Blank Rome’s Justin Chiarodo Named Government Contracts MVP by Law360
Blank Rome LLP is pleased to announce that Partner Justin A. Chiarodo, who serves as co-chair of the Firm’s nationally recognized Government Contracts practice group, has been named a Law360 MVP for 2020. The notable MVP awards recognize attorneys who have “distinguished themselves from their peers by securing hard-earned successes in high-stakes litigation, complex global matters, and record-breaking deals.” Justin joins a select group of only six attorneys nationwide recognized in the Government Contracts category.
The 2020 Class of MVPs includes 189 attorneys from 76 firms spanning 38 practice areas. Competition for the MVP distinction was especially strong this year with Law360 editors reviewing more than 900 submissions to determine the winners. Profiles of the winners will be promoted over the course of the following weeks on Law360. An excerpt of Justin’s MVP profile is shared below.
MVP: Blank Rome's Justin Chiarodo
Blank Rome LLP's Justin Chiarodo led a team that helped Oshkosh Defense successfully defend its long-held position as a supplier of U.S. Army tactical vehicles in a complicated bid protest, earning him a spot among Law360's 2020 Government Contracts MVPs.
Biggest Accomplishment This Year:
Chiarodo, co-chair of Blank Rome's government contracts practice, worked on important bid protests and mergers and acquisitions this year, including successfully protesting Mission1st Group Inc.'s exclusion from a $7.5 billion multi-award Defense Information Systems Agency contract, and then helping to defend DISA's award decision from a subsequent challenge.
But his biggest accomplishment was his work as co-lead on the firm's successful representation of Oshkosh in a challenge to a Family of Medium Tactical Vehicles deal with the Army, which he described as "an advanced class in big protests" involving issues that had arisen in the course of a decade-long major defense procurement program.
Oshkosh has picked up billions of dollars in FMTV-related awards since 2009, but Navistar Defense LLC challenged $320 million in new orders placed by the Army in 2019, arguing that Oshkosh had been the beneficiary of unlawful sole-source extensions to a contract that should have ended years ago. The Court of Federal Claims denied the protest in January.
The challenge Chiarodo and his team faced was "taking a very complex procurement history and trying to tell a very simple story," while working with the government to bring all the relevant context together for the judge, he said.
"There were allegations the Army didn't follow the Competition in Contracting Act; you had motions to supplement the administrative record and motions to strike — really a bushel basket of litigation activity in that matter," he said. "And then substantively touching on a number of really key issues in federal procurement, including the use of sole sourcing requirements contracts and the cardinal change doctrine."
To read Justin’s full MVP profile, please click here.