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hough many faces have changed, Washington Life’s rules of power remain the same on this, our 8th annual, Power 100 List. Once again we recognize a wide-ranging mix of local personalities guided by the following indicators and attributes: (1) knowledge is power; (2) access is power; (3) influence is power; and (4) the perception of power is often the most powerful of all. Money doesn’t necessarily beget power, as it ultimately depends on how it is used. For listing purposes, we continue the tradition of eliminating anyone drawing a government paycheck since that would be, well, a bit boring. Instead, our list primarily focuses on players — some more behind the scenes than others — who have helped shape legislative and judicial politics, the economy, diplomacy, media, business, real estate and the arts. While things tend to slow down after a major presidential election, there has been plenty happening in Washington, be it the tax skirmishes, immigration debates, gun control, environmental and energy security battles, money in politics, middle east policy or major gay rights cases before the Supreme Court. Behind (and often in front of) the buzz are the power players who help shape
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the national dialogue on these issues and so many more. Nearly 50 percent of our listees are new this year, having proven that through their knowledge, influence or access, they have the ability to profoundly shape the environments in which they interact. They represent a dazzling mix of personalities. Among them are David Corn, who broke a story that may indeed have impacted the outcome of the 2012 presidential election; the Human Rights Campaign’s personable new leader Chad Griffin; Fox News’ Bret Baier, whose ratings continue to surpass his competitors; NPR’s Kojo Nnamdi, one of the most beloved men in radio; and the ONE Campaign’s Michael Elliott, among many others. We also acknowledge leaders in the arts and professional sports for their influence on the cultural life of our region, including Redskins’ quarterback Robert Griffin III, Arena Stage’s Molly Smith, chef extraordinaire Jose Andres, and the Washington National Opera’s dynamic duo Phillippe Auguin and Francesca Zambello. Whether their influence comes from political impact or cultural influence, these individuals show the depth and breadth of power in Washington and beyond. Read on for the full list.
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CORYALEXANDER Alexander represents the country’s largest health insurance company, UnitedHealth, which insures more than 70 million Americans and was ranked No. 22 on Fortune Magazine’s top 500 companies in 2012. He does this with serious Capitol Hill connections, which is understandable since he was formerly House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer’s chief of staff. A major contributor to Democratic candidates, he was named a top corporate lobbyist in both 2012 and 2011 by the Hill Newspaper.
ROBERTALLBRITTON FREDRYAN As if owning two local television stations wasn’t enough, Allbritton’s influence is exerted through Politico, which has changed the speed in which American politics is covered with a cadre of reporters breaking news daily from Capitol Hill and beyond. Despite several layoffs in January, Allbritton has given Politico editor-in-chief John Harris and executive editor Jim VandeHei a “clear mandate,” according to the Huffington Post, to continue growing the organization, which includes the subscription-based, policyfocused Politico Pro. The gentlemanly Ryan runs the company by relying upon more than three decades of political experience (which includes serving as chief of staff to President Ronald Reagan after the “Gipper” left the White House).
MIKEALLEN The quirky hyperactive journalist behind Washington’s morning mustread, the Politico Playbook, finally took a vacation last May after penning his email newsletter for 990 days straight. When he returned, Politico’s chief political correspondent plunged straight through the 2012 election cycle, adding new responsibilities to his plate all the while. Allen hosts a number of wonky “Playbook Breakfasts,” where he interviews Washington newsmakers and recently discussed technology and politics with Microsoft boss Bill Gates at the first ever “Playbook Cocktails.”
TOMANDERSONDANA LANDRYWILLIAMFX MOODYMARCSCHAPPELL The team at Washington Fine Properties is already on its way to
meeting last year’s whopping $1.55 billion sales volume with the sales of iconic Laird-Dunlop Coach House in Georgetown, the Ballantrae Farm Estate in McLean, and a District home that once belonged to the mother of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis which sold for $8.6 million. As one of the leading luxury real estate firms in the Capital area, WFP was awarded the “Highest Sales Volume per Agent” distinction and the “Highest Average Sales Price per Transaction” award in both 2012 and 2011 by Real Trends, the real estate ranking organization. WFP also holds the distinction of having participated in over 50 percent of capital area transactions involving homes valued at $5 million plus, with the average sales price for the firm exceeding $1.3 million, that being the highest in the nation. WFP had more agents recognized by the Wall Street Journal this year, including Mark McFadden, Nancy Taylor Bubes, Margot Wilson, Marsha Schuman, W. Ted Gossett, Ellen Morrell, Matthew McCormick, William F. X. Moody & Robert Hryniewicki..
JOSEANDRES Sure, he’s the chef credited for bringing the small plates concept to the United States, but in Washington, Andrés means that and more. Not only did opening his restaurant empire — which these days includes Jaleo, Zaytinya, Minibar and Oyamel — reinvigorate Chinatown and help create downtown’s bustling food scene, he’s used his position as one of the capital’s top chefs to shape food policy as well. Andrés is partnering with the State Department to spread awareness about toxic stove fumes. He’s also educating diners by opening a restaurant completely inspired by a National Archives exhibit and is teaming up with White House Chef Sam Kass to promote first lady Michelle Obama’s healthy eating initiatives.
PHILIPPEAUGUIN FRANCESCAZAMBELLO The ascent of the highly esteemed Auguin into the role of Washington National Opera’s music director in 2010 and Zambello as its artistic director in 2012 are two big bright spots for the beleaguered company. With the Kennedy Center officially holding the reins since 2011, Zambello is now planning to expand the opera’s
Jose Andres use of those facilities by staging operas in some of the smaller theaters as well. She has also vowed to reach out more locally. “We have a chance to be in such a city...with such a persona of government and politics, the capital of America, and we’re not connected to any of that,” Zambello told the Washington Post last September when she was promoted from artistic adviser to artistic director. “I want to connect, in terms of both content and audience development.”
BRETBAIER In February Fox News’ “Special Report” anchor hit a milestone as Baier and his Washington-based team celebrated topping his time slot for 50 consecutive months among cable news shows — a feat only achieved in recent ratings history by NBC’s Brian Williams. Baier’s first day of reporting in Washington was on 9/11, when he drove to the area from his home base of Atlanta. He covered the Pentagon, then the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq for Fox before taking the reins of “Special Report” from Brit Hume in 2009. He’s also earned local goodwill as a major player on the charity scene, while using a personal ordeal — his son Paul was born with five congential heart defects — to raise awareness of that issue.
BOBBARNETT The Hollywood Reporter recently named Barnett the “most sought-after literary agent in America,” pointing out that it’s a funny distinction to give a man whose book agent work is a sideline. Barnett, a partner at Williams & Connolly, has negotiated big-dollar contracts for memoirs from America’s political royalty, including Barack Obama, Bill and Hillary Clinton, George W. and Laura Bush, and Republican strategist Karl Rove. Most recently, he’s the man behind accused murderer Amanda Knox’s forthcoming
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memoir “Waiting to be Heard” and has represented Ann Curry when she left NBC’s “Today Show” to take on a different role with the network. A Democrat, he’s helped numerous public officials transition out of government service; he’s also been involved in nine presidential campaigns, usually prepping candidates for debates.
JEREMYBEN-AMI It’s been five years since J Street’s founding, but the pro two-state solution Jewish advocacy group has grown quickly and backed the right horses in last year’s election. Besides Ben-Ami being a major player in the discussion — with a pro-Israel, pro-Peace message — J Street has been instrumental in getting young people involved. In 2009 there were just seven J Street university outposts, now there are more than 50. The group boasts around 15,000 donors and 180,000 supporters and its political action committee distributed $1.8 million to candidates during the last cycle, winning 70 of their 71 races, according to the Jewish Times.
glasses without a collective Washington gasp. A CNN mainstay and the host of the weekday newscast “The Situation Room,” Blitzer is the network’s true anchor man. When “John King USA” was pulled off the air last June, Blitzer got the empty hour. When CNN opened its renovated Washington broadcast studio, Blitzer cut the ribbon (and debuted those short-lived “hipster” glasses). He remains a focal point, even as the cable news channels strives to reinvent itself with new hires.
