Vincent (Vince) McKnight is Co-Managing Partner of the Washington, DC Office of Sanford Heisler Sharp, Co-Ombudsperson, and Co-Chair of the firm’s Whistleblower & Qui Tam Practice Group.
Since joining the firm, Vince has received several awards and recognitions. Most recently, he was one of a few plaintiff’s lawyers recognized as an MVP by Law360 in Government Contracts. Martindale-Hubble gave him the Judicial AV Preeminent Rating in 2021, and prior to that, he regularly received the AV Preeminent Rating. He has also been recognized as a Best Lawyer in America and a Super Lawyer. In addition, he was named as a Lawyer of Distinction and listed on the National Black Lawyer Top 100 list.
At Sanford Heisler Sharp, Vince’s practice has focused on representing corporate whistleblowers who have exposed government contract procurement fraud, banking misconduct, securities fraud, and other corporate malfeasance. He has also represented executives in sensitive wrongful discharge and discrimination cases. Vince’s representations have included:
- Representing the former Executive Vice President and Chief Security Officer of Wells Fargo who assisted the OCC, SEC, and DOJ to recover $3.5 Billion in fines and penalties arising out of the “fake account” scandal
- Representing the former Director of Contracts at Navistar who alleged that Navistar misrepresented its pricing structure to the DOD and overcharged the Government in the MRAP vehicle purchase resulting in Navistar agreeing to pay $50 million to settle this case in 2020
- Representing the former Director of Contracts from CDM Smith who alleged that CDM Smith developed an automated process to conduct an audit that dramatically cut the man-hours necessary to complete the job but continued to charge the Government as if the work was still being performed manually, resulting in CDM Smith paying $10 million to resolve these allegations
- Representing the former Director of Contracts at NetApp who alleged that NetApp violated the GSA “Best Price Clause” and overcharged the Government by millions, resulting in NetApp paying $128 million to resolve these allegations
- Representing a former executive at Tenet who alleged that Tenet overcharged the Government by ordering and billing for unnecessary medical tests for patients, leading Tenet to settle these claims for $1.4 million
Vince received his law degree from the University of Pennsylvania and his undergraduate degree from Brown University. While at the University of Pennsylvania, Vince learned trial advocacy in the school’s pioneering clinical program that allowed him to try a case in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania as a student. He was also on a team of student lawyers that convinced a federal judge that confining a prisoner indefinitely to solitary confinement without meaningful review violated his civil rights.
A member of the District of Columbia and Maryland bars, Vince regularly leads and participates on panels on whistleblower laws at the ABA, the Federal Bar Association, and Taxpayers Against Fraud. He has been quoted in numerous newspapers and press outlets on important whistleblowers matters. He was part of a team of lawyers that consulted with then-Maryland State Senator (now U.S. Congressman) Jamie Raskin to draft the Maryland False Claims Act. Formerly, he served on the Board of Governors for the Trial Lawyers Association of Metropolitan DC. He currently serves on the Board of Directors for Taxpayers Against Fraud.
Before joining Sanford Heisler Sharp, Vince completed a clerkship for the Honorable William C. Pryor on the District of Columbia Superior Court and the District of Columbia Court of Appeals. Over his 40-plus-year career, Vince has tried over 50 cases to verdict and appeared in courts across the U.S. Vince also litigated Adams v.Cohchran, the case in which the DC Court of Appeals first departed from the employment-at-will doctrine (the assumption that employment is for an indefinite amount of time and may be terminated at any time) in the District of Columbia.
When Vince is not lawyering, he enjoys spending time with his family and listening to jazz. As a native Washingtonian, he is an avid fan of all Washington sports teams and regularly attends Wizards games.