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Steven R. Phillips

Steven R. Phillips

Chair, Government Affairs and Public Policy

Steven Phillips focuses his practice on the representation of corporations, associations and foreign governments before Congress, the Administration, and federal agencies, with a concentration on issues related to trade, technology, defense, homeland security, health care, artificial intelligence, environment and energy. He has also advised clients that face Congressional investigations and helps them to navigate through Congressional hearings and the potential impacts of such investigations.

Steven advises clients on congressional strategies, including congressional investigations; the legislative process; and the regulatory process. He spent 10 years working in the Senate including as a Legislative Director. Steven has regularly been ranked as a "top lobbyist" by the Washington, D.C. publication, The Hill.

Bar admissionsDistrict of ColumbiaNorth Carolina


Significant Accomplishments

  • Helped several defense contractors secure additional, multi-million dollar increases in appropriations funding for several Army and Air Force programs
  • Developed strategy to secure hundreds of millions of dollars in increased funding in defense bills for an Army program, in face of challenges from competitors to prevent such funding
  • Worked with a large defense company to resurrect a billion dollar defense weapons system, which had been initially cancelled by the Defense Department;  the effort involved drafting legislative language
  • Advised a consumer goods company on CPSC policies and strategies related to enhancement of product safety
  • Advised several clients regarding trade, CFIUS and export control policies and legislative proposals, as well as how to comply with trade sanctions laws
  • Developed successful strategy to help a European government retain a key US military base in the territory; strategy included working closely with DoD and Congress on developing Private Public Partnership concepts
  • Advised clients on recent congressional investigations, including companies that have been the subject of data breaches or cyber-attacks, as well as companies in the baby food and ventilator industries. 
  • Advised clients on COVID related issues:  he recently was successful in helping a PCR testing company to secure a State level contract to perform COVID-19 related testing, and he also helped a PPE manufacturer with market penetration strategies
  • Advised a defense contractor on a multi-million dollar Army program and helped company maintain Congressional support and funding for the program during several competitive phases
  • Secured language in defense bills authorizing a multi-year authority for a US$1.2 billion Army program, which was essential to start funding for the program
  • Advised clients regarding various technology issues and policies; helped an industry coalition implement a strategy to affect the standards for the next generation technology
  • Helped develop and implement a strategy to secure passage of the SMART cities grant program, to provide $500 million in grants to deploy smart and AI technologies
  • Advised a consumer goods company on CPSC policies and strategies related enhancement of product safety 
  • Worked with a large defense company to resurrect a billion dollar defense weapons system, which had been initially cancelled by the Defense Department. The effort involved drafting legislative language and advocating before all Congressional defense committees
  • Advised several companies on the new loan guarantee and renewable energy provisions in the recently enacted economic stimulus bill 
  • Helped companies protect important tax provisions from being adversely affected by Congressional efforts to revise key tax deductions
  • Developed and implemented a strategy to secure passage of the SAFETY Act that provides liability protection for anti-terrorism products and services
  • Attend the WTO trade talks in Singapore and the GATT negotiations in Geneva; worked with negotiators on issues such as high-tech tariffs, textiles and anti-dumping
  • Organization of successful Senate efforts to stop revision to patent law that would have resulted in hundreds of millions of dollars in lost revenue and adversely affected pharmaceutical research
  • Assistance to a company in securing over $50 million in federal funding for an environmental cleanup of valuable property
  • French
  • J.D., Campbell University, The Norman Adrian Wiggins School of Law 1987
  • LL.M., Georgetown University 1989
  • B.A., Campbell University 1984
    cum laude


Chambers USA

  • Band 4, Nationwide Government Relations: Federal (2024)

The Legal 500 United States

  • Recommended, Insurance: Non-contentious (2015)
Additional Awards
  • Named to Top Lobbyists, The Hill (2020-2022)


  • With the goal of countering China's tech ascendancy, the US Senate approves the US Innovation and Competition Act, 16 June 2021
  • Technology, artificial intelligence in focus for the Biden Administration and the 117th Congress, 18 March 2021
  • The new economic aid to hard-hit small businesses, nonprofits, and venues…what is in it for businesses?, 22 December 2020
  • Landmark artificial intelligence legislation advances toward becoming law, 16 December 2020
  • SEC 2021 and beyond: What to expect, 7 December 2020
  • PREP Act immunity: federal courts weigh in, 4 September 2020
  • Main Street Lending Program updates: Revised terms and new guidance, 11 June 2020
  • Senate passes bill to expand PPP loan covered period to 24 weeks and reduce required use on payroll costs to 60 percent, 4 June 2020
  • SBA Paycheck Protection Program: SBA issues long awaited forgiveness application, with additional guidance expected, 21 May 2020
  • Main Street Lending Program: Federal Reserve expands scope and eligibility for small and mid-size business loans, 5 May 2020
  • HHS clarifies PREP Act immunity for COVID-19-related activities, 28 April 2020
  • Congress approves more funding for small businesses, 23 April 2020
  • Main Street Lending Program: Federal Reserve unveils emergency lending facilities for small and mid-size businesses up to 10,000 employees, 13 April 2020
  • US $2T stimulus COVID-19 package includes significant R&D funding, 10 April 2020
  • Coronavirus: Overview of healthcare funding stimulus and policy provisions in the CARES Act (United States), 10 April 2020
  • Hospitality industry update: President signs into law massive COVID-19 relief and economic stimulus package, 3 April 2020
  • Coronavirus: Congressional leaders and the Trump Administration reach agreement on massive COVID-19 relief and economic stimulus package, 26 March 2020
  • SBA to provide disaster assistance loans for small businesses impacted by coronavirus (COVID-19) (United States), 24 March 2020
  • Coronavirus: Federal government stimulus response – Massive stimulus package may move through US Congress at "warp speed", 19 March 2020


  • Presenter, "What the US mid-terms mean for the insurance sector," November 12, 2014
  • Presenter, "Conducting Business in a Distressed Environment: Renewable Energy provisions in the Economic Stimulus Bill," Washington Metropolitan Area Corporate Counsel Association, March 25, 2009
  • Presenter, "What We Can Expect from the Obama Administration and the Impact of Economic Recovery Efforts on Sourcing in Key Industry Sectors," Sourcing Interests Group webinar, March 10, 2009

Prior Experience

Prior to joining DLA Piper, Steven served as legislative director and counsel to a U.S Senator. During his 10 years in Congress, Steven developed and implemented the Senator's legislative strategy and managed his legislative staff. He served as the senior policy advisor to the senator on a broad range of issues, including technology, appropriations, trade, tax, communications, health care, energy, and environment. Steven's responsibilities included drafting legislation and speeches, in addition to providing advice on Senate floor strategy.

Prior to working in the Senate, Steven served as a law clerk for a mid-size French law firm and as a law clerk to a firm in Raleigh, North Carolina. He is fluent in French and has traveled extensively in Europe and Asia.