Brownstein’s Transition at the Top
Managing partner Rich Benenson discusses the Denver firm’s goals

by Tony Flesor

Although the leadership transition at Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck was announced in January, Rich Benenson is just settling into his new role.

On July 1, Benenson took over as managing partner from Adam Agron who had been in the role since 2013. He said the goals for the firm as he takes the wheel involve largely staying the course. Benenson said the firm intends to continue doing what it has been doing in its strategic growth and investing in talent.

LOBBYING SUCCESS

Despite its Denver roots, Brownstein is largely known nationally for its lobbying clout. That showed in mid-July when the firm announced it brought in more than $10 million in revenue through its lobbying work for the second quarter of 2019, topping the list of lobbying firms and edging out the former leader, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld, according to Lobbying Disclosure Act reporting.

Benenson emphasized that the No. 1 distinction is just for the quarter, but he said he attributes the growth to the firm’s “atypical approach.”

“We have a bipartisan bicameral approach to the lobby space, and we’ve done well with that,” Benenson said. “Where we land on the revenue list obviously has some import to us, but it’s not driving the train. We’re happy when we see this number at No. 1, but we’d be equally happy, I think, to see strong performance at No. 2. The key for us is that we’re seeing incremental growth, smart growth, incremental revenue and more profit coming out of that operation.”

STRATEGIC GROWTH

Benenson said one of his primary goals is to continue the firm’s strategic growth in practice areas that are “legitimately preeminent” and to grow those practices in geographic areas that support them. In addition to growing the government practice in Washington, D.C., Benenson also highlighted its real estate, gaming, cannabis, outdoor recreation and middle market private equity M&A group practices.

To read the rest of this story and other complete articles featured in the Aug. 19, 2019 print edition of Law Week Colorado, copies are available for purchase online.