David E. Johnston

Of Counsel


David E. Johnston is a lawyer, businessman, and entrepreneur with over thirty years of experience representing and advising a broad range of for-profit and non-profit organizations and their executives, boards of directors, and stakeholders. He has extensive experience as a business and transactional lawyer with expertise in corporate, securities, banking, private equity, venture capital, and corporate governance matters.

Mr. Johnston has been involved, domestically and internationally, in legal, policy, and operational matters arising from natural disasters. He currently serves as Senior Advisor to the American Red Cross Office of Disaster Cycle Services, Program Development, Washington, DC, and is a member of the Board of Directors of the Palmetto South Carolina Region of the American Red Cross.


Over the course of his legal career, David has been a partner in major law firms, where he has held management and leadership positions. He has served as corporate counsel for public and private companies, including The Wachovia Corporation, Food Lion, Inc.and Plexigen, Inc.

David is currently Of Counsel to the Law Office of L.W. Cooper, a Charleston, SC, boutique law firm that provides full-service representation to clients regarding business transactions, tax planning, tax controversy, business litigation, and other financially-driven matters. Davids practice at Cooper is focused on corporate, securities and finance law.

Business & Entrepreneurial

David founded and serves as CEO of Hamilton Advisors, LLC, based in Charleston, South Carolina, that advises for-profit, non-profit, and government organizations on domestic and international challenges and solutions concerning risk, resiliency, and development issues, including disaster preparation, response, recovery, mitigation and development. Hamiltons clientsinclude: ARC Communications Company, LTD (Bangkok,Thailand), Sustainable Ocean Systems, Inc. (Paradise Valley, AZ), VisibleGood, LLC (Newburyport, MA), WorldWater & Solar Technologies,Inc.(Princeton, NJ), Korvax, Inc.(Fairfax, VA) and Selovita, LLC(Fort Myers, FL).

Boards & Affiliations

Mr. Johnston has served on the boards of directors and as advisor to a number of for-profit, non-profit and government organizations, including:

  • Food Lion, Inc.
  • Plexigen, Inc.
  • The Children's Law Center
  • The Charlotte World Affairs Council
  • Stop Hunger Now, Inc.
  • The Charlotte Regional Sports Commission
  • Worldwide Shelters, Inc.
  • The Make It Right Foundation Finance Committee
  • Appalachian State University Department of Technology and Environmental Design
  • Veterans On Deck

David was a member of a world-wide delegation to post-tsunami Indonesia and a participant in the Habitat for Humanity Leadership Build Summit. Additionally, he was a representative of Worldwide Shelters, Inc. at the 2010 Haiti Resources for Reconstruction and Humanitarian Assistance Summit and a speaker at the 2005 ThinkTech Homeland Security Innovation Conference in Charleston, SC where he addressed Hurricane and Tsunami Aftermath-Technology Innovations for Rebuilding.

Currently, Mr. Johnston is a member of:

  • The Board of Advisors of Elements of Genius, Inc. (Charleston, SC)
  • The Board of Directors of The Sustainability Institute, Inc. (Charleston, SC)
  • The Steering Committee of the Upper Peninsula Initiative (Charleston, SC)

David is a member of the North Carolina State Bar and the American Bar Association. He is a member of the ABAs Business Section and several of its committees, including Private Equity/Venture Capital, Economic Development, Non-Profit Organizations, and Disaster Response and Preparation.

Mr. Johnston is a graduate of Kenyon College, Gambier, Ohio and The Indiana School of Law, Bloomington, Indiana.