E&E News – Team Opens Firm

Team opens firm

Former congressional aides Brian Sowa and Jeff Vorberger have opened Keystone Public Affairs (KPA), which will specialize in energy issues as well as defense, transportation and health care. Sowa and Vorberger will, respectively, serve as the president and executive vice president of the new firm, which will have a Pennsylvania emphasis.

Sowa and Vorberger each served as a senior staffer to former Rep. John Peterson (R-Pa.), directing his legislative agenda on the Natural Resources and Appropriations committees. During their tenure on the Hill, they helped write legislation that included the categorical exclusions provision in the 2005 Energy Policy Act, lifting of the federal ban on offshore drilling, and reauthorization of the Abandoned Mine Land Reclamation Act.

“Pennsylvania has a wonderful opportunity to revitalize our economy and keep our young people home, and it all begins with development of the Marcellus Shale gas play,” Vorberger said. “The Marcellus provides growth opportunity not only for the oil and gas industry itself, but for other industries as well, including transportation, health care and technology.

“Scrutiny from legislators and regulators will in turn heighten across all these sectors, and companies well-positioned in the public arena stand to gain an advantage in identifying opportunities and navigating potential pitfalls,” he added.

Vorberger comes to the new role after a stint at strategic communications firm Financial Dynamics, where he worked with Transocean Ltd. and the Independent Petroleum Association of America. Prior to that, he worked as director of government relations for the National Ocean Industries Association, representing the offshore oil and gas industry in the aftermath of the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill. On the Hill, he was Peterson’s deputy chief of staff and legislative director, specializing in energy, health care, and appropriations.

Sowa most recently held the job of vice president at Strategic Marketing Innovations, representing Fortune 500 companies and technology startups. He had worked as Peterson’s senior legislative assistant.

Reprinted from E&E Daily with permission from Environment & Energy Publishing, LLC. 202/628-6500.