After three years as the U.S. representative on the World Bank's board of directors, Eli Whitney Debevoise II has returned to Arnold & Porter as a partner.
Debevoise was nominated to be executive director of the World Bank by President George W. Bush in 2007. His term expired on Jan 20, 2009, but President Barack Obama asked him to stay on until his successor, Ian Hoddy Solomon, was confirmed by the Senate on March 10.
At the World Bank, Debevoise represented the United States on the boards of four World Bank institutions with a combined balance sheet of nearly $500 billion: the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the International Development Association, the International Finance Corporation, and the Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency. He also served on the administrative council of the World Bank’s fifth institution, the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes.
As the U.S. representative on the bank’s board, he worked with Treasury secretaries Hank Paulson and Timothy Geithner on a succession of food, fuel, and financial crises.
Debevoise joined Arnold & Porter in 1979 and made partner in 1986. His practice focuses on international financial transactions, public policy, international arbitration and multijurisdictional litigation.
He said he doesn’t expect his practice to change much despite his time away, but he expects to have a larger role in expanding Arnold & Porter’s transactional work. “I’m looking forward to being back here and working to make the transactions practice bigger and also to help the firm on its global strategy as more and more of its practices are affected by the globalization of the legal industry,” Debevoise said.