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Subodh Chandra

Founder and Managing Partner

A former federal prosecutor, law director for the City of Cleveland, and large-firm litigator, Subodh Chandra is the founding and managing partner of The Chandra Law Firm LLC.

Chandra's practice focuses on high-profile civil and appellate litigation, including civil-rights, employment, and business litigation; white-collar-criminal defense; and internal investigations, in both federal and state courts. The litigation that Chandra handles often has a crisis-communications, public-policy dimension.

Before founding the firm, Chandra served as Director of Law of the City of Cleveland, a billion-dollar corporation. Chandra led the work of an 82-lawyer department with both criminal and civil divisions. He also sometimes served as the City's acting mayor.

As Cleveland's general counsel, Chandra handled legal work in-house and slashed by nearly 90% spending on outside counsel, saving millions; moved vigorously through in-house investigations to clean up internal corruption; restored the department's reputation; and attracted top performers who helped make it Ohio's most diverse law firm.

Previously, as federal prosecutor, Chandra successfully prosecuted healthcare fraud and corruption—winning a commendation from FBI director Robert Mueller for "demonstrated excellence" as well as from the special agent in charge of the FBI's Cleveland office. Chandra also prosecuted tax fraud, bank fraud, and other economic crimes.

Before that, Chandra served as a litigator in large law firms in both Cleveland and Los Angeles. Chandra defended the cities of Los Angeles and Beverly Hills against high-profile allegations of police misconduct, and represented large media companies and motion-picture studiios. Some of his more memorable work included defending the television show "Hard Copy" against libel charges by the singer Michael Jackson.

Chandra began his legal career as special presidential counsel at the American Bar Association.

Chandra is a graduate of the Yale Law School, where he was executive editor of the Yale Law & Policy Review. He also graduated with honors and distinction from Stanford University, which awarded him the John Gardner Fellowship to work as a protégé of Ohio Governor Dick Celeste.

Chandra has served as Distinguished Practitioner in Residence at Case Western Reserve University School of Law, teaching appellate practice and legal ethics. He has also served as a legal-ethics and attorneys' fees expert in litigation.

Long active in assisting people who aspire to public service, Chandra was also a 2006 candidate for Ohio Attorney General, winning most newspaper endorsements. The Cincinnati Enquirer called Chandra "the best candidate Ohio Democrats have produced in years." Chandra was also one of the earliest supporters of President Barack H. Obama, raising money for him and serving as a delegate to the 2008 Democratic National Convention.

Chandra presently serves on the Special Ohio Advisory Committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights.

Chandra is admitted to practice law in Ohio, California, and New Mexico (inactive), and in federal courts around the country.


Founding and managing partner of The Chandra Law Firm LLC (2005–present)

Director of Law and Prosecuting Attorney, City of Cleveland (2002–05)

Assistant U.S. Attorney, Office of the U.S. Attorney, U.S. Department of Justice, Cleveland, Ohio (1999–2002)

Litigator, Thompson Hine & Flory (1997–99)

Litigator, Christensen, Miller, Fink, Jacobs, Glaser, Weil, & Shapiro, Los Angeles, CA (1996–97)

Special president counsel, American Bar Association, Albuquerque, NM (1994–96)

Bar Admissions

New Mexico (Inactive)


Distinguished practitioner and adjunct professor taught appellate practice and legal ethics, Case Western Reserve University School of Law

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • U.S. Commission on Civil Rights Ohio Special Advisory Committee
  • Member Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association’s Judicial Selection Committee
  • Former chair Cleveland Bar Association’s Diversity Action Committee
  • Former co-chair Cleveland Bar Association
  • Former Board of Trustees member Cleveland Metropolitan Bar Association
  • Member International Network of Boutique Law Firms, Ohio Chapter President



Community Involvement


Litigation Percentage

100% of Practice Devoted to Litigation


Yale Law School, New Haven, Connecticut Law Review: Yale Law & Policy Review, Executive Editor

Stanford University
Honors: With Honors
Honors: With Distinction
Honors: John Gardner Fellowship to work with Ohio Governor Richard F. Celeste

Honors and Awards

Partial listing:

  • Recognition by FBI director Robert Mueller for "demonstrated excellence" federal prosecutions
  • Northeast Ohio Coalition for the Homeless Advocate of the Year
  • Best Progressive Crusader (Cleveland Scene Magazine)
  • Crain’s Cleveland Business “40-under-40” award
  • Outstanding lawyer award from New Mexico Bar Association
  • Life Member, Ohio Eighth District Court of Appeals Judicial Conference

Past Employment Positions

  • City of Cleveland, Director of Law and Prosecuting Attorney, 2002–05
  • U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Ohio. U.S. Department of Justice, Assistant U.S. Attorney
  • Thompson Hine LLP, Litigator
  • Christiansen, Miller, Fink, Jacobs, Glaser, Weil & Shapiro, Litigator
  • American Bar Association, Special Presidential Counsel



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