David B. Ryan



David B. Ryan is a partner and business lawyer with Foley & Lardner LLP. He has extensive experience in revenue bond financings, including as bond counsel, underwriter’s or purchaser’s counsel, and borrower’s counsel and in asset-backed securitization financings. He currently serves as primary bond counsel for the State of Wisconsin's general obligation, state revolving fund revenue bonds, and master lease credits. David has worked on new markets tax credit-enhanced revenue bonds for hospitality, housing and industrial projects. He has also served as lead issuer’s counsel on over $30 billion of asset-backed debt issuances for receivables financings. David also frequently represents financial institutions in providing credit and liquidity facilities for taxable and tax-exempt debt financings. He is a member of the firm’s Finance, Financial Institutions and Public Finance Practices.

Thought Leadership

David has over 30 years of experience in student loan finance, including Federal Family Education Loan (FFELP) and private loan program development, warehouse financings and term securitizations, and portfolio purchases and sales. He has been a frequent panelist at Education Finance Council and National Council of Higher Education Loan Program conferences and seminars, and played a major role in the development of the first common form of FFELP promissory note.


  • Selected for inclusion in Chambers USA: America's Leading Business Lawyers (2016-2018)
  • Recognized by The Legal 500 for his work in structured finance (2010-2012)
  • Selected by his peers for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America© in the fields of:
    • Securitization and Structured Finance Law (2011-2023)
    • Non-Profit / Charities Law (2018-2023)
    • Public Finance Law (2018-2023)
  • Named the Best Lawyers® “Lawyer of the Year” in Milwaukee in the fields of:
    • Securitization and Structured Finance Law (2017, 2023)
    • Public Finance Law (2014)


A native of Alton, Illinois, David was a 1981 Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Coe College. He graduated, magna cum laude, from the University of Illinois College of Law in 1984, where he served on the University of Illinois Law Forum and was elected to the Order of the Coif.

Professional Memberships

David is a member of the National Association of Bond Lawyers.


  • Wisconsin