Reed Skaggs, Ph.D.

Dr. Reed Skaggs is a trusted advisor for clients, uniquely able to navigate relationships between academia and the Department of Defense (DOD) science and technology enterprise.  With a Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry and decades of experience within the federal defense establishment, Reed provides Lewis-Burke clients with informed strategies and effective approaches to supporting the missions of the DOD, Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Department of Energy (DOE), and the Intelligence community.

Reed has held various management and leadership positions such as serving as the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Army Research and Technology and as the Acting Deputy Director for Ground Systems, Soldier Systems and Training, and Biometrics.  Reed led the formulation of the Army Research Laboratory (ARL)’s long-term S&T portfolio strategy and established new programs for materials, computational sciences, and neuroscience.  His assignment to the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) expanded his breadth of experiences to include developing national policies for high-skilled immigration, the United States accession to the Ottawa Convention, as well as addressing the health and sufficiency of the national security S&T enterprise for the 21st century.  At Lewis-Burke, Reed counsels clients on the nuances of DOD research operations and tailors strategies to effectively engage, including connecting clients to the highest leaders in the DOD.  As a senior expert for Lewis-Burke’s defense practice, Reed develops and implements multi-faceted initiatives to raise clients’ federal profile, ranging from Capitol Hill engagement to providing advanced intelligence to position them for unique DOD funding opportunities.

Issue Expertise: Defense/national security R&D, DOD laboratories and budget process, physical and materials sciences, and engineering.

Additional Experience: As a scientist, Reed appreciates learning about emerging technical research areas and leverages personal curiosity to develop innovative high-level strategies for clients.  Most recent examples include identifying emerging federal opportunities such as robotics/autonomy, quantum information science, and infectious diseases.

Vital Statistics: Reed grew up in Southern VA, attending Hampden-Sydney College followed by his pursuit of an advanced degree in physical chemistry at George Washington University.  Reed was a postdoc at the Army Research Laboratory (ARL) where he was hired into civil service from 1999 to 2015 when he came to Lewis-Burke Associates, LLC.  In his personal time, Reed loves to play golf and spend time with his two daughters and wife Jennifer.  He is an avid Ravens and Nationals fan.

Amber Cassady

Amber is a national security policy expert who leverages broad federal agency expertise, spanning the Department of Defense (DOD) and the National Institute of Standards of Technology (NIST), to develop and execute federal advocacy strategies.  Amber drives agency engagement across the federal S&T enterprise, including basic and applied defense research, defense health research, and emerging technologies and innovation. Amber creates and protects vital S&T research programs through authorization and appropriations legislation. As a leader in the Coalition for National Security Research (CNSR), Amber identifies and advocates for community-wide defense S&T priorities on behalf of Lewis-Burke clients. 

Issue Areas: Defense, national security, defense health, manufacturing, technology, and international affairs 

Additional Experience: Prior to joining Lewis-Burke, Amber worked as a Research Assistant at the Bertelsmann Foundation, a transatlantic think tank where she covered European Union-U.S. policies in artificial intelligence, technology, manufacturing, and the future of work.  She also interned with the Department of State at the U.S. Embassy in Lisbon, Portugal and gained international diplomatic experience in the Embassy’s politics and economics section.  Amber worked as an Education Outreach Assistant at the Center for European Studies, at the University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill. 

Vital Statistics: Amber received both her undergraduate and graduate degrees from UNC (Go Heels!). She earned a B.A. in Global Studies, a B.A. in Contemporary European Studies, and a minor in Spanish. She also earned an M.A. in Political Science, during which she studied at Pompeu Fabra University in Barcelona, Spain, and was awarded two Foreign Language Area Studies (FLAS) scholarships by the U.S. Department of Education for her study of Portuguese.   

Amber leans into her role as a go-to foodie at Lewis-Burke and enjoys giving restaurant recommendations (fine dining to dives) across the DMV.  


Amanda Bruno

Amanda advises Lewis-Burke clients on federal activities that impact education, immigration, economic development, and workforce policy. She provides strategic guidance on upcoming research opportunities and potential congressional action in these key areas. Amanda’s previous work in the higher education community brings an important perspective to Lewis-Burke.

Issue Expertise: Education policy, workforce issues, immigration, engineering, emerging technologies, transportation policy, economic development, and international affairs.

Additional Experience: Prior to joining Lewis-Burke, Amanda served as a Government Affairs Associate in The Ohio State University’s Office of Federal Relations in Washington, D.C., where she handled a portfolio that included higher education issues and administrative functions. She also previously interned at The Capitol Initiatives Group, a boutique lobbying firm representing not-for-profit organizations, trade associations, and businesses.

