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National Restaurant Association - Matt Walker

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Matt Walker Vice president, government affairs

Matt Walker is vice president of government affairs for the National Restaurant Association. He leads the Association’s advocacy with the Senate and collaborates on efforts directed at the House of Representatives and the Administration.

Before joining the Association, Walker worked in Congress for 14 years. He was a longtime deputy staff director and chief counsel for the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship and a senior aide to Sen. Olympia Snowe (R-Maine).

In addition to managing the Small Business Committee’s priorities, he supported Snowe’s legislative efforts on the Senate Finance and Senate Commerce committees. Among his accomplishments: Developing and spearheading legislative initiatives credited with helping the Small Business Administration support more than $30 billion in small business loans, the highest level in the agency’s history. During his tenure, he was recognized by major national publications as among the top aides on Capitol Hill.

Walker is a retired veteran. Throughout his military career in the Army National Guard, he played critical roles in diverse units including engineer, infantry and joint forces headquarters. During his 2006-2007 deployment to Afghanistan, in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, Walker was selected to serve as U.S. liaison to the South Korean and Polish forces. At the same time, he was project manager of their construction operations, managing more than 25 major construction projects in a combat theater without any work stoppages.

Walker is a veterans’ advocate who serves on the American Legion’s Small Business Task Force. Previously, Walker practiced law at Pierce Atwood, a leading New England firm, focusing on complex general and commercial litigation involving high profile cases. He worked more than six years in restaurants.

A Maine native, Walker earned a Bachelor of Arts in political science and an Interdisciplinary in legal studies from the University of Maine and a Juris Doctor from the Maine School of Law.

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