L. William Paxon retired from the firm at the end of 2017. He advised public and private sector clients on policy issues. 

Practice & Background

A five-term member of Congress from New York State, Mr. Paxon played a key role as chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) in electing and re-electing the first House GOP majorities since the 1920s.

The authoritative Almanac of American Politics termed Mr. Paxon “a triumphant national leader” who is “one of the party’s best political brains” and “best natural politicians.”

Following his 21-year career as a county, state and federal legislator, Mr. Paxon joined the law firm of Akin Gump Strauss Hauer and Feld LLP, where, since January 1999, he has advised a wide range of public and private sector clients on policy issues. He has consistently been rated one of Washington’s top lobbyists.

In 1992, after just two terms in Congress, Mr. Paxon was unanimously elected by House Republicans as the first new chairman in 16 years at the NRCC, the campaign organization responsible for electing Republicans to the U.S. House of Representatives.

In that role, Mr. Paxon won acclaim for his efforts to revitalize the NRCC, and he spearheaded the historic 1994 “Republican Revolution” that captured the House by gaining 54 seats and electing a remarkable 73 freshmen Republican members.

He was reelected NRCC chair for the 1996 election cycle and again led the House GOP to a stunning victory in retaining the first House Republican majority in 68 years.

Since leaving Congress, Mr. Paxon has remained active as a senior leader of the Republican Party and a key fundraiser for GOP candidates and causes; in 2001, he chaired the Bush-Cheney Transition Advisory Team.

While in Congress, Mr. Paxon served as chair of the House Leadership, founded the House Republican Israel Caucus and was a member of the following committees: Energy and Commerce, Banking, Budget, Small Business and Veterans Affairs.

As a member of the House GOP Leadership for five years, Mr. Paxon was intimately involved in crafting and executing a wide range of legislative initiatives, including the historic “Contract with America,” welfare reform, and tax relief and economic growth policies.

Originally from the rural upstate New York community of Akron, near Buffalo, Mr. Paxon began his political career at age 23, when he won election to the Erie County Legislature, then to the New York State Assembly and finally, at age 34, to the first of his five terms in the U.S. House.

His congressional district spanned the suburban and rural areas surrounding Buffalo and Rochester, along the shores of Lakes Erie and Ontario, and through the Finger Lakes to Auburn near Syracuse.

Mr. Paxon served on the Board of Directors of the Delaware North Companies, a global leader in hospitality and food services.

Mr. Paxon is married to former U.S. Representative Susan Molinari, who is Google Inc.’s head of government affairs for the Americas. They have two daughters and reside in Alexandria, VA.


Awards & Accolades

  • Consistently named by The Hill as one of Washington, D.C.’s “Top Lobbyists”