Donald B. Ensenat

Senior Counsel

Ambassador Donald B. Ensenat has had an active international, energy, and maritime law practice since 1973.  In addition, he has served in government six times including:

  • President George W. Bush nominated and the Senate confirmed him as Chief of Protocol of the United States, with the rank of Ambassador, where he served until February 2007
  • President George Bush nominated and the Senate confirmed him as U.S. Ambassador to Brunei where he served until 1993
  • Appointed by President George Bush, with Senate confirmation, to the Board of Directors of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), on which he served until 1992
  • Assistant Attorney General of Louisiana in charge of federal court and Louisiana Supreme Court litigation for the state (1975­1980)
  • The first Legislative Assistant to Congresswoman Lindy Boggs’ (1973 – 1974), after election to her husband’s seat following his untimely death in an Alaska air crash
  • Legislative Assistant to Congressman Hale Boggs, the Majority Whip (and later Majority Leader) of the U.S. House of Representatives (1969 -­ 1970)

His practice experience includes an active litigation calendar, including trials and appeals, domestic and international transactions, including CFIUS review, and advising corporate and sovereign clients on governmental relations and international matters.  Most recently, he served as Of Counsel to Patton Boggs, L.C.P. in Washington, D.C. and Dallas, TX from 2007-2015. He has been a Proctor member of the Maritime Law Association of the U.S. (MLAUS) since 1980.  He has held an AV rating (peer-rated highest ability and ethics) from Martindale-Hubbell for 30 years.

Amb. Ensenat has also been active in his community.  He has served as an officer or board member of multiple professional, charitable, and political organizations, including in 2000 as Chair of President George W. Bush’s Presidential election campaign in Louisiana.  Additionally, in 1970, he served as former President George H.W. Bush’s personal aide during his campaign for U.S. Senator from Texas

A New Orleans native, Amb. Ensenat received his B.A. from Yale University in 1968 and his J.D. degree from Tulane University School of Law in 1973.  He served in the United States Army reserve from 1968 to 1974.

He is a member of the Louisiana, Texas and District of Columbia Bars.  He is admitted to practice before the United States Supreme Court, the U.S. Fifth and Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, as well as multiple United States District Courts.



  • AV Preeminent Peer Review Rating in Martindale Hubbell


  • Board of Directors and Executive Committee (and past President and Chairman) World Trade Center of New Orleans – the original of the 300 plus World Trade Centers worldwide
  • Council of American Ambassadors
  • Asia Society
  • Yale Alumni Association of Louisiana (president, 1985­1987; Chair of Admissions Committee, 1988­ 2001)
  • Ogden Museum of Southern Art
  • World War II Museum