THOMAS“TOMMY”HALE BOGGSJR Patton Boggs turned 50 in 2012, with the firm’s namesake continuing to influence legislation through what the Washington Post names as the “most lucrative lobby shop in Washington.” Last year marked a leaner year for the legal giant with revenue falling from $48.4 million to $46 million, according to Politico, and a number of layoffs besides. But the firm says it’s using the anniversary to reinvent itself in an era in which lobbying has become more diversified and grassroots oriented.
ROBERTS“BOB”BENNETT After 40 years of practicing law, this Washington “superlawyer” includes among his clients former President Bill Clinton, New York Times reporter Judith Miller and, more recently,Washington, D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray. He’s the go-to guy for high-profile white-collar crime. In March, he was named one of the country’s 100 most influential lawyers by the National Law Journal.
WAYNEBERMAN Berman made headlines last summer when he left Ogilvy Government Relations, where he had been the managing director since 2004. Now he’s the in-house lobbyist for private equity firm Blackstone Group, Ogilvy’s largest client. Currently, Blackstone is competing to acquire Dell Inc. This bid pits Berman and Blackstone against the company’s founder Michael Dell. Berman brings years of experience in government to his job, having worked for the campaigns, transition teams and administrations of Presidents George W. Bush, George H.W. Bush and Ronald Reagan..
WOLFBLITZER Wolf Blitzer can’t even get new
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DAVIDBRADLEY David made his fortune through his two research firms, the Advisory Board and the Corporate Executive Board, but it’s his ownership of Atlantic Media that has transformed him into a major media player. His portfolio includes the intellectual Atlantic, the wonkish National Journal and, since September, the online-only Quartz, which is geared toward worldly business professionals. Bradley is known for recruiting top talent to all the brands and, as the New York Times reported, is “a bit of a brain collector.” Bradley demonstrates his reach in D.C. during White House Correspondents’ weekend, annually hosting an intimate dinner at his home, along with several other star-studded parties.
JOHNBBREAUXTRENTLOTT The bipartisan team of former senators was snatched up by Patton Boggs in 2010 and now commands a diverse group of clients including liquor giant Diageo, American Airlines, Tyson Foods and Fedex, according to lobbying disclosure forms. The team is also on tap to be on the list of high-profile names involved in the fight over federal tax reform on Capitol Hill later this year. As
a side gig, Lott is a senior fellow at the Bipartisan Policy Center, the only think tank in Washington whose sole mission is to find solutions that appeal to both sides of the aisle — something which is very appealing during a time of nonstop political discord.
BILLBURTON It was better late than never for Bill Burton and his cohorts at the proObama Super PAC Priorities USA Action. The organization hammered away at Mitt Romney during the last several weeks of the 2012 presidential election, spending nearly $21 million between Oct. 18 and Nov. 26, according to Politico, and ending the period with $4.33 million still in the bank. And it paid off with President Obama coasting back into the White House for four more years. This access will be helpful to Burton who, in January, signed on with the left-leaning Global Strategy Group. Burton was an early entry to Obamaland, working as the campaign’s press secretary in the 2008 cycle. Previously he worked alongside then-Rep. Rahm Emanuel, D-Ill., as communications director for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.
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GUYCECIL Guy Cecil has one goal and one goal only as the 2014 midterm election approaches: “To hold the majority, that’s it,” he recently told the New York Times. Cecil is staying on as executive director of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee after successfully fending off GOP threats and retaining a senate majority for the Dems. Senate races in 2014 look even more brutal, but Cecil has plenty of experience. He came to the DSCC as its political director in 2006 and proceeded to usher Democrats into a majority that year. He left to work on Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign and then was chief of staff to Sen. Michael Bennett of Colorado, whom he helped re-elect in 2010. The duo is back together going into 2014 because Bennett said he would only take the job as DSCC chair if Cecil was at his side.
AJAMESCLARK The name Clark is practically synonymous with the Washington real estate and construction boom inasmuch as the company owns and is
Bono and former President Bill Clinton TrentPowell) Lott (Photo by Tony
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BILLCLINTON Even with Hillary Clinton not posted up at the State Department, Clinton has powerful ties in Washington and at the White House. (It probably helps being one of only four living U.S. presidents). Clinton long ago buried the hatchet with his wife’s former Democratic primary rival President Obama, even giving one of the most compelling and persuasive arguments for Obama’s re-election at last summer’s Democratic National Convention in Charlotte. In addition, his William J. Clinton Foundation and the Clinton Global Initiative garner much goodwill in Washington and beyond.
Hillary Rodham Clinton redeveloping large swaths of downtown. Notable projects from the Clark Construction Group, a part of CEI, include the Arena Stage upgrade and CityCenterDC, a joint project with Smoot Construction, which is rapidly transforming the former convention center site. Clark and Smoot teamed up again with H.J. Russell & Company to bring the National Museum of African American History and Culture to the National Mall in what will be the Smithsonian Institution’s 19th outpost. Expected delivery date for this project is 2015. Meanwhile, daughter Courtney Clark Pastrick is making strides in philanthropy in the family’s name, running The Clark Charitable Foundation, which funds programs that target the disadvantaged, medical research, health care and education in the local area.
PAULCLEMENT Conservatives love former solicitor general Paul Clement for not shying
away from controversial cases. “In fact, since leaving the position of solicitor general under Bush, he has become, in the Obama age, a sort of anti-solicitor general — the go-to lawyer for some of the Republican Party’s most significant, and polarizing, legal causes,” New York Magazine noted in a profile written last year. Recently the “superlawyer” made headlines arguing on behalf of the Defense of Marriage Act after being hired by House Republicans to defend it. Clement has also defended Arizona’s controversial immigration law before the Supreme Court (the Court ended up striking down parts) and offered the Republican challenge to the Affordable Care Act last year. “Paul truly is the best lawyer of his generation, and if he can’t win the case, no one can,” President Obama’s former acting Solicitor General Neal Katyal told New York magazine. Nevertheless, Clement came up short on that one too, with the High Court ruling that the “individual mandate” was, in the end, constitutional.
It’s only been a few months since she’s left the State Department, but Hillary Clinton can’t utter a sentence, shake a hand or approach a podium without the press screeching about the probabilities of her running for president in 2016. She chose a Washington society event to make her first public appearance in private life, speaking at the Vital Voices Global Leadership Awards at the Kennedy Center in early April. And although she kept her speech light on politics and heavy on women power, it still got people talking — especially since she shared the stage with another potential 2016 candidate,Vice President Joe Biden.
GWAYNECLOUGH During his first five years, the secretary of the Smithsonian has weathered art-related mini-scandals and major money woes so well that, in January, the institution’s board of regents announced that the job was his indefinitely. Clough is raising big bucks for the institution, with a goal of $1 billion over the next five to seven years, while reassuring employees and the public that sequester cuts won’t impact the museums’ day-to-day operations. Meanwhile, attendance climbed to more than 30 million across all Smithsonian museums in 2012, the highest in the past decade.
Means Committee. Since taking over as media relations director for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, which employs almost 5,000 people and had a budget of $607 billion in 2008, he has handled the communications for every phase of implementing President Obama’s Affordable Care Act. As full implementation of the health care legislation goes into effect this year and into 2014, Cook will be a key player in the transition.
