Williams & Jensen lobbyists leave to start own firm

Several partners at Washington lobbying powerhouse Williams & Jensen have left to start their own shop, Alignment Government Strategies, the new firm plans to announce Wednesday.

Five of the six founding partners of the new firm — Becky Anderson, Mike Beer, Bert Carp, Jenny DiJames and Patrick Pettey — recently departed Williams & Jensen, one of the city’s highest-earning lobby firms that last year reported $17.6 million in fees. The sixth is one of their former clients, Leo Jardot, who managed the in-house lobbying operations at Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, which was acquired by Pfizer in 2009. Alignment Government Strategies is slated to open its doors Wednesday.

The bipartisan firm will specialize in banking, nuclear, telecommunications, defense, energy and transportation issues.

Carp said the split from Williams & Jensen was amicable. The group that left together had been doing the majority of the work for some of Williams & Jensen’s clients, he said. Carp declined to name which clients would be moving their business to Alignment Government Strategies, but he and the other founding partners of Alignment are registered to lobby for dozens of companies including AK Steel, Coca-Cola and Pfizer, according to lobbying records.

“Mid-career is when you think about doing something entrepreneurial and having your own thing,” Carp said. “It seemed like a terrific opportunity to do something new. It’s an outgrowth of what we did at our former firm.”

In a statement, Williams & Jensen chairman and chief executive Steven J. Hart said his firm “wishes these individuals well as they begin a new chapter in their professional lives.”

Catherine Ho covers lobbying at The Washington Post. She previously worked at the LA Daily Journal, the Los Angeles Times, the Detroit Free Press, the Wichita Eagle and the San Mateo County Times.

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