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Nicole Watson

Partner and Senior Policy Advisor

Experience in local, state and federal government affairs

With more than a decade of government affairs experience, Nicole Watson is recognized for her leadership and judgment in developing and executing effective legislative and government relations strategies across Tennessee and the Southeast. Nicole represents the interests of corporate clients, industry groups, professional associations and not-for-profit organizations before elected officials in the Tennessee General Assembly, the United States Congress and government officials in numerous local, state and federal agencies.

Nicole's experience includes drafting and negotiating legislation, assisting with regulatory and rulemaking compliance strategy and traditional lobbying to the state legislature, the state executive branch, congressional representatives, state and federal agencies, city councils, county officials and community leaders. Additionally, Nicole monitors legislative developments and educates clients on legislative processes, procedures and progress. She also manages political action committees (PACs) and fundraising programs for clients and provides guidance on grassroots advocacy efforts and the development of coalitions.

Prior to joining Waller, Nicole led government relations, public policy and economic development initiatives for a Chattanooga-based law firm. Earlier in her career she gained valuable government and regulatory affairs experience with Tennessee American Water Company and the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council. While attending law school, Nicole served as a Federal Government Affairs Summer Associate for the National Rifle Association and a Government Relations Intern for a leading bipartisan government relations firm in Washington, D.C. Before attending law school, Nicole served as a congressional intern on Capitol Hill for United States Senators George Allen (R-Va.) and John Warner (R-Va.).

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  • Related Services
  • Education
    • J.D., Regent University Law School, 2006
      • Republican National Lawyers Association
      • Regent University School of Law Ambassador
    • B.A., cum laude, Emory & Henry College, Mass Communications, Political Science, 2002
      • Pi Sigma Kappa National Political Science Honor Fraternity
      • Pi Gamma Mu International Social Science Honor Society
      • Cardinal Key National Women's Honor Society
  • Bar Admissions
    • Tennessee
    • District of Columbia
  • Professional Involvement
    • Member, Board of Directors, Chattanooga Bar Association
    • Member, Tennessee Bar Association
    • Member, Tennessee Lobbyists Association
    • Appointed Member, City of Chattanooga Health, Educational and Housing Facility Board
    • Member, Tennessee Chamber of Commerce and Industry Public Affairs Committee
  • Community Involvement
    • Member, Volunteer Leadership Committee, The Trust for Public Land
    • Chattanooga Woman of Distinction, 2019
    • Chair, Hamilton County Dolly Parton Imagination Library Fundraising Committee
    • Chair, Voices Luncheon Committee, Women's Fund of Greater Chattanooga, 2022
    • Member, Junior League of Chattanooga
      • President, 2018-2019
      • Sustainer Advisory Council, Chair, 2019-20
    • Volunteer, Girls Inc. of Chattanooga
      • Honoree, UnBought and UnBossed Awards, 2017
    • Member, Strategic Planning Committee, First Presbyterian Church of Chattanooga
    • Appointed Board Member, Hamilton County Read20
    • Vice Chair, Friends of Scouting, Cherokee Area Council Boy Scouts of America, 2015-2016

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