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Mary F. Birch

As Lathrop Gage’s government relations coordinator and chair of the firm’s government relations practice area, Mary Birch tracks issues and developments that may affect businesses on the local, state and national levels, and consults with clients as to how they may participate in the decision-making process.

Ms. Birch is not an attorney but as the head of the government relations department she works for strategic solutions and to help our clients get the best Lathrop Gage attorney for their issue.

During her time with the Chamber, Ms. Birch facilitated the government relations efforts for the organization and its members at the local, regional, state and federal level. She has established relationships with elected officials and staff at various levels and worked primarily in the area of strategic issue management.

Ms. Birch has nearly two decades of experience in government relations and consulting, particularly at the local level. From 1984 to 2002, she served as president of the Overland Park Chamber of Commerce, where she directed efforts to attract an unprecedented level of business to the city. During her tenure, 62,000 jobs and 4,000 new companies were created in Overland Park. In 2002, she was named “Johnson Countian of the Year” by Johnson County Community College.

AREAS OF PROFESSIONAL EMPHASIS

  • Government Relations
  • Economic Development Packaging
  • Issues Management
  • Lathrop Gage Federal PAC
  • Community Involvement
  • Political Intelligence/Involvement
  • Strategic Planning Facilitation
  • Special Projects
  • Leadership Development & Training
  • Business Development/Marketing

SPECIAL PROJECTS

  • Facilitator Kansas City Tomorrow Leadership Program
  • 1999 Kansas Transportation Plan
  • Overland Park Convention Center
  • Nordstrom to Oak Park Mall
  • Sprint Campus
  • Johnson County Education Research Triangle, 2008
  • 2010 Kansas Transportation Plan
  • Johnson County Courthouse Campaign, 2016
  • 2018 Kansas Transportation Committee

COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT

  • KU Edwards Campus Business Advisory Board
  • UMKC Madam President Board
  • Shawnee Mission Committee for Excellence
  • United Community Services Board of Advisors
  • Enterprise Center of Johnson County Board
  • UCS Strategic Plan Committee
  • KU School of Nursing Advisory Board

HONORS

  • Kansas City Business Journal’s Power 100, 2016, 2017
  • JCCC Foundation Outstanding Service Award, 2014
  • Pearl Award, Girl Scouts of NE Kansas and NW Missouri, 2012
  • OPEDC Ben Craig Award, 2011
  • R&D Magnet Award, Kansas Bioscience Organization, 2009
  • Honorary Chair, Books & Boutiques Event, St. Luke’s South Foundation, 2009
  • Kansas City Business Journal’s Women Who Mean Business, 2006
  • American Chamber of Commerce Executives’ Life Member Award, 2005
  • Certified Chamber Executive, 1989 
  • ACCE Chairman’s Award
  • Rotary Distinguished Service Award
  • Paul Harris Fellow
  • Johnson Countian of the Year, 2002
  • 2010 OPCVB “Ed Eilert Converge Award” Recipient

PREVIOUS AFFILIATIONS/INVOLVEMENT

  • KC InvestEd, Chairman
  • Johnson County Community College Foundation Board, President
  • Community Foundation of Johnson County, Chairman
  • University of Kansas Medical Center Advancement Board, Chairman
  • MOCSA Board of Directors
  • Heart of America Boy Scouts Trailhead District Committee
  • Chairman of City of Overland Park 50th Anniversary Celebration
  • AIA Kansas City Board of Directors
  • Speaking of Women’s Health Committee
  • American Chamber of Commerce Executives, chair
  • Kansas Chamber of Commerce Executives, chair
  • U.S. Chamber Institutes for Organization Management, chair
  • Colorado Institute, chair
  • Mid-America Regional Council Transportation Forecast Committee, chair
  • Shawnee Mission School Superintendent Search Committee, chair
  • Midwest Governor’s Conference, chair
  • U.S. Chamber of Commerce, board member
  • United Community Services, board member
  • (Johnson) County Economic Research Institute, board member
  • Union Station Assistance Corporation, board member
  • Kansas Chamber of Commerce & Industry, board member
  • Johnson County Enterprise Center, board member
  • Overland Park Convention and Visitors Bureau, board member
  • U.S. Chamber Local Chamber Committee, member
  • Overland Park Rotary Club, member
  • Kansas Industrial Developers Association, member
  • SafeHome Board of Advisors, member
  • Shawnee Mission Education Foundation, member
  • Blue Valley Education Foundation, member
  • Johnson County Chamber Presidents’ Council, member
  • Governor’s 2000 Transportation Task Force, member
  • Governor’s Insurance Advisory Task Force, member
  • Highway 69 Association, member
  • U.S. Chamber Institutes for Organization Management, instructor; courses taught: Government Relations 101, Advanced Government Relations, Future Trends in Chambers, Non-Dues Income, Community-Wide Visioning, Leadership Development Programs, Professional Ethics
  • Safe Home Capital Campaign
  • Candidate for Kansas Lt. Governor - 2002
  • KDOT Transportation Economic Impact Group
  • MOCSA Johnson County, Chairman

Prior to joining Lathrop Gage, Ms. Birch served as an independent consultant to local and national chambers of commerce and other not-for-profit organizations.

Presentations

  • Panelist, Women Beyond Business, Kansas City Business Journal, September 27, 2019
  • Speaker, 2013 Lathrop Gage Kansas Legislative Forecast Breakfast, Overland Park, KS, December 10, 2013
  • Speaker, Lathrop Gage State of Litigation Conference, Kansas City, KS, June 6, 2013
  • Speaker, Lathrop Gage Missouri Legislative Forecast Breakfast, Springfield, MO, February 10, 2012
  • Speaker, Lathrop Gage Missouri Legislative Forecast Breakfast, St. Louis, MO, January 20, 2012
  • Speaker, Lathrop Gage Missouri Legislative Forecast Breakfast, Columbia, MO, January 20, 2012
  • Speaker, Lathrop Gage Missouri Legislative Forecast Breakfast, Kansas City, MO, January 13, 2012
  • Speaker, Lathrop Gage Kansas Legislative Forecast Breakfast, Overland Park, KS, December 15, 2011
Photo of Mary F. Birch
  • Overland Park

    10851 Mastin Boulevard
    Building 82, Suite 1000
    Overland Park, KS 66210-1669
F: 913.451.0875

Assistant

Cherie King
913.451.5193

Education

University of Kansas, B.S.J., 1974