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Most CEOs at big lobby groups aren’t registered lobbyists

Changes in influence methods, pressures of management, outdated law mean many top industry advocates don’t meet requirements

Hauptli Freeman McGreevy
From left, Todd Hauptli, Geoff Freeman, Jim McGreevy. While Hauptli and McGreevy are registered lobbyists, Freeman is not. He notes the nature of advocacy and association management has changed dramatically.

May 10, 2019
By William Ehart

Lobbying is the name of the game for most trade associations.

In fact, as CEO Update salary surveys consistently show, that’s why CEOs of associations that lobby heavily get the biggest bucks.

But getting paid to influence policy is not the same as being required to register as a lobbyist under the federal Lobby Disclosure Act.

CEO Update looked at the 100 biggest association spenders on lobbying, as reported to Congress in 2018, and found only 36 of the 100 current CEOs were registered as lobbyists in the most recent quarterly filing period.