1333 New Hampshire Ave NW, Washington, DC 20036, United States. You can reach out to Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP using their phone line 202.887.4265. You can also check their website akingump.com or email them at [email protected].
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Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP
1564, 1333 New Hampshire Ave NW, Washington, DC 20036, United States
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