Practice Chair
Russell  W. Sullivan

Russell W. Sullivan



Chair of Brownstein’s National Tax Policy Group. Veteran of Capitol Hill who served for nearly a decade as Senate Finance Committee staff director. Creative strategist who finds legislative and regulatory solutions that save clients’ money.

Russ Sullivan is one of the top tax attorneys and advocates in the country. When companies face risks in Washington, D.C., they turn to Russ to develop creative solutions that save their industry. For Fortune 50 companies, start-ups and national trade associations alike, Russ translates federal policy and the U.S. tax code for clients’ boards and members and identifies untapped opportunities. He provides clients with clarity when they need it most, offers critical information for developing smart business strategies, and engages the Treasury Department and tax-writing committees on Capitol Hill to advance clients’ domestic and international tax priorities.

In addition to advocating on tax policy, Russ represents clients’ interests on health care, pension planning, trade, energy, financial services and economic development policies. He worked firsthand on many of these issues during his 14 years of service on the Senate Finance Committee. During his time in Congress, Russ saw some of the most important issues within the business community come before the committee and helped draft landmark legislation such as the 2001 tax legislation, the 2005 and 2007 Energy Policy Acts, and the Affordable Care Act, Russ leverages these expertise’s to provide clients with contextual insight into current tax and health care policy debates.

Russ is passionate about fostering at-risk youth; he has served as legal guardian for 22 teenagers, and has continually fought for an increase in the adoption tax credit. He proudly serves on the board of directors for the Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute.


    Representative Matters

    Recent Experience

    • Called upon by one of the world’s largest private equity firms to represent the client during its merger with a leading insurance company. Advised on the resultant domestic and international tax implications.

    • In a time of crisis and under significant pressure, delivered informational seminars by webinar on COVID-19 tax legislation, regulatory guidance and the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP). Kept thousands of tax preparers and accounting firms abreast of the latest developments in Washington, D.C. during the pandemic on behalf of the client, a global leader in information services.

    • Assisted a client in a competitive industry in developing legislation to increase tax information reporting regarding transactions booked on gig economy platforms and helped persuade Congress to enact the bill, which partially paid for COVID relief legislation.

    • On behalf of a global hospitality company, helped develop the concept and parameters for a federal tax credit that incentivized employers to keep workers on their payroll during the COVID-19 pandemic. Presented proposal to key staff on the Senate Finance Committee and House Ways and Means Committee, who incorporated the idea into the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act as the Employee Retention Tax Credit (ERTC).

    Insights & Publications



    • J.D., 1987, University of Texas School of Law
    • B.B.A., 1983, Baylor University


    • District of Columbia
    • Texas


    Member, Board of Directors, Child Development Center at the Church at Clarendon

    Community Involvement


    Finance Chair, Board of Directors, Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute

    Finance Chair, Board of Directors, The Fourth Sector Group

    Member, Board of Directors, Capital Area Reach

    Member, Board of Directors, John Leland Seminary



    "There is no more of an effective, professional and respected tax lobbyist in Washington, D.C., than Russell Sullivan." – Chambers USA, 2021

    Top Lobbyists, The Hill, 2020

    Chambers USA, 2019-2024

    Best Lawyers in America, 2018-2024

    JD Supra, Readers Choice Awards in Tax category, 2020