DAVIDCORN If one news story could be blamed for Mitt Romney’s downfall in this past presidential election, fingers would most likely point toward Mother Jones’ and MSNBC’s David Corn. Already a significant liberal media name, Corn was given the secretly taped “47 percent” video, which media critic Howard Kurtz later called the “scoop of the year.” Bartender Scott Prouty, who surreptitiously filmed Romney’s speech, had seen some of Corn’s well-researched stories on Romney’s factories in China and handpicked him to be the reporter to leak the GOP candidate’s remarks. “I respected David Corn’s journalism,” Prouty told MSNBC’s Ed Schultz. More recently Corn scooped again, but more controversially, when he published a story about what was said during a closed-door meeting between Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and his campaign staff. When he’s not getting game-changing scoops, Corn is also earning praise as a filmmaker these days with his documentary “Hubris,” a closer examination of how the U.S. got into the Iraq War.
BRIANCOOK Cook earned his communications chops on the Hill working for Rep. Pete Stark and the House Ways and
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COLINCROWELL One of the quickest ways to judge a person’s influence is to see how many Twitter followers they have, and as head of global public policy for Twitter, Crowell spends his days leveraging the popularity of the social networking site to gain clout among Washington elite. Described by the Washington Post in 2009 as “one of the most influential tech policy operatives you’ve never heard of,” the rising star of the corporate lobbying world combines both his Capitol Hill expertise as a longtime staffer for Rep. Ed Markey and his communications skills from his days as senior counselor for the FCC to expand Twitter’s presence in Washington. (At press time, Crowell’s personal Twitter account had 5,035 followers.)
JIMDEMINT Just two years into his second term, South Carolina Republican Sen. Jim DeMint made the surprise announcement last December that he was going to leave Congress to become president of the Heritage Foundation in the spring, citing his disappointment that the right had not taken enough control of its message and ideas and communicated them directly to the American people. During his tenure on Capitol Hill, DeMint helped fellow Tea Party darlings, including Sens. Rand Paul, Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz, to get elected through his Senate Conservatives Fund political action committee. Now, he plans to master the messaging. “We know that lawmakers are not going to push, promote and pass conservative ideas unless people understand and support them,” DeMint told Yahoo News during his second day at the think tank’s helm.
THOMASDONOHUESCOTT REED Under the leadership of Donohue and Reed, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce became a much bigger player in the political game, though it predominantly backed the losing horses during the last election cycle. Of the 15 Democratic U.S. Senate candidates the chamber spent $24 million to defeat, only two went down and the group’s luck wasn’t much better in the House. This year, the chamber will instead use its vast influence to get something
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done on immigration, already striking a deal with the AFL-CIO for a new visa program for guest workers while gearing up for battle with the SEC to defeat any rule that would require public disclosure of political donors.
HIV. A brainiac with two degrees from Oxford, this Liverpool native also spent time on the Central Policy Review Staff in Britain’s Cabinet Office, and will likely go a long way to boosting ONE’s policy efforts in Washington.
This former White House communications director left in 2009 to return to SKDKnickerbocker, which soon doubled in size. Dunn has parlayed her perceived direct connection to the White House to win clients and boost business, but this didn’t happen without controversy. “Members of the AxelrodGibbs-Plouffe axis chafe at the work Dunn’s firm, SKDKnickerbocker, has done for ex-Republican governor Charlie Crist and for a coalition of junk-food manufacturers,” the New Republic recently reported, noting that the sugar campaign was in “direct competition with the first lady’s antiobesity campaign.” During the last election cycle, Dunn played senior adviser to President Obama, even pretending to be CNN’s Candy Crowley during debate prep, but continued to serve her corporate clients, too.
As the Chief White House Correspondent for Fox News Channel (and before that, CNN), Ed Henry has two of the loftiest perches in town, one covering the Leader of the Free World for Fox, and the other as president of the White House Correspondents Association, where he’s finishing up a two-year term as one its most outspoken and effective recent presidents. At The White House for CNN, one memorable moment early in Obama’s first term occurred in 2009 when Henry asked a pointed follow-up to a question that Obama had previously ignored, about the AIG bonus payments controversy. He decamped to Fox News in 2011, where his access to key administration officials has led to scoring a number of scoops with the pointed questions from Henry continuing.
RICHARDFAIRBANK MICHAELELLIOTT In 2011 the former Time International editor took over the reins at ONE, the global advocacy organization with the added cool factor of having been founded by U2’s Bono. Since then, the group has grown to include over three million members around the world, thereby adding more voices to the pressing concern of ending extreme poverty and preventable diseases like
At the helm of one of the most visible financial institutions in the country, with celebrity spokesmen asking “What’s In Your Wallet?” Fairbank has watched Capital One’s common stock jump 37 percent in 2012, according to the Washington Business Journal. When it comes to CEOs, Fairbank may be clustered among the good guys taking no salary since 1997, but he still managed to rake
Jim DeMint in $22.6 million last year — mostly from bonus pay and stocks.
HOWARDFINEMANRYAN GRIM While Fineman is one of cable news’ most recognizable political talking heads, what Grim does behind the scenes as Huffington Post’s Washington Bureau chief is noteworthy, too. Grim leads a team of talents, including political reporter Sam Stein, a favorite of bookers on MSNBC. He also plucked Eliot Nelson, the lead writer of HuffPost Hill — the Post’s answer to Politico’s Playbook — out of obscurity. Nelson, who had been robbed at gunpoint at his Shaw apartment, penned a particularly colorful police report about the incident. Reportedly two months later, he was hired.
FRANKLINFOER When Facebook co-founder and former Obama online campaign adviser Chris Hughes bought a majority share of the New Republic last year, the first thing he did was hire back Franklin Foer, who had been the magazine’s editor for five years before vacating the position in 2010. “I had no thought of returning to edit the magazine,” Foer told the New York Times. “But to me, it feels like a new project. It doesn’t feel like I’m going back to my old job.” A lifelong Washingtonian, Foer quickly snapped up local talent including Washington City Paper editor Michael Schaffer and reporter Lydia DePillis, along with a handful of writers from New York-based publications. In January, the New Republic was officially re-launched with a new look
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Gregory O’Dell (courtesy photo) in print, on the Web and in app form. In an interview with President Obama Foer asked the question: had the president ever fired a gun? POTUS offered that he occasionally would go skeet shooting at Camp David, a fact that intrigued the news cycle for several days.
TUCKERFOOTE A veteran of the House Financial Services committee, Foote is not only considered one of the up-andcoming lobbyists on K Street but was named to the Hill newspaper’s list of Top Lobbyists in 2012. The former Capitol Hill aide is at the helm of Mastercard’s Washington office, which, last September, expanded to a team of six. “We want to find new ways to partner with government, not fight it,” Foote told the National Journal at the time. On the horizon for Foote and his cohorts at Mastercard is the debate over credit card swipe fees as retailers continue to push for reform.
PWESLEYFOSTERJR Bit by bit for longer than four decades, Foster has built the largest privately owned residential real estate company in the country. Based in Chantilly,Va., his empire provides mortgage, insurance and title services, manages rental properties and, of course, brings in big dollars from home sales. Foster is cautiously optimistic that the real estate business is getting back on its feet. “We are working our way through and are beginning to see a real shift in the market,” he recently told the Georgetowner. “The good news is
Stephen Fuller that our company is well positioned to succeed in any scenario.” The company’s top agents include Marc Fleisher, whose team was ranked 13th out of 250 real estate teams nationwide by the Wall Street Journal and Real Trends in 2012 as well as the brothers Wydler (Hans and Steve), whose professional accomplishments include releasing a tell-all book in 2012, “Inside the Sell, Top Agents Reveal Unspoken Secrets and Dangers of Buying and Selling Your Home.”
reputation in the lead-up to the 2012 presidential election as a rain-maker backing fellow Mormon Mitt Romney on the Republican ticket. He lost that one, but his other losses are few and far between. Armed with a seemingly unlimited budget, Gerard has gone right back into the fray on the muchcontested $7 billion Keystone XL Pipeline project, a fight that is reaching a crescendo with the EPA’s justreleased environmental impact report contradicting the State Department’s own assessment.
