Howard S Liebengood

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Howard S. Liebengood (born 1943 died 2005) had a career spanning law, the military, as U.S. Senate sergeant-at-arms, tobacco industry lobbyist, running his own lobbying firm and chief of staff for two Republican senators.

Between 1981 and 1983 Liebengood was U.S. Senate sergeant-at-arms before becoming the executive vice president for federal relations chief of the Tobacco Institute; he was Executive Vice President for Federal Relations at the Tobacco Institute.

The following year, he formed the lobbying firm, Gold & Liebengood with Martin B Gold. Both Gold and Leibengood had served as Capitol Hill staffers. In 1989 the company was bought out by Burson-Marsteller and Liebengood stayed with it for several years. He then moved to law firm Powell, Goldstein, Frazer and Murphy

In 1995 Liebengood became chief lobbyist for Philip Morris Companies, Inc.

Liebengood died of a heart attack in 2005 at age 62.[1]

Documents & Timeline

1973: Howard Liebengood joins the Senate staff as assistant minority counsel on the Select Committee on Watergate. (the event where Hillary Clinton made her name)

1974-75: Howard Liebengood leaves Senate staff for one hear to service as a consultant to Senator Howard Baker on the Church Committee.

1980: Paul Manafort and his newly formed company Black, Manafort, Stone and Kelly begin to work for the Reagan for President team.

1981-83: Liebengood was "The Republican Sergeant-at-Arms of the United States Senate".

1983: Howard S Liebengood leaves the Senate staff permanently and sets up as a lobbyist.

1983 May 13: Memo from James Bowling to Curtis Judge. This memo is recommending candidates for the position of Exec VP, Federal Relations with the Tobacco Institute.

Howard Liebengood was chosen shortly after for the position of an Executive Vice President of the Tobacco Institute. [2] [3]

1984 July 2: Howard Liebengood is listed then as Executive Director of Government Relations His resignation takes effect on August 1. (However the Tobacco Institute intends to retain his services) [4]

1984 Aug: Howard S Liebengood, joined with Martin B Gold to create the Washington lobby firm of Gold & Liebengood, which is later described as the "Best Republican lobbyshop in Washington DC." (Another proposed partner Thompson appears to have dropped out at the last minute)

Their main client was the Tobacco Institute (which was naturally handled by Liebengood). However they also represented The College of American Pathologists (handled by Marty Gold) and the Opthalmologists handled by John Scruggs, (the ex Assistant Secretary of the HHS)

Liebengood is also working for the tobacco industry through the Labor Management Committee run by James Savarese and/or Ogilvy & Mather PR for the TI.

1986 Apr 17: Howard Liebengood is listed by the Tobacco Institute (Washington Working Group) in the staff Federal Relations division, as Vice President of Issues Management. [5]

The Tobacco Institute Washington Working Group was convened by


1987 Feb: Liebengood was forced to resign the Tobacco Institute account in Feb 1987 over a conflict of interest between his firm's medical accounts and the tobacco industry. [7]

1988 Oct 17: Gold and Liebengood are billing the Tobacco Institute for services rendered ($20,286 -- his monthly retainer of $20k + expenses)). Howard Liebengood is charging them for

Meetings with Washington Working group, Denise Bode, John Scruggs , Martin B Gold, Charlie Mellody (Rostenkowski), Bill Hildenbrand, and Niels Holch (McConnell).


1989: Gold & Liebengood is said to have been acquired by Burson Marstellar. Howard Liebengood supposedly left to partner with the DC law firm of Powell, Golstein, Frazer and Murphy. (however see below)

1989 May 12 Memo from Kathleen Linehan at the Philip Morris Management Corp offices in Washington DC. She is sending material on the Industry Advertising Code and "Part of the Coalition's Hill Package" Freedom to Advertise Coalition to PM staffers Jim Stanton, Howard Liebengood, Carey Sherman, Rich Bliss, Bill Oldaker, and Bob Kabel (and a cc to David Greenberg). [9]

1994: Howard Liebengood is hired by Philip Morris to lobby on the Hill. [10]

1996: Gold & Liebengood (now without Liebengood) merged with Paul Manafor's lobby firm Black, Manafort, Stone and Kelly to form BKSH & Associates

Howard Liebengood was still the Vice President of Government Affairs with Philip Morris.

