Stafford Powell

Alison J. Stafford Powell

Baker & McKenzie LLP


Alison Stafford Powell has considerable experience counseling US and non-US companies on cross-border outbound trade compliance in the areas of export controls, trade and financial sanctions, anti-terrorism controls, anti-corruption and anti-money laundering rules, US anti-boycott laws, and US foreign investment restrictions under the Exon-Florio Provision. With a background also in EU and UK trade restrictions, she routinely advises non-US companies on reconciling US and EU trade regulations and on the extra-territorial impact of US trade restrictions. She is a dual US/English qualified lawyer and has worked in the Firm’s London, Washington, DC and Palo Alto offices since 1996.

Practice Focus

Ms Stafford Powell advises on all aspects of outbound trade compliance, including compliance planning, risk assessments, licensing, regulatory interpretations, voluntary disclosures, enforcement actions, internal investigations and audits, mergers and acquisitions and other cross-border activities. She develops compliance training, codes of conduct, compliance procedures and policies. She has particular experience in the financial services, technology/IT services, travel/hospitality, telecommunications, and manufacturing sectors.

Representative Legal Matters

  • Assisted European airline in overcoming statutory and regulatory hurdles to enable resumption of Iran route following the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action with Iran, including advocating regulatory changes and licensing policy to US regulators.
  • For private equity fund, assessed and mitigated sanctions compliance and political risks associated with a series of acquisitions in the aviation services sector, including conducting cross-border acquisition due diligence, obtaining time-critical licenses and conducting a pre-closing compliance investigation and voluntary disclosure alongside seller's counsel.
  • Counseled financial technology and travel technology companies on compliance strategies for capitalizing on new opportunities under relaxed Cuba sanctions program.
  • Conducted multi-jurisdictional risk assessment and compliance due diligence and advised on exit strategies for consumer goods manufacturer in context of increasing international sanctions against North Korea.
  • Represented numerous clients before the US Departments of Commerce and Treasury in export control and trade/financial sanctions matters, including voluntary self-disclosures, responding to administrative subpoenas and other enforcement inquiries, licensing, classification requests, advisory opinions, and regulatory interpretations.
  • Counseled international hospitality company on compliance risk assessments and compliance planning in preparation for corporate restructuring and IPO.
  • Conducted deemed export compliance review for major telecommunications company.
  • Advised on multiple encryption technical reviews under the US Export Administration Regulations for various software and IT companies.

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • American Bar Association - International Law Section
  • State Bar of California - International Law Section
  • Law Society of England & Wales - Member
  • Women in International Trade - Member, Northern California
  • District of Columbia Bar - Member


  • District of Columbia~United States (2013)
  • California~United States (2002)
  • England & Wales~United Kingdom (1998)


  • College of Law at London (1996)
  • Hosei University, Tokyo (1994)
  • Cambridge University (M.A. Hons) (1994)
  • Cambridge University (B.A. Hons, First Class, Oriental Studies) (1992)


  • English
  • Japanese

Previous Offices

  • London
  • Washington, DC

Presenter, “Immigration and Export Control: Renewed Focus of DHS,“ California State Bar, 2011

Presenter, "Tech Talk", 2015, 2016 

Co-author, Chapter on “International Trade," The Encyclopedia of Information Technology Law, Sweet & Maxwell Ltd., 2005

Contributor, “Cross-Border Transactions Handbook,“ Baker McKenzie LLP, 2008

Presenter, “EU Export Controls and Trade Sanctions,“ Export Control Coordinators Association of National Laboratories, 2006