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TSS Adds Helen Tolar, Elevates Lindsay Austin to Co-Lead DC Office

11/13/2017


Troutman Sanders Strategies Adds Helen Tolar, Former Chief-of-Staff to Senator John Boozman

Government Relations Firm Also Elevates Lindsay Austin to Co-Lead DC Office

Washington, D.C., November 2, 2017 – Troutman Sanders Strategies, a leading government affairs firm, today announced the hiring of Capitol Hill veteran and attorney Helen W. Tolar. Until this past month, Tolar served as Chief-of-Staff to Senator John Boozman (R-AR). She joins the firm as a Principal and will co-lead the Washington office with Lindsay Austin.

Tolar brings to Troutman Sanders Strategies nearly 13 years of experience serving high profile Members of Congress. Since September 2013, she ran Senator Boozman’s offices, managing nearly 40 people in Washington and Arkansas. Previously, she served as Staff Director and Chief Counsel of the U.S. House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs. Earlier, she worked in government affairs capacities for BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina and South Carolina REALTORS.

Tolar is a graduate of Converse College, in Spartanburg, SC, where she remains actively involved as a member of the Board of Trustees and chair of the Board of Visitors. She holds a law degree from the University of South Carolina School of Law and is a member of the South Carolina Bar.

“At Troutman Sanders Strategies, we work hard to navigate the growing complexities our clients face with federal, state and local governments,” said Pete Robinson, Chairman of the firm. “We’re thrilled Helen shares in our mission and has chosen to bring her talents to our Washington practice.”

The addition of Tolar is one of a series of personnel moves. Lindsay Austin, who joined the firm in 2011, was promoted to Principal this fall. Together, Austin and Tolar will serve as the primary leads on all federal affairs work and will maintain management responsibilities for the Washington office. Austin represents a range of clients in Washington on issues varying from healthcare to agriculture, defense, education, energy and other issues impacting the business community. With 13 years of professional experience on and off Capitol Hill, as an aide to former Rep. Lynn Westmoreland and then as a government affairs consultant, Austin maintains an extensive network inside the beltway and in her home state of Georgia.

In addition, former Congressional aides Tom Tilton and Chris Baxter were promoted to Senior Manager and Manager, respectively.

“With 2018 agendas taking shape on Capitol Hill and in statehouses across the country, we are positioning ourselves with the very best talent to advocate and provide solutions for our clients,” Robinson added.

In the Press…

The Washington Post, Capital Business: Washington-Area Appointments and Promotions for Nov. 6, By Aaron Gregg, 5 November 2017

Excerpt:
Troutman Sanders Strategies of the District appointed Helen Tolar and Lindsay Austin principals.

The Hill, Lobbying World: By The Hill Staff, 7 November 2017

Excerpt:
Helen Tolar, former chief of staff to Sen. John Boozman (R-Ark.), has joined the lobbying firm Troutman Sanders Strategies. Tolar served in Boozman’s office for just more than four years, but has about 13 years of experience on Capitol Hill. She previously served as the staff director and chief counsel of the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee. In the private sector, she has worked at BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina and the National Association of Realtors’ South Carolina state affiliate.

Roll Call, Word on the Hill: Dine with the Presidents, By Alex Gangitano, 3 November 2017

Excerpt:
Staffer shuffle
Helen Tolar, former chief of staff to Sen. John Boozman, R-Ark., is now principal and co-leader of the D.C. office of Troutman Sanders Strategies, a government affairs firm. She started in Boozman’s office in 2013, and before that was staff director and chief counsel for the House Veterans’ Affairs Committee.

Politico Influence, Inside the Podesta Group After Podesta, By Theodoric Meyer, 3 November 2017

Excerpt:
Jobs Report:
— Troutman Sanders Strategies is adding Helen Tolar, who was until recently chief of staff to Sen. John Boozman (R-Ark.), as a principal. She’ll lead the firm’s Washington office with Lindsay Austin, a former aide to former Rep. Lynn Westmoreland (R-Ga.).