STEPHENFULLER Need the sequester explained simply? For more than 40 years Stephen Fuller has made the economy his business. Recently he’s positioned himself to be a knowledgeable media expert who spits out digestible bits of data for public consumption on demand. In the past three years, the professor and economist delivered more than 250 public speeches, according to the Washington Business Journal, and has also released a bevy of highly quoted reports. But being a media star has had its drawbacks, too. A recent Loudoun Metrorail study got attacked by some for being too developement-friendly. “I’m old enough to where I don’t take it personally,” Fuller told the Business Journal. He has also been quoted saying that he plans to retire in the next two to three years.
JACKGERARD As head of the American Petroleum Institute, the oil industry’s biggest and most aggressive advocate earned a
EDGILLESPIE The oft-quoted Gillespie spent this last campaign cycle within Mitt Romney’s inner circle, trying to make the candidate seem more moderate after a sharp turn to the right in the Republican primary. Now, with Romney not in the White House, Gillespie and the Republicans are seeking a reboot and Gillespie is once again in the position to be influential. He rejoined the Republican State Leadership Committee as its chairman in February as the group launched a “Future Majority Caucus” initiative to elect female, Hispanic, AfricanAmerican and Asian-American Republican candidates to state office. The former RNC chairman has had big wins in the past, shepherding both of George Bush’s presidential victories and the GOP’s takeover of both houses of Congress in 2004.
NICHOLASGIORDANO As one of the leaders of Washington
Council Ernst & Young’s tax and budget practice, Giordano is expected to have his plate full once Congress begins to tackle tax reform. Before excelling in the world of tax lobbying, Giordano served as the chief tax counsel of the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance and Legislative Director and tax counsel for Sen. Max Baucus. Giordano’s combined knowledge of political budget and tax policy issues and the fact that WCEY consistently outperforms the field on tax-related lobbying (they reported $6.37 billion in revenue from the tax service line for 2012) makes him an easy choice as Congress’ go-to consult on tax reform.
BRADLEYGRAHAMLISSA MUSCATINE Married former Washington Post reporters Graham and Muscatine were looking for the next step in their careers when they heard that Politics and Prose, Washington’s preeminent independent bookstore, was up for sale. Carla Cohen, who founded the upper Northwest store alongside business partner Barbara Meade, had become ill and died the autumn before, when in June 2011 the husband and wife team took over the neighborhood bookshop. Besides journalism, Muscatine had spent years working in politics, including as Hillary Clinton’s speech writer. Now she and Graham are in charge of the institution which is the destination for authors, political or otherwise, when they pass through town. Adding to the store’s clout, last November “Saturday Night Live” used the Politics and Prose name
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Chad Griﬃn in a hilarious skit depicting an author event with Gen. George Petraeus’ mistress, Paula Broadwell.
DONALDGRAHAM KATHARINEWEYMOUTH With the Washington Examiner folding and the Washington Times on shaky ground, Donald Graham and Katherine Weymouth might be the last best hope for daily print newspapers in the nation’s capital. The Post has been making big changes, too. Boston Globe editor Marty Baron came in January to lead the newsroom. In March the Post announced there would soon be a pay wall erected around its website that will also start featuring more video. USA Today’s Jackie Kucinich was also hired to co-anchor a daily political program with Chris Cillizza.
DAVIDGREGORY While he’s been criss-crossing the Sunday show ratings with CBS “Face the Nation” host Bob Schieffer, the “Meet the Press” host had his contract extended in February, proving that NBC brass was wholly behind the host, despite rumors to the contrary. Gregory continues to nab highprofile interviews, including one with President Obama in December. Remember, it was also on “Meet the Press” last May where Vice President Joe Biden inadvertently came out in support of same-sex marriage, with POTUS soon following suit.
CHADGRIFFIN No matter what the Supreme Court says, it’s already been a big year for the
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Robert Griﬃn, III Human Rights Campaign’s president. Griffin was picked to lead the Districtbased LGBT organization in March 2012 after his work to challenge California’s Proposition 8 caught the group’s attention. It was Griffin who first brought together the bipartisan legal team of Theodore Olson and David Boies there. Since then, the HRC has successfully pressured many politicians, including President Obama, to publicly support same-sex marriage. The group also spearheaded a successful equality-themed Facebook campaign when the marriage cases went before the Supreme Court.
ROBERTGRIFFINIII If you want to see hope and change in Washington, look no further than the Washington Redskins’ quarterback. The former Heisman Trophy winner was the fresh face of the franchise this year, taking the ’Skins to the playoffs for the first time since the 2007 season. And while Griffin sustained a horrific knee injury playing against the Seattle Seahawks in a Wild-Card game, he made his first public appearance in February and didn’t limp as he accepted the Associated Press’ offensive rookie of the year award. So far, so good, Griffin has said of his recovery efforts, telling reporters that he aimed to play in game No. 1 next season.
JASONGRUMET Jason Grumet has not only been instrumental in getting big-name partisans in the same room, he also has them working together on the same
Jason Grumet problems. Grumet, along with former Sens. Howard Baker, Tom Daschle, Bob Dole and George Mitchell, formed the Bipartisan Policy Center in 2007 as the only Washington think tank that actively promotes working across the aisle. Since then, they’ve attracted a cadre of former members of Congress and have helped move along health care and other major legislation. Going forward, the group plans to be a problem-solver in the immigration debate, recruiting Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, former H.U.D. Secretary Henry Cisneros and former governors Haley Barbour and Ed Rendell to work on a special Immigration Task Force.
MARYKAYHENRY Before becoming labor’s top woman, Henry spent more than three decades representing healthcare workers and will be adding her spunk to this year’s immigration debate, where she’ll be a major player. She’s also one of the most influential members of the LGBT community, being recently named to Out magazine’s 50 most powerful list. She broke the glass ceiling in 2010 after being unanimously elected as the first female president of the Service Employees International Union.
BOBHISAOKA When his sister Joan passed away from cancer in May 2008 at only 48 years of age, Bob and his wife Paula jumped into action, planning the first Joan Hisaoka Make a Difference Gala in October of the same year. Joan, a prominent public relations professional, made her goal clear: that she wanted
David Gregory to make life easier for those living with cancer. In September, the annual gala returns for its sixth year, having raised millions for the cause, a highlight of the fall social schedule. The couple continues to donate to several other Washington causes as well, including Teach for America.
ILYSEHOGUE Though the elections are long over, the so-called “war on women” is only heating up and the newly minted NARAL Pro Choice leader appears to be chomping at the bit. Pledging to “go on the offense,” this veteran of lefty activism, who honed her skills at online campaign innovator MoveOn.org, is shaping up to be a force to be reckoned with in the next chapter of the feminist movement.
JONHUNTSMAN Despite his conservative record as the governor of Utah, Republican Jon Huntsman proved his moderate chops as President Obama’s ambassador to China and again during his candidacy for president. He’s continued that leaning as the national leader and honorary co-chairman of No Labels, a group formed in early 2013 that he hopes will be a strong voice for bipartisan problem solving. He was also among the first batch of Republicans this year to come out in support for same-sex marriage. With his wife, Mary Kaye, and three Twitter-friendly daughters at his side, he’ll be one to watch in the run up to 2016.
HAROLDICKES Ickes is truly making it a family
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The tech sector in Washington is heating up. Here, a few upstarts who are making waves.
NEW MEDIA JOHNSTANTON Washington Bureau Chief, Buzzfeed Stanton brings years of Washington reporting experience to the site that was originally known for cat memes and funny gifs.
