Russell L. Smith is counsel to the Government Relations Department, focusing on a wide variety of federal relations areas, including legislative matters, congressional investigations, and Executive Branch and independent agency proceedings involving foreign direct investment in the United States, international trade laws and policy, trade embargoes, environmental law, consumer products, financial services, foreign boycotts, nuclear power, defense contracting, federal and state campaign finance law, and federal lobbying and gift rules.
From 1984 to 1988, Russell was Counsel to the Republican Members of the Committee on Energy and Commerce of the United States House of Representatives. His primary responsibilities included advising the Republican Members on legislation and investigations involving international trade, securities law, defense contracting and auditing of federal contractors, pharmaceutical manufacturing, importing and sales, and various energy issues. He also played a primary staff role in the drafting and consideration of legislation authorizing and establishing the conditions for the 1986 public offering of the stock of Conrail, and the Omnibus Trade Act of 1988.
From 1982 to 1984, Russell was Special Advisor and Director of the Office of Automotive Industry Affairs at the International Trade Administration of the Department of Commerce, where he coordinated and actively participated in Administration activities on legislation and regulations affecting the automobile industry. He handled key issues including voluntary export restraints by the Government of Japan, domestic content legislation and fuel economy and safety regulation.
From 1976 to 1982, Russell was Federal Liaison and subsequently Washington Counsel for Conrail, where he was responsible for legal and legislative issues involving divestiture of rail lines, disputes with other regional railroads, tax benefits and claims by Penn Central employees against Conrail.
From 1972 to 1976, Russell was an Attorney Advisor with the Office of the General Counsel of the Treasury Department. During that time, he handled matters involving antidumping and countervailing duty cases, the 1972-73 wage and price control program, the Lockheed loan guarantee program and the Penn Central Railroad bankruptcy and subsequent creation of Conrail.
Russell has served as an Adjunct Professor in the Georgetown University Masters Program in Public Policy, where he has taught a course in Politics and International Trade Policy. He is a past president and Life Member of the Board of Directors of Adas Israel Congregation in Washington, D.C., and co-chairs the Max Kampelman Legal Forum of the Jewish National Fund.