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The 100+ List – part five (of seven)

In alphabetical order, The Missouri Times collected a list of more than 100 people in the world of politics and political media that you need to know if you don’t already. The list doesn’t include legislators, but rather their staff and the governmental relations personnel and consultants that affect the outcomes of the legislator’s actions. Follow them on Twitter, familiarize yourself with their work and keep an eye out, because these people are not going anywhere. This list appeared in the Aug. 1 issue of The Missouri Times. If you have any questions or comments about the list, email Scott Faughn at

A few people from each category will be posted each day. Keep an eye out.

In case you missed it, here are the previous posts: Part one – Part two – Part three –Part four

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Governmental relations

Bill McKennaMcKenna
Spokesman, Missouri Transportation Alliance

He is a former state senator from Jefferson County who was one of the most accomplished legislators to enter government advocacy. With his experience as former Chairman of the State Highway Commission, McKenna is right at home advocating for the state’s transportation needs. He is also the father of Sen. Ryan McKenna, D-Jefferson City, and uncle of Rep. TJ McKenna, D-Festus. His experience with politics made him one of the best public speakers in advocacy.

Chuck HatfieldHatfield
Chair of Government Solutions Practice Group, Stinson Morrison Hecker
Twitter: @chuckhatfield

The number of people who have the access that Hatfield has to the governor’s office can likely be counted on one hand. Hatfield has a great sense of humor and is a throwback to politicos of the past. His client list is unique, representing Kansas City Power & Light, as well as Monsanto Company. Surely that is a testament to his ability to be personally liked by most people who work with him.

Clark BrownBrown
Legislative Director, Service Employees International Union (SEIU)

To put it simply, in a legislature that features Republican super majorities, Clark does not have an easy job. However, he has been part of an effort to hold back the tide of some legislation that would cripple the union movement. Clark and SEIU are some of the most aggressive advocates for workers’ rights in the state, thus making it difficult for anyone to match his passion.

David McCrackenMcKracken
Lobbyist, Flotron & McIntosh
Twitter: @DMcCracken77

Like Jackson, McCracken is another up-and-coming lobbyist from St. Louis. He played a role in lobbying for local control of the St. Louis Police Department. He has one of the more varied portfolios in the business that includes healthcare, technology and association clients. McCracken is also talented with technology and networking systems.

Jim FoleyFoley
Partner, Burton & Liese

Foley follows some of his counterparts in the powerhouse Burton & Liese firm as a former legislator of some note. He spent 10 years in the House and served as Assistant Minority Floor Leader before leaving the legislature and becoming the Deputy Director of the Department of Economic Development. His strong background in two branches of government and his time as an Alderman and President of the Board of Alderman in St. Ann gives him a wider background than most.

