Steve Ryan has long been among a group of lawyers in Washington who could reliably be expected to know who was representing a CEO preparing to face members of Congress under the glare of the klieg lights.

Of course, there was always a chance Ryan, the veteran congressional investigations and white-collar lawyer, was doing representing himself as a partner at McDermott Will & Emery. He’d led the firm’s government strategies practice for more than a decade. Ryan has long been a registered lobbyist for some of the country’s biggest companies.