Ryder up to challenge as counsel for RNC

Law Talk profile for The Memphis Daily News

Feb. 21, 2013

John Ryder of Harris Shelton Hanover Walsh PLLC was recently appointed general counsel of the Republican National Committee.

The appointment is subject to membership approval at the committee’s spring meeting in April.

As general counsel, a volunteer position, Ryder will advise the chairman, Ryan Reince Priebus, and supervise the full-time legal staff, which includes a chief counsel, deputy counsel and an assistant. The committee’s redistricting department also reports through the office of chief counsel and has its own lawyers on staff.

Following the past presidential election, the chairman of the RNC started the Growth and Opportunity Project. Ryder explained it as “a very systematic review of various aspects of the party’s efforts and image and messaging.”

As part of the project, there are eight task forces reviewing different elements, including two that Ryder will be a part of: presidential primaries and campaign finance laws.

Involved with Republican politics for nearly four decades, Ryder is more than qualified for the position of general counsel.

“I’ve done redistricting work since the late ’70s and then I’ve been involved in various election law matters and lectured on election law issues both for the bar association and for the Republican National Lawyers Association since the late ’80s, so I’ve got a history of involvement,” Ryder said.

He began his work with the national committee in 1996 and served two four-year terms, was off for four years, then served again beginning in 2008; he was the director of the Southern Republican Leadership Conference held in Memphis in 2006 … (read more)