The Southern Group is bringing on Karis Lockhart as its new Legislative and External Affairs Director in Tallahassee.
Rachel Cone, managing partner of the Tallahassee office, announced the hire in an email to firm staff.
According to the announcement, Lockhart will take on a long list of responsibilities, including tracking Legislative Session priorities, managing interns, assisting on client reports, coordinating events, database management, and RFI responses, among other things.
Lockhart comes to the firm from the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, where she served as Deputy Legislative Affairs Director for the past two Legislative Sessions.
Prior to serving at DEO, Lockhart worked on Gov. Ron DeSantis’ 2018 campaign as a digital assistant, served as the campaign manager for her mother Amy Lockhart’s run for Seminole County Commission and worked on Jason Brodeur’s 2016 state House campaign.
During her college years she held numerous student leadership positions tied to the Republican Party, including a stint as Chair of the UCF College Republicans and later Chair of the Florida Federation of College Republicans.
Her resume — which earned her “Rising Star” recognition in the summer 2019 edition of INFLUENCE magazine — belies the fact that she graduated from the University of Central Florida just two years ago.
Lockhart begins her job at The Southern Group on Monday.
The Southern Group is one of the top lobbying firms in the state. TSG represents an array of clients across several industries and routinely places among the top-5 state-level lobbying firms in quarterly earnings.
The firm has six offices across Florida and also operates in Alabama, Georgia and South Carolina.