Nossaman LLP

Katherine C. Bourdon


T 202.887.1453
F 202.466.3215
1666 K Street, NW, Suite 500
Washington, DC 20006

Katherine Bourdon focuses her practice on railroads – counseling passenger and freight railroads, public transit and light rail systems, and state and local government agencies on regulatory, transactional and litigation issues.  In addition, she assists with the development of major infrastructure projects and a variety of construction, procurement, real estate and contracting matters.

She has previously served as a transportation industry analyst at the U.S. Surface Transportation Board.  In this capacity, she oversaw the STB's Rail Consumer Assistance Program, an informal dispute resolution program for railroads and rail shippers nationwide.  She counseled shippers on governing regulations and provided outreach activities on behalf of the Board.

In addition, Ms. Bourdon prepared in-depth briefings and analyses on consumer concerns and rail-industry trends to STB members and staff.  While at STB, she also served on a detail assignment to the Office of General Counsel in conjunction with her law school course work.

Ms. Bourdon began her transportation career at Norfolk Southern Railroad, where she served in various marketing and sales positions.  In this capacity, she managed accounts of both small and large rail shippers throughout the southeastern United States.  This experience provided significant insight into rail operations and rail shipper concerns.

After graduating from law school, she clerked for the Hon. Charles E. Erdmann at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces.  She earned her law degree from The Catholic University of America, Columbus School of Law, in Washington, D.C.  She holds an undergraduate degree in marketing from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.

Representative Work

  • Maryland Transit Administration and Maryland Department of Transportation – Purple Line Light Rail.  Member of the legal team advising MTA/MDOT on the state's first PPP project under legislation passed in 2013.  The proposed $2.2 billion Purple Line light rail system will run 16.2 miles in the Washington, D.C., suburbs between Bethesda and New Carrollton, with 21 new stations along the route.  Initial tasks included assistance with the enabling legislation allowing the use of PPPs to finance, develop and operate transportation projects, drafting the request for qualifications and developing draft documents for industry review.  In early 2014, MTA announced that four teams have been short-listed to submit proposals for a 30-year concession for the Purple Line.  The Firm is developing procurement and contract documents for the project, including participation in the pre-RFP industry review process.  In July 2014, MTA issued the final RFP for a 30-year concession to the shortlisted teams.  Construction is slated to start in 2015; trains will begin running in 2020.
  • National Railroad Passenger Corporation (Amtrak).  Member of the legal team serving as counsel to Amtrak in its negotiations with freight railroads concerning the terms and compensation governing access to rail lines.  The National Railroad Passenger Corporation, doing business as Amtrak, is a publicly funded railroad service operated and managed as a for-profit corporation to provide intercity passenger train service in the United States.  It operates 374 trains each day on 31,500 miles of track in 46 states and three Canadian provinces.  For the most part, Amtrak is a tenant on the nation's freight railroads.  The Firm also represents Amtrak in U.S. Surface Transportation Board proceedings related to rail line access.
  • California High-Speed Rail Authority – California High-Speed Rail.  Member of the legal team advising CHSRA on institutional arrangements, procurement plan and financing options.  The Firm has been involved with this project since its inception in 1996.  The $68 billion California High-Speed Rail project will connect Northern to Southern California.  It is the first high-speed rail project in North America and among the largest global infrastructure projects ever undertaken.  Nossaman serves as primary outside legal advisor to CHSRA for this 800-mile, 24-station system using a series of design-build contracts.  The first $1 billion design-build contract has been awarded to help develop the Central Valley segment.  The second $1.23 billion design-build contract was awarded in December 2014.
Bio Photo
Bio Photo



J.D., The Catholic University of America, Columbus School of Law, 2009

B.S., Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, 1998


District of Columbia


Professional Affiliations

Virginia State Bar

Virginia Women Attorneys Association

Women's Transportation Seminar

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