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BIO - Vonda J. Orders

Thursday, August 22, 2013


General Counsel

Vonda J. Orders is the General Counsel for the DC Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD), and has served in this capacity since September 2009.  As the top legal advisor to DHCD, Ms. Orders advises the agency on the use of its Community Development Block grant funds, HOME funds, Neighborhood Stabilization Program funds, and other local funds, and also provides counsel and guidance on policy matters.  In addition, she serves as trustee for the agency’s loan programs and is the Freedom of Information Act officer and agency ethics counselor.  Ms. Orders manages a staff of ten attorneys and two paralegals.  The General Counsel’s office provides legal advice, develops form documents, takes enforcement action, and conducts all loan and grant closings. 

Prior to becoming General Counsel, Ms. Orders was as an Assistant Attorney General in the Real Estate Section of the Commercial Division of the D.C. Office of Attorney General.  She began her career as an associate at Gallagher Evelius and Jones, LLP in Baltimore, Maryland where she spent five years.  As an associate, Ms. Orders represented non-profit developers in multi-layered affordable housing transactions utilizing Low-Income Housing Tax Credits, HOME funds, tax-exempt bonds, and many state and local funding sources. She holds bar licenses in Maryland and the District of Columbia, and is a member of the District of Columbia Bar Association and the American Bar Association. 

Ms. Orders is a board member of the Lafayette Elementary School Afterschool Program, a non-profit organization that runs quality after-school programs for kids in Washington, DC.  She is a proud “double Terp.”  Ms. Orders graduated from the University of Maryland at College Park in 1996 with a B.A. in Journalism and graduated with honors from the University of Maryland School of Law in 2002.