(Photo: J. Albert Diaz/ALM)

The former head of Allen & Overy’s political law group in Washington, D.C., has jumped to fast-growing Holland & Knight.

Charles Borden, who joined the Florida-founded Am Law 100 firm Monday as a partner, says he’s expecting an “explosion” in his practice coming out of the midterms and approaching the 2020 presidential election. He brings with him senior counsel Sam Brown.

“We’re seeing increased activity in terms of engagement in the political process and electoral process, and a lot of people making political contributions for the first time,” Borden said. “All of that is leading to greater regulatory and compliance issues for our clients, particularly those in the financial services sector.”

Borden said the surging volume of work in the marketplace explained the timing of his move.

“I increasingly need to be on a platform where I have good synergies with a top-tier government relations practice as well as a Washington-based investigations practice,” he explained.

Holland & Knight’s website lists approximately 60 attorneys and professionals in the public policy and regulation group in D.C., and Borden said that he’s looking forward to working with the wider team to grow business.

The connection between what we do in political law space and what the broader public policy and regulation group is doing is fantastic,” he said. “I can’t wait to get out here and pitch with these colleagues and get a chance to get some exciting mandates.”

Borden is also visiting fellow at the Centre for Analysis of Risk and Regulation at the London School of Economics and co-teaches a course on government ethics at Harvard Law School, where he is a visiting lecturer in law. In the run-up to the 2016 presidential election, he and Allen & Overy colleagues penned a weekly column for American Lawyer affiliate Corporate Counsel.

“Charles is one of the top political law attorneys in the country, with a roster of blue-chip clients that includes many of the leading players in the financial services industry, both in the United States and globally,” Rich Gold, the leader of Holland & Knight’s public policy and regulation  group, said in a statement. “His international experience and knowledge of cross-border and global political issues greatly enhances our practice.”

U.K.-based Allen & Overy hired Borden and two other partners from O’Melveny & Myers in 2011 to launch its Washington, D.C., office.

Brown, meanwhile, formerly served as counsel to Commissioner Ellen Weintraub of the Federal Election Commission. There, he played a key role in formulating the commission’s response to the Citizens United v. FEC decision.

Holland & Knight has recently been targeting Philadelphia for growth, starting a new office in the city with several dozen former Reed Smith attorneys. The firm has also brought in Reed Smith veterans in New York and Los Angeles.

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