Husch Blackwell Strategies Announces Expansion in Texas

Firm Will Provide Lobbying and Strategic Consulting Services in Austin, Houston

Husch Blackwell Strategies today announced it is expanding in Texas where the firm will provide state legislative government affairs consulting and lobbying in its new offices in Austin and Houston.

Mark Vane

Mark Vane

Mike Stafford

Mike Stafford

The firm is adding to its team two of the most experienced government relations specialists in Texas with the addition of Mark Vane in Austin and Mike Stafford in Houston.

“Since launching Husch Blackwell Strategies, we’ve experienced rapid growth as we develop a significant presence in multiple key capital cities,” said Andy Blunt, Chairman of the Board and Chief Operating Officer for Husch Blackwell Strategies.

“We are excited that our first major expansion is in Texas where we will be on-boarding two outstanding government relations specialists who are respected professionals in the Texas Capitol and across the state.

Adding Mark Vane and Mike Stafford and the expertise they bring to our team will benefit our clients and provide significant value to our vertically-integrated approach to tactics and strategy at both the state and federal levels.”

Mark Vane | Mark Vane’s experience in the state capitol includes leading a legislative effort to correct a position in a Texas tax audit that would have reversed decades of state law regarding the imposition of motor vehicle tax on the purchase of buses by companies that provide transportation services for school districts. Working with the Office of the Comptroller of Public Accounts, education trade associations and legislators representing impacted school districts across the state, Mark was successful in crafting and directing legislation that maintained the previous tax position and saved millions of dollars for school districts across the state.

He also drafted and worked to pass legislation that created a new market for the heavy equipment industry in Texas. The bill amended Texas law to allow those who rent heavy equipment to offer loss damage waivers to customers, thereby providing customers with financial protection if equipment is damaged or lost during a rental period.

Mark was also part of a team that developed a budget rider to ensure that the state created time parameters in which new pharmaceuticals would be added to the state's Medicaid formulary. He joined forces with trade associations and other lobbyists to develop the new procedure, draft the language, and promote the concept to key legislators who lead the state's appropriation process.

Mike Stafford | A former county attorney to Harris County, Texas, Stafford focuses his practice on resolving government-related disputes, including condemnations, regulatory compliance and administrative matters, earning a reputation for obtaining favorable results for both property owners and government condemnors. He also counsels clients in connection with election law disputes. He earned his J.D. from South Texas College of Law and has a B.A. in Chemistry from the University of Texas.