Stephen F. Williams

Hon. Stephen F. Williams
Firm: United States Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit
Address: E. Barrett Prettyman United States Courthouse
333 Constitution Avenue, N.W.
Fifth Floor, Room 5205
Washington, DC 20001
Phone: (202) 216-7210
Web site:

Position Bar Admissions Education
Published Works Affiliations
Lawyer Profile:

Judge Williams was appointed to the United States Court of Appeals in June 1986, and took senior status in September 2001. He graduated from Yale College (B.A. 1958) and from Harvard Law School (J.D. 1961). Judge Williams was engaged in private practice from 1962 to 1966 and became an Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York in 1966. From 1969 until his appointment to the bench, Judge Williams taught at the University of Colorado School of Law. During this time, he also served as a Visiting Professor of Law at UCLA, University of Chicago Law School, and Southern Methodist University and was a consultant to the Administrative Conference of the United States and the Federal Trade Commission.

Current Employment Position(s):
Senior Judge, since 2001

Appointed 1986 by President Reagan
Bar Admissions:
Colorado, 1977
New York, 1962
U.S. Supreme Court, 1983
U.S. District Court Southern District of New York, 1966
Harvard University Law School, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1961
Honors: magna cum laude

Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, 1958
Honors: magna cum laude

Published Works:
The Natural Gas Revolution of 1985, 1985

Cases on Oil and Gas Law (With R. Maxwell, P. Martin and B. Kramer), 6th ed., 1992

Subjectivity, Expression & Privacy: Problems of Aesthetic Regulation, 62 Minnesota Law Review 1, 1977

Running Out: The Problem of Exhaustible Resources, 7 Journal of Legal Studies 165, 1978

Solar "Access" and Property Rights: A Maverick Analysis, 11 Connecticut Law Review 430, 1979

Implied Covenants for Development and Exploration in Oil and Gas Leases - The Determination of Profitability, 27 Kansas Law Review 443, 1979

The Static Conception of the Common Law: A Comment, 9 Journal of Legal Studies 277, 1980

Getting Downtown - Relief of Highway Congestion Through Pricing, Regulation, p. 45, March/April, 1981

Implied Covenants in Oil and Gas Leases: Some General Principles, 29 Kansas Law Review 153, 1981

An Energy Policy Perspective on Solar Hot Water Equipment Mandates, 1 UCLA Journal on Environmental Law and Policy 135, 1981

"Liberty" In the Due Process Clauses of the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments: The Intentions of the Framers, 53 Colorado Law Review 117, 1981

Severance Taxes: The Supreme Court's Role in Preserving a National Common Market for Energy Supplies, 53 Colorado Law Review 281, 1982

Liberty and Property: The Problem of Government Benefits, 12 Journal of Legal Studies 3, 1983

The Requirement of Beneficial Use as a Cause of Waste in Water Resource Development, 23 Natural Resource Journal 7, 1983

Energy Policy in the Cold Light of Morning, 61 Texas Law Review 571, 1983

Free Trade in Water Resources: Sporhase v. Nebraska ex rel. Douglas, 2 S. Ct. Economic Review 89, 1984

Implied Covenants' Threat to the Value of Oil and Gas Reserves, 36 Institute on Oil and Gas Law and Taxation, Chapter 3, 1985

Federal Preemption of State Conservation Laws After the Natural Gas Policy Act: A Preliminary Look, 56 Colorado Law Review 521, 1985

The Proposed Sea-Change in Natural Gas Regulation, 6 Energy Law Journal 233, 1985

The Law of Prior Appropriation: Possible Lessons for Hawaii 25 Natural Resource Journal 911, 1985

The Legal Integration of Energy Markets (With Terence Daintith) Vol. 5 of Integration Through Law: Europe and the American Federal Experience, 1987

Second Best: The Soft Underbelly of Deterrence Theory in Tort, 106 Harvard Law Review 932, 1993

Hybrid Rulemaking, Under the Administrative Procedure Act: A Legal and Empirical Analysis, 42 University of Chicago Law Review 401, 1975

Panel: Culpability, Restitution, and the Environment: The Vitality of{ Common Law Rules 21 Ecology Law Quarterly, 559, 1994

Unconstitutional Conditions Through a Libertarian Prism Public Interest Law Review, 159, 1994

Legal Versus Non-Legal Theory 17 Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy, 79, Winter, 1997

Court-Gazing: Reviews of David C. Savage, Turning Right: The Making of the REhnquist Supreme Court, and H.W. Perry, Jr., Deciding to Decide: Agenda Setting in the United States Supreme Court, 91 Michigan Law Review, 1158, 1993

The Roots of Deference (Review of Christopher F. Edley, Jr., Administrative Law: Rethinking Judicial Control of Bureaucracy) 100 Yale Law Journal 1103, 1991

Background Norms in the Regulatory State, (Review of Cass R. Sunstein, After the Rights Revolution: Reconceiving the Regulatory State) 58 University of Chicago Law Review 419, 1991

Fingers in the Pie (Review of Jeremy Rabkin, Judicial Compulsions: How Public Law Distorts Public Policy) 68 Texas Law Review 1303, 1990

Review of Morton Horwitz, The Transformation of American Law, 25 UCLA Law Review 1187, 1978

Review of Richard A. Posner, Economic Analysis of Law, 45 University of Colorado Law Review 437-53, 1974

Fixing the Rate of Return After Duquesne, 8 Yale Journal on Reg. 159, 1991

Pollution Control: Taxes v. Regulation (International Institute for Economic Research, Original Paper 23), August, 1979

Optimizing Water Use: The Return Flow Issue, 44 University of Colorado Law Review 301, 1973

Risk Regulation and Its hazards: Review of Stephen Breyer, Breaking the Vicious Circle, 93 Mich. L. Rev. 1498, 1995

Deregulatory Takings and Breach of the Regulatory Contract: A Comment 71 N.Y.U. L. Rev. 1000, 1996

Classes/Seminars Taught:
Professor, University of Colorado School of Law, 1969 - 1986

Visiting Professor, UCLA School of Law, 1975 - 1976

Visiting Professor, Fellow, University of Chicago Law School, 1979 - 1980

Visiting Professor, Southern Methodist University School of Law, 1983 - 1984

Professional Associations and Memberships:
Administrative Conference of the United States, 1991 - 1996
Judicial Conference Liaison

Federal Trade Commission, 1983 - 1985

American Law Institute

Historic Boulder, Inc.

International Association of Energy Economists

Administrative Conference of the United States

Past Employment Positions:
Administrative Conference of the United States and the Federal Trade Commission, Consultant, 1969 - 1986

Southern District of New York, Assistant United States Attorney, 1966 - 1969

Debevoise, Plimpton, Lyons & Gates, Attorney, 1962 - 1966

United States Army, 1961 - 1962

Birth Information:
1936, New York, New York, United States of America

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