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Greg Walden is joining the ranks of former lawmakers on K Street.
The Oregon Republican’s new strategic advisory firm, Alpine Advisors, went live Monday, weeks after he retired from Congress in January following his 11th term. The venture is a partnership with top lobby shop Alpine Group, whose clients include Shell Oil Co., U.S. Cellular Corp., Edison Electric Institute, Amgen Inc., Duke Energy Corp., and Ford Motor Co.
Walden, who once ran a family radio company with his wife, still considers himself an entrepreneur — choosing to build his own business, rather than going to a large firm.
“It’s kind of a clean slate,” he said in an interview Monday. “It’s a bit of a startup, if you will, that I get to organize and build, but have the back-end support — compliance, HR all those sorts of things — that Alpine can offer.”
Walden was chairman and ranking member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, which gave him insight into a wide-ranging policy portfolio covering energy, technology, telecommunications, and health care. He also led the National Republican Congressional Committee for two election cycles.
“Everybody wants to get something done, and we’re the players who can get things done,” he said.
Ethics rules prohibit him from lobbying Capitol Hill on behalf of his clients for one year after retiring. Although he’s able to lobby the Executive Branch — and has worked with some Biden administration appointees— he doesn’t foresee himself lobbying.
He won’t be advocating his former colleagues on policy, but he’s paying attention to a number of key issues that will come up in an infrastructure package, including an expansion of broadband capabilities.
“To me, this is more strategic thinking,” Walden said, “looking out over the horizon at threats and opportunities with organizations who crave that kind of information.”
Les Spivey, the CEO and managing principal of Alpine Group, said in a statement that the firm’s move “beyond traditional lobbying is a major element of the Alpine Group’s growth.”
“The creation of Alpine Advisors and Chairman Walden’s leadership will unlock that growth and allow us to continue building a top consulting and advisory practice,” Spivey said.
To contact the reporter on this story: Megan R. Wilson in Washington at firstname.lastname@example.org