Kwamina Thomas Williford is co-chair of the firm's Consumer Protection Defense and Compliance Team. Ms. Williford helps companies navigate complex regulations and enforcement regimes related to consumer engagement and interaction, including marketing and advertising, reporting and decisions being made based on consumer credit, receiving payments from consumers and the use of consumer information. She also advises companies on how to reduce their risk profile related to consumer protection concerns when looking to bring innovative products and technology to market.
Ms. Williford represents companies faced with Civil Investigative Demands (CIDs) and inquiries brought by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) as well as state attorney generals related to federal and state consumer protection laws. Her experience with relevant laws implicated include the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, Federal Trade Commission Act (FTCA), Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), Telemarketing Sales Rule (TSR) and the Credit Repair Organizations Act (CROA). She is also experienced in defending DOJ allegations of potential violations of the civil False Claims Act (FCA).
Clients also call on Ms. Williford to conduct highly sensitive internal investigations related to alleged improper or questionable activities identified by employees or that are identified through the organization's compliance and ethics program.
Ms. Williford draws upon her experience to help clients decrease their risk profile by counseling companies on specific measures to enhance and refine their corporate compliance programs. Ms. Williford also works with clients to develop compliance training materials and conduct management training on compliance issues. She also served as the co-editor of the Corporate Compliance Answer Book, published every year since 2009 by the Practising Law Institute. Ms. Williford worked on the book with dozens of attorneys across the firm knowledgeable in various aspects of compliance. Leveraging this experience, coupled with her leadership roles within the firm over the past 17 years, has enabled Ms. Williford to work seamlessly with attorneys across subject matters to service clients and match their needs with Holland & Knight talent.
Currently, Ms. Williford chairs the Steering Committee for the firm's Diversity and Inclusion Engagement Initiative, designed to deepen partnerships with clients and businesses that share Holland & Knight's values of diversity and inclusion. Ms. Williford also serves on Holland & Knight's Innovation Committee, designed to further develop the firm's use of innovation and Artificial Intelligence to advance the practice with higher efficiency. She has also served on the firm's Directors Nominating Committee.
Within the community, Ms. Williford currently serves as the chair of the National Bar Association's (NBA) Commercial Law Section, a member of the NBA's Board of Governors, and has also served on the NBA's Judicial Selection Committee. Ms. Williford also actively supports diverse legal pipeline endeavors throughout the country, and serves on the board of Light House Studios, an organization dedicated to equipping young people with the skills and confidence to tell their stories and build community through collaborative filmmaking.
Prior to joining Holland & Knight, Ms. Williford served as a law clerk for the Honorable Gerald Bruce Lee in the "rocket docket" U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia.
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