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Personnel note: McGuireWoods Consulting opens new Tallahassee office

These three have good reason to toast the new year: Veteran lobbyists Sean Stafford, Rhett O’Doski and Ryder Rudd have opened a new office in Tallahassee for McGuireWoods Consulting.

The announcement was shared first with Florida Politics.

“We are excited to welcome Sean, Rhett and Ryder to the team and establish a strong government affairs practice in Tallahassee,” Jim Hodges, incoming president and CEO of McGuireWoods Consulting, said in a statement.

“They are seasoned professionals who possess the relationships and policy expertise to be tremendous assets for both current and future clients, as well as a great resource for the law firm and its attorneys,” Hodges added.

The three lobbyists have more than six decades of combined government relations experience in Florida and were formerly with the Advantage Consulting Team, founded by Stafford and O’Doski in 2008.

Stafford and O’Doski will serve as senior vice presidents in the firm’s State Government Relations practice and Rudd will join as a vice president.

“All are adept at working with companies and organizations, both large and small, to develop tailor-made strategies aimed at achieving clients’ business goals and legislative objectives,” according to a company news release.

The new office is downtown at 115 East Park Ave., next to the DoubleTree hotel.

“The firm has a number of clients in the state or that have legislative or policy-related needs in Florida and we are excited to be able to offer our comprehensive suite of services to them,” said Mark Bowles, incoming chairman of McGuireWoods Consulting.

“Establishing an office in Tallahassee helps fill out our southeastern footprint and the additions of Sean, Rhett and Ryder ensure we have assembled the best team possible to move forward with our strategic vision.”

Here are capsule bios, provided by the firm, on each of the three:

— “Stafford is a lifelong Tallahassee resident who has provided political, legislative and strategic advice to some of the nation’s most recognized corporations over the past 25 years. He has worked across party lines and navigated complex issues in state government across myriad industries. Stafford, who is also an active member of the Florida Association of Professional Lobbyists, has been appointed by Republican and Democrat elected officials to serve on various task forces, including the Governor’s Trade Mission to the UK Task Force and the Florida Chief Financial Officer’s ‘Safeguarding our Seniors’ Task Force.”

— “O’Doski has a diverse government relations background with more than 20 years of experience working in both the public and private sector. Prior to entering the private sector in 2002, he served as senior consultant to former Insurance Commissioner and current U.S. Senator Bill Nelson, as a legislative specialist to former Chief Financial Officer Tom Gallagher and chief of staff to former state Sen. Charles Williams. He also served as the legislative lobbyist for the Department of Insurance under two gubernatorial administrations where he was responsible for the development, coordination and passage of the Department’s legislative agenda and budget priorities. In addition to his expertise in insurance-related issues, O’Doski is also well versed in the healthcare, energy, technology and financial service industries.”

— “Rudd has more than 14 years of state government and regulatory experience spanning both the public and private sectors. In his public sector service, he has worked in a variety of capacities in the Executive Office of the Governor, the Department of Management Services, the Department of Environmental Protection, and the Public Service Commission. He is well versed in issues related to energy policy, utilities, telecommunications, environmental protection, natural resources, land use, real estate, insurance, purchasing and procurement, state agency vendor contracts and the state retirement system.”

Founded in 1998, McGuireWoods Consulting LLC is a full-service public affairs firm offering government relations, strategic communications & grassroots, and infrastructure and economic development services. It is a subsidiary of McGuireWoods LLP, a leading international law firm with more than 1,000 lawyers in 20 cities.

Written By

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including Florida Politics and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. Schorsch is also the publisher of INFLUENCE Magazine. For several years, Peter's blog was ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.

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Florida Politics is a statewide, new media platform covering campaigns, elections, government, policy, and lobbying in Florida. This platform and all of its content are owned by Extensive Enterprises Media.

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