INFLUENCE Magazine – Fall 2022

Ballard Partners Launches “13th and Park” Podcast

– Co-Hosted by Firm Partners Adam Goodman and Justin Sayfie 

And Recorded in Ballard Partners Studios in Washington –

Ballard Partners, one of the top government relations firms in the United States, has launched a new podcast co-hosted by firm partners Adam Goodman and Justin Sayfie. The podcast name, “13th and Park” refers to the two street names where Ballard Partners has offices in Washington, DC (“13th”) and Tallahassee, Florida (“Park”).  

The first four podcast episodes were recorded at the newly opened Ballard Partners Studios in Washington and are now live and streaming on all major platforms including Apple, Spotify and Amazon.  

The first episode of “13th and Park” features Larry Sabato, University of Virginia Professor and renowned political prognosticator. Sabato founded and directs the University’s Center for Politics. In his appearance, Sabato looks into his crystal ball and forecasts the results of the 2022 midterm elections. Click here to listen to the Sabato episode.  

The second episode features Marc Caputo, NBC Digital reporter and former Politico reporter. Caputo discusses a day in the life of an NBC Digital reporter, and provides an unusually candid assessment of the current state of the news media in the U.S. Click here to listen to the Caputo episode.  

The third episode features John McLaughlin, a strategic consultant and GOP pollster for over 35 years. During the podcast, McLaughlin provides a behind-the-curtain look at the Republicans’ strategy for the 2022 midterm elections, and he also dishes some advice to GOP campaigns. Click here to listen to the McLaughlin episode.  

The fourth episode features Ballard partner Courtney Coppola. Coppola is the Co-Chair of the firm’s Cannabis Practice Group and a former cannabis regulator for the State of Florida. In her appearance, she provides a crash course on cannabis legislation at the federal level and opines on the future of the cannabis industry and licensing in the State of Florida. Click here to listen to the Coppola episode.  

“13th and Park listeners will feel like they are eavesdropping on a private conversation between the savviest minds in the country,” said Brian Ballard, the firm’s President and Founder. “Adam and Justin are the perfect co-hosts for the podcast’s insightful conversations on a broad range of topics including politics, government, economics, technology and culture.” 

Goodman is one of the nation’s best-known media consultants and has been producing award-winning television, radio and strategic messaging for corporate, advocacy and candidate campaigns for four decades. Goodman is a frequent national TV commentator and widely published columnist. He was honored by being selected as the first Edward R. Murrow Fellow at Tufts University’s prestigious Fletcher School. He was also recently named, for the third time, as one of Florida’s “500 Most Influential Business Leaders” by Florida Trend. Dubbed a “media icon” by the Tampa Bay Times, Goodman has also worked with screen and television celebrities on behalf of issues and causes, from Robert De Niro and James Earl Jones to Katie Couric and Bob Barker. Goodman serves as a strategic communications consultant for Ballard Media Group’s clients domestically and abroad. 

Sayfie has served in the administration of three U.S. presidents and also served as a top advisor for former Florida Governor Jeb Bush. He has appeared as a political commentator on CNN, Fox News and MSNBC. Sayfie has also published Florida’s popular political news site and mobile app, Sayfie Review, since 2002. He can be followed on Twitter @JustinSayfie.

Michael LaRosa Joins Ballard Partners as a Partner in the Washington Office

Ballard Partners, one of the top government relations firms in the United States, is opening a new office in Sarasota and firm partner Todd Josko will serve as Managing Partner of the newly opened office. 

“As Florida’s growth continues to boom, Southwest Florida is a burgeoning market for Florida business and also plays a critical role in Florida governance and elections,” said Brian Ballard, the firm’s President and Founder. “We are delighted to be expanding the firm’s significant footprint in Florida under Todd’s leadership, given his long-standing personal ties and unique knowledge of Sarasota and Manatee Counties.” 

Josko has over 25 years of experience in state and municipal government relations, public affairs, strategic communications and political strategies, and has been a partner in the firm’s Tampa office since 2016. Previously, as founder and president of a Tampa-based public affairs firm that he led for 15 years, Josko helped Fortune 500 companies and trade associations successfully resolve governmental and regulatory challenges, particularly on issues affecting growth, transportation, economic development and water quality. Earlier in Josko’s career, he served as a legislative aide to a member of the Florida House of Representatives from Manatee County.

“I am excited to plant the Ballard Partners flag in my hometown of Sarasota,” said Josko. “With our firm’s local, state, federal and international reach, our capabilities are unrivaled in Southwest Florida.”

Josko formerly held a senior level position with an international strategic communications firm and has advised many national, state and local Republican candidates. Josko holds a Master of Science degree in Political Science from Florida State University and a Bachelor of Science degree in Finance from the University of Florida.

The firm’s thriving Tampa office will continue to be led by Ana Cruz.

Ballard Partners and Thomas Cerra Form Strategic Partnership

Ballard Partners, one of the top government relations firms in the United States, has formed a strategic partnership with Thomas Cerra, a nationally respected educator and K-12 government relations consultant.

“Creating this strategic partnership with a nationally respected educator and consultant like Tom gives our clients direct access to his decades of experience in K-12 education as well as his broad national reach especially in Florida and California,” said Brian Ballard, the firm’s President and Founder. “Our firms have jointly represented a number of school districts in recent years, and we are delighted to establish this more formal K-12 partnership with Tom.” 

As the former deputy superintendent for Miami-Dade County Public Schools (M-DCPS), Cerra’s career as a K-12 educator is well-known nationally as his career spans an experience ladder that includes teaching, school-site administration, serving as chief lobbyist, chief negotiator and labor relations for M-DCPS. His experience also includes city, county, state and federal government relations, as well as strategic planning and policy development. For the last 26 years, he has been president of Florida School Services, Inc, an educational consulting firm. His clients have included school districts, benefits providers, school design and construction and publishing and technology companies as well as an educational foundation. He has served as a legislative lobbyist for M-DCPS for the past 26 years.

“Partnering with Ballard Partners is a great opportunity to mutually enhance our respective relationships and deliver exceptional services to our respective clients,” said Cerra. “I’m looking forward to working closely with Brian and the supremely talented group of professionals at Ballard Partners.”

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