Law firm Drinker Biddle & Reath is trying an experiment in its healthcare law area to obtain new business by using outside consultants, forming an advisory board to achieve its goal.
The outside advisers are not employees of the firm and instead receive a consultant’s fee, which means the firm does not have to pay their salary or benefits, but can still tout their services to clients.
The board was formed in July and is made up of four Drinker Biddle attorneys and two outside consultants, Tracy Sefl, a Democratic communications strategist, and Michael O’Grady, a health economics specialist and former Health and Human Services assistant secretary under President George W. Bush. Both Sefl and O’Grady have day jobs running their own consulting shops. The internal Drinker Biddle board members are employee benefits attorney Brad Campbell, education lawyer Charles Rose, corporate attorney Jesse Ruiz and white collar defense attorney Scott Coffina.
The model is a cost-effective way of giving clients access to services that the lobby shop does not do itself. It is an extension of the rebranding effort the lobbying group began earlier this year, when it renamed itself District Policy Group and began more aggressively marketing services that go beyond traditional lobbying and include grass-roots organizing, social media training and political intelligence.