Politico, Playbook Power Briefing: The Tax Cut and Jobs Act Arrives – Sam Clovis Withdraws USDA Nomination in Wake of Russia Investigation – Robert Mercer to Sell Stake in Breitbart to His Daughters, By Jake Sherman, Anna Palmer, Daniel Lippman and Zach Montellaro, 2 November 2017

Excerpt:
Transitions
… Helen Tolar is joining Troutman Sanders Strategies as a principal and co-lead of the D.C. office. She previously was chief of staff to Sen. John Boozman (R-Ark.). … Brett Zongker has started at the Library of Congress overseeing communications related to exhibitions and new acquisitions in the collection; he most recently was senior associate director of media relations at GW and is a former AP reporter.

Troutman Sanders Strategies is a professional government affairs firm committed to providing solutions for business and government. Troutman Sanders Strategies is a subsidiary of Troutman Sanders LLP, an international law firm with more than 650 lawyers in 16 offices in Hong Kong, Shanghai and throughout the United States. To learn more about the firm, visit our website at troutmansandersstrategies.com.

Virginia Governor Appoints Troutman Sanders Strategies Director to Board

11/13/2017


Virginia Governor Appoints Troutman Sanders Strategies Director to Board
Karin Addison to serve on the Board of Trustees for the Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth

RICHMOND – Nov. 10, 2017 – Troutman Sanders Strategies Director Karin Addison has been appointed to the Board of Trustees of the Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth by Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe. Addison will serve as a citizen member for the Foundation, which empowers Virginia’s youth to make healthy choices by promoting active, nutritious and tobacco-free living.

“I am honored to serve the Commonwealth of Virginia and am humbled by Governor McAuliffe’s appointment,” Addison said. “The Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth is such an important organization dedicated to teaching our youth how to make good choices. I look forward to furthering its vital work.”

“Karin Addison is an impressive colleague who is sure to make a positive impact through her service on the Board of Trustees of the Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth,” said Clark Lewis, principal of Troutman Sanders Strategies and partner at Troutman Sanders. “We are pleased about her appointment by Governor McAuliffe and congratulate her work and this achievement.”

Governor McAuliffe announced Addison’s appointment on Nov. 9.

About the Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth (VFHY)
Established by the Virginia General Assembly in 1999, the Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth empowers Virginia’s youth to make healthy choices by promoting active, nutritious and tobacco-free living. Since the Foundation began its work in 2001, high school smoking in Virginia has been cut by more than 70 percent and the number of middle school smokers has dropped by 85 percent. The Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth directly reaches about 50,000 children each year through classroom-based prevention programs in public schools, after-school programs, community centers, day cares and prevention programs across the state. VFHY’s award-winning marketing campaigns deliver prevention messaging to more than 500,000 children annually. For more information, visit VFHY.org.

About Troutman Sanders Strategies
Troutman Sanders Strategies is a professional government affairs firm committed to providing solutions for business and government. Troutman Sanders Strategies is a subsidiary of Troutman Sanders LLP, an international law firm with more than 650 lawyers in 16 offices in Hong Kong, Shanghai and throughout the United States. To learn more about the firm, visit our website at troutmansandersstrategies.com.

About Troutman Sanders
With a diverse practice mix, workforce and footprint that includes 16 offices spanning the United States and China, Troutman Sanders has cultivated its reputation for a higher commitment to client care for over 120 years. Ideally positioned to help clients across sectors realize their business goals, the firm’s 650 attorneys transact for growth, resolve mission-threatening disputes and navigate complex legal and regulatory challenges. See troutman.com for more information.

TSS Recognized in the James Magazine’s Top Lobbyist Issue

09/18/2017


The James Magazine’s September/October Top Lobbyists issue announced its annual ranking of Georgia’s top governmental affairs firms and registered lobbyists. Overall, Troutman Sanders Strategies ranked third in the list of Top Governmental Affairs Firms. Individual members of the TSS team also ranked among Georgia’s top lobbyists (page 10 in the link below);

Chairman Pete Robinson ranked first on its list of Top Registered Male Lobbyists.

Principal Robb Willis ranked 14th on the list of Top Registered Male Lobbyists.

Senior Manager Sam Hill ranked eighth on its list of Top Registered Female Lobbyists.