Vital Statistics: A native of Cleveland, Ohio, Amanda graduated summa cum laude from Miami University with bachelor degrees in Political Science and International Studies and is currently pursuing a Master’s in Public Policy from George Mason University.  As a lover of history, she spends her days off taking in D.C.’s historical sights and museums.  Amanda enjoys reading, taking fitness classes, watching college football, and cheering on Cleveland’s professional sports teams.

Andrew Herrin

Andrew Herrin supports Lewis-Burke clients by tracking, monitoring, and researching congressional and federal agency activities related to health, engineering, and transportation.  Specifically, Andrew provides clients with in-depth information on emerging opportunities in the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the National Science Foundation (NSF), and the Department of Transportation (DOT).

Issue Expertise: Health and hospitals, engineering, computing, and transportation.

Additional Experience:  Before joining Lewis-Burke, Andrew spent a year abroad as an intern for the U.S. Department of State in Berlin, Germany.  During his internship, he learned the ins and outs of federal agency operations and the nuance of U.S. foreign policy.  Andrew also gained valuable experience as an intern in the district office of Congressman Richard Hudson (NC-08), where he supported campaign outreach and assisted constituents with navigating federal agencies.

Vital Statistics: Originally from Mount Pleasant, North Carolina, Andrew earned his undergraduate degree at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he double majored in Political Science and Contemporary European Studies and minored in History.  While studying abroad, he also earned a graduate degree in Political Science with a focus on Transatlantic relations from Humboldt Universitaet and Freie Universitaet.  Andrew enjoys supporting Tarheel athletics, traveling, and visiting the nearest park.  As a new transplant to the D.C. metro area, Andrew looks forward to discovering more of the District.

Otto Katt

Otto Katt brings a passion for education to his advocacy in the areas of higher education, workforce, immigration, and tax policy on behalf of Lewis-burke clients.  Otto provides strategic guidance on legislative, administrative, and regulatory issues at the Department of Education (DoED).  He leverages his professional knowledge and expertise, gained while working in the K-12 space and at the state and federal policy level, to provide timely insight and support to clients on key education policy issues including federal student financial aid, the evolving higher education landscape, and tax and immigration policy as they relate to higher education.

Before joining Lewis-Burke, Otto served as the Education Advisor for Tennessee Representative Phil Roe, a member of the House Education and the Workforce Committee.  While there, he proposed and developed education and workforce development policies for the congressman.  He also staffed and advised the congressman at Education and Workforce Committee meetings and district events and engaged various interest groups, stakeholder groups, and agencies regarding pertinent legislation.

Issue Expertise: Higher education policy, student financial aid, free speech, campus safety, accreditation, STEM (Department of Education), workforce (Department of Labor), immigration (DHS; USCIS), and tax.

Additional Experience: Otto has worked in education as a teacher, administrator, and policy analyst in New Jersey, Massachusetts, and North Carolina.  These experiences include serving as a Teach For America Corps member.

Vital Statistics:  Otto received his B.A. in History from The College of New Jersey in Ewing, NJ and his Masters in International Studies: Latin America from the University of Connecticut in Storrs, CT.  He grew up in New Jersey but enjoys the opportunity to road-trip across the U.S.  Otto ran track in college and continues to run the occasional marathon.

Bill Ruch

Bill Ruch is Lewis-Burke’s leading expert in industrial transformation and commercialization, a complex area that involves assisting clients as they forge public-private partnerships and pursue regional economic development initiatives.  Bill’s diverse portfolio covers federal interests across the research and development spectrum, from the social and behavioral sciences and STEM education models to the transition of applied technologies from lab to market and advancement of workforce development strategies.  His day-to-day can include providing in-depth analysis on federal trends, targeted advocacy on Capitol Hill and at federal agencies, and coalition building with relevant stakeholders to bolster messaging.

Over time, Bill has also leveraged his personal interest in criminal justice to strengthen the firm’s capabilities in domestic security.  Through these efforts, Bill works closely with clients, federal agencies, and congressional leaders to ensure our nation’s officers and first responders have access to technologies and evidence-based processes to effectively protect and serve.

Issue Expertise: Economic development, technology transfer, criminal justice, homeland security, cybersecurity, social and behavioral sciences, appropriations, and STEM education.

Additional Experience: Prior to joining Lewis-Burke, Bill accrued valuable state and local government experience at the Michigan House of Representatives and was involved in various political campaigns.

Vital Statistics: Bill is a proud land-grant graduate, having attended Michigan State University, where he received his Bachelor of Arts in Political Science with a concentration in Pre-Law. When he’s not spending time at Lewis-Burke, Bill can be found bragging about his Spartans’ victories and discussing various TV shows, movies, and local DC happenings.  Outside of work, Bill enjoys distance running and American League baseball.