ADAMSHARP Government, News and Social Innovation at Twitter Sharp isn’t a lobbyist, but a resource in Washington to help government agencies and pols properly use the social media device.
TECH SAVVY EVANBURFIELDANDDONNAHARRIS Founders, 1776 Burfield and Harris got the District’s blessing to create a gathering place for entrepreneurs
affair. The former deputy chief of staff to Bill Clinton recently announced that he will advise the Ready for Hillary super-PAC in preparation for Hillary Rodham Clinton’s potential 2016 presidential campaign. Ickes has already joined with James Carville to begin reaching out to possible donors. “They don’t have any idea what she’s going to do, but if she runs they want to be ready to give whatever assistance they can,” Ickes told The Sunday Times.
its ability to bring discretionary equity dollars to many different types of products. So far, JBG’s portfolio includes 10.5 million square feet of office space, 2.8 million square feet of retail space, 7,000 multifamily units and 5,000 hotel rooms — a total of $10 billion in assets. Current projects under development include many mixed-use properties (a company specialty) such as the highly anticipated 230,000-square-foot “Louis” building on the hip U Street corridor.
A master communicator, the CEO of America’s Health Insurance Plans has been at the center of virtually every health care fight in recent decades, with many crediting her with squashing President Bill Clinton’s efforts to pass universal care in the ’90s. When President Obama’s Affordable Care Act was on the table, she supported and then opposed it. But as the ACA is implemented, Ignagni has softened her position. After hearing consumer complaints about the rising cost of health care, Ignagni appears to be using her influence to bring all sides of the debate together to find a solution to control costs.
For 27 years, the Shakespeare Theatre Company’s artistic director has produced high-quality productions and has been able to recruit some of Hollywood’s biggest players to his stage. In 2013 alone he’s hosting “West Wing” alum Richard Schiff, Academy Awardwinner Christopher Plummer and fivetime Tony winner Audra McDonald, who will join the ranks of James Earl Jones, Patrick Stewart and Helen Mirren in his panoply of players here. Kahn has reached out to the greater Washington community to attract fans (including quite a few Supreme Court justices and members of Congress) and can count on Chelsea Clinton as one of his biggest. During his 25th anniversary gala, Clinton said that seeing Kahn’s Shakespearean plays helped her survive eight years in the White House.
WALTERISAACSON Among the top think tank brass, Isaacson has branded himself as someone who can bring in big name talent to events, recruiting heads of state, secretaries of state and everyone in between to the smaller Washington Ideas Forum and the large Aspen Ideas Festival each year. While he’s accomplished big things at the helm of Aspen, CNN, Time Magazine and as a best-selling author, Isaacson is scoring serious pop culture points for having his biography “Steve Jobs” turned into a movie by none other than “Social Network” screenwriter Aaron Sorkin.
RACHELHOLTANDALEXPRIEST UberDC After a year ensnared with the D.C. government, the black car service hailed via Smartphone is street legal and with the addition of Uber Taxi, cabbies are happy, too.
As the head of the influential American Bankers Association, the former Republican governor of Oklahoma speaks for the nation’s $13 trillion banking industry. He does this often and vociferously, writing impassioned op-eds and appearing on television — usually to talk about what he sees as the many sins of the DoddFrank bill.
RYANCOSTELLO CEO, Event Farm Needed a smart way to ticket the Congressional Blues Festival and Event Farm grew out of that; features include letting Smartphone users “bump” their phones to swap tickets.
BENJACOBSBRIANP COULTERROBERTSTEWART MICHAELGLOSSERMAN The Chevy Chase, Md.-based real estate developer has come quite a long way since Benjamin Jacobs, Donald Brown and Joseph Gildenhorn founded the company in 1960 with an egalitarian spirit. Since then, a new generation is leading a team that includes top producers Matt Kelley and James Iker in remaking much of Washington’s urban landscape through
President Obama’s surprise pick to head the World Bank Group is just one year into his new job, but he is harnessing his experience as a 20-year change-maker in international aid to make some bold statements, most recently at Georgetown University where he told his audience that ending extreme poverty worldwide by 2030 was possible. We believe him. After all, as the first Asian-American to head a major university (Dartmouth), Kim unraveled the school’s fiscal woes and
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Christine Lagarde developed a streamlined healthcare delivery system that cut costs by 30 percent. As director of the World Health Organization’s HIV/AIDS department, he succeeded in bringing life-saving anti-retroviral therapies to three million more in developing countries.
Jim Yong Kim allowing Israel to exclude selected Americans, including Arabs, Muslims or anyone who is critical of Israeli actions or supportive of Palestinian rights, from entering their country or the occupied territories.
MARIATERESAKUMAR EZRAKLEIN Just how influential is the 28-yearold Washington Post blogger? Recently, when White House adviser Dan Pfeiffer was discussing what President Obama liked to read, Klein was one of the handful of writers personally named. “It takes serious things seriously,” Pfeiffer said of Wonkblog, penned primarily by Klein. Not only is Klein fluent in domestic and economic policy, but he’s able to explain complicated concepts on television, which he does regularly as a contributor for MSNBC.
HOWARDKOHR The longtime head of the nation’s most powerful Israel lobby, American Israel Public Affairs Committee, has much to contend with these days, including the U.N.’s late 2012 vote to grant Palestine non-member observer status and a strong challenge from JStreet to be the more balanced voice of the American Jewish community. But under Kohr’s leadership, AIPAC is pushing ahead to exclude Israel from being impacted by sequester cuts to the foreign aid budget, pushing Congress to take even more militant positions against Iran and, most recently, promoting legislation that would uniquely allow Israel to enter the U.S. “visa waiver” program, so that Israelis can enter the U.S. without a visa, while
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It’s always nice to have a celebrity sidekick, as Kumar has in Voto Latino co-founder Rosario Dawson, but she’s personally enhanced the brand by being the group’s face in Washington. A frequent guest on cable news, Kumar has helped expand the organization’s original role from simply getting out the vote, to being another robust voice in the immigration debate that resonates with many younger Latino voters.
Maria Theresa Tapie. Directly after, the IMF’s board of directors expressed a continued confidence in Lagarde.
for his expertise in rebuilding struggling tech companies and convincing investors to see them through.
In the wake of December’s Sandy Hook shooting, the National Rifle Association executive vice president has become the face of the gun lobby. And while he’s taken plenty of flak for suggesting that armed guards are the answer to school shootings, the NRA has stealthily helped take many gun control measures off the table, including a ban on assault weapons and highcapacity magazines, and most recently, background checks despite 90 percent public support for the measure. LaPierre and the NRA can also take credit for neutering more comprehensive legislation.
Never has a Washington baseball team received as much publicity as Lerner’s Nationals are getting this season with grand talks of a possible World Series win. The real estate tycoon (one of only 13 Washingtonians on Forbes’ “2013 Billionaires” list) and majority owner of the Washington Nationals prefers to maintain a very low profile at games and has insisted that he entered the baseball business purely for the love of the game. But it is hard to deny the financial boost Lerner has given the team; over the past few years he has boosted the National’s payroll by more than $100 million per season and now it has been announced that he is finally ready to sell naming rights of the stadium “this year or the next.”
