Karen Blackistone Oaks has expert knowledge advising multifaceted, multimillion-dollar policy campaigns that incorporate a wide range of advocacy strategies. Over the past decade, she has developed a stellar reputation for working with clients to develop innovative legal strategies that complement their customized advocacy plans, including nation-wide lobbying campaigns, grassroots and grass-tops advocacy, ballot measures, and candidate advocacy.
Karen has counseled high-profile advocacy groups, presidential campaigns, and multi-national corporations, and her practice includes advising a wide array of clients in the areas of campaign finance, elections, government ethics, and in the law of tax-exempt organizations. For example, she develops legal compliance programs for corporations, nonprofit organizations, trade associations, PACs, and others pertaining to lobbying, gifts to public officials, and campaign finance. During election season, Karen prepares clients for election-day operations and post-election contingencies, and she has successfully represented candidates in post-election recounts and election contests.
In 2004, Karen coordinated the Bush campaign’s legal operations across twenty states in preparation for nationwide election-day litigation contingency operations. In 2008, she was the principal legal counsel for one of the leading Republican presidential primary candidates, and she advised the campaign on general legal matters and a wide range of legal issues and post-election disputes.
Karen speaks about campaign law and ethics to clients, groups, and organizations. Past appearances have included the Leadership Institute and the Women’s Campaign School at Yale University.
Karen lives in Alexandria, Virginia with her husband. In her free time, she enjoys hiking and has volunteered with developmentally disabled adults since 2013.
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