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A staff member for Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) has flown to NASA as a legislative affairs specialist.
Tom Rivera joined Boxer's staff in August 2013, soon after graduating from San Diego State University. He was promoted from staff assistant to legislative research assistant in less than a year, but now joins NASA as a congressional liaison.
While Rivera does not have a scientific background, his magna cum laude political science degree, together with his Capitol Hill experience, should help in NASA's uphill struggle to secure science funding for future missions.
An animal rights lobbyist from the American Veterinary Medical Association has joined the staff of Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.).
Elise Ackley will take on the role of legislative assistant in DeLauro's office, where she will focus on issues in agriculture, the environment and consumer safety.
A graduate of veterinary school at Louisiana State University, Ackley interned with the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Agriculture during her studies, giving her valuable experience on the executive branch. After receiving her degree, Ackley joined the office of Sen. Richard Durbin (D-Ill.) with a year-long congressional fellowship from the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Following her fellowship, Ackley joined the AVMA. In her short lobbying career, which lasted only four months, Ackley petitioned members of Congress for support in animal rights policy, including the Animal Welfare in Agriculture Research Endeavors Act and the Horse Transportation Safety Act.
Daniel Henke has turned a new page in a young career in Washington, leaving the staff of Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) to take on a new legislative role with the Monument Policy Group lobbying firm.
While on Roberts' staff, Henke worked as a legislative correspondent, focusing on transportation and telecommunications issues. He will join a Monument Policy Group that has major clients in both of these sectors, including behemoths like Netflix, Microsoft, Boeing, and Airbus, allowing Henke to contribute to government relations for the top players in the field.
As the Monument Policy Group's new legislative manager, Henke will join an already strong staff in these sectors, and will also contribute to the Monument's highly reputed homeland security lobbying.
A Senegalese man convicted of embezzling more than a billion dollars in public funds is lobbying the U.S. government for his freedom.
Karim Wade's hiring of Nelson Mullins Riley and Scarbrough LLP is an example of the relatively common practice of wealthy or powerful foreign nationals getting into legal hot water, and then turning to Washington lobbyists to build support for their cases.
Wade has been in a Senegalese jail since April 13, 2013 for embezzling $1.4 billion in assets. He committed the fraud during his time serving in numerous cabinet posts in the Senegalese government, when his father was president. Wade was convicted in March 2015, and sentenced to six years in prison.
Wade's lobbyists have filed Foreign Agent Registration Act papers saying they are asking the U.S. government to take a stand on "international criminal justice reform."
Another recent example of a foreigner facing criminal sanctions and seeking U.S. support is Dan Adamescu, a Romanian businessman who was arrested in 2014 for bribing four judges presiding over bankruptcy cases involving several of his ventures. Soon after his arrest, he hired the public relations group Qorvis to lobby Congress and "raise awareness of the plight of Dan Adamescu, a political prisoner in Romania."
Similarly, the family of Salahuddin Quader Chowdhury, the former minister of Bangladesh and a convicted war criminal, has lobbied Congress following Chowdhury's execution last November. The family of the former minister hired the lobbying organization Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld to educate the U.S. government about Chowdhury's "politically motivated conviction and death sentence."
Some of these foreign parties are willing to go to great lengths to appeal to the U.S. government. Between July and October of 2014 alone, Adamescu spent an estimated $130,000 on lobbying for his cause.
A longtime staffer for Rep. Bob Latta (R-Ohio) has jumped to the Joint Commission to fill a crucial post.
Allison Witt Poulios, Latta's deputy chief of staff, in her new role as the Commission's director of federal relations. The Joint Commission is a non-profit organization in charge of accrediting health care institutions and programs in the U.S. The Commission carries a lot of weight in the health care sector, as most states require its accreditation for health care organizations to be licensed in their state and to receive reimbursement for Medicaid expenses. Due to the Affordable Care Act and the expansion of Medicaid, the Joint Commission's role in American healthcare has grown more important in recent years, making Poulios' new role an integral one.
Poulios has spent most of the past 16 years working for Bob Latta as both a state senator and state representative in Ohio, as well as in the U.S. House of Representatives. She also spent five years as a lobbyist with Kegler, Brown, Hill and Ritter, a Columbus-based firm, although she did not register as a federal lobbyist while there.
We spend a large part of our days looking at data. Documents often come in by the dozens and hundreds. And while most are boring - how interesting can staring at a phone directory or salary records be, for example? - we find daily reasons for interest, amusement or even concern packed in the documents. So we are launching a new running feature that we call "Caught our Eye."
Longer than tweets but shorter than most blog posts, Caught our Eye items will bring back the interest in reviewing documents and researching people. Some items might bring hard, breaking news. Others will raise eyebrows and lead some into further inquiry. Others might be good for a joke or two around the water cooler. All will enlighten about the people or workings of Capitol Hill.
Caught our Eye items will be published each morning for LegiStorm Pro subscribers. Non-Pro site users will be able to receive the news items a few hours later. In addition to having immediate access to the news, LegiStorm Pro users will have a handy way to search and browse all past items.