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headshot of christopher mcdonald, williams mullen director of government relations

Christopher J. McDonald

Director of Government Relations
Richmond, VA
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  • 804.420.6371
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  • 804.420.6507

Chris McDonald is an attorney and lobbyist who serves as director of government relations with Williams Mullen’s Virginia State Government Relations Group. Chris provides lobbying services to businesses, associations and individuals before Virginia’s legislative and executive branches of government, including state agencies and boards. Chris’ knowledge and experience as a lobbyist assists clients who need to amend, pass, eliminate or defeat legislation and regulations, and he leverages his background in and familiarity with both state and local government affairs to help clients achieve their objectives.

Prior to joining Williams Mullen, Chris served as director of government relations for the Virginia Association of Counties (VACo), where he represented VACo and its member counties before state and federal government entities. In his role at VACo, Chris managed a policy portfolio that included natural resources, agriculture, energy, criminal justice, public safety, emerging legal issues, COVID-19, finance and more. Chris was a member of the National Association of Counties (NACo), where he was appointed to the Environment, Energy and Land Use Steering Committee, the Justice and Public Safety Steering Committee, the Rural Action Caucus, and the Resilient Counties Advisory Board. Chris has also served on a wide array of statewide boards and committees, holding appointments to the Virginia Water Resources Research Center Statewide Advisory Board, the Virginia Chesapeake Bay Program Local Leadership Workgroup, the Chesapeake Bay Stakeholder Advisory Group, the Virginia Food Access Coalition, and the Virginia Department of Emergency Management (VDEM) 911 Legislative Committee, among others.

Prior to his time at VACo, Chris served in Governor Terry McAuliffe’s administration, counseling the Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy (DMME), the Secretary of Commerce and Trade, the Governor’s Office and other state government entities and officials as Special Advisor for Energy Policy. In this role, Chris managed a portfolio that included solar, wind and nuclear energy, energy efficiency, energy project financing, economic development and more.

Chris earned his Juris Doctor degree from W&L University School of Law and his Bachelor of Arts degree in Philosophy, with honors, and in Political Science from Vanderbilt University.

Chris is a graduate of the Sorensen Institute for Political Leadership’s Political Leaders Program. As part of the Class of 2020, he was honored by his classmates as “Most Likely To Work Across The Aisle.”

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  • Washington and Lee University School of Law (J.D.), 2014
    • Honors in Trial Skills
  • Vanderbilt University (B.A.), 2011
    • Honors in Philosophy
Professional & Community Affiliations

Professional Affiliations

  • Richmond Bar Association
  • Governor-elect Ralph Northam’s Policy Council on Natural Resources
Bar & Court Admissions

Bar Admissions

  • Virginia State Bar

Court Admissions

  • Supreme Court of Virginia
  • Virginia's State Courts