Daily News: June 18, 2012

National Public Policy Advisors Join Polsinelli Shughart in D.C.

National law firm Polsinelli Shughart announced it added veteran policy consultants Andy Wright as shareholder, and Tracy Hammond as a senior policy advisor, to the firm’s national Public Policy Group. Highly experienced in their field, Wright and Hammond will lobby and provide consulting and strategic advice on behalf of firm clients, including those within the energy, environment and telecommunications industries.

“Andy brings nearly 30 years of lobbying, strategic planning and public service experience to Polsinelli Shughart and will provide great leadership and direction to our firm’s various industry areas,” said James H. Davidson, chair of the national Public Policy group. “Our clients will also benefit from Tracy’s experience and direct relationships with elected officials and other key policy decision makers.”

The firm’s Washington office includes seasoned lawyers and litigators in addition to its strong public policy practice. The addition of Wright and Hammond occurs during a particularly exciting period of growth for Polsinelli Shughart, which has recently opened new offices in Dallas and Los Angeles. In 2011, The National Law Journal ranked Polsinelli Shughart as “the third fastest growing law firm in the country.”

Wright brings a unique mix of political, legal and policy knowledge to the firm. Prior to joining Polsinelli Shughart, he served as managing principal to a multidisciplinary, global government affairs, public relations and management consulting firm. In prior years, Wright has served as chief of staff to two congressmen and has provided leadership and direction to two national trade associations, including serving as vice president of government affairs for the American Insurance Association and president of the Satellite Broadcasting and Communications Association. He is a frequent speaker on political and policy issues and was honored in 2011 by The Hill newspaper as one of Washington’s “Top Lobbyists.”

Wright earned his law degree from the University of Virginia in 1978, and earned a B.A. degree in English, Philosophy and Theology from Emory & Henry College in 1974.

Hammond has assisted clients with strategic planning and tactical implementation through communications and collaboration with fellow industry members, elected officials and other key decision makers. As a member of the firm’s national Public Policy group, he also will help guide strategic client interaction with policymakers and provide updates to current and potential public policy impacts of federal legislation and regulatory actions. Prior to joining Polsinelli Shughart, Hammond worked extensively with individual clients and coalitions on energy, environment and sustainability issues, including smart grid deployment, traditional and renewable energy development and tax policy. For nearly a decade, he has directly interacted with both Congress and numerous administrative agencies in his representation of clients.

Hammond began his career in Washington with the American Association of Political Consultants, where he was engaged in event planning and association development. He later became an account executive for the Campaign Media Analysis Group (CMAG) where he serviced both electoral and issue advocacy campaigns by providing analysis on political media activity. Hammond graduated from Southwest Missouri State University (now Missouri State University) summa cum laude with a B.A. degree in Business in 1999. He earned a master’s degree in Political Management from George Washington University in 2001.