Jeffrey Dubner Accepts ACS CAN’s Annual Judicial Advocacy Initiative Award for Successful Litigation on E-Cigarette Regulation

Washington, D.C. — Today, the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) honored Democracy Forward Senior Counsel Jeffrey Dubner with its Judicial Advocacy Initiative award for his work in leading ACS CAN and other public health groups’ successful litigation that compelled the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to begin conducting premarket review of all new e-cigarette products.

Democracy Forward Executive Director Anne Harkavy congratulated Dubner on the award and joined ACS CAN in celebrating Dubner and the groups’ success. “We’re immensely proud of Jeff’s work representing an outstanding cohort of public health groups, which forced the FDA to do its job and regulate the slew of new e-cigarette products that were hitting the shelves without FDA review. Our nation’s children and public health are better off thanks to these efforts,” Harkavy said.

The award was presented at a virtual ACS CAN celebration in front of roughly 600 grassroots volunteers from across the country.

In 2018, Dubner led Democracy Forward, ACS CAN, and other public health groups’ litigation efforts as they filed suit against the FDA for allowing e-cigarettes and other recently introduced tobacco products to remain on the market without complying with a statutory requirement that FDA review all new products before they hit the market. The FDA’s attempt to exempt e-cigarettes from premarket review, which began in 2017, violated the Tobacco Control Act and the Administrative Procedure Act.

A federal judge concluded that the agency’s delay played a role in the skyrocketing youth use of e-cigarettes and gave “manufacturers responsible for the public harm a holiday from meeting the obligations of the law.” The judge agreed with the public health groups and required the FDA to begin reviewing new products. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit subsequently rejected appeals filed by tobacco industry groups, sealing the public health groups’ victory. Manufacturers faced their first deadline just last week — September 9 marked their deadline to submit applications for all new products.

Dubner joined Democracy Forward as Senior Counsel in 2017. In addition to securing victory on behalf of ACS CAN, in his work at Democracy Forward, Dubner has helped:

  • Reverse the unlawful termination of the Department of Health and Human Services’ Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program
  • Force the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to collect pay equity data from large employers affecting 60 million U.S. workers
  • Expose Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross’s illegal use of a personal email account to conduct government business
  • Ensure that the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau will finally implement a long-delayed requirement that banks report statistics on lending to small, minority-owned, and women-owned businesses
  • Prevent the Department of Energy from reopening a loophole in energy efficiency requirements for central air conditioners

Dubner has previously been recognized as a “Rising Star” by both the National Law Journal and Super Lawyers, and was honored for “Outstanding Antitrust Litigation Achievement by a Young Lawyer” by the American Antitrust Institute. Read more about his work and background here.