JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – In the latest news of firm mergers and ventures, powerhouse government affairs firms Statehouse Strategies and Cloakroom Advisors have announced the joining of forces with the Husch Blackwell law firm to create a new joint venture which will be called Husch Blackwell Strategies.

The new lobbying and consulting firm will be headquartered in Jefferson City, combining much of Husch Blackwell’s existing government affairs team with the existing operations of Statehouse Strategies LLC and Cloakroom Advisors, LLC.

Greg Smith

“Providing clients access to the full suite of government affairs services under one roof is increasingly important in coordinating overall corporate strategy,” Husch Blackwell Chief Executive and Managing Partner Greg Smith said. “Husch Blackwell Strategies represents a natural evolution in presenting clients with a strong value proposition in what is a very competitive business.”

As part of the merge, Andy Blunt, the founder and chairman of Statehouse Strategies, will join Husch Blackwell Strategies as Chairman of the Board and Chief Operating Officer, where he will focus primarily on expanding the venture’s state-level practices.

Andy Blunt

“Combining the expertise of Husch Blackwell with Statehouse and Cloakroom makes good business sense and will ultimately benefit clients,” said Blunt. “This combination will provide clients with access to a trusted advisor whose footprint covers Washington, D.C. and several key state capitals during a time when policy-making at both levels is critical to organizations.”

Gregg Hartley, the founder and principal of the federal lobbying firm Cloakroom Advisors LLC, will become the Executive Vice-Chair of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of Husch Blackwell Strategies and will concentrate on growing the venture’s federal practice group.

Gregg Hartley

“Husch Blackwell Strategies is built on the notion that clients want and need a vertically integrated approach to tactics and strategy at both the state and federal levels,” Hartley said. “We live in a turbulent political era, and business goals and challenges can change drastically in the blink of an eye. Husch Blackwell Strategies provides a scalable, all-in service.” 

Husch Blackwell partner Kyle Gilster will serve as the venture’s General Counsel, and several leading government affairs consultants and attorneys will join the venture from Husch Blackwell.

“This combination marks serious growth in our team’s ability to help clients anticipate and shape the laws and regulations that affect their businesses most,” said Catherine Hanaway, former Speaker of the Missouri House and the head of Husch Blackwell’s Government Solutions team.

According to a news release, Husch Blackwell Strategies’ Washington presence will be located within Husch Blackwell’s current office location and a satellite office near Capitol Hill.

The firm itself will be nationally headquartered in Jefferson City, at the offices now occupied by Statehouse Strategies.

Benjamin Peters is a reporter for the Missouri Times and Missouri Times Magazine, and also produces the #MoLeg Podcast. He joined the Missouri Times in 2016 after working as a sports editor and TV news producer in mid-Missouri. Benjamin is a graduate of Missouri State University in Springfield. To contact Benjamin, email or follow him on Twitter @BenjaminDPeters.