CHRISTINELAGARDE She’s the world’s banker, having taken over the reigns of the International Monetary Fund in July 2011. Since then, she’s helped work out a bailout deal for Greece, all the while continuing to go after those too-big-tofail banks that caused much of the mess in the first place. “At finance meetings all over the world, she is treated practically like a rock star,” former IMF chief economist Kenneth Rogoff recently told the BBC. The first female IMF managing director, French finance minister and chairman of her law firm is not, however, the first IMF head to be investigated. In March, French authorities searched her Paris apartment in connection with a case questioning whether she should have awarded arbitration to French businessman (and Nicolas Sarkozy ally) Bernard
TEDLEONSIS Leonsis must feel a bit like he’s walking down memory lane as he has recently returned to his days in dotcom land with his new interim coCEO position with Groupon. When he started with AOL in 1993, it was merely a fledgling Internet service provider trying to get off the ground. He became a key player during the company’s boom, but also helped rebuild it to where it is today before stepping down in 2006 to focus on his Monumental Sports & Entertainment company, which owns the playoffbound Washington Capitals, Washington Wizards, Washington Mystics and the Verizon Center. Groupon is now valued at about $3 billion, after hitting $17 billion in November 2012, and Leonsis has been temporarily brought on board
JW“BILL”MARRIOTTARNE SORENSON Officially, Marriott may no longer be at the helm of his company, but he’s still an influential force. The business titan recently released another book “Without Reservations” telling his story of turning his family’s first hotel into an international empire. Meanwhile, Sorensen, the company’s third CEO and the first not bearing the Marriott name, is using his position to push for visa reform, which would allow more foreign tourists to enter the United States, thus boosting the country’s hospitality industry. Even though Marriott and Sorenson were big Mitt Romney backers (Romney returned
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to the company’s board, for the third time, after the election in December), President Obama has been lobbying Sorenson on immigration reform. Locally, the hotel industry, which has hit a slump in recent months, has big hopes for the Marriott Marquis Hotel at the Washington Convention Center,w hich opens its doors in 2014.
CHRISMATTHEWS That infectious chortle is hard to miss whether he’s belting it out from NBC’s Nebraska Avenue studio or walking into a cocktail party. Matthews spends six days a week on the airwaves, with his MSNBC show “Hardball” and Sunday’s “The Chris Matthews Show,” but still finds time to be a best-selling author. Now 16 years old, the show and Matthews continue to be appointment TV for the political classes.
MELISSAMAXFIELD It’s no surprise that one of the country’s leading cable, entertainment and communication companies with a vested interest in legislation protecting copyright enforcement on the Internet would want its principle lobbyist to have a working knowledge of the current political landscape. Enter Maxfield, who joined the company after an extensive career in politics, including work on several Democratic campaigns, a stint as director of Dedicated Americans for the Senate and the House PAC and time on Sen. Tom Daschle’s staff. Within five years of joining the company she was named vice president of its federal government affairs office then started tackling the Comcast/NBC Universal merger.
After its successful completion, she was named to her current position as senior vice president of congressional and federal government affairs.
JIMMESSINA After serving as President Obama’s campaign manager, Messina’s next step is twofold. First, he remains in charge of Organizing for Action, the nonprofit successor to Obama for America, which is focusing its resources to the states — getting involved in legalizing gay marriage in Illinois and supporting publicly funded elections in New York state. In addition, he has launched a political consulting firm, The Messina Group, with several Obama campaign veterans, where he’ll do consulting work for the DNC and others.
PATRICIAMILLETT As the head of Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld’s Supreme Court practice, Millett occupies a rarified space as one of a handful of women to argue before the Supreme Court. This year, she argued her 32nd case, thereby setting a record for a woman lawyer. In a field dominated by men, Millett is an influential female voice in important cases, most recently arguing for the right of one Native American tribe to build a casino on federal land. She’s also sought after for commentary/analysis on important Supreme Court cases, including the recent Voting Rights Act challenge.
CONNIEMILSTEIN Connie Milstein knows how to bring people together to do good. At
her Georgetown home in December she welcomed surprise guest Joe Biden, who came to cheer on David Axelrod for shaving off his mustache to benefit his charity, Citizens United for Research in Epilepsy. (Milstein serves on its board.) Then there’s her downtown property the Jefferson Hotel, where Obama chose to break bread with Republican senators and Dick Cheney decided to make a rare appearance to congratulate his old friend Alan Simpson on the former senator’s new book. Milstein supports a multitude of philanthropic endeavors. She’s the namesake behind New York University’s new Washington, D.C. campus and an active board member of Blue Star Families, a military charity, as well as a trustee of Ford’s Theatre. This year she served as chairman of the Washington National Opera as well.
SUSANMOLINARI Soon after Susan Molinari was named head of Google’s Washington office in February 2012, the former New York Republican congresswoman hit the ground running in the famed search engine’s anti-trust battle with the Federal Trade Commission. Less than a year later, Molinari and her team were able to place a huge check in the “W” column as the FTC declared that Google “had not violated antitrust or anti-competition statutes in the way it arranges its Web search results.” By finishing this investigation within two years, Google avoided a costly and lengthy battle that Microsoft fought in the 1990s — the same one that led to Google becoming the dominant leader of the technology sector in the first place.
JANETMURGUIA As the president and chief executive officer of the largest Hispanic civil rights organization in the country, National Council of La Raza, Murguía plays a major role in the ongoing comprehensive immigration reform debate. She’s testified before Congress and taken her message to the masses via a multitude of media hits. Her group pressured lawmakers to stay on track when many in Washington believed that the gun control debate could derail immigration reform. As a veteran of the Clinton White House, Murguía is a political pro, who will do all she can to make sure this opportunity doesn’t go to waste.
VALINASR Once a senior adviser to the Obama Administration on Afghanistan and Pakistan, Nasr has now become a vocal critic of the administration’s foreign policy gatekeepers. In his new book “The Indispensable Nation,” Nasr says that the White House ignored prescient advice from the late Amb. Richard Holbrooke (Nasr’s mentor) who believed a military solution would never work in Afghanistan and that the U.S. should negotiate with the Taliban and hash out a solution with neighboring countries including Pakistan and Iran. This story of “Good Sir Richard vanquished by the Dark Knight of 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.,” writes James Traub in a review for the Wall Street Journal “crashed into Washington like a minor meteor in March...sending State Department
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officials scrambling to insist that they had an ‘excellent working relationship’ with White House staff despite Mr. Nasr’s depiction of wholesale neglect.” Besides rattling the White House and State, Nasr brings his years of policy chops to the halls of the Paul Nitze School of Advanced International Studies at John Hopkins University and to his work at the Brookings Institution, where he serves as a senior fellow.
former secretary of state had only missed once in its 12 years. As Vital Voices’ president and CEO, Nelson brought in other big names as well:Vice President Joe Biden, fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg and NBC’s Ann Curry to honor the brightest and bravest women leaders from across the globe. Nelson not only attracts star power, she also uses the group’s financial resources to support its many international programs to accelerate peace and prosperity.
A Washington native, Nassetta was behind Hilton’s relocation to Northern Virginia in 2009, and now he’s using the convenient location to push legislation on Capitol Hill. Like Arne Sorenson at Marriott, Nassetta is pressing for visa reform so that more foreign travelers can enter the United States and stay at Hilton hotels. In 2012, he was named to the steering committee of “Partners for a New Beginning” an Aspen Institute project that aims to “deepen connections” between the U.S. and the Middle East through publicprivate partnerships. At the same time, Hilton continues to expand in that part of the world and elsewhere. In April, the company opened the first DoubleTree by Hilton hotel in South Africa.
Nnamdi is arguably the most respected radio journalist in Washington, with his thoughtful interviews covering news, politics and — on Wednesdays — food. Nnamdi came to the U.S. in 1968 from his native Guyana to participate in the Civil Rights movement and this, along with years of covering District and U.S. politics, allows him to give his listeners a more global perspective on political issues facing the city and country. As for his interview style, NBC4’s Tom Sherwood told the Washington Post that “Nnamdi will want to know if the guest really did ‘take all that money,’ and it sounds like he’s asking you out for a date.” While Nnamdi has no problem attracting guests from the highest echelons of political power, he doesn’t seem to mind adding a little pop culture into the mix, too.
