Lawanda Nowlin Hodges, Esq. is the managing partner of The Law Firm of Lawanda Hodges, LLC, a white collar and high-stakes criminal defense firm. She practices in both federal and state courts and is one of the few attorneys in Georgia who has Top Secret Security (SCI) Clearance with the United States Department of Justice.
As a former prosecutor, Lawanda has over a decade of experience prosecuting major felonies, ranging from public corruption to homicide. As a Senior Assistant District Attorney in the Atlanta Judicial Circuit, Lawanda prosecuted some of the most heinous crimes, earning her numerous awards including, but not limited to, Attorney of the Year and The Lewis Slaton Award (awarded to the highest achieving prosecutor in the Atlanta Judicial Circuit).
As lead counsel in over 50 felony jury trials, Lawanda is a seasoned trial attorney. She has handled sophisticated criminal matters that required jury pools of over 200 jurors and jury questionnaires due to their complexities. She has successfully prosecuted and assisted in the investigation of over 500 felony matters, interviewing and assessing hundreds of witnesses. Lawanda understands all stages of a criminal investigation, as she has directly orchestrated legal search warrants and presented dozens of matters before the grand jury, including those involving public officials. Such vast experience caused Lawanda to be selected on the Criminal Justice Act Panel, a group of attorneys deemed eligible for appointment by the Court to represent indigent individuals in federal criminal cases.
As a former Deputy Chief Assistant District Attorney of public integrity and white collar units, Lawanda also directly supervised and managed large-scale white collar and public corruption investigations that took several months (and in some cases, years) to investigate. In this role, she managed parallel and multi-agency investigations, involving agencies such as the Georgia Bureau of Investigations (GBI) and the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI).
Lawanda is also accomplished in handling complex corporate matters concerning major corporations. She worked as an associate for the international firm, King & Spalding, LLP and was a senior business/commercial litigator at Ashe, Rafuse & Hill (now Polsinelli). The combination of her civil and criminal litigation experience makes her especially capable to handle complex cases needing the seasoned trial advocacy abilities of a prosecutor and the business acumen of a corporate litigator.
Lawanda is active in the legal community. She is a member of many bar associations, including the Women’s White Collar Criminal Defense Association, the National Bar Association (NBA), the Federal Bar Association, and the American Bar Association. Lawanda has been recognized as one of NBA’s Top 40 Under 40, The Network Journal’s Top 40 Under 40, and America’s Top 100 Criminal Defense Attorneys.
In her time away from the law, she enjoys coaching Spelman College’s Mock Trial Team and spending quality time with her husband and three sons.