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Overview

With a wealth of government affairs experience, and by serving in key decision-making roles in the Wisconsin executive and legislative branches, Mike helps clients navigate the complexities of government and public policy.

Mike applies this in-depth and practical understanding of the government’s inner workings when representing clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to nonprofits. His background has equipped him to advocate for clients on legislative, administrative and agency regulatory matters; advise companies on marketing their products and services to Wisconsin; obtain incentives and economic development packages for companies; and advise clients on electoral process resource management.

Mike served under two Wisconsin governors – as chief of staff and as an assistant deputy secretary at the departments of Corrections and Financial Institutions. He has a keen understanding of how to advocate for a client with the governor, Cabinet members and key agency decision-makers in the executive branch. Mike also held leadership roles in the Wisconsin Legislature as executive director and in-house legal counsel of the Senate Republican Caucus, special counsel to the Senate Select Committee on Healthcare Reform, and clerk of the Senate Organization Committee.


Industry

Services

Education

  • J.D., University of Wisconsin Law School
  • B.S., Bradley University
    • Political Science and Journalism

Admissions

  • Wisconsin

Professional Associations and Memberships

  • Wisconsin Attorney General's Crime Victims Council
  • State Bar of Wisconsin
  • Association of Wisconsin Lobbyists
  • WisPolitics.Com Advisory Board
Featured Case Study

Lobbying Effort Allowed Indian Tribe to Protect Sacred Burial Site

A concrete company wanted to excavate stone at a Wisconsin location, desecrating a major Ho-Chunk Nation burial mound site. Mike worked on behalf of the Nation to successfully prevent legislation that would have allowed the disturbance of that particular sacred site and any other burial sites in the state. Taking it further, Mike and the Government Affairs team worked closely with Rep. Amy Loudenbeck to introduce and pass legislation that strengthened existing protection for burial sites.


Additional Experience

Lobbying

  • Achieved dissolution of committee hostile to private for-profit university.
  • Guided two legislative efforts to create and define personal property tax exemption on heavy equipment rentals.
  • Advocated on behalf of satellite TV providers and their national association in opposition to franchise fee taxes.
  • Represented stakeholders in state budget negotiations on real and personal property tax issues.
  • Led lobbying effort of statewide condominium association.
  • Obtained proclamations and resolutions from governor and legislature in support of client projects.
  • Provided strategy and guidance on state and local issues to association of 600 mayors and village presidents.
  • Assembled and led advocacy efforts of association of Wisconsin venture capitalists to obtain venture capital funds from Wisconsin for startup companies.
  • Led advocacy efforts to defeat regulatory licensing bill that threatened nutritional products company and its consumers in three successive legislative sessions.
  • Negotiated several items of interest to telecommunications provider in major telecommunications reform legislation.

Contract Procurement

  • Served as principal lobbyist for Fortune 100 technology solutions company.
  • Represented Wisconsin Interactive Network, a subsidiary of nation's leading provider of official government online services.
  • Procured five-year contract for exclusive public-private partnership for Wisconsin self-funded, multiagency web portal for online services.

Economic Development

  • Advised largest global internet provider on state and local advocacy efforts.
  • Advised international food processor with 1,700 employees on business agricultural issues.
  • Obtained multiple broadband grants for county economic development corporation.
  • Obtained $15 million economic development offering from Wisconsin for new construction of $70 million manufacturing facility in northern Wisconsin.
  • Obtained $1 million grant from Wisconsin for waste digester for international Wisconsin-based food processing company.

Government Service

  • Served on Governor's K-12 Transition Team.
  • Served on Governor's Presidential Advisory Council.
  • Hosted multiple meetings and events with the governor, legislative leadership, mayors and village presidents.
  • Facilitated founding sponsorship of Wispolitics.com News Maker luncheon series.

Indian Law Regulatory/Lobbying

  • Negotiated $8 million excise tax settlement matter with Department of Revenue on behalf of tribal government.
  • Initiated creation of Wisconsin legislative council study committees to study issues of importance to tribal governments.
Outside the Office

Mike and his family enjoy outdoor activities at a lake in northern Wisconsin.

Mike and his wife have a lake home in northern Wisconsin where they have built family memories with their three children for nearly two decades. They enjoy boating, fishing, swimming, biking, hiking, snowmobiling and gathering around the campfire.

Community Leadership

Mike serves a nonprofit crisis pregnancy center dedicated to helping mothers and their babies.

Mike serves on the Board of Directors for Care Net Crisis Pregnancy Center, a nonprofit organization that offers compassion, hope and help to mothers considering abortion. He advises the organization about the best approach to communicating its message with the public and state government.

  • CareNet Crisis Pregnancy Center, Board of Directors, 2003-present; President, 2013.
Pro Bono Combatting Opioid Addiction

Mike volunteers on pro bono projects that help to combat opioid addiction.

For the past four years, Mike has handled pro bono work for client Alex Hoffman, a high-level bank executive in Milwaukee who tragically lost his son to opioid addiction. On his client’s behalf, Mike has spent hours with the Wisconsin governor, attorney general and a legislator who has spearheaded legislation to combat opioid addiction. Mike has been helping Hoffman prepare testimony and navigate governmental processes. Hoffman has recently published a book, Our Last Day in Heaven: A Story of Tragedy, Loss, and Hope with Angels in the Midst, a memoir about the events surrounding the loss of his son. Mike wrote one of the dedications for the book.