Manager Matt Ralston and Research Analyst Michael Casto were named Rising Stars.

September/October James Magazine

 

 

TSS Members Mentioned in James Magazine’s Insider Advantage

05/15/2017


Three members of the Troutman Sanders Strategies (TSS) team have been highlighted in the May/June edition of Georgia’s James Magazine’s Insider Advantage.

TSS Chairman, Pete Robinson, is featured as one of Georgia’s “Most Influential and Politically-Connected Attorneys” and for his work as the co-chair of the Judicial Nominating Committee (page 11).

Additionally, TSS Principal, Rob Leebern, and Director, Lindsay Austin, are both mentioned as members of Georgia’s “Political Influences in Washington” (page 20).

To read the full edition of Insider Advantage, please click the link below.

May-June James Magazine

 

 

NC Legislative Update – 2/23/2017

02/27/2017


2017 Session Overview

In North Carolina, all 170 legislative seats were on the ballot in November, along with all constitutional officers, members of Congress and one U.S. Senate seat. Notably, Democratic challenger and then Attorney General Roy Cooper unseated the Republican incumbent, Governor Pat McCrory. In the legislature, Republicans maintained their super-majorities in both chambers, thus giving them enough votes to override any gubernatorial vetoes without the need for any Democratic votes.

The 2017 legislative “long session” convened in earnest January 25, 2017, following an earlier organizational session two weeks prior. The North Carolina General Assembly does not have a constitutional or statutory adjournment date or number of legislative days, but the long session traditionally adjourns in July or August. The determining factor for adjournment is typically the conclusion of the appropriations process—that process, which has just begun, results in adoption just prior to adjournment of a biennial budget beginning July 1, 2017 and running through June 30, 2019. Continuing budget resolutions are adopted should June 30 come and go without a new budget. The Senate begins the appropriations process this year.

For all other legislation, the crossover deadline is currently set for April 27, 2017. Crossover is the date by which a non-appropriations/finance bill must pass the chamber in which it originated and “crossover” to the other chamber in order to remain eligible for consideration through the remainder of the session (and the short session in 2018). During the long session, there are no limitations on what types of legislation can be filed, only introduction deadlines.

Litigious Atmosphere

The legislative session convened in a more litigious atmosphere than in previous sessions. The legislature, the Governor and others are currently involved in a number of lawsuits. Pending matters include HB 2 (local non-discrimination ordinances), legislative redistricting, Medicaid expansion, the confirmation process for the Governor’s cabinet, and reallocation of powers from gubernatorial appointees to other elected officials. Below are more details regarding some of these lawsuits.

Confirmation of Governor’s Cabinet

During a special session in December of last year, the legislature enacted H 17, Modify Certain Appointments/Employment, which drew on a state constitution provision specifying “advice and consent” to require the NC Senate to confirm the Governor’s cabinet secretary nominees, in a manner similar to what the US Senate does. Governor Cooper filed a lawsuit in January asserting that H 17 was unconstitutional interference with the duties of his office. Republican lawmakers argue that the constitution gives them the power to review nominees.

In early February, the NC Senate presented a schedule for confirming Governor Cooper’s nominees. Under the process, nominees would first go to the committee on the subject matter their agency oversees before a final review by the Senate Nominations Committee. Then, the full Senate would approve or reject the nomination.

Following the Senate’s announcement to begin confirmation hearings, Governor Cooper’s attorney filed suit and requested a restraining order to halt the Senate proceedings pending injunctive relief. A three-judge state court panel issued a temporary restraining order that prohibited the NC Senate from beginning confirmation hearings. The panel then heard arguments from Governor Cooper for a preliminary injunction to block the approval process on Friday, February 10. The following Tuesday, it issued an order denying the injunction. The full trial on the lawsuit is currently scheduled for March 7.

