Biography

Mike joined Verrill following his service as Speaker of the House in the 120th Maine Legislature (2000-2002). While representing his Portland district, Mike pursued a variety of initiatives, from seeking increased access to affordable health care to championing tax credits aimed at creating new educational opportunities.

Prior to serving as Speaker, Mike served as Majority Leader (1998-2000) and Majority Whip (1996-1998). As a legislator, he worked on diverse issues ranging from health care and higher education to tax reform and domestic violence. When Maine's term limit law precluded him from returning to the State House, it was only natural for Mike to seek out new avenues to continue to pursue his passion for public policy and politics.

At Verrill, Mike is using his public policy experience to provide a cutting-edge combination of services to clients under the aegis of Maine Street Solutions, the firm's strategic consulting group. This venture provides the firm with a variety of capabilities including traditional legislative advocacy, public relations, grass-tops and grassroots advocacy, and campaign management. Mike helps numerous clients navigate the public arena through his ability to provide multilateral strategic advice and planning.

This mix of services has been largely unavailable from a single firm in the state of Maine. Mike believes that clients can utilize Maine's relatively small size to their advantage—a concept he calls the "small state phenomenon." According to Mike, anything is possible in a small state because of the ease with which messages can be disseminated among critical audiences.

Mike has particular interest in the ways in which citizens can inform the public debate on issues and make a difference in fashioning policy. Grassroots efforts, of course, can often be used to great advantage in moving an initiative forward. However, Mike also relies on the use of what he terms "grasstops" advocacy, in which influential members of the community are called upon to shape opinion through peer-to-peer communications.

By combining advocacy, strategic communications, and campaign management services with a full-service law firm, Mike provides a more holistic, multilateral approach to resolving his clients' problems. By merging public policy experience with traditional legal practice, Maine Street Solutions provides clients with the best chance to achieve their goals.

Services/Industries

Education

  • University of Maine School of Law  (J.D., cum laude)
  • Bowdoin College  (A.B.)

Public Service

  • Holocaust Human Rights Center, Board Member
  • Western Mountain Foundation, Board Member
  • Maine Equal Justice Partners, Board Member

Bar Admissions

  • Maine

Memberships

  • ABA President's Commission on Loan Repayment (2001-2003)

Honors

  • Received Katahdin Counsel Recognition for pro bono efforts (2019)
  • Recognized by Best Lawyers® as the 2013 and 2020 Augusta, Maine, Government Relations Practice Lawyer of the Year
  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America© Government Relations Practice

To learn more about third-party ratings and rankings, and the selection processes used for inclusion, click here.

Firm Highlights

Matter

Advised Fortune 500 Company on Group Health and Welfare Benefit Plans

We were engaged by a Fortune 500 manufacturing company to provide legal and compliance services regarding its group health and welfare benefit plans. During the course of our representation, we have advised the company...

Publication/Podcast

BLM-Masked Employees of Whole Foods Lose Race Bias Appeal Regarding Dress Code

News

Verrill Attorney Tom H. Wilkeson Elected as Secretary of the Connecticut Bar Association’s Business Law Section

WESTPORT, Conn. (July 5, 2022) Verrill attorney Tom H. Wilkeson was recently elected as Secretary of the Connecticut Bar Association’s Business Law Section for a two-year term. Wilkeson will be joining Ken Lerman as...

Event

Annual Update Part 6: Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion - Top Legal Challenges and Best Practices for Your Company

Join Verrill for its sixth session of the 2022 virtual Labor & Employment Annual Update Series. Verrill attorney Tawny Alvarez will discuss steps that employers are taking to embrace diversity in their hiring practices...

Event

Implications of the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act Webinar

Join Verrill's Robert Laplaca who will be presenting this webinar on understanding what risks confront gambling businesses operating on the internet. The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act was passed in 2006, but its implications...

News

Verrill Partner Robert Ruesch Elected to American Bar Association’s Forum on Construction Law’s Governing Committee

Publication/Podcast

New DOJ Task Force Announced Will Impact Health Care Providers & Prescribers in Northern New England

Major enforcement news was released today, Wednesday, June 29, 2022, for medical professionals and anyone working in or around the health care space in Maine , New Hampshire , and Vermont . The United...

Matter

Elections and Constitutional Law: Successfully Challenged Certification of Initiative Petition

In a victory for consumers and the ride-hailing public, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court recently barred the Secretary of State from placing on the November ballot initiative petitions proposed by companies such as Uber...

Blog

Four Verrill Attorneys Recognized by Chambers & Partners for Energy and Environmental Law in Maine

Verrill attorneys Juliet T. Browne, James I. Cohen, Gordon R. Smith, and Mathew J. Todaro were recently recognized for energy and environmental law in Maine in the 2022 Chambers & Partners Guide . Chambers...

Blog

Health Plans: PCORI Fee Is Due August 1, 2022

What is the PCORI Fee? The Affordable Care Act created a non-profit corporation, the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (“PCORI”), to conduct research to help individuals, providers, and policymakers make better healthcare choices by advancing...

Contact Verrill at (855) 307 0700