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Akin Gump hires Pagano — Grant Denton joins CLS Strategies — Association: Political billboards a growth area

Date: March 05, 2014

The Outdoor Advertising Association of America has crunched the numbers and found that the political outdoor advertising market is up significantly.

AKIN GUMP HIRES PAGANO: The law firm Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld has hired White House Deputy Assistant to the President for Legislative Affairs Ed Pagano in the firm’s public law and policy practice. Pagano spent the past two years in the Obama administration, where he served as the president’s liaison to the Senate. “Ed is truly an outstanding addition to the firm,” said Kim Koopersmith, Akin Gump chairperson, in a statement. “With two decades of experience in the public sector, including on both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue, he has developed an excellent reputation throughout Washington. Ed’s experience and guidance will be a great asset to our many clients whose interests intersect with the federal government, and I am thrilled to welcome him as one of our partners.”

GRANT DENTON JOINS CLS STRATEGIES: Former Obama campaign staffer Grant Denton has joined CLS Strategies as managing associate of digital services. He’s the second Obama campaign alum to join the firm in the last year. He joins former Pennsylvania digital director and fellow CLS Strategies managing associate Josh Cook on the company's growing digital team. “Grant will be crucial in strengthening our digital work to get our client’s voice heard by precisely the right audience, bypassing the traditional gatekeepers. Our approach rejects one-size-fits-all strategies in favor of tailored efforts that marry creativity and the targeted messages with the right digital platform,” said Cook.

GOOD TUESDAY AFTERNOON where it’s been 495 years since Hernán Cortés sailed from Cozumel for the Yucatán peninsula for an invasion of modern-day Mexico. His small army ultimately destroyed the Aztec capital Tenochtitlan three years later, in 1521. More than 400 years later, songwriter Neil Young would pen a disapproval of Cortés’s invasion on the album “Zuma.” Send your lobbying news, gossip, tips and scoops to Andrea is And keep up with PI on Twitter by following @ByronTau or @PoliticoPI.

ASSOCIATION: POLITICAL BILLBOARDS A GROWTH AREA: The Outdoor Advertising Association of America has crunched the numbers and found that the political outdoor advertising market is up significantly. Political ad spending on outdoor advertising grew 13.3 percent from the 2009-10 election cycle to the 2011-12 cycle, according to an analysis of Kantar Media data done by the association. Advocacy groups are increasingly turning to billboards and other outdoor advertisements to make political points. Ongoing high-profile billboard campaigns include the government of Canada’s advocacy in Washington, the Americans for Prosperity billboard buy against Sen. Kay Hagan in North Carolina and a National Republican Senatorial Committee campaign against Democratic Rep. Bruce Braley in Iowa. “Advocacy groups are turning to outdoor advertising for several reasons. They are looking for alternatives to television, which is expensive and already saturated with advertising. They often need to act quickly and billboards — especially digital billboards — provide rapid turnarounds. Billboards also permit very specific targeting of audiences. And outdoor ads powerfully communicate messages without the cost and time required to produce a TV or radio ad,” the association argues in a release.

ACCCE UPS JADE DAVIS: The American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity has promoted Jade Davis to senior director of state affairs. His previous title was director of state affairs and outreach.  “Jade has proven to be a talented leader on the ACCCE team, working to build relationships and educate groups both inside the beltway and across the country about the importance of affordable, reliable coal-fueled power,” said Mike Duncan, ACCCE president & CEO. “Jade’s continued dedication to our mission of preserving and promoting coal-based electricity is invaluable, and his new role is a testament to his talent as a driver of outreach and advocacy.”

SAMUELS TO HEAD UP ENGINE ADVOCACY: Julie Samuels, Electronic Frontier Foundation's patent policy guru, is departing to take over as Engine Advocacy's executive director, reports POLITICO’s Alex Byers in Morning Tech. She'll take over much of the day-to-day work from Engine co-founder Josh Mendelsohn, and her addition is supposed to foreshadow further growth of the Engine team, according to a release. For example, Engine's also bringing on former patent office chief of staff Peter Pappas as a senior fellow on intellectual property, and plans to add new folks on net neutrality and women in technology. "As Engine moves into its third year and continues to grow, there's no one I'd rather have leading us than Julie Samuels," Engine co-founder Michael McGeary said in a statement.

ITSA ANNOUNCES NEW HIRES: POLITICO’s Adam Snider has the scoop: The Intelligent Transportation Society of America will announce two key hires later today. Jennifer Carter has left SAIC to become the group's director of technical programs, where she will be the point person for ITSA's research and tech work with DOT. And Callie Hoyt will be the new manager of external affairs, where she will work on communications, marketing and outreach efforts. Hoyt comes over from the Alliance for Driver Safety and Security.

CAPON OUT AT NARP: Also, via Adam Snider: The National Association of Railroad Passengers is losing its longtime leader. Ross Capon, who has been executive director of the group since 1976, will be "transitioning from" the post, NARP announced. Larry Scott will be the acting president. "Ross has served America's passengers with great distinction during his 39 year tenure," said NARP Chairman Bob Stewart.


WYDEN SHORTAGE ON K STREET: His ascent to Senate Finance Committee chairman has major lobbying shops in a bidding war over insiders with the Oregon Democrat. Via The Hill:

THERE’S A FITNESS LOBBY, OBVIOUSLY: And they’re honoring Earl Blumenauer and Shelley Moore Capito

HOLLYWOOD LOBBYING GROUP TO SPONSOR CPAC:  “The Conservative Political Action Conference has never been known for attracting Hollywood (unless you count Kirk Cameron, Stephen Baldwin or the Duggars), but the Motion Picture Association of America will be there this year — at least in spirit. The movie studios’ biggest lobbying group is once again sponsoring the conservative confab, which kicks off Thursday just outside of D.C.”


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