People

Leadership and Staff

Adam J. White is Co-Executive Director of the Gray Center and a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. He also is a public member of the Administrative Conference of the United States, and he has served on the leadership councils for the administrative law sections of both the American Bar Association and the Federalist Society. After clerking for Judge David Sentelle of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, Adam practiced constitutional and regulatory law in Washington, with special focus on energy infrastructure regulation, financial regulation, administrative law, and constitutional separation of powers. He became the Center’s Executive Director in 2017, and its Co-Executive Director in 2021.

 

Jennifer Mascott is Co-Executive Director of the Gray Center and an Assistant Professor of Law at the Antonin Scalia Law School. Professor Mascott writes in the areas of administrative and constitutional law and the separation of powers. Her scholarship has been cited by the Supreme Court and has been published in the Stanford Law Review and a number of other journals. She is a former law clerk to Justice Thomas and to then-Judge Kavanaugh of the D.C. Circuit, and testified in the Senate in support of Justice Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the Supreme Court. Professor Mascott recently took leave from her academic position to serve as Associate Deputy Attorney General in the Department of Justice as well as Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Office of Legal Counsel. She also previously held the positions of Public Member of the Administrative Conference of the United States and Vice Chair of the Judicial Review and Supreme Court Committee within the ABA’s Section of Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice. Professor Mascott formerly served as the Faculty Director of the Antonin Scalia Law School’s Supreme Court and Administrative Law clinics and as an Olin/Searle Fellow affiliated with the Georgetown University Law Center. Professor Mascott graduated from the George Washington University Law School, where she earned the highest cumulative graduating GPA on record at the school. She became the Center’s Co-Executive Director in 2021.

 

Trent McCotter is the Director of the Separation of Powers Clinic and the Director of Clinical and Academic Programs. He is also a partner with Boyden Gray & Associates. Having served as Deputy Associate Attorney General of the United States and as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, Mr. McCotter has deep experience at every level of federal litigation and with every major federal agency.

Mr. McCotter maintains an extensive appellate practice. He has considerable experience identifying and briefing cases that draw the Supreme Court’s attention, having persuaded the Court to grant certiorari in numerous cases raising issues of sovereignty, constitutional rights, due process, and criminal law. He has authored and submitted nearly 40 briefs at the Court. He has also personally argued ten federal appeals across the Second, Fourth, Ninth, Federal, and D.C. Circuits—including once arguing three separate appeals in just four days. He has been counsel in over 30 other appeals raising matters from FOIA and the APA to constitutional rights and statutory construction.

As Deputy Associate Attorney General, Mr. McCotter oversaw DOJ’s Civil Appellate and Federal Programs branches, which are responsible for defending nearly all major litigation against the federal government. He formulated litigation strategy for high-profile administrative and constitutional matters involving the Environmental Protection Agency, Federal Election Commission, Department of Commerce, Food & Drug Administration, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Department of Homeland Security, and Department of Education, among others.

During his three years as a federal trial attorney in the Eastern District of Virginia’s “Rocket Docket,” Mr. McCotter won the Attorney General’s Award for Distinguished Service, was lead counsel in a multi-million-dollar trial, argued dozens of dispositive motions on matters ranging from administrative law to intellectual property, and first-chaired over 30 depositions, including a dozen expert witnesses.

During his DOJ tenures, Mr. McCotter also assisted with the confirmations of two Supreme Court justices and over a dozen lower-court judges. Mr. McCotter served as an inaugural clerk to the Hon. Steven J. Menashi on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit and also clerked for the Hon. R. Lanier Anderson III on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit.

Mr. McCotter graduated summa cum laude from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, with a degree in economics, and graduated magna cum laude from the University of North Carolina School of Law, where he received eight book awards for the highest grade in a class and served as an Articles Editor on the North Carolina Law Review.

 

David Wu is the Director of Operations at the Gray Center.  Prior to this, he was appointed to senior roles by three governors in three states, a mayor, and the President, including acting as Chief Operating Officer for the state of Illinois and as Acting Assistant Secretary for Administration for the United States Department of Agriculture. He also has worked in the private sector in finance, journalism, and start-ups in the United States and overseas. He has degrees from Wesleyan University, the University of Wisconsin, and Harvard University.

 

Tyler Carter is the Associate Director for Events and Operations at the Gray Center. Prior to joining the Gray Center, Tyler worked as an Office Coordinator at George Washington University, where she helped plan student-focused events in Housing and Residence Life. Tyler is a graduate of Towson University in Towson, Maryland where she earned her B.S. in Public Health and Health Care Management.

 

 

Mike Tyrrell is the Communications Assistant at the Gray Center. Mike graduated from Northwestern University in 2021 with a master’s degree in journalism and communications. He also attended the University of Pittsburgh from 2010-2015, where he received a bachelor’s degree in history and a master’s degree in social studies education. Mike previously worked as a high school history teacher, before switching careers and transitioning into the journalism and communications industry.

Founder and Former Director

Judge Neomi Rao, Former Director of the C. Boyden Gray Center for the Study of the Administrative State, founded the Center in 2015 when she was a Professor of Law at George Mason University’s Antonin Scalia Law School.

Judge Rao was appointed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit in March 2019. She graduated from Yale College in 1995 and the University of Chicago Law School in 1999. Following graduation, she served as a law clerk to Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson III of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit and, in the 2001 October Term, as law clerk to Justice Clarence Thomas of the U.S. Supreme Court. Between her clerkships, Judge Rao served as counsel for nominations and constitutional law to the U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary. In 2002, she joined the international arbitration group of Clifford Chance LLP in London, England. From 2005-2006, she served as Special Assistant and Associate White House Counsel to President George W. Bush. From 2006 to 2017, Judge Rao was a professor at the Antonin Scalia Law School at George Mason University, where she taught constitutional law, legislation and statutory interpretation, and the history and foundations of the administrative state. In July 2017, she was appointed to serve as the Administrator of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs in the Office of Management Budget. She served in this position until her appointment to the D.C. Circuit.