Redistricting

The General Assembly may also have to review legislative redistricting again this year. Last August, a three-judge federal district court found that the state’s legislative district maps constituted an unconstitutional racial gerrymander in 28 House and Senate districts. The panel ordered the General Assembly to redraw the maps by March 15 and hold special elections in 2018 to supersede those just held in 2017. Legislative leadership appealed this order. On January 10, 2017, the US Supreme Court overturned the lower court order pending further of the full appeal. The Supreme Court has yet to take further action so it is becoming more unlikely that there will be a special 2017 election, although the redrawing of maps for the 2018 elections is likely.

Medicaid Expansion

In January, Senate President Pro Tempore Phil Berger (R-Rockingham) and House Speaker Tim Moore (R-Cleveland) filed a federal lawsuit against the federal and state Departments of Health and Human Services challenging Governor Cooper’s plan to expand Medicaid. During his campaign, Governor Cooper listed Medicaid expansion as one of his top priorities and in early January, he submitted a letter and draft plan to CMS to expand Medicaid. However in 2013, the General Assembly passed legislation (S.L. 2013-5) prohibiting expansion without legislative approval. U.S. District Court Judge Louise Flanagan granted Berger and Moore’s motion for a temporary restraining order against Cooper’s expansion efforts. On January 27, that injunction was extended for another 60 days to give the new federal administration a chance to review all submissions and act accordingly.

2017 Session Policy Overview

Below are some of the issues that will be addressed by the General Assembly this session based on specific policy areas.

Healthcare

Significant healthcare policy issues this session are expected to include behavioral health reform, potential adjustments to the Medicaid reform bill, and an attempt by the Senate to repeal the state Certificate of Need law. We also expect to see bills filed to address opioid abuse, step therapy, oral chemotherapy parity and drug pricing transparency. Scope of practice battles will also consume some of the legislature’s attention, with H 36 expanding the types of procedures optometrists can perform and H 88/S 73 addressing advanced practice nurses, and likely more to come.

Regulatory Reform

Last session the legislature was not able to pass a regulatory reform bill, as it had in recent years. Those efforts will continue this session, and will likely include matters left on the table plus new ones. We also anticipate seeing changes in insurance rate and form filing, such as H 43, Auto Insurance Regulatory Modernization. H 43 would allow auto insurers to write insurer-specific driver incentive plans and opt-out of the current Safe Driver Incentive Plan (SDIP) set forth in statute. Other areas of reform will involve response to any federal “Repeal and Replace” legislation for the Affordable Care Act, further permitting reform, and likely proposed changes to beer wholesaler laws affecting small breweries.

Tax Reform

Since taking over control of the legislature in 2011, the Republican majority has enacted a series of tax policy reforms. We expect further debate on tax reform this session. Discussions may include changes to the tax credit/incentive system, lowering individual and corporate income tax rates, and mechanisms for economic development. The House Finance Committee recently held a meeting to give an overview of tax issues. The elimination of the franchise and mill machinery taxes were specifically mentioned, but changes need to avoid significant disruption the state revenues.

Education/Higher Ed

During the legislative interim, several committees met and discussed reforms to the state’s education policies. The legislature will likely consider changes to the community college funding formula and the pay structures and schedules for teachers and school administrators.

Legislation this session that has already seen action includes H 13, Class Size Requirement Changes, and H 39, Amend Appointments/UNC Board of Governors. H 13 is an attempt to address issues regarding class size requirements in earlier legislation. Schools would be able to return to the previous flexibility offered for the teacher student allotment ratio. H 39 would decrease the number of members appointed to the UNC Board of Governors by the General Assembly from 16 to 12.

HB 2 Repeal

During the 2017 long session, we expect there to be a number of attempts to repeal the measure. Already several bills have been filed which would repeal the law with or without other provisions. Governor Cooper has said repeal of H 2 is one of his top priorities and offered a compromise proposal. H 107 and S 93, Common Sense Compromise to Repeal HB 2, would repeal HB 2 and call for stricter penalties for bathroom crimes. These bills would also require cities to notify the legislature 30 days before adopting any nondiscrimination ordinance. It is unclear at this point what will transpire during the 2017 session on this highly politicized issue.

From Here

As we are only a month into the 2017 regular session, and we have not even reached the first bill introduction deadline, it is difficult to predict all of the interesting twists and turns ahead. We are on the ground, working every day on issues affecting our clients in virtually every industry. Please feel free to contact us if this outlook spurs questions or if you need additional information or detail.

