Government Experience

  • Department of Veterans Affairs—Attorney Advisor, 2013-2014
  • Federal Aviation Administration—Attorney, Office of the Chief Counsel, 2014-2018


  • Washington and Lee University, B.A. (2009) cum laude
  • Washington and Lee University School of Law, J.D. (2012)


  • District of Columbia
  • Massachusetts
  • New York
  • U.S. Supreme Court


  • Mandarin (Intermediate)

Mary-Caitlin Ray


A former attorney for the Federal Aviation Administration, clients come to Mary-Caitlin for practical and strategic advice on navigating complex aviation challenges. She represents aircraft owners, operators, and manufacturers as well as investors into aviation related businesses, advising on regulatory and transactional matters. She has significant experience advising clients on the impacts of and solutions for emerging technologies in the aviation sector, including uncrewed aircraft systems (UAS or drones) and electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft.

Mary-Caitlin’s practice spans the crewed and uncrewed side of the aviation world.

She has advised Fortune 500 flight departments, high net worth individuals, and manufacturers and suppliers on regulatory concerns related to the operation and production of aircraft, including complex issues related to permitted compensation, pilot licensing, operating structures such as dry leasing, timesharing and fractional ownership agreements, and emergency and Letter of Investigation response related to quality escapes and incidents. She also represents clients in the acquisition and sale of business aircraft, including cross border transactions requiring the export or import of aircraft.

Mary-Caitlin counsels drone and eVTOL manufacturers, operators, and owners on all aspects of FAA regulatory compliance, including the business impacts of the evolving global regulatory framework for emerging aviation technologies. She also advises drone manufacturers and operators on development of internal aviation-related corporate policies and best practices.

Mary-Caitlin has significant experience advising investors on the regulatory implications of investment into a wide array of aviation-related businesses, including MROs, manufacturers (including eVTOL manufacturers), and businesses that own and/or operate aircraft.


Professional Activities and Memberships

  • Chair, Young Lawyers Committee of the American Bar Association Forum on Air and Space Law
  • Young Lawyer Liaison to the American Bar Association Forum on Air and Space Law
  • Member, International Society of Transport Aircraft Trading
  • Member, Women in Aviation International
  • Vice Chair, ABA Section of Public Contract Law Young Lawyers Committee, August 2017-August 2018

Representative Matters

  • Advised small UAS operators on FAA operating and registration rules, including counseling on new and upcoming FAA rulemakings affecting sUAS operations
  • Advised UAS manufacturers on compliance with remote identification regulations
  • Drafted internal UAS use and remote identification policies for commercial UAS operators and manufacturers
  • Represented buyers and sellers in numerous aircraft purchase and sale transactions
  • Advised clients on negotiated lease documents related to Part 91 operations
  • Represented numerous private equity funds in conducting transactional due diligence and counseling related to the acquisition and sale of aviation related businesses, including Maintenance and Repair Organizations, manufacturers, aircraft owners and operators, and UAS and eVTOL manufacturers and operators
  • Counseled numerous FAA certificate holders, including PMA and Part 145 Repair Station Certificate holders, on responses to FAA investigations and audits

Speeches & Presentations

  • "Charting the Course: Finding of Niche as a Burgeoning Lawyer," American Bar Association, Montreal, Canada. (September 16, 2022). Speaker: Mary-Caitlin Ray.
  • “How Different Will the Future Be?" Isle of Man Aviation Conference, Douglas, Isle of Man, 2022. (June 22, 2022). Speakers: Mary-Caitlin Ray
  • “The Public-Private Connection – The Policies You Need to Know to Plug Into Dual Use & Other Opportunities” Law-Tech-Connect Workshop, Orange County, FL. (April 25, 2022). Speaker: Mary-Caitlin Ray
  • “Airports of the Future: Legal Considerations for Sustainable and Safe Mobility of People and Goods,” Eighth Annual In-House Recovery Conference, Dana Point, CA (March 10, 2022). Panelists: Meagan Bachman, Lorraine Campos, Mary-Caitlin Ray and Chahira Solh.
  • "Drone Law & Policy in Commercial Operations," 2020 AZDroneFest & Education Expo (October 22, 2020). Panelist: Mary-Caitlin Ray.
  • "Public Safety Drone Regulation and Policy," InterDrone Webinar Series (August 19, 2020). Presenter: Mary-Caitlin Ray.
  • "Parsing the Preemption Puzzle: Where is the Line?" ABA Forum on Air and Space Law Drone Law Conference, Washington, D.C. (June 18, 2018). Moderator: Mary-Caitlin Ray.
  • "Not Your Average Bid Protest," ABA’s 24th Federal Procurement Institute, Annapolis, MD (March 14-17, 2018). Moderator: Mary-Caitlin Ray.


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