After slightly over a year at Bracewell, government contracts expert Angela Styles, once chair of Crowell & Moring, has moved to Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld’s Washington, D.C., office.
Styles joined Bracewell in late 2017 after Crowell’s partnership voted her out after one term. She said Texas-based Bracewell lacked the capital presence she needs for her practice.
“I love their Texas footprint, but as I spent time there, I realized what I was looking for is a firm just like Akin,” Styles explained. ”They have the quintessential Washington law firm and my practice is a quintessential Washington practice, in terms of what I do for clients and the different types of work I pull in.”
She pointed in particular to expertise in the current hot-button issue of export controls, as well as interactions with Capitol Hill and the executive agencies.
“I just came to realize it is important for my clients not just to have access to me and my skill set, but other team members with these strengths,” Styles added.
She flagged her longtime relationships with Akin Gump government contracts partner Robert K. Huffman and international trade partner Hal Shapiro, both of whom she worked with earlier in her career at Miller & Chevalier.
“Bob has kept in touch with me for many years, as has Hal. We’ve been colleagues opposite each other on cases, as well as friends,” she said. “He knew the strengths and weaknesses of my platform, and he finally talked me into coming over here.”
In a press release, Huffman laid out Styles’ capabilities, calling her a ”recognized leader” on government procurement policy, cost and pricing issues, commercial item contracting, and other key areas for government contractors.
“Each of these is likely to be an area of focus for Congress, the Department of Defense and other agencies during the coming years,” Huffman said. “Angela’s arrival ensures we are well positioned to meet our clients where they need us most, and I am delighted to have her with us.”
When Styles moved to Bracewell in 2017, she cited the appeal of that firm’s Texas roots, noting she was from Dallas and her husband from Abilene. Akin Gump, founded in Dallas in 1945, remains heavily invested in the Lone Star State.
“I have clients in Texas, and that connection is very important for me too,” she said.
The firm also has a significant international presence.
“It is unique for me to have a real global platform as well, and I’m interested in exploring what I can do with that,” Styles said.
A spokesman for Bracewell said: “We wish Angela well and thank her for her contributions to the firm during her time with us.”
Styles practiced at Crowell & Moring for 10 years and became chair of the firm in February 2015. The firm voted in September 2017 to replace her the following March with current chair Philip Inglima. The next month, Styles told colleagues in a memo that she would be leaving the firm within a week.