J. Thomas Rosch, a former commissioner with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, is returning to Latham & Watkins in D.C. and San Francisco as of counsel.
Rosch served as managing partner of the firm's San Francisco office from 1994 to 2005, prior to his confirmation with the FTC in 2006. In his new role, Rosch will work with Latham's antitrust and competition practice.
As a commissioner, Rosch played a key role in revitalizing the FTC's litigation efforts, particularly in relation to enforcement. In several merger and consumer protection cases, he opposed the majority, notably on privacy issues involving the social media website Facebook.
Rosch criticized the horizontal merger guidelines issued by the Department of Justice's Antitrust Division and the FTC in 2010 for failing to represent how the Commission analyzes merger complaints.
Looking back at his six-year tenure as commissioner, Rosch said in a phone interview that history will judge his biggest achievements, adding that his role was, "to teach the staff how to win and how to lose."
"I am excited about returning to Latham. This was the happiest place that I practiced law in my 40 year career," said Rosch. He added that he is glad to be "relieved of managerial duties and free to practice law."
Rosch said he will focus on antitrust and consumer protection. He will split his time between D.C. and San Francisco, where his wife bought a home and where most of his friends are.
"We are delighted to welcome our friend and colleague Tom Rosch back to Latham. His legal expertise is unrivaled, and we know him to be trusted adviser to clients and a generous colleague," Christopher Yates, Global Co-Chair of the firm's Antitrust & Competition Practice Group, said in a written statement.
Sean Berkowitz, chair of Latham’s global litigation department, added that Rosch "brings unique insights from his years as a practitioner and as an FTC Commissioner."
In 2011, Rosch received a Legal Times Visionary Award and was honored as "Antitrust Lawyer of the Year" by the California State Bar antitrust section in 2003.