Robert D. Gifford

Of Counsel

Robert Gifford

Representation Location(s):
Oklahoma and Federal Practice

Practice Areas:
Administrative Law, Business Law, Contract Law, Corporate Law, Government Contracts, Litigation, Military Law, Real Estate Law, White Collar, and Federal Investigations.

State of Oklahoma, United States Supreme Court, United States District Court: Northern District of Oklahoma, Western District of Oklahoma, Eastern District of Oklahoma, and District of Columbia.

2015 Master of Strategic Studies @ United States Army War College, Carlisle, Pennsylvania

1996 Juris Doctor @ University of Oklahoma College of Law –

Articles Editor, American Indian Law Review; Who’s Who (American Law School Students); Secretary, National Native American Law Students Association; National Moot Court Team (NALSA); Intern, Cleveland County District Attorney’s Office (’95-’96); Judicial Extern (Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals); Intern, Oklahoma Tax Commission (’94-’95); Intern/Legal Clerk (Cherokee Nation)

1996 Triple Major Graduate (Marketing, Mass Communications, & Film) with a Minor in Business Administration  @ Southwestern College; Rhodes Scholar applicant on behalf of College; Honors Graduate; Varsity Football, Varsity Track and Field, Academic All-Conference. 

Robert D. Gifford is an extremely talented leader, litigator, and advocate for his clients.  Mr. Gifford’s commitment to serve is demonstrated through his experiences as an Assistant United States Attorney (AUSA), his impeccable career as an Army Judge Advocate through the rank of Colonel, as a Judge for various tribes throughout Oklahoma, and as a trusted attorney for businesses and individuals throughout the United States.  He is a tireless professional who can be counted on for his legal acumen in the most complex cases.

Legal Experience

Litigation Attorney

As a former federal prosecutor with the Department of Justice (DOJ) in Nevada and Oklahoma, Mr. Gifford is highly adept in federal investigations and white collar defense.  While serving with the DOJ, Mr. Gifford’s experiences included serving as Anti-terrorism Advisory Coordinator, Human Trafficking Coordinator, and a Tribal Liaison for the U.S. Attorney’s Office. 

Prior to becoming an Assistant United States Attorney, he jump started his legal career working for the Cherokee Nation, as Assistant District Attorney in Tulsa, and as an Active Duty Army Judge Advocate with tours at Fort Sill, Oklahoma, Fort Knox, Kentucky, and Bosnia-Herzegovina. 

Mr. Gifford is a tribal member of the Cherokee Nation and currently serves as a Chief Judge for both the Kaw Nation and Iowa Tribes.  He is also an Associate Judge for the Miami and Seminole Tribes and a Justice for the Comanche Nation Supreme Court.  

Mr. Gifford’s prosecution and diverse legal experiences bolster Fontanez Law Firm’s bench to offer competent and capable white collar defense nationwide. 

United States Army Judge Advocate

Mr. Gifford enjoyed an active duty and reserve career in the Army for over 20 years and advanced to the rank of Colonel.  In addition to his time at Fort Sill, Knox, and Bosnia-Herzegovina, he mobilized on active duty to the “War Courts” at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.  In that capacity, Mr. Gifford served as the Legal Spokesman to the world-wide media and Deputy Director of Legal Operations. 

In addition, Mr. Gifford was competitively selected and graduated from the prestigious United States Army War College where he earned a Masters of Strategic Studies.  Mr. Gifford’s military experiences are a tremendous value to Fontanez Law Firm and continue the tradition of this veteran-owned law firm. 


Mr. Gifford espouses life-long learning and continues to publish scholarly works in Criminal and other areas of the law. 

