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Home News Archive The Peregrination of Angela Styles

The Peregrination of Angela Styles

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Attorneys change firms.

Sometimes they lateral from one firm to another. Sometimes they leave a Big Law practice to start their own firm. Sometimes a group of attorneys leaves en masse. It happens with a certain regularity and there’s nothing particularly noteworthy about the departure of an attorney from a firm.

And not all attorneys depart their firms. For example,, Tom Lemmer has been with the same government contracts practice for more than 35 years. Terry Albertson has been a fixture at Crowell & Moring since we can remember.

But many attorneys do change firms and it’s almost never noticed by the public. Unless you are a client or a colleague, it’s just not that big of a deal.

We’ve followed (from afar) the moves of Ms. Angela B. Styles and we’ve never written about them before. But her latest move prompted us to think about her career. Ms. Styles’ career is interesting (at least to us). We thought it might be of interest to our readers.

Note we have no inside knowledge here. We’ve never discussed this issue with Ms. Styles, nor have we discussed it with any of her (former) colleagues. All we are going on is what we have seen from a distance. (With the help of several websites.)

Why Ms. Styles? Well for one thing for a time she served as the Administrator of the Office of Federal Procurement Policy (OFPP). That was a Senate-confirmed position. In that role, she established procurement policy (duh) and she also Chaired the Cost Accounting Standards Board. Thus: she is kind of a big deal.

Anyway, Ms. Styles’ career appears to have started when she was a Legislative Aide for Congressman Joe Barton (R-TX). She spent two years in that position and then headed to law school at the University of Texas. After graduating and passing the bar, she worked as an Associate at the inside-the-Beltway firm of Miller & Chevalier. She worked for the firm for five years, before jumping to the Federal government.

In 2001 Ms. Styles joined the General Services Administration (GSA) as a “budget oversight official” (according to one website). But she didn’t stay there long.

She was nominated and confirmed as the Administrator OFPP in 2001. She served in that capacity for two years. While there, she revamped and reissued OMB Circular A-76, covering public/private competitions.

Afterwards, Ms. Styles rejoined Miller & Chevalier—this time as a partner. She was there for three years before departing to join Crowell & Moring’s government contracts practice. While there, she was named as Chair of that practice and, subsequently, as Chair of the entire firm. She served in that capacity until recently, when she joined Bracewell’s growing government contracts practice as a partner. Crowell touted her rise “from lateral to Chairwoman in eight years” in a 2015 press release (a press release that we understandably removed after her departure from the firm).

While at Crowell, Ms. Styles also served as Director of the Defense Industry Initiative on Business Ethics and Conduct (DII), replacing Brigadier General Dick Bednar (USA, Retired). She no longer serves in that capacity, though we could not determine when she departed DII.

Ms. Styles’ tenure at Crowell was quite successful, according to published reports. Nonetheless, the partnership voted to replace her, perhaps because of a desire to move in a different strategic direction. According to this article, “Three sources familiar with internal machinations at Crowell & Moring said that there appeared to be disagreement within the partnership about the direction of the Washington, D.C.-based firm, such as a desire to pursue merger opportunities in New York and expand its portfolio of practice groups beyond its traditional strength in the government contracts space.” Although her term as Chairwoman wasn’t due to officially end until February 2018, Ms. Styles opted to depart early for a new role at Bracewell, a move characterized by one report as “unusual.”

Obviously, Bracewell is happy to have such an experience practitioner with impeccable leadership credentials. The Bracewell press release calls her “one of the leading government contracts lawyers in the United States.”

An interesting career—right?

From staffer to associate, and from associate to Senate-confirmation. From Partner to head of a firm’s most important practice, and from there to management of an entire firm.

Now Ms. Styles is at another firm and we are sure great things are in store for both her and that firm.



Effective January 1, 2019, Nick Sanders has been named as Editor of two reference books published by LexisNexis. The first book is Matthew Bender’s Accounting for Government Contracts: The Federal Acquisition Regulation. The second book is Matthew Bender’s Accounting for Government Contracts: The Cost Accounting Standards. Nick replaces Darrell Oyer, who has edited those books for many years.