Bastress, Susan B.

Susan B. Bastress

  • T +974 4453 2509

Susan Bastress is the Managing Partner of our Doha office. Susan advises multinational companies on cross-border, transactional business issues, providing strategic legal counsel. She leverages an extensive background in commercial transactions, real estate, infrastructure development and alternative dispute resolution in her work for architectural, hospitality and infrastructure development firms.

Much of her work focuses on multinational companies seeking advice and counsel on achieving success in the Middle East region. Her understanding of the political climate in the Middle East, derived from her work on behalf of other sovereign clients of the firm, significantly augments her ability to provide sound advice and counsel to such clients.

Representative clients have included the embassies of foreign governments, an international media company, a national retail chain, the institutional investment arm of a foreign government, and the housing finance authority of a US territory. Susan represents clients in Qatar in the health, education, telecom, and security sectors. In addition, Susan offers substantial experience in alternative dispute resolution, and founded the Virgin Islands Mediation Service (VIMS), personally mediating more than 150 civil cases involving environmental tort liability, hurricane-related claims in construction disputes, and personal injury. Susan has also served on the panels of the American Arbitration Association and JAMS, in which capacity she has arbitrated and mediated complex construction disputes.

In 2003, Susan established the firms’ Doha office, serving as its initial managing partner. Susan also has the distinction of being the first non-Qatari attorney licensed to practice law in the State of Qatar.


  • Prepared mixed-use development documentation in connection with a $5.5 billion, 8,600-acre community in Qatar.
  • Represented an international airline in the launch of flight operations into the United States.
  • Mediated an architectural design dispute involving a major development project in the Middle East.
  • Represented the Discovery Channel in leasing more than 250 retail outlets.
  • Represented owners in the development of 5-star hotels both internationally and in the United States.
  • Represented the Virgin Islands Housing Finance Authority in connection with a program to develop affordable housing.
  • As counsel to an affiliate of the National Cooperative Bank, coordinated with the Federal National Mortgage Association to create a secondary market for housing cooperative share loans.


  • George Washington University Law School, J.D., with honors, 1981
  • Duke University, B.S., magna cum laude, 1974


  • District of Columbia
  • Doha, Qatar
  • Maryland
  • United States Virgin Islands

Memberships and Affiliations

  • Advisory Board Member, Qatar University/College of Law
  • Board member, Middle East Institute (MEI)


  • Speaker, “Qatar’s New Cybercrime Law”, (January, 2015)
  • Speaker, “Comparative Outlook on Women’s Contributions in MENA,” (May 25, 2014)
  • Speaker, Qatar Construction and Arbitration Law Trends, (MEED Qatar Project 2014 Conference) March 17, 2014
  • Speaker, Qatar Tender Law Seminar (December 2013)
  • "Sovereign Wealth Funds: Applicability of CFIUS to Investments in US Real Estate,” American College of Real Estate Lawyers (August 2008)
  • “U.S. Law Offices Abroad: What You Need to Know When Entering a New Market,” Practising Law Institute (PLI) webcast (June 11, 2007)
  • Author, “Valuable Lessons Learned: One Mediator’s Perspective,” Inside the Minds: Preparing for Alternative Dispute Resolution Cases (2007)
  • Co-Author, “Gulf Nations Are Open for Business,” Counsel to Counsel (January 2005)
  • “The Emergence of Qatar as a Prime Foreign Investment Destination,” Middle East and North Africa Business Guide (2004/5)

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