Heather Tewksbury Nyong’o


Heather Tewksbury Nyong’o


Heather Tewksbury Nyong’o is a well-regarded lawyer and trusted advisor who has established a premier practice representing companies and individuals in government investigations and related litigation throughout the United States and abroad. Ms. Nyong’o leads WilmerHale's California Cartel Enforcement Practice, part of the firm's internationally recognized Antitrust and Competition Group. She has represented multinational corporations and executives in cross-border criminal and civil antitrust investigations and litigation, and brings her unique experience and insight to cartel investigations and to the workings of the antitrust agencies that are most actively involved in cartel enforcement.

Ms. Nyong’o is also recognized for her trial work. She was included in the Diversity Journal's 2017 “Women Worth Watching” list, recognized as one of the Top Women Lawyers by the Daily Journal in 2014 and 2016, and named Litigator of the Week by GCR USA for her defense work in 2014. She is also consistently recognized as a highly regarded lawyer by Chambers USAChambers Global and The Legal 500 United StatesChambers USA describes Ms. Nyong’o as a “criminal antitrust expert” and “very talented trial lawyer” who is “absolutely brilliant” and knows “how the antitrust division thinks.”

Ms. Nyong’o is active throughout the broader legal community. She is a Fellow of the Litigation Counsel of America – Trial Lawyer Honorary Society, and serves in the leadership of the Antitrust Section of the American Bar Association. She also currently serves as vice chair of the California State Bar's Antitrust and Unfair Competition Section Executive Committee, and participates as a speaker or moderator on numerous panel discussions sponsored by notable thought leadership organizations, such as the American Bar Association, GCR Live, Practicing Law Institute, Golden State Institute and the National Institute on White Collar Crime. Ms. Nyong’o served for two years as editor-in-chief of the Journal of Competition, which is published by the California State Bar and Westlaw.

Ms. Nyong’o joined the firm in 2014 after serving as a trial attorney in the Antitrust Division of the US Department of Justice (DOJ) in San Francisco, where she handled some of the most significant investigations and criminal prosecutions brought by the agency in recent years. Most notably, she served as one of the lead trial lawyers in United States v. AU Optronics Corporation, a case with seven defendants (two corporations and five executives) involving price-fixing in the LCD industry. After that trial, Ms. Nyong’o led the sentencing of the corporations, which resulted in a record $500 million fine and the first-ever appointment of a corporate compliance monitor in a contested sentencing. She also served as lead trial counsel in the jury trials of two AU Optronics executives.

Ms. Nyong’o began her career as an attorney at a major Bay Area law firm, where she practiced intellectual property and complex civil litigation. 

Speaking Engagements

  • Moderator, "Enforcement Issues and Opportunities for Antitrust Practitioners," PLI's Antitrust Institute 2017: Developments & Hot Topics, 2017
  • Panelist, "Using Antitrust Convicts in Antitrust Compliance Program," ABA Section of Antitrust Law Spring Meeting, 2017
  • Moderator, "Dealing with Enforcement Issues and Opportunities," PLI's Antitrust Institute 2016: Developments & Hot Topics, 2016
  • Chair and Moderator, "From Dawn Raid to a Negotiated Plea," ABA Section of Antitrust Law Spring Meeting, 2016
  • Panelist, "Does Gender Matter in Antitrust Law? Tips from Experienced Practitioners in Private Practice, Government and In-house Roles on How to Survive and Thrive in Your Antitrust Practice," The State Bar of California Antitrust and Privacy Section Webinar, 2016
  • Panelist, "Cross-Examination; Trial Objections," PLI's California Trial Advocacy, 2016
  • Panelist, "Dealing with Enforcement Issues and Opportunities," PLI's Antitrust Institute 2016: Developments & Hot Topics, 2016
  • Panelist, "Antitrust Prosecution Trends," 30th Annual National Institute on White Collar Crime, 2016
  • Moderator, "Did the enforcers go bananas in Dole v. Commission? What are the boundaries of cartel conduct and why does it matter?" GCR Live Cartels Conference, 2016
  • Co-Chair, Fall Forum, ABA Section of Antitrust Law, 2015
  • Panelist, "FTAIA Practice and Problems," ABA Section of Antitrust Law, 2015
  • Panelist, "Preparing for an Antitrust Trial as an Associate," ABA Section of Antitrust Law, 2015
  • Debater, "An Oxford Union-style debate – The new world of global civil litigation: is the US a model or cautionary tale?" GCR Live Antitrust Litigation USA, 2015
  • Heather Nyong’o Named M&A and Antitrust Trailblazer by The National Law Journal

    The National Law Journal has named Heather Nyong’o, a Palo Alto–based partner at WilmerHale, as a 2018 Mergers & Acquisitions and Antitrust Trailblazer.

    November 1, 2018
    Read More


Insights & News


  • Education

    • JD, University of California, Berkeley School of Law, 2002

      Executive Editor, Ecology Law Quarterly, Member, Berkeley Law & Technology Journal
    • BA, Political Science, University of California, Berkeley, 1997

      Golden Key Honor Society
  • Admissions

    • California

  • Government Experience

    • Department of Justice

      Antitrust Division

      Trial Attorney, San Francisco Field Office