Native American Law: Will It Ever Be Taken Seriously?
Lawyers Monthly
January, 2018

In the military, trusted officers have become alleged assailants in sex crimes
Washington Post
October 19, 2017

Federal prosecutor Gifford shifting to private practice
The Journal Record
December, 2016

“Your Witness Counsel” – Cross Examination
Oklahoma Bar Journal
November 19, 2016

A Primer for Ye Ol’Woodshed: Witness Preparation
Oklahoma Bar Journal
November 19, 2016

The Time is Twenty Years past 9:02 a.m.
Oklahoma Bar Journal
April 18, 2015

Human Trafficking: Beyond Pretty Woman and Huggy Bear
Oklahoma Bar Journal
August 15, 2013

The Fourth Amendment – the Airport and Borders
Oklahoma Bar Journal
November, 2012

Employment Protection for the Citizen-Soldier
Oklahoma Bar Journal
November 19, 2011

Groucho was Wrong about Military Justice
Oklahoma Bar Journal
November 19, 2011

The OBA’s ‘Draft’ – Will you Answer the Call?
Oklahoma Bar Journal
November 19, 2011

War Courts Make Sense
The Daily Oklahoman
September 7, 2009

Sex Offender Registration in Indian Country
United States Attorney Bulletin
July, 2009

Foregoing the Scorched Earth Policy: Ethical Cross-Exam
Oklahoma Bar Journal
December 15, 2008

Cross-Examination – ABA’s 101 Practice Series – Breaking Down the Rules
American Bar Association (Young Lawyer’s Division)

Planning for Trial – The 101 Practice Series – Breaking Down the Rules
American Bar Association (Young Lawyer’s Division)

Preparing a Witness – ABA’s 101 Practice Series – Breaking Down the Rules
American Bar Association (Young Lawyer’s Division)

Protect Yourself from Credit Card Billing Errors
Military Money
October, 2007

Planes, Trains & Automobiles – the Fourth Amendment & your Vehicle
Oklahoma Bar Journal
March 15, 2007

Very Appealing Ethics
Oklahoma Bar Journal
December, 2006

Co-Signing a Loan is a Risky Business
Military Money
October, 2006

Guideline “Departures” at Sentencing after Booker
United States Attorney Bulletin
September 7, 2006

Become an Authority: Get Published
American Bar Association (General Practice/Solo Magazine)
August, 2006

Bankruptcy Just Got A Lot Tougher
Military Money
December, 2005

Ethics & the Criminal Prosecutor – Guilt shall not escape, nor innocents shall suffer
Oklahoma Bar Journal
December 15, 2005

The Law Language and Humpty Dumpty
Oklahoma Bar Journal
September 3, 2005

A Federal Grand Jury Primer
The Young Lawyer (American Bar Association)
August, 2005

The Fifth Amendment & the Federal Grand Jury
Oklahoma Bar Journal
August, 2005

Appellate Advocacy
The Young Lawyer (American Bar Association)
March, 2005

Crime & Punishment: Article 15
The Reserve & National Guard magazine
July, 2004

Let’s Kill all the Lawyers
Oklahoma Bar Journal
May 15, 2004

Understanding the Federal Sentencing Guidelines
The Young Lawyer (American Bar Association)
February, 2004

Stepping on the Battlefield: Military Justice Primer
Oklahoma Bar Journal
October, 2000

The Legalities of the Properly Shined Boot
The Tulsa Lawyer (Tulsa County Bar Association)
March, 2000

Who Really Plays for the Love Game
The Sporting News
December, 1992


Mr. Gifford’s extraordinary accomplishments as a prosecutor have earned him awards for outstanding performance by the Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Director of the United States Marshal’s Service, and the United States Department of Agriculture. 

He has also been an active member of the Oklahoma Bar Association.  He has served as the Chair of the bar’s Criminal Law Section, was previously a member of the bar’s Board of Governors, and was the founder and previous Chair of the Oklahoma Bar Military and Veteran’s Law Section.  Mr. Gifford’s service earned him the Oklahoma Bar Association’s “Professional Advocate of the Year”.  He also was awarded the prestigious Justice Cardozo Award for his work in Criminal Law.

Robert's Personal Life

Mr. Gifford is a devoted husband and father of three daughters.  He loves Oklahoma and military history and has a passion for Native American culture. 

Professional Associations

Oklahoma Bar Association, Master Military Justice Practitioner, United States Supreme Court Bar