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Fresh out of the Carter White House, and with prior District government experience, Pauline Schneider joined Richmond’s Hunton & Williams in 1985, where she soon began putting her government expertise and contacts to work. Today, she heads the firm’s public finance team in the Washington office, a practice she developed and which is involved in most of the tax-exempt financing issued by the District. “I love what I do because there is a side to me that really cares about the public interest,” says Schneider. “Almost everything I help to finance is done in the public interest.” Thanks to Schneider, Hunton & Williams has been lead bond counsel to the District since 1996, and was lead counsel from 1986 to 1992. The four-year hiatus occurred when Sharon Pratt Kelly was mayor and the bond work went elsewhere. As lead bond counsel, Schneider represents the city when it issues tax-exempt general obligation bonds to finance roads, schools, offices, or other municipal projects. Separately, Hunton & Williams is one of three law firms that represent the city when it issues tax-exempt revenue bonds on behalf of nonprofit entities, such as hospitals and universities or other groups providing a public benefit. The District’s associate treasurer, Lasana Mack, says that Schneider has helped the city pare its debt service payments by introducing mechanisms like interest rate swaps that lower borrowing costs. “Part of Pauline’s value is her knowledge of these types of sophisticated transactions,” Mack says. In addition to her work for the city, Schneider is bond counsel to the Washington Convention Center Authority and was longtime bond counsel to the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, which issues bonds for the Reagan National and Dulles airports. She is now representing the underwriters of several airport bond issues. Schneider’s clients also include developers with land use and zoning matters before city agencies. Among them is T. Conrad Monts, chairman of the Washington Development Group Inc. in Annapolis, whose controversial deal with the City Council to renovate the John A. Wilson Building in the mid-1990s ended in litigation, which Schneider did not handle.

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