ALYSENELSON As Hillary Clinton stepped back into private life, the first place she publicly stood back up again was behind the podium at this year’s Vital Voices Global Leadership Awards gala, an event the
GROVERNORQUIST The head of Americans for Tax Reform may have had a bumpy year, as a number of Republicans broke with his “taxpayer protection pledge.” That
2012 was not the brightest year for the GOP, with big losses in the executive and legislative branches. But now they are focusing on rebranding with a few key faces forging the path.
ROBERTCOSTA Washington Editor, National Review Named by Politico as one of the 10 breakout political reporters of 2012; was promoted to Washington Editor in December
ANANAVARRO Republican strategist A needed Latina voice among Republican talking heads
KEVINMADDEN Executive Vice President of Public Affairs for JDA Frontline A veteran of team Romney, who’s now taking his expertise to K Street
SECUPP MSNBC’s “The Cycle” The bespectacled conservative offering news and commentary daily on the liberal cable channel
KENMEHLMAN KKR, Global Head of Public Affairs The former RNC Chairman who came out of the closet and now out for gay marriage; he’s among the Republicans leading the charge
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said, 219 representatives and 39 senators still signed on, which means in the House, Norquist still has considerable support despite the razor-thin majority. In addition, he has been a proponent of comprehensive immigration reform, using his popular “Wednesday Meeting” model to gather select conservatives and Republicans to hash things out.
GREGORYO’DELL Few people have had the opportunity to affect the physical landscape of the nation’s capital as much as Gregory O’Dell. As president and CEO of Events DC, O’Dell joined the quasipublic convention and sports authority company a year into the building of Nationals Park — the first LEEDcertified major professional sports stadium in the U.S. — and was tasked with bringing the project to completion on time and within the city council-mandated budget constraints. He did both, completing construction in a total of 23 months, for $693 million. Between managing the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, the Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium and the surrounding Festival Grounds, the non-military functions of the D.C. Armory and, of course, Nationals Park, Events DC’s properties bring more than a million tourists and about $2 billion in revenue to the city each year, not to mention creating countless new employment opportunities for local residents. Never one to rest on his laurels, O’Dell keeps busy with the construction of Washington’s largest hotel, the 1,175-room, 46suite Washington Marriott Marquis Convention Center hotel, which broke ground in 2010.
Theodore B. Olson and David Boies
Their odd coupling could mean marriage for gay and lesbians in the state of California and maybe even across the land. Olson, who won Bush vs. Gore for “W” back in 2000, and Boies, then his liberal legal foe, teamed up to challenge the constitutionality of California’s Proposition 8, with Olson arguing the case before the Supreme Court this March. When the justices hand down a decision in late June, even a narrow ruling could mean victory for the duo since many believe the cases mark the beginning of the end of opposition to gay rights.
MILTPETERSONJON PETERSON Milt Peterson founded his family’s real estate development business in 1970, literally building it from the ground up, and these days he’s the face of Maryland’s National Harbor. In November, construction began on the Tanger Outlet complex there, bringing the first upscale retail complex to Prince George’s County by Christmas. Peterson used his political clout and his cash — $400,000 for an advertising campaign — to get Marylanders to vote yes on Question 7 to expand gambling legalization in the state. This allows a deal to go forward to bring an MGM Resorts casino to the riverfront facility as well. Son Jon has been with the family business since 1986.
ERICHPICA With the threat of the Keystone XL pipeline still looming and the company behind the project, TransCanada Corp., rerouting it to try to avoid opposition from Nebraska, Pica and his allies are trying to kill Keystone by showing how development of Canada’s dirty tar sands constitutes “a carbon bomb” in the words of famed NASA scientist Jim Hansen, and would be devastating for the climate security of our planet. The environmental group has also been instrumental in the fight to shut down dangerous old nuclear plants such as the troubled San Onofre facility in Southern California as well as working with Republicans and Democrats alike to fight wasteful government subsidies to polluting industries.
HEATHERPODESTA The beginning of 2013 marked the separation of one of Washington’s most prominent power couples, Heather and Tony Podesta. But the founder of Heather Podesta + Partners, the lobbying shop she started in 2007, has her own set of clients that she lobbies for and big wins she can tout. For example, at the end of last year Podesta’s client Uranium Energy was given Environmental Protection Agency approval to pollute an aquifer in Goliad County, Texas, as part of the process to mine for uranium. The plan, when first proposed, was deemed dead on arrival, but Podesta used her clout to take her plea to the No. 2 at the EPA with the agency eventually reversing its decision.
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JOHNPODESTANEERA TANDEN John Podesta guided President Obama into the White House as chairman of his transition team. Now, in the president’s second term, his group, the Center for American Progress, has become the preeminent think tank on the center-left. CAP was founded in 2003 to respond to the progressive movement’s having many issue-oriented groups but no umbrella organization to unite them under one roof. This led to Podesta and Tanden — who deals with the day to day business of the group — being frequently quoted and involved in a vast array of debates in Washington.
TONYPODESTA Podesta is one of the most effective and seasoned lobbyists in Washington with clients such as construction giant Bechtel, Lockheed Martin, BP Oil, General Motors and Bank of America. In 2012, the Podesta Group booked more than $21 million, according to lobbying disclosure filings. This year, Podesta used his influence to help former Republican Sen. Chuck Hagel land the secretary of defense job at the Pentagon. He also signed on the Iraqi Government as a client in February.
MARTHARADDATZ For the past decade, Martha Raddatz has been praised for her war stories, covering the ins and outs of Iraq and Afghanistan as ABC News’ chief global affairs correspondent. But in 2012, it was domestic politics that made her a power player in journalism. Raddatz was one of four presidential debate moderators posing questions to Joe Biden and Paul Ryan in the sole vice presidential debate. And with George Stephanopoulos comfortably at the helm of ABC’s Sunday show “This Week,” Raddatz is his primary substitute (while also appearing frequently on the “This Week” panel).
ABARRYRAND Statistics alone make a compelling case for the American Association of Retired Persons’ influence. The nonprofit, nonpartisan organization is the world’s largest, boasting more than 37 million members and its magazine has the largest circulation of any publication in the United States. And while the organization as a whole
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represents people over age 50, baby boomers hitting the retirement age of 65 are doing so at a rate of 8,000 a day. This means that Rand, who has been at AARP’s helm since 2009, has major say on the issues of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.
MICHAELRANKINJONATHAN TAYLORMARKLOWHAM DAVIDDESANTISAND DERRICKSWAAK The area’s luxury real estate market is back on track and TTR Sotheby’s is taking full advantage. In 2012, the firm participated in more than 1,300 transactions with sales that closed for 96 percent of the list price on average and set several impressive price records — finding a buyer for the most expensive sale ever at the Watergate; brokering the sale of the most expensive condo ever for the D.C. area; and also being the firm behind the most expensive condo sale of the year for the District, according to Curbed D.C. They’ve even bested themselves with sales in 2012 rising 52 percent to $1.3 billion from 2011. TTR Sotheby’s became a part of the Sotheby’s International family in 2006 and has grown to over 200 agents in offices in Georgetown, downtown D.C., McLean and Chevy Chase. In November, the firm marked one billion in sales for the year, by throwing a festive fête at the Four Seasons in Georgetown.
DAVIDRHODES He’s not even 40 and is shaking up broadcasting. Rhodes was named president of CBS News in February 2011 and got his start in the business at Fox News Channel, the only CBS executive to do so. He reinvigorated “CBS This Morning” by putting together Charlie Rose, Gayle King and Norah O’Donnell. With the “Today” show in trouble, “CBS This Morning” is seriously trying to overtake the NBC show in the ratings. At night, “CBS Evening News with Scott Pelley” was up 6 percent in the coveted 25-to54-year-old demo for the first quarter in 2013. In Washington, Rhodes has happily watched Bob Schieffer’s “Face the Nation” overtake NBC’s “Meet the Press” in the ratings.
