Jake Bonifield brings an element of practicality to his government services’ clients. Knowledgeable on issues ranging from environmental policy to public safety to higher education regulations, Jake is a strategic and results-oriented advocate who focuses on helping clients navigate an increasingly complex web of policy, process, and procedure to achieve their desired results.
Jake understands the policy-making process, particularly the areas of rulemaking and legislative lobbying, having worked with the Indiana legislature and on Capitol Hill prior to attending law school. He sees himself as an adviser who can synthesize complex policy issues and help clients formulate strategies to achieve their goals. This client-centric approach informs his counsel at every turn.
Prior to joining Barnes & Thornburg, Jake served as director of government relations for a postsecondary institution in Chicago. In that role, he oversaw and orchestrated federal advocacy work across the college’s 23 campuses, engaged external influencers and advised executive leadership on a range of political and policy dynamics. Jake also managed state relations for the institution, regularly interacting with legislators and tracking legislation across the Midwest and Florida.
Driven to impact public policy while in college at DePauw University, Jake worked on the Gregg for Governor Campaign in Indiana, as an intern in the office of Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) in Washington, D.C., and as a government services intern with Barnes & Thornburg. He also was a policy analyst with the DePauw Environmental Policy Project.
These experiences led him to found the only student-run government relations organization in Indiana – Hoosier Youth Advocacy (HYA).
Jake brings his knowledge of how government works and of how to create effective public policy to the table for clients, as he has played an active role in everything from technical policy discussions to grassroots political engagement, working with elected officials on both sides of the aisle.
Professional and Community Involvement
Board member, Florida Association of Proprietary Schools and Colleges
Chair, Florida Association of Proprietary Schools and Colleges Legislative Committee
Former member, Career Education Colleges and Universities Legislative Committee
Founder and former president, Hoosier Youth Advocacy
Former author, Indianapolis Business Journal monthly column on politics