Chad T. Sarchio, JD ’95, associate chief counsel for International and Intelligence Law at the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), was elected president-elect of the District of Columbia Bar (DC Bar) for the 2020-2021 term. Mr. Sarchio is the tenth GW Law alumnus to lead the DC Bar in the past few decades. Susan M. Hoffman, JD ’79, served as president for the 2019-2020 term.
A longtime professorial lecturer of law in trial advocacy and pretrial practice at GW Law, Mr. Sarchio has been an active member of the DC Bar for more than 20 years. The organization, with more than 110,000 members in 50 states and 80-plus countries, is the largest unified bar in the United States.
“Anyone who has participated in or benefited from the DC Bar knows how impressive its mission, mandate, and members are,” he said. “It sets the standard for pro bono, training, practice management, and lawyer assistance programs. I’m incredibly humbled to have the opportunity to serve the Bar and look forward to maintaining this tradition of excellence and helping to lead our Bar forward during these uncertain times.”
Professionally, Mr. Sarchio has dedicated his career to public service. At the DEA, he leads a team of attorneys supporting law enforcement professionals and facilitating interagency and international relationships worldwide. Prior to joining the DEA in 2006, he was a federal prosecutor at the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, where he prosecuted hundreds of federal and local criminal cases and served as lead counsel in more than 70 trials. He also served as investigative counsel during the Senate Select Investigation into military and federal law enforcement performance during Hurricane Katrina. He launched his legal career as an active duty member of the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General’s Corps and served in the JAG Reserves from 2000 to 2019.
During his tenure at the DC Bar, Mr. Sarchio plans to focus on innovation, proactive education and outreach in the global health crisis and beyond. “The current pandemic and its economic impacts for both lawyers and those who will need them most—the poor, small businesses, and other under-privileged communities—require innovative solutions,” he said.
As president, he hopes to inspire a renewed commitment to pro bono work and find creative ways to use current circumstances to expand access to justice. “As we learn the lessons of how remote training, witness examination, and other technological solutions can help lawyers, courts, litigants and others in the legal system during this time of crisis, I am committed to identifying and expanding upon those approaches that also can help improve access to and administration of justice in the future,” he said.
While excited to face the challenges ahead, he looks back with pride on his GW Law roots. In addition to serving as an adjunct professor at the law school for the past two decades, he served as a member of the GW Law Alumni Association’s Board of Directors. Most importantly, GW Law was where he met his wife, Christina Sarchio, JD’ 95, who serves as a partner at the global law firm Dechert. “I would not be in this position without GW Law, nor would Christina be in hers,” he said. “We count ourselves lucky to have been born into the law by GW.”