Mr. Cowan joined Patton Boggs after a long and successful career in the Washington public affairs industry. He served as president of Columbus Public Affairs and as chief executive officer of Newmyer Associates, a public affairs and strategic intelligence firm. He was vice chairman of Cassidy & Associates and a founder and chief executive officer of The Jefferson Group. Earlier, Mr. Cowan served at Gray & Company and Hill & Knowlton Public Relations, counseling numerous domestic and international clients.
Before entering the private sector, Mr. Cowan held presidential appointments in three administrations. During the first Reagan administration, he served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Labor for Occupational Safety and Health until his appointment as Chief of Staff and Counselor to the Secretary of Labor in 1982. Later, President George H.W. Bush appointed him as a Commissioner on the National Commission on Employment Policy. Most recently, President George W. Bush appointed him as a Member of the President’s Council on the 21st Century Work Force.
Besides his presidential appointments, Mr. Cowan held several other government posts. He was Counsel to the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct (ethics) of the U.S. House of Representatives. He also served at the Central Intelligence Agency as an operations officer, seeing service abroad and as a country desk chief in the agency’s Directorate of Operations, and later held the position of Assistant Legislative Counsel to the Director of Central Intelligence. In the military, he was a rated officer in the U.S. Air Force.