Gibbons Expands Government Affairs Practice

Wednesday, February 18, 2015 - 13:21

Gibbons P.C. has announced William J. Castner, Jr., will serve as the new leader of its Government Affairs Department. In addition, the firm has added four new lawyer-lobbyists to join the existing members of the department.

As chair of the Gibbons Government Affairs Department, Bill Castner will oversee all areas of the practice, including client relations, matter management and staffing. Recognized among the most politically influential individuals in the state, Mr. Castner previously served as chief counsel to the governor of New Jersey and executive director and general counsel of the General Assembly Majority Office.  He has worked at Gibbons since 2010, except for a short hiatus when he was appointed chief counsel to the Democratic members of the New Jersey Apportionment Commission and New Jersey’s Redistricting Commission from 2011-2012.  

Gibbons Government Affairs Department Adds Four Lawyer-Lobbyists

Joining the firm as counsel are Christine A. Stearns, currently vice president of Health & Legal Affairs for the New Jersey Business & Industry Association, and Jason J. Redd, former deputy executive director and general counsel to the New Jersey Senate Majority Office. In addition, longtime Gibbons attorneys Kevin G. Walsh, a director in the Gibbons Business & Commercial Litigation Department, and Robert Johnson, an associate in the firm’s Corporate Department, have also been named members of the Government Affairs Department.

The new lawyer-lobbyists include:

  • Christine A. Stearns, currently vice president of Health & Legal Affairs for the New Jersey Business & Industry Association, is an attorney who has been named among the “50 Most Powerful People in Health Care in New Jersey” by NJBIZ and the “Top 10 Healthcare Lobbyists in New Jersey” by NJ Spotlight.  She currently serves on several state boards that regulate New Jersey’s healthcare system, including the Health Care Administration Board, Individual Health Coverage Program, and Small Employer Health Benefits Program, as well as on the board of the New Jersey Health Care Quality Institute, a nonprofit foundation working to ensure quality, accountability, and cost containment
  • Jason J. Redd, former deputy executive director and general counsel to the New Jersey Senate Majority Office, has extensive experience managing and drafting legislation and analyzing healthcare, insurance and medical profession issues. His past roles also include serving as chief of staff to Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg, along with various counsel positions in the New Jersey Senate and General Assembly Majority Offices. While in law school, Mr. Redd served as a student extern to New Jersey Supreme Court Justice James Zazzali.
  • Kevin G. Walsh is a former assistant United States attorney for the District of New Jersey under United States attorney Christopher J. Christie. He also clerked for Chief Justice Deborah T. Poritz of the Supreme Court of New Jersey and is a former council member in Westfield. In his government affairs practice, Mr. Walsh represents clients in a wide variety of government affairs issues before state agencies and executive branch officials in Trenton. His clients include hospitals, electric utilities, telecommunications companies, cable television providers, solar contractors, a non-traditional medical company, accounting firms, infrastructure/architecture firms and trade associations.
  • Robert Johnson is a former assistant counsel to Governor Christie who was responsible for advising the governor on numerous pending legislative and regulatory issues, coordinating with state legislators, department commissioners and lobbyists. He also dealt frequently with the Department of Banking and Insurance (DOBI), Division of Consumer Affairs, Division of Alcohol and Beverage Control, and State Law Review Commission. At Gibbons, Mr. Johnson represents public and private companies, commercial banks, and government agencies in connection with M&A, stock and asset purchase transactions, securities regulations, corporate governance matters, credit facilities, public finance, contract drafting, cross-border transactions, and general corporate matters. He also has represented clients in negotiations with DOBI for specific exemptions and obtaining certain licenses. 

These new lawyer-lobbyists join the existing members of the Gibbons Government Affairs Department – David J. Pascrell, Paul J. St. Onge and Noreen M. Giblin.

  • David J. Pascrell has represented client interests in Trenton and Washington, D.C. in a variety of sectors – including financial and insurance, health and hospital, technology, utilities, development and construction, and public entities – under the administration of every New Jersey governor since 1997 and in the Legislature under both Republican and Democratic control. He has worked with almost every state department, agency, board, authority, and commission in New Jersey. Mr. Pascrell handles the full range of clients' government relations needs. In particular, his proficiency in local and state procurement law has supported clients with business development interests at the municipal, county, state, and federal levels. He also focuses on regulatory and public policy matters.
  • Paul J. St. Onge has represented clients at the local, county, state and federal levels of government, and with the executive branch of New Jersey’s state government. In the public sector, Mr. St. Onge has held a number of senior level positions, including assistant director of the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA) and special assistant to the New Jersey State Treasurer, where he also served as the board designee to the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority, the NJEDA, New Jersey Urban Development Corporation, and the South Jersey Port Corporation. Additionally, he served as special projects director in the Washington, D.C. office of  Senator Bill Bradley.
  • Noreen M. Giblin previously served as the chief of staff to the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, where she was responsible for representing the Board throughout state government, working closely with other state agencies. Ms. Giblin also formerly served as director of Executive Office Operations for Governor Corzine and, before that, as state director to Senator Frank R. Lautenberg, where she oversaw the staff and operations throughout New Jersey. She also served as deputy director of the Authorities Unit and as assistant counsel – Authorities Unit in the Office of the Governor of New Jersey.