TSS Cabinet Nominations Report – Updated 5/15/2017

01/30/2017


The 115th Congress has witnessed a flurry of activity since it convened on January 3, 2017.

Republican and Democratic leaders of the Senate and House of Representatives started the year by naming chairs and allocating committee seats to incumbents and new members.

The two chambers also passed a Republican-led budget resolution laying the groundwork for the repeal of the Affordable Care Act through a process called reconciliation.

Additionally, the Senate has been busy reviewing President Trump’s nominations to lead the federal departments and agencies. These heads of departments will also make up the majority of his Cabinet.

Thus far, the Senate has confirmed the majority of President Trump’s cabinet. However, two cabinet positions, the Secretary for the Department of Agriculture and the Secretary for the Department of Labor, and one cabinet-level position, the United States Trade Representative, remain to be confirmed. Dozens of other high ranking administrations officials are also still pending confirmations.

Typically, the Senate’s confirmation process for the head of a federal department begins with an initial confirmation hearing in the committee or committees of jurisdiction. There, members can question the candidate and learn more about their policy positions.

Confirmation hearings are followed by a vote in the committee to advance the nomination to the full Senate floor, ending in a full vote by the Senate to confirm or reject the nominee.

What follows is a list of President Trump’s nominations for his Cabinet and their current status along the confirmation process. The list is in the order of the presidential line of succession.

Also included are some Cabinet-level and other administration positions that are not officially part of Trump’s Cabinet, but still require Senate confirmation.

Note: This report is up-to-date as of Monday, May 15. Dates of confirmation hearings, committee votes and full Senate votes are subject to change.

To read the report in full, please click the link below.

TSS Cabinet Update

 

 

 

Troutman Sanders Strategies Welcomes Hannah Irvin to Atlanta Team

01/13/2017


Troutman Sanders Strategies Welcomes Hannah Irvin to Atlanta Team

Atlanta – Jan. 11, 2017 – Troutman Sanders Strategies is pleased to announce that Hannah Irvin has joined the Atlanta office as its new Manager of State Affairs.

Hannah comes to the firm from the Office of Governor Nathan Deal where she began her career in 2011. During her tenure, she held various roles including an appointment to the State Records Committee, an Extradition Coordinator for Governor Deal’s Executive Counsel and a Legislative Liaison for his policy team.

In her role as Legislative Liaison, Hannah served as the Governor’s direct line of communication between the House of Representatives and the State Senate. She also assisted the Governor’s legal team in ensuring passage of items on Governor Deal’s legislative agenda.

Hannah is a native of High Point, North Carolina and a graduate of the University of Georgia.

Please join us in welcoming Hannah Irvin to the firm.

About Troutman Sanders Strategies
Troutman Sanders Strategies is a full-service government relations and issue management firm that advocates for its clients’ public policy issues through a broad array of contacts at the federal, state and local levels in order to build better partnerships among governments and businesses. The firm is committed to its goal of protecting and enhancing the business of its clients through proactive support in matters involving government.

About Troutman Sanders
Troutman Sanders LLP is an international law firm with more than 650 lawyers in 16 offices located throughout North America and Asia. Founded in 1897, the firm’s lawyers provide counsel and advice in practically every aspect of civil and commercial law related to the firm’s core practice areas: Corporate, Energy and Industry Regulation, Finance, Litigation and Real Estate. Firm clients range from multinational corporations to individual entrepreneurs, federal and state agencies to foreign governments, and non-profit organizations to businesses representing virtually every sector and industry. See troutmansanders.com for more information.

TSS 2017 Federal Outlook

12/21/2016


With the Obama administration coming to an end, January 2017 marks the beginning of a dramatic wholesale conservative shift in federal public policy making. Starting with the swearing-in of the 115th Congress on January 3rd, and followed by President Donald J. Trump’s inauguration on January 20th, the legislative and executive branches promise a robust schedule of activity heading into the Trump administration’s first 100 days.

