Personnel note: Bethany Swonson McAlister joins Corcoran Partners

Bethany ART
McCalister is a former Chief of Staff at the Florida Department of Education.

Corcoran Partners on Tuesday announced that it is adding Bethany Swonson McAlister to the team.

“We are excited and honored to have Bethany join the Corcoran Partners team. Her experiences have equipped her with the knowledge and ability to navigate countless areas of policy and bring people and entities together to form successful partnerships. Bethany’s expertise and character are second to none and we know that she will play an integral role in serving the interests of our clients,” said Mike Corcoran, CEO and founding partner of Corcoran Partners.

McAlister brings more than a decade of experience in the private, nonprofit and government sectors to the firm. She most recently worked as Chief of Staff at the Florida Department of Education, after serving the agency as Deputy Chief of Staff and Legislative Affairs Director and as the Executive Director for the Florida Education Foundation.

The hire was praised by former Education Secretary Richard Corcoran, McAlister’s former boss and the brother of Mike Corcoran.

“I appreciate Bethany and her time at the Florida Department of Education, her advocacy for important policy issues and her staunch support for ensuring that Florida’s education system continues to be the driving force that provides well-rounded citizens that give back to the State of Florida,” he said. “She is a fierce advocate and focused leader that has made it clear she will not stop working until all aspirations to empower families and create conditions that support improved community outcomes are reached.”

In addition to her work at DOE, McAlister has managed global hospitality accounts in the communication field, led annual million-dollar development efforts, secured multi-year grants spearheading civic literacy education, and executed a statewide U.S. Senate debate.

She has also developed an extensive network of leaders across the state. Among them are Sens. Joe Gruters and Shevrin Jones and Reps. Alex Rizo and Dana Trabulsy, each of whom offered their seal of approval on the new gig.

“I am positive Bethany will serve as an exceptional teammate who will keep the needs of others at the forefront of all she advocates for,” Gruters said. “I look forward to working with her to advance better outcomes and programs for our state.”

McAlister earned a bachelor’s degree in public relations from Florida State University and a master’s degree in nonprofit management from the University of Tampa.

Corcoran Partners is one of the Top 10 lobbying firms in the state in terms of quarterly revenues. Its clientele spans several industries, including real estate development, gaming and telecommunications. McCalister joins a team that already includes Mike Corcoran, Jacqueline Corcoran, Matt Blair, Helen Levine, Will Rodriguez, and Andrea Tovar.

Drew Wilson

Drew Wilson covers legislative campaigns and fundraising for Florida Politics. He is a former editor at The Independent Florida Alligator and business correspondent at The Hollywood Reporter. Wilson, a University of Florida alumnus, covered the state economy and Legislature for LobbyTools and The Florida Current prior to joining Florida Politics.


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