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Jan 10, 2012

McGuireWoods Consulting Opens Austin, Texas Office


“Our firm has a large and growing number of clients with operations or interests in Texas. The new McGuireWoods Consulting presence in Austin complements our law offices in Houston and Austin, and enables us to meet our clients’ often pressing government and public affairs needs,” said Richard Cullen, chairman of McGuireWoods LLP. “We appreciate being able to serve our clients in today’s world where law, governmental affairs and public relations often intersect.”
Saenz, a former Texas assistant secretary of state and senior advisor to Governor Perry, joins the firm as a senior vice president and leader of the Texas practice. His former firm – Saenz Public Affairs – assisted clients with executive branch, legislative branch and regulatory/agency advocacy.
“McGuireWoods Consulting is a leader nationally in providing public affairs services, and its strength in state capitals makes it distinct. I was also attracted by its reputation for tackling complex public policy challenges and providing excellent service to its clients,” said Saenz. “Our team in Texas will combine first-rate local knowledge, contacts and experience with the resources and reach of a major bipartisan national firm. We are excited about what this will mean for our clients.”
Saenz’s public affairs experience includes not only governmental service and government relations consulting, but also top roles in statewide political campaigns. He was director of Texans for Rick Perry, Governor Perry’s political organization, where he managed the day-to-day activities of the Governor’s political operations and his successful reelection campaign in 2006. He was also political director for Governor Perry’s successful election bid as Governor in 2002.
“As McGuireWoods continues to grow in Texas, we are pleased to add a strong public affairs consulting component to our capabilities,” said Richard P. Keeton, a partner in the law firm’s Houston office. “Those who have worked in and around state government in Austin know of Luis Saenz’s excellent reputation for serving clients with the utmost energy and integrity, and that makes him an ideal fit with the McGuireWoods team.”
Saenz started his professional career in politics and public affairs in Washington, D.C. He did policy work at the Heritage Foundation, served as a State Department political appointee in the administration of President George H.W. Bush, and was on the political staffs of U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison, former Congressman Henry Bonilla, and former U.S. Senator Phil Gramm. He also served on the staff of former Texas Comptroller Carole Keeton Strayhorn.
“Many of us are familiar with Luis from his time in Washington and from his tenure with Governor Perry, and we are very excited to have him join the McGuireWoods family,” said former U.S. Congressman L.F. Payne, president of McGuireWoods Consulting. “He is a very valuable addition to our expanding national, federal, and state capital practice, both through his work on the ground in Austin and through his political relationships and expertise nationally.”
Founded in 1998, McGuireWoods Consulting LLC is a full-service public affairs firm offering government relations, strategic communications & grassroots, and infrastructure and economic development services. McGuireWoods Consulting is a subsidiary of McGuireWoods LLP and in 2010 was ranked in the Top 20 of The National Law Journal's "The Influence 50," an annual report of the top public affairs firms in Washington, D.C. McGuireWoods Consulting has offices in Washington, D.C., Richmond, Virginia, McLean, Virginia, Atlanta, Chicago, Raleigh, North Carolina, Columbia, South Carolina, Springfield, Illinois, Austin, Texas and Bucharest, Romania.  For more information, visit McGuireWoods Consulting’s website at