After serving in the Kansas Legislature for 28 years, practicing insurance defense law and health care law in a law firm setting for 36 years and after serving as CEO of a statewide business association for 4 years, I’ve opened my own legal and governmental consulting firm to continue serving the needs of clients with matters involving state government, the Legislature and licensing agencies & Boards. I bring a combined 41 years of legal, legislative and governmental relations experience to existing and prospective clients.

Legal Background 

•JD, University of Kansas School of Law – 1976 

•Partner, Reynolds, Peirce, Forker, Suter & O’Neal, Hutchinson, KS – 1979-1984 

•Hutchinson Community College Instructor – 1976-1984 

•Shareholder, Gilliland & Hayes, P.A., Hutchinson, KS – 1984-2012 

•Of Counsel, Gilliland & Hayes, LLC – 2012-2016 

•Extensive trial experience in areas of insurance defense and professional liability; handled 100’s of workers compensation cases for employers 

•Recently completed successful settlement against the State which restored over $3M in fees swept from fee funds by the Legislature and Adminstration 

•Currently provide legal services to clients with issues before the Legislature, licensing agencies, regulatory agencies and Boards 

•40 Hours of certified mediation training

•Served on the Board of Governors of the KU Law Society 

•As attorney/legislator, appeared in Fed. Court both in 2002 and 2012 to defend legislative redistricting maps 

Legislative Backgound 

•Elected to Kansas House of Representatives – 1984 – Hutchinson/Reno County 

•Served in Kansas House of Representatives – 1985 – 2012

•Served 2 years as V.C. of House Judiciary Committee 

•Served 2 years as Ranking Republican of House Judiciary Committee 

•Served 16 years as Chairman of the House of Judiciary Committee

•Served 2 years as Chairman of the House Education Committee 

•Served as V.C. of the Select Committee on School Finance 

•Served 2 years each as Chairman of the House Redistricting Committee during the 2002 and 2012 Legislative and Congressional redistricting

•Served twice as Chairman of House Committee on Contested Elections 

•Served twice as Chairman of House Select Investigative Committees

•Other committee assignments included Public Heath, Commerce & Industry, Education Budget and Legislative Budget 

•Elected as Minority Whip when Republicans were in the minority and the Majority Whip

•Elected as Speaker of the Kansas House of Representatives – 2009-2012 

•Served in alternating years with the Senate President as Chairman of the Legislative Coordinating Council and was a member of the State Finance Council 

•Executive Committee member, National Speakers’ Conference

•Executive Committee member, Council of State Governments

•Kansas Judicial Council member for 16 years 

•Commissioner, Uniform Law Commission for 16 years 

•Member, Kansas Commission on Judicial Performance 

•Member, Kansas Sentencing Commission 

•Board member, KTEC 

•Member Commission on School Efficiency 

Governmental Relations and Association Management Background 

•Hired as President & CEO of the Kansas Chamber of Commerce and Industry – 2012-2016 

•Development and execution of annual Kansas Chamber Legislative Agenda 

•Extensive lobbying of Legislative members and Administration 

•Legal, legislative, and political analysis, member engagement research, public appearances and media interviews 

•Upon retirement from the Kansas Chamber, formed O’Neal Consulting LLC in Dec. 2016 to represent individual clients with legislative and legal issues related to the Legislature and State government