John and Tony Podesta
JOHNFWROGERS Years of Washington experience plus Wall Street connections make Rogers
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breeding and in January, he announced he would be giving another $50 million to the Kennedy Center. In addition, he has also scooped up some of history’s most precious documents and then loaned them to area museums. His purchases include copies of the Magna Carta, the Declaration of Independence, the 13th Amendment, the Emancipation Proclamation and one of the first U.S. maps drawn after the Revolution.
AUBREYSARVIS After more than four years at the helm of Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, an LGBT advocate group that played a crucial role in the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” this Army veteran took a step back from the limelight to focus on increasing LGBT representation in corporate America and aiding Iraq and Afghanistan veterans. He maintains a direct line of contact with all the heads of military commands and former and current chairmen of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and led President Obama’s charge to engage service members in the 2012 election.
BOBSCHIEFFER Sunday is CBS “Face the Nation” host Bob Schieffer’s day to shine. The 76-year-old newsman has consistently been besting longtime rival “Meet the Press” in the ratings and has used his platform to criticize Washington for the sequester cuts and badger the gun lobby in the wake of Sandy Hook. Around town, Schieffer proves he’s a man of the people performing, from time to time, with his country rock band, Honky Tonk Confidential, at Hill Country Barbeque in Chinatown.
Molly Smith one of the “scariest, most important people at Goldman Sachs,” Business Insider once said of this “Colossus bestriding the globe,” who spent his earlier years working at the White House under the Reagan and Ford administrations before taking a position at the treasury department. Today he uses his vast network of connections to exert influence on the job at Goldman Sachs and help nonprofit institutions by serving as a board member of National Museum of American History, as treasurer of the Ronald Reagan
David Rubenstein Presidential Foundation board, vice chairman of White House Historical Association.
DAVIDRUBENSTEIN The Carlyle Group co-founder would personally prop up the Washington Monument if he had the strength. In any case, the billionaire ended up splitting the tab for the cracked structure’s $15 million repair bill with the U.S. government. Rubenstein also gave $4.5 million last year to the National Zoo to continue panda
STEPHANIESCHRIOCK The energetic leader of EMILY’s List, the organization dedicated to supporting and electing pro-choice Democratic women to local and national office, made a splash on the 2004 presidential campaign trail as Howard Dean’s finance director. She went on to help get long-shot Al Franken elected to the U.S. Senate and handled the complicated legal challenge that followed the razor-thin election results. More recently, she helped elect three new women to the Senate, boosting their number to a record high in the 113th Congress.
GARYSHAPIRO Working with the bipartisan team of Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) and Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Gary Shapiro’s Consumer Electronics Association and other online allies helped stop SOPA and PIPA legislation last year. Shapiro and the CEA are also influencing the immigration debate by taking the conversation of high-skill visas to lawmakers. He and his tech-savvy crowd have also created new ways to entice Congress to do their bidding. In April, for instance, they debuted an app with a geographic component so lawmakers can see what CEA members are up to in their home districts.
MOLLYSMITH Molly Smith can boast that she’s attracted legendary actress Kathleen Turner twice to Arena Stage — first for “Red Hot Patriot: The Kick-Ass Wit of Molly Ivins” and again soon for next season’s production of “Mother Courage and her Children” in which Turner will take on the title role of Mother Courage. Smith has been at the Arena Stage’s helm since 1998 and helped usher the company into a new era when the renovated Mead Center for American Theater opened its doors in 2010. Now it’s a popular events venue as well as playhouse for the greater Washington community. Smith has also proved her chops as a director with “The Music Man” and “Oklahoma!” in recent years. She is also politically involved, having organizing a Washington march for gun control in January after the massacre in Newtown, Conn.
PATTYSTONESIFER For Stonesifer’s sake, we hope the old saying “it’s better to be a big fish in a little pond” is true. In January, the former founding CEO of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the largest philanthropic institution in the world, accepted a new position as president and CEO of Martha’s Table. It came as quite a surprise that this foundation-world heavyweight would want to go from managing a $39 billion endowment fund and a staff of more than 500 to the $6 million budget and 81 employees of the local food pantry and nonprofit organization, but Stonesifer decided she wanted a more “hands-on”
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position. Her move to Martha’s Table follows her service as chairwoman of the Smithsonian Institution Board of Regents and White House Council for Community Solutions and two decades with Microsoft, where she helped develop MSNBC, Encarta and Slate magazine.
RICHARDLTRUMKA With President Obama back in the White House, the AFL-CIO head has changed his mission as he looks to rethink and remake the American labor movement. In the lead up to his organization’s convention in September, Trumka is gathering input from workers, academics, civil rights groups, and other allies to figure out ways labor can serve workers better. “Instead of saying to our community partners and the civil rights movement or the Latino movement, ‘that’s your issue and this is my issue,’ they’re going to be our issues, and we’re going to work together,” Trumka said in a recent interview on C-SPAN.
CHRISWALLACE There’s no questioning Wallace’s journalistic pedigree, but the “Fox News Sunday” host has long held his own, in part because his tough and comprehensive interview style. He was the first journalist to score a postelection sit-down with Mitt and Ann Romney and is also happy to call out guests from the right such as Wayne La Pierre of the NRA. His folksy charm has captivated Washington’s media establishment, in part thanks to his wife Lorraine’s two cookbooks, “Mr. Sunday’s Saturday Night Chicken” and “Mr. Sunday’s Soups.”
RANDIWEINGARTEN With schools closing, student loan debt soaring and sequestration threatening to do even more slimming to the budgets of public schools across the country, Weingarten represents her 1.5 million members with passion. In March she made this point clearly when she was arrested in Philadelphia for protesting public school closures. She’s been vocal recently on the negative effects sequestration will have on the nation’s teachers and schools. She’s also among those in the labor community who are gearing up for gubernatorial races in 2013 and 2014, planning a substantial counteroffensive against right
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wing state leaders who have tried to gut union power since 2010.
GEORGEWILL Mitt Romney might be president if he had listened to columnist George Will and released his tax returns. And while Will has been a steadfast voice for conservatism, he’s occasionally surprised his rightward-oriented readers by supporting a few ideas from across the aisle, for example when he agreed with Democratic Sen. Sherrod Brown’s proposal to break up America’s biggest banks. Will likes to keep his readers on their toes with his often scathing commentary, while keeping the general public informed of his positions via numerous television appearances.
DANIELYOHANNES A former banker born in Ethiopia and raised in California and Denver, Colo. ,Yohannes knows a thing or two about investing. He built his fortune with the launch of M&R Investments and co-founded New Resource Bank in San Francisco to fund green businesses and projects. He uses his considerable knowledge in growing businesses to good effect directing Millennium Challenge Corporation’s considerable financial support to help developing countries such as Honduras and Nicaragua meet specific — not to mention life-changing — development goals.
DAVIDZASLAVANDJOHN HENDRICKS As head honchos of the Silver Spring-based “nonfiction entertainment juggernaut” (as AdWeek calls it), they’ve watched Discovery continue to grow. In April, the company announced that major names like Kal Penn, Tamron Hall, Susan Lucci and Jerry Springer would be anchoring shows across the networks as new, creative shows were being added to the lineup (“My Teen Is Pregnant and So Am I” on TLC and “Eel of Fortune” on Animal Planet. The company also continues to grow internationally with the launch of TLC in the United Kingdom and Ireland. Zaslav has also expressed confidence that the flailing OWN Network, Discovery’s joint venture with Oprah Winfrey, is turning the narrative around.
Bono and former President Bill Clinton RandibyWeingarten (Photo Tony Powell)
Published on Apr 30, 2013