Russell R. Johnson III

Russell R. Johnson III

Managing Partner
Haymarket, Virginia
An experienced bankruptcy attorney and frequent lecturer on utility bankruptcy law issues who represents numerous utility companies in federal bankruptcy, district and courts of appeal across the United States on issues ranging from claims, termination of service, theft of service, preference and fraudulent conveyance litigation, post-petition security, executory and forward contract issues and Chapter 9 bankruptcies.  In addition, Russell represents utilities dealing with state law bankruptcy alternatives, such as receiverships.

Areas of Practice

  • 95% Bankruptcy
  • 5% Creditors' Rights

Litigation Percentage

  • 75% of Practice Devoted to Litigation

Bar Admissions

  • Virginia, 1990
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Virginia, 1990
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 4th Circuit, 1990
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 6th Circuit, 2008
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 8th Circuit, 2012
  • U.S. District Court Western District of Virginia, 1991
  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Michigan, 2008
  • U.S. District Court Western District of Pennsylvania, 2015
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court Eastern District of Virginia, 1990
  • U.S. Bankruptcy Court Western District of Virginia, 1991


  • University of Richmond, The T.C. Williams School of Law, Richmond, Virginia
    • J.D., Doctor of Jurisprudence cum laude - 1990
    • Honors: National Moot Court Team, McNeill Law Society
    • Law Review: Associate Editor, University of Richmond Law Review
  • Indiana University, Indiana, Pennsylvania
    • B.A., Bachelor of Arts summa cum laude - 1987

Published Works

  • Adequate Assurance of Payment for Utilities Under 11 U.S.C. 366(b), The Need for a Legislative Solution, 4 Virginia Bankruptcy Law and practice, Nov/Dec., 1994

Representative Clients

  • American Electric Power
  • AVANGRID Companies
  • CenterPoint Energy, Inc. Companies
  • Dominion Resources Companies
  • Eversource Energy Companies
  • Exelon Companies
  • FirstEnergy Corp. Companies
  • National Grid Companies
  • Rappahannock Electric Cooperative
  • Southern California Edison Company


  • Speaker on numerous topics at the Third Through Twenty-Second Annual Utility Bankruptcy Conferences
  • Treatment Of Forward Contracts Under The United States Bankruptcy Code, Midwest Energy Association Legal Affairs Roundtable, October 1999
  • Customers In Crisis: The Protections And Remedies Afforded Customers And Utilities Under The United States Bankruptcy Code, Indiana State Bar Association, November 2008
  • Credit Strategies To Address Customer Accounts Prior To And During Bankruptcy Court Proceedings, American Gas Association Legal Forum, July 2009
  • Summary of ABI Commission Report Reform of Chapter 11: Recommendations Affecting Utilities, National Association of Credit Management, International Utilities Group, 2015

Honors and Awards

  • Outstanding Public Service Award, The Indiana County Alumni Chapter, IUP, 1987
  • Outstanding Utility Practitioner Award, Seventh Annual Utiity Bankruptcy Conference, 1998

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Virginia State Bar, Member
  • American Bankruptcy Institute, Member, 1993 - 2017

Past Employment Positions

  • Hunton & Williams, Associate, 1990 - 1995
  • The Law Office of James D. Kepley , Of Counsel, 1995 - 1996
  • Law Offices of Russell R. Johnson III , Sole Proprietor , 1996 - 2009
  • Marlin Integrated Capital Holdings and Affiliates, Of Counsel, 2000 - 2005
  • Law Firm of Russell R. Johnson III, PLC, Managing Partner, 2009 - 2017

Pro Bono Activities

  • Assistant Soccer Coach, Goochland Middle School and for Powhatan Soccer Association (U13), 2016 - 2017
  • Chair, Outreach Committee at St. Matthews United Methodist Church, Goochland, VA, 2015 - 2017