Robert Szabo

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Bob Szabo has practiced federal public policy law for forty years.  

Bob came from Louisiana to Washington, DC in 1975 to serve as Senior Legislative Assistant to Senator J. Bennett Johnston (D-LA).  Bob has focused his career on counseling, advocating for, and resolving federal policy issues for clients on issues in the areas of energy, the environment, natural resources and transportation.  He has extensive experience working with both Congress and the Executive Branch of the federal government.   

While a member of Senator Johnston’s staff, Bob worked on issues before the Senate Interior and Insular Affairs Committee and, later, its successor committee, the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.   During the first two years of the Carter Administration, Bob worked almost exclusively on President Carter’s proposed national energy plan legislation, which consumed both Congress and the Administration during that period of time.  Many of the energy issues that continue to be considered and debated by the federal government today were first debated in the Carter national energy plan.

  • Experience

    Since joining the firm as a partner in 1978, Bob has represented a wide range of clients on a variety of federal issues, including but not limited to the following:

    • Representing a major independent oil and gas producer with regard to issues arising in foreign nations from which the producer holds oil and gas leases;
    • Assisting federal outer continental shelf (OCS) oil and gas lessees to obtain the right to retain their leases;
    • Representing a state with respect to both its claims for a share of federal OCS revenues through Section 8(g) of the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act and for other portions of OCS revenue;
    • Assisting a major hydroelectric project owned by two states to remove the legal impediments to the project’s operation due to the presence of federal property in the project;
    • Representing a cellulosic ethanol producer in its successful effort to develop one of the nation’s first cellulosic ethanol demonstration facilities;
    • Representing a coalition of groups with regard to the operation of the Section 404 permitting program of the Clean Water Act and also with regard to the definition of “waters of the United States”;
    • Representing a large coalition of customers dependent on freight railroads for their transportation in an effort to improve their ability to negotiate acceptable commercial transportation arrangements;
    • Representing a large national coalition of interests in their efforts to improve the Endangered Species Act; and
    • Representing a national trade association of energy service companies with respect to the application of a provision of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act and the federal tax benefit provided for energy efficient buildings.
  • Professional Affiliations
  • Awards & Honors
    "Best Lawyers in America" by Best Lawyers
    Government Relations Law, 2008-2018
    Chambers USA
    Transportation: Rail (for Shippers) 2013-2016
  • Government Service

    Office of U.S. Senator J. Bennett Johnston (D-LA)

    Senior Legislative Assistant, 1975-1978

    Supreme Court of Louisiana

    Law Clerk for the Honorable Justice John A. Dixon, Jr., 1972-1973

  • News & Presentations
  • Thought Leadership


    Expedited Permitting to Save the Louisiana Coast: A Case Study(6/1/2018)
    Municipal Water Leader, Vol. 4 Issue 4 pp. 18-23

    About the Author

    T.C. Richmond served as the vice-chair of the federal advisory committee that produced the Third National Climate Assessment, NCA3, and was a lead author on its Water Resources Chapter.  She is currently a member of the Independent Advisory Committee on Applied Climate Assessments (IAC).



Louisiana State University Law School J.D., 1972
Associate Editor, Louisiana Law Review

Louisiana State University B.S., 1970