Ryan is a Shareholder in Maynard Nexsen’s Government Investigations & White Collar Defense practice group. Ryan is an outstanding trial lawyer with two decades of experience who has tried more than 35 cases to verdict in both state and federal court. In addition to numerous state court victories, Ryan won consecutive not guilty verdicts in federal jury trials in 2020. Ryan has also proudly argued two federal cases before the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Ryan has been lead counsel in countless government investigations and white collar criminal matters involving healthcare, environmental violations, antitrust, insurance fraud, political corruption, bank fraud, as well as civil and criminal matters related to the SEC. He has represented business entities as outside General Counsel, advising his corporate clients regarding compliance matters and stepping in when allegations of wrongdoing have arisen.

He has assisted both individual and corporate clients when they have received time sensitive Grand Jury Subpoenas. He has successfully negotiated Non-Prosecution Agreements for clients who have received Target Letters from the Department of Justice. Ryan works with other practice groups regularly, understanding that Maynard Nexsen’s full-service team can manage a wide array of legal challenges.

Even more impressive than Ryan’s not guilty trial verdicts are the success stories that don’t make headlines. Often his best work is done privately by quietly convincing law enforcement and prosecutors to decline charges or dismiss cases wrongly indicted. Ryan understands the reputational harm a government investigation can have on businesses and individuals, and he works diligently to minimize any negative impact.

Prior to joining Maynard Nexsen, Ryan was a Founder of Dysart Willis, a full-service criminal defense firm. Ryan, a Raleigh native, was an Assistant District Attorney in Wake County, North Carolina, following law school. He is a member and the past Chair of the Board of Trustees of Raleigh’s First Baptist Church.

Memberships and Appointments

Ryan was a long-time Criminal Justice Act (CJA) panel attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina. In that capacity, Ryan helped hundreds of indigent federal defendants facing serious criminal allegations.

Ryan is a member of the American Bar Association (ABA) White Collar Section.

Community & Professional

  • Tenth Judicial District Bar
  • Wake County Bar Association
  • North Carolina Bar Association
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • American Bar Association, White Collar Section
  • First Baptist Church (Raleigh)
    • Board of Trustees
    • Deacon
    • Finance Committee, Chair
    • Co-Teacher, 3rd-5th Grade Sunday School Class

Outside Maynard Nexsen

Ryan enjoys spending time with his wife, Robin and daughter Lucy, particularly when they get the chance to enjoy the mountains or coast of North Carolina together.


  • Representation of a witness in a federal Grand Jury investigation focused on the former head of a union for allegedly misappropriating funds
  • Representation of a company in a federal Grand Jury investigation into illegal dumping in violation of environmental law
  • Representation of a business in a Department of Labor investigation of Davis-Bacon Act contract violations 
  • Federal Grand Jury representation in an environmental criminal matter
  • Federal Grand Jury representation in an antitrust investigation
  • SEC target and Securities fraud representation
  • Bankruptcy fraud representation
  • Representation of an individual in military COVID-19 relief fraud matter
  • Federal Grand Jury / trial witness representation in a health care fraud matter
  • Political corruption/bribery investigation representation of City Councilwoman
  • Representation of a high-profile cooperating defendant in an immigration/bank fraud matter involving a Russian national
  • Pre-indictment representation in a VA fraud matter
  • Representation in multiple federal and state healthcare fraud matters
  • Bank Fraud trial representation
  • Gambling industry target representation (secured Non-Prosecution Agreement)
  • Representation of multiple federal Target Letter recipients
  • Representation in multiple military / contractor procurement fraud matters
  • Representation in multiple Money Laundering matters
  • Crop insurance fraud / wire fraud representation
  • Representation in multiple tax fraud matters



  • Super Lawyers (2018-2024)
  • Super Lawyers, Rising Star (2012-2016)




  • State Bar: North Carolina
  • U.S. Court of Appeals: Fourth Circuit, Eleventh Circuit
  • U.S. District Court: North Carolina (Eastern, Middle, Western), Tennessee (Eastern)
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