Longtime GOP aide to launch lobbying shop

Longtime GOP aide to launch lobbying shop
© Greg Nash

Ryan Thompson, chief of staff to Rep. Ron WrightRon WrightSusan Wright, wife of Texas congressman who died of COVID-19, announces run for seat The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by The AIDS Institute - Tanden's odds plummet to lead OMB Former Trump officials eye bids for political office MORE (R-Texas), is leaving Capitol Hill to launch his own lobbying shop after 20 years of federal service.

He was former Rep. Joe BartonJoe Linus BartonRep. Ron Wright dies after contracting COVID-19 Biden's gain is Democratic baseball's loss with Cedric Richmond Bottom line MORE’s (R-Texas) chief for more than seven years. When Barton retired in 2018, Wright took his seat.

Thompson's lobbying shop will be called Live Oak Strategies, which refers to a type of tree common in Texas. It will officially launch later this month.


“My Texas roots provided me a pretty solid foundation to build on. My decades of service have helped grow my knowledge and reach. And my hope for the future is that I can run a solid business that my clients and I are proud of,” Thompson told The Hill.

Thompson, a Texas native, will be based in D.C. He's leaving the Hill at a time when a growing number of Texas Republicans are announcing their retirements.

“My background policy-wise is the Energy and Commerce Committee. But I think, because I’m a Texan, I think a lot of my potential clients will be probably Texas-based,” he said. “The relationships that I’ve been able to forge in and around the Capitol have given me a perspective where I can move around D.C. and move around Capitol Hill in a way that someone might have a need for.”

Barton was chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee from 2004 to 2007.

Thompson is also well-known on Capitol Hill for his work with the annual Congressional Baseball Game, which he has been involved with since 2004.

He founded the Congressional Sports for Charity Foundation in 2016, which now organizes the game. The foundation raises more than $1 million a year. In October, it gave $851,000 to local charities that focus on families and children.

Thompson has no lobbying restrictions other than he cannot lobby Wright for a year. Live Oak Strategies will start as a one-person operation, but he is open to expanding in the future.

“I have great confidence that, because of the talent pool that I’d be pulling from of the dedicated, qualified people that work in the Capitol, I’m confident that I could put a team together that would service my clients very well,” Thompson said.