Eric Tanenblatt, chair of US Public Policy for Dentons


Eric Tanenblatt, a veteran political operative and government official, took over the U.S. public policy practice at Dentons, the world’s largest law firm, last month. Despite his years in politics, his current pet project has little to do with elections. Among other things, he wants to advocate for public policy that will make autonomous vehicles – also called self-driving cars – a reality.

Tanenblatt, who isn’t a lawyer, said it is becoming more common for non-lawyer professionals to take leading roles in law firms, especially when their part of the firm isn’t focused on litigation. And litigation isn’t the specialty of his part of the practice.

Instead, Tanenblatt will work with a team spread across offices in seven states. He can work with clients on everything from negotiating incentives for a large economic development to zoning issues. The practice also has an arm that works on strategic communications for public affairs. In the end, it comes down to the client. 

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