Lisa Zornberg is a litigation partner based in the firm’s New York office. She is a member of the White Collar & Regulatory Defense Group, where her practice focuses on white collar defense, regulatory enforcement actions and internal investigations—including cyber investigations—for corporations and financial institutions as well as complex civil litigation. Ms. Zornberg also co-heads associate training for the firm’s litigation department.
Ms. Zornberg is ranked as a leading lawyer in White Collar-Crime and Government Investigations by Chambers USA (2022), where clients note that she is “a natural leader and a very impressive lawyer.” She is also said to be “a terrific, thoughtful lawyer that anyone would want on their side” and “a tremendous communicator who is able to synthesize a complex set of facts into clear and compelling stories.”
Prior to joining Debevoise in 2019, Ms. Zornberg was the Chief of the Criminal Division of the United States Attorney’s office in the Southern District of New York. As Chief of the Criminal Division from 2016 to 2018, Ms. Zornberg supervised approximately 170 federal prosecutors and oversaw the Office’s criminal investigations and prosecutions, including of corporate and securities fraud, cybercrime, health care fraud, criminal violations of U.S. sanctions, Federal Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) and RICO violations, terrorism, public corruption, construction fraud, art fraud, violence and drug offenses. Ms. Zornberg first joined the U.S. Attorney’s Office in 1998, where, over the next 14 years, she served as an Assistant United States Attorney in both the Civil and Criminal Divisions, rising to supervisory ranks in each division. From 2004 to 2005, she was Deputy Chief of Appeals in the Civil Division, and from 2011 to 2012, she was Co-Chief of the Complex Frauds Unit in the Criminal Division. From 2012 to 2016, Ms. Zornberg was a partner at a premier New York City litigation boutique, where she defended corporate officers and individuals in criminal and regulatory matters and handled complex litigation.
As Chief of SDNY’s Criminal Division, Ms. Zornberg worked closely with leadership of the Department of Justice, other U.S. Attorney’s Offices and other state and federal authorities, including the New York County District Attorney’s Office, SEC, CFTC, Office of Foreign Asset Control, New York Attorney General and New York Department of Financial Services.
Nicknamed the “tiny tornado” by one New York newspaper for her effectiveness in court, Ms. Zornberg has tried 15 cases to verdict, in both civil and criminal matters. Ms. Zornberg has lectured nationally about current trends in federal law enforcement.
Ms. Zornberg is Co-Chair of the United Jewish Appeal’s White Collar & Securities Enforcement Executive Committee, a Board member of the Federal Bar Council, a Board member of The Office of the Appellate Defender, and a former national vice chair of the American Bar Association’s White Collar Committee. She is a recipient of the Department of Justice Marshall Award, the department’s highest award given to attorneys for excellence in legal performance. She is also the recipient of the Federal Law Enforcement Foundation’s Federal Prosecutor of the Year award.
Ms. Zornberg graduated magna cum laude from Harvard College in 1991 and cum laude from Harvard Law School in 1994. Early in her legal career, Ms. Zornberg clerked for the Hon. Sonia Sotomayor, when Justice Sotomayor served as a United States District Judge for the Southern District of New York.