The rapid rise of well-connected offspring

By Laurie Bennett

August 15, 2013 at 9:01am

When John English launched an unsuccessful run for the Oklahoma state legislature in 2003, he described his business as selling golf clubs over the internet.

Ten years later, he heads Heartland Energy Partners, a company that does business with the federal departments of Energy, Veterans Affairs and Health and Human Services.

Founded in 2009, the energy and healthcare consulting firm has received $3 million in federal contracts in the last two years, according to

The company’s advisory board is a Who Was Who of Washington.

English’s father, former Rep. Glenn L. English (D-OK), is chairman. Until earlier this year, the elder English was chief executive of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association.

Tommy Thompson, a four-term Wisconsin governor who served as HHS secretary under George W. Bush, is a board member.

So is Frank Keating, CEO of the American Bankers Association, former governor of Oklahoma, and an ex-assistant secretary of the Treasury.

Today the company announced that former Rep. James R. Jones (D-OK) has also joined the board.

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