Los Alamos High School Alumnus Adam Orr Earns 2020 Top 40 Young Lawyers Award


Adam A. Orr/Courtesy photo


Los Alamos High School Class of 2003 alumnus Adam A. Orr has been awarded the American Bar Association’s 2020 Top 40 Young Lawyers Award. A letter announcing the award noted that selection for the prestigious award is a testament to his “superb reputation as an outstanding lawyer”, his professional accomplishments, and his service to the public.

Orr currently serves as an assistant counsel in the U.S. Department of the Navy’s Office of Naval Research. He advised clients with the Office of Naval Research in Arlington, Virg., including the Aerospace Science Research Division, the Ocean Battlespace and Expeditionary Access Division, and the Navy’s STEM Program. His main practice areas including federal contracts and financial assistance, as well as civilian personnel law.

Orr is an editor of the ABA International Law Year-in-Review and a member of the ABA Diversity Enhancement Program for the Section of Environment, Energy and Resources.

Orr graduated from the University of New Mexico in 2008 with a bachelor’s degree in English and went on to earn a master’s degree in technical writing from the University of Massachusetts where he also taught undergraduate courses and technical writing. He received his law degree from the Chicago-Kent College of Law at Illinois Institute of Technology. While in law school, Orr was a law clerk for the Department of Energy’s Assistant General Counsel for Environment in Washington, DC, and the general counsel of an international energy firm in Chicago, IL. He also served as Editor-in-chief of the Journal of Environment and Energy Law, and was awarded Chicago-Kent’s Distinguished Public Service Award.

Orr was employed by several Los Alamos National Laboratory subcontractors while he attended UNM and worked on the construction of both the LANL Emergency Operations Center and the National Security Sciences Building. In addition, he worked as a technical editor for the Chemistry and Metallurgy Research Replacement project.

Prior to his present job, Orr was legal counsel to the DOE Office of Science. While at DOE, he served as lead federal attorney for Ames National Laboratory and negotiated a restructuring of part of that facility’s prime contract. He also negotiated liability of failure of a multi-million-dollar power plant, which earned him special recognition by DOE’s Deputy Director for Science Programs, and was selected as the lead attorney for the procurement of the Financial Management and Support System at Argonne National Laboratory.

Orr is the son of Keith and Leslie Orr.

The Top 40 Young Lawyers award program provides national recognition of ABA Young Lawyers Division members who exemplify a broad range of high achievement, innovation, vision, leadership, and service to the profession and to their communities.  Nomination must be made by a senior attorney in good standing with the ABA.  The honorees are named by a selection committee comprised of attorneys from various practicing settings.  On the Rise – Top 40 Young Lawyers Honorees will receive national recognition in ABA print publications, online and via social media.