Robert J. Donatoni

Robert J. Donatoni

President and Founder
West Chester, Pennsylvania

Robert J. Donatoni received his undergraduate degree from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 1976. He graduated Magna Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa for academic excellence. Mr. Donatoni received his law degree from Temple University School of Law in 1979 graduating with honors.

From 1979 through 1980, he served as an Assistant District Attorney in Chester County and from 1980 to 1983 as an Assistant Public Defender in Chester County. Since 1984, Mr. Donatoni has been engaged in the private practice of law with a primary emphasis in representing individuals and entities investigated and accused of crimes in state and federal courts. In addition to his state and federal practice in Pennsylvania, Mr. Donatoni has defended criminal prosecutions in the federal courts of New Jersey, Maryland, Delaware, South Carolina, Arizona, Wyoming, Virginia and Georgia in addition to appearing in state courts on behalf of the accused in New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Tennessee and Florida.

Mr. Donatoni is a past President of PACDL, the Pennsylvania Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers having also served as Secretary, Vice President and Present-Elect of that organization. He served for six years as a Hearing Examiner for the Supreme Court Disciplinary Counsel and has served as the Chairperson of the Chester County Criminal Rules Committee, a Chester County Task Force investigating abuses of the 911 system. Mr. Donatoni is recognized in Best Lawyers in America since 2015 for White Collar and Non-White Collar Criminal Defense. He is a frequent lecturer on various subject for Continuing Legal Education in connection with the Pennsylvania Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers. Mr. Donatoni is also a founding member of the Chester County Advocacy Academy.

In October of 2003, in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, Mr. Donatoni was inducted as a Fellow of, ACTL, the American College of Trial Lawyers. The ACTL is an organization limited to 1% of the bar in the United States and Canada and induction as a Fellow is done only after nomination by a Fellow of the ACTL and extensive investigation regarding professional and ethical standards. Mr. Donatoni, for over three decades, has been rated AV, the highest rating for legal skills and ethical concerns by Martindale Hubbell, an independent national rating service.

Areas of Practice

  • 90% Criminal Law
  • 10% Personal Injury

Litigation Percentage

  • 100% of Practice Devoted to Litigation

Bar Admissions

  • U.S. District Court Eastern District of Pennsylvania, 1981
  • U.S. District Court Middle District of Pennsylvania
  • U.S. District Court Western District of Pennsylvania
  • U.S. Court of Appeals 3rd Circuit, 1984
  • Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, 1979
  • Pennsylvania, 1979


  • Temple University School of Law, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
    • J.D. - 1979
    • Honors: With High Honors
  • University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Massachusetts
    • B.A. magna cum laude - 1976
    • Honors: Phi Beta Kappa
    • Honors: Magna Cum Laude
    • Major: History
    • Minor: Economics


  • BB&T Bank
  • Sovereign National Bank


  • Chester County Academy of Advocacy, Co-Founder and Course Planner, 2014 - Present
  • Hearing Examiner for the Supreme Court Disciplinary Counsel, Supreme Court
  • Chester County Criminal Rules Committee
  • Blue Ribbon Panel for Judicial selection, State Court Trial Judges
  • Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure, American College of Trial Lawyers, 1999 - 2005
  • Federal Criminal Practice, Widener University, 2016 - Present
  • Criminal Law & Procedures, PACDL, 1987 - Present
  • Adjunct Professor of Law, Widener University, Delaware School of Law , 2016 - Present

Honors and Awards

  • Voted Top Criminal Defense Attorney in Main Line Today Magazine, 2007 - 2008
  • AV Preeminent Peer Review by Martindale-Hubbell
  • Chester County 911 Commission
  • The Best Lawyers In Pennsylvania , 2008 - Present
  • The Best Lawyers In America, Criminal Defense, White Collar and Non-White Collar areas, 2015 - 2018
  • Phi Beta Kappa, 1975
  • Fellow American College of Trial Lawyers, 2003 - 2018

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Fellow, American College of Trial Lawyers, 2003 - Present
  • Pennsylvania Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (PACDL), Past President and Founding Member
  • Chester County Bar Association, Member, 1979 - Present
  • Hearing Examiner, Disciplinary Counsel of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, 1999 - 2005
  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • Association of Trial Lawyers of America

Past Employment Positions

  • District Attorney of Chester County, PA, Intern/Lawyer, 1978 - 1981
  • Public Defender of Chester County, PA, Trial Attorney, 1981 - 1984


  • English


  • Phi Beta Kappa