John F. DeStefano

Of Counsel

Washington, D.C.
T +1.202.861.1742
F +1.202.861.1783


John DeStefano’s comprehensive approach to legacy management directly benefits his private clients. John draws on his background in law, finance and tax to advise public company executives, emerging growth company founders and wealthy families across the country on implementing financially sustainable, values-based legacy plans focused on multigenerational growth and success.

Lifestyle preservation, purposeful wealth transfer and impactful philanthropy are frequent objectives, as are transmitting core family values and teaching the next generation to be good stewards of the family heritage. Through an Annual Summit discipline, John gathers family members and advisors around the same table to discuss vision, evaluate strategy and move tactically. To promote transparent communication and sound decision-making, the family’s comprehensive balance sheet, plan blueprint, capital allocation, tax exposure and more are displayed digitally in real-time with FinClar – a bespoke financial technology experience created for the firm’s private clients. Altogether, such a consistent approach keeps families on track and ahead of the curve over the long term.

Alongside his practice, John is a tenure-track law professor at Campbell University School of Law in Raleigh, North Carolina, where he teaches and publishes in the areas of estate planning and tax law and serves the state legislature as a member of the general statutes commission’s committee on trust law. John also co-lectures an advanced wealth transfer tax planning course at Georgetown Law and is a graduate of the Mid-Atlantic Fellows Institute of the American College of Trust & Estate Counsel (ACTEC). Before law school, John worked in portfolio management at a multibillion-dollar endowment and lectured undergraduate business finance. He is a four-time graduate of the University of Florida, with distinction.

Recognitions and Memberships


  • Best Lawyers in America® Tax Law: Ones to Watch (2022 to 2023)
  • Mid-Atlantic Fellows Institute of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC)
  • Supreme Court of Florida Pro Bono Service Silver Pin (2017)
  • Supreme Court of Florida Pro Bono Service Bronze Pin (2016)


  • American Bar Association: Real Property, Trust and Estate Law Section
  • The Florida Bar: Real Property, Probate & Trust Law Section


  • North Carolina General Statutes Commission, Trust Law Committee
  • The John Carroll Society (Archdiocese of Washington)

Prior Positions

  • U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Florida, Economic Crimes Section: Law Clerk (2013)
  • U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission, Enforcement Division, Asset Management Unit: Law Clerk (2012)


  • U.S. District Court, Southern District of Florida
  • Florida
  • District of Columbia


  • LL.M., Taxation, University of Florida Levin College of Law, 2015; Book Award in Estate Planning
  • J.D., University of Florida Levin College of Law, 2014
  • M.S., Finance, University of Florida, 2009
  • B.S., Finance, University of Florida, 2008; Warrington Finance Scholar