Republicans are optimistic about their prospects for a productive legislative year; the GOP has not had undivided control of the federal government since they lost both chambers of Congress in the 2006 election cycle. The current balance of power in the Senate stands at 52 Republicans and 48 Democrats. The House of Representatives has 241 Republicans and 194 Democrats.

Since the election, Trump and GOP congressional leaders appear to have mended the hostilities that broke out during the campaign. This new found alignment bodes well, as Trump is likely to lean heavily on the policy expertise of congressional Republicans to carry out his anticipated public policy agenda.

Leadership and members of congress have already set a bold and ambitious legislative plan for 2017. There will be a strong and targeted focus on rolling back dozens of regulations proposed and finalized toward the end of President Obama’s term, as well as delivering legislative priorities like repealing Obamacare and tax reform.

The policy areas discussed below are some of the top agenda items for the 115th Congress and the new Trump administration. Also included are issues and agenda items that have carried over from the previous Congress. Many of these issues, such as Trump’s nominations, Obamacare repeal and replace, comprehensive tax reform, and confirming a Supreme Court Justice are top GOP priorities and will be addressed within Trump’s first 100 days in office. Other issues, like the debt ceiling and government funding, have hard deadlines and will have to be addressed early in the year. The remaining items may be considered later in 2017 or throughout the 115th Congress and Trump’s first term.

To read the report in full, please click the link below.

TSS 2017 Federal Outlook

 

 

 

TSS Adds Government Relations Expert Jennifer Walle

11/22/2016


Troutman Sanders Strategies Adds Government Relations Expert Jennifer Walle

ATLANTA – Nov. 16, 2016 – Troutman Sanders Strategies, the governmental relations and issue management arm of the law firm Troutman Sanders LLP, announced today that Jennifer Walle joined the group as State Manager for State Government Affairs at Troutman Sanders Strategies. Before joining Troutman Sanders, Jennifer was an associate at Cornerstone Government Affairs. As a member of Troutman Sanders Strategies, Walle will specialize in economic development projects, procurement and healthcare policy. She will also assist firm clients with legislative, budget and regulatory issues in other areas.

Walle has more than ten years of government relations expertise, including lobbying experience at the state level focused on economic development, energy matters, healthcare, and locality advocacy. She has represented commercial developers, localities, non-profits, and both IT and healthcare companies before the Virginia General Assembly and the Executive Branch offices. During the course of her career, Walle successfully garnered more than $5 million in state and external financing for a transformational economic development project, assisted in passing legislation to increase the safety of school buses on Virginia roads, and assisted National and Virginia-based startups in the legislative, procurement, budget, and regulatory process.

“Jennifer’s vast experience and accomplishments are impressive and make her an ideal addition to the practice,” said Clark Lewis, partner and principal with Troutman Sanders Strategies. “We know that her work and advocacy across various industries will be an immediate asset to the firm and our clients.”

Prior to Cornerstone Government Affairs, Walle was the Vice President of Legislative Affairs and Campaign Development for Right Policy & Media, before which she served as City Council Liaison for the City of Richmond as well as a Budget Analyst specializing in the Capital Improvement Plan (CIP).

Jennifer has a bachelor of arts degree in Political Science and Government from Christopher Newport University, graduating cum laude, and is also is a graduate of the Sorensen Institute for Political Leadership at the University of Virginia.

About Troutman Sanders Strategies
Troutman Sanders Strategies is a full-service government relations and issue management firm that advocates for its clients’ public policy issues through a broad array of contacts at the federal, state and local levels in order to build better partnerships among governments and businesses. The firm is committed to its goal of protecting and enhancing the business of its clients through proactive support in matters involving government.

About Troutman Sanders
Troutman Sanders LLP is an international law firm with more than 650 lawyers in 16 offices located throughout North America and Asia. Founded in 1897, the firm’s lawyers provide counsel and advice in practically every aspect of civil and commercial law related to the firm’s core practice areas: Corporate, Energy and Industry Regulation, Finance, Litigation and Real Estate. Firm clients range from multinational corporations to individual entrepreneurs, federal and state agencies to foreign governments, and non-profit organizations to businesses representing virtually every sector and industry. See troutmansanders.com for more information.