Richard A. Gephardt is President and CEO of Gephardt Government Affairs. He provides strategic advice and hands-on lobbying for clients on issues before the House of Representatives, the Senate and the Executive Branch. Mr. Gephardt has brought successful resolution for clients on issues related to negotiations, crisis management, and strategic communications. He represents a broad array of Fortune 100 clients, and has served as a public spokesperson for clients on coalitions to bring about policy solutions to healthcare reform and climate change.
Mr. Gephardt served for 28 years in the United States House of Representatives (from 1977 to 2005), representing Missouri’s 3rd Congressional District, home to his birthplace St. Louis. In his first year in Congress, he was appointed to both the House Ways and Means and Budget Committees.
He was elected to serve as House Democratic Leader for more than 14 years, as House Majority Leader from 1989 to 1995, and Minority Leader from 1995 to 2003. In his role as Leader, Mr. Gephardt emerged as one of the leading strategists of the Democratic Party’s platform and chief architect to landmark reforms in healthcare, pensions, education, energy independence and trade policy.
Mr. Gephardt has served with dozens of sitting Senators and member of Congress, supporting many of them during their campaigns, inductions into Congress and their time as colleagues. He enjoys strong bipartisan relationships and has continued to serve as a trusted adviser to senior officials in government and Congressional leadership.
Stemming from his time in Congress, Mr. Gephardt has experience facilitating a number of negotiations between corporate leaders and the union movement. He currently serves on the board of the Centene Corporation and CenturyLink and is currently the Chair of the Board of Trustees of The Scripps Research Institute, a private, non-profit research organization engaged in basic biomedical science. Most recently, Mr. Gephardt was a member of the Board of Directors at The Ford Motor Company and The U.S. Steel Corporation. In addition, he is a member of the Board of Directors at The Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars, a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and is the Founder of the Gephardt Institute for Civic and Community Engagement at Washington University in St. Louis. Widely known for his advocacy for international human rights, Mr. Gephardt served as Chairman of the National Endowment for Democracy, a private, nonprofit organization that endeavors to strengthen democratic institutions around the world through nongovernmental efforts, from 2009 to 2013.
Mr. Gephardt began his career in public service in 1968 as a precinct captain for St. Louis’ 14th Ward, and from 1971 to 1976, served as its Alderman. In 1976, he was elected to the Congress, succeeding 24-year incumbent Leonor Sullivan. Mr. Gephardt earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Northwestern University in 1962 and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Michigan Law School in 1965.