Crowell & Moring has found a new leader for its lobby shop.
Judah "Jud" Sommer, who most recently was the senior vice president of government affairs for UnitedHealth Group Inc., succeeds Patrick Donnelly, who stepped down as the chairman of the firm's public policy group earlier this year. Donnelly, who helped launch the practice in 2008, is now the chief executive officer of the American Oil Chemists' Society, a fats and oils trade association.
Sommer, a Crowell senior counsel, said he left UnitedHealth in March to retire. But Crowell convinced him to forgo his retirement for the opportunity to strengthen the firm's public policy group, he said. After pulling in $4.45 million in 2009, Crowell has seen its federal lobbying revenue fall to $3.64 million in 2010 and $3.33 million in 2011, according to data from the Center for Responsive Politics.
Prior to joining UnitedHealth, Sommer served as the managing director of Goldman Sachs & Co., where he headed the firm's government affairs operations. He also was a partner at Stroock & Stroock & Lavan and an aide to former Sen. Jacob Javits (R-N.Y.).