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Movin' on up: Chris Hudson takes on a new national role at AFP.

Influence

Personnel note: Chris Hudson moves up to AFP national post

A veteran of one of Florida’s most influential policy groups is going national.

Chris Hudson, state director for Americans For Prosperity-Florida, will now become AFP’s vice president of State Government Affairs. Hudson has been the group’s top Florida operative since 2014.

Skylar Zander, AFP-FL’s deputy director and chief legislative architect will become interim state director.

Hudson’s new role will be to drive national policy priorities “across the 36 states where AFP has had a permanent presence” according to a statement released Wednesday. Americans For Prosperity is the key political arm of the Koch Network; AFP-FL is its signature grassroots organization.

In Florida, Hudson played a significant part in developing a “permanent grassroots infrastructure” that included mobilizing thousands of Floridians to take action on a number of AFP issues: slowing down Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act, enacting health care and education reforms (like the newly enacted Schools of Hope scholarships), as well as putting a check on government programs tagged as “corporate welfare.”

AFP-FL pressure on Florida lawmakers led to significant cuts and reforms of several incentive programs in Florida, such as film industry subsidies and taxpayer money for sports stadiums.

“I’ve learned a lot over my four years with the Florida Chapter,” Hudson says. “I’m looking forward to sharing those lessons with our teams across the country to help drive significant policy victories that promote the principles of a free and open society by reducing barriers, so all Americans can achieve their highest potential.”

Hudson also credits supporters, both locally and in Tallahassee, for “cementing AFP in their communities as a trusted resource to lawmakers and community groups.”

With such a foundation, Hudson says he is confident AFP-FL will reach “even greater heights.”

“I look forward to seeing firsthand our new and current leaders step up to lead the charge,” Hudson says.

Before his time at AFP-FL, Hudson spent three years leading government relations for public relations firm Strategic Advocacy and the Foundation for Government Accountability, a nonpartisan free-market think tank. In 2010, Hudson served as Central Florida field director for the House majority’s campaign effort, working with 20 legislative campaigns along the I-4 Corridor.

Hudson is based in Naples, where he lives with his wife and daughter.

Written By

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist, editor and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing, reporting and management experience, Phil produced content for both print and online, in addition to founding several specialty websites, including HRNewsDaily.com. His broad range included covering news, local government and entertainment reviews for Patch.com, technical articles, and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine as well as advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as editor and production manager for Extensive Enterprises Media since 2013 and lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul. He can be reached at phil.ammann@gmail.com.

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