1998 July 1: Minutes of the Steering Committee of the Labor Management Committee. Mike Forscey had bailed out following the exposure of LMC activities and the release of documents.

The Minutes record the retention of Peter Kadzik of Dickstein, Shapiro, Morin & Oshinksy as legal counsel. [11]

July 9: Mike Forscey returns LMC files to the Tobacco Institute. [[12]

1998 Aug: The Labor Management Committee has been so useful to the tobacco industry both in the USA and Europe that Philip Morris decided to take it over; the Tobacco Institute was to be closed down. Bob Harbrandt, Tim Scully and Howard Liebengood are involved.

1998 Aug 12: The ex-Teamsters union lobbyist Tim Scully advises Howard Liebengood who is now working for Philip Morris that Bob Harbrandt (Food & Allied Services union) has requested a meeting over the Labor Management Committee. He makes the following points:

  • Frank Hurt and the LMC believe they have a commitment from Steve Parrish (the Senior VP Corporate Affairs at PM) to keep the Labor Management Committee (LMC) structure functioning.
  • It is possible to restructure the LMC into a new industry/labor organization. This needs to be considered carefully to avoid further disclosure under the Landrum-Griffin Labor Management Disclosure Act, etc.
  • The control of the new organisation should remain with the BC&T (the tobacco union) and the machinists unions.
  • Liebengood and David Greenberg - (of PM Europe) have already had a meeting with Frank Hurt, John Jarvis and Bob Harbrandt.
    • There is now an urgent need to discuss the World Tobacco Expo in Geneva, from Oct 19 1998 and make a decision on Philip Morris funding these activities.
    • Hurt wants Jim Savarese to attend these Geneva meetings with him
  • He explains the situation in Europe

    "Previously, Jim Savarese and Mike Forscey had a separate contract though David Greenberg's Brussel's office to assist him in developing relationships with European tobacco unions. This contract has not been renewed.

    It is my understanding from a conversation with David Greenberg that his replacement in Europe does not see the critical need to continue this former contract. Much of the reasoning for this position comes from the restructuring of the European Community and new rights that labor unions have gained through changes to the European Community constitution and charter.

    Under these changes, companies are required to establish work councils with their unions and union membership is guaranteed on certain corporate boards and governing bodies. PM was one of the first multi-national corporations to establish work councils with our employee unions in Europe. This new structure accomplishes more directly the goals and needs of the industry with labor."


1999 Jan 31: This date is listed as the official closing date of the US Tobacco Institute. James Savarese was still operating the Labor Management Committee, however. [14]

1999 Feb 4: Howard Liebengood is listed as working at Philip Morris's during the merger of External Programs division and [[Washington Regulatory Office[]. John Scruggs also works for them as "External Program Director" ?? (EPD). [15]

1999 Oct 13: Philip Morris launched a major ad campaign and website admitting cigarettes were dangerous. This name was still on the staff distribution list. [16]

1999 Dec 9: John Scruggs is holding a PM meeting to boost the ties between the WRO and EPD divisions

Scruggs is running the WRO
Roy Marden seems to be part of the External Programs Division (Kevin Callahan and Whist ???)

They list the think-tanks and organisations that they are influencing [17]

2001: he was appointed as chief of staff for Tennessee Republican, Senator Fred Thompson. When Thompson retired Liebengood became chief of staff for Republican Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist.

2005 Jan 13: Liebengood died from a heart attack aged 62.

SourceWatch resources

External resources


  1. Matt Schudel, Lobbyist, Senate Aide Howard Liebengood Dies Washington Post. Sunday, January 16, 2005; Page C10

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External links