NMA taps former Hill aides to lobby on permitting, cleanups

By Hannah Northey | 07/02/2024 04:10 PM EDT

The trade group has been boosting its lobbying as lawmakers and agencies work on critical mineral issues.

 James “J.D.” Derderian.

James “J.D.” Derderian, founding partner of the Stanton Park Group, is lobbying for the National Mining Association. Stanton Park Group

The National Mining Association has enlisted a number of former Republican Capitol Hill staffers to lobby Congress around accessing more federal land, the cleanup of abandoned mines and boosting domestic production.

Lobbyists from Stanton Park Group are now working for NMA, according to a recent disclosure form, including James “J.D.” Derderian, the firm’s founder and managing partner, who served as the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s chief of staff from 1995 to 2001 under Republican leadership.

NMA also tapped Valerie Henry, a former senior policy adviser to Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.), who retired in 2021; Joe Rachinsky, who worked for now-House Energy and Commerce Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.); and Bryan Wells, who previously advised former Republican Sen. Pat Roberts of Kansas.


The mining association is beefing up its lobbying muscle as companies look to secure more lands, accelerate permitting and boost domestic production of critical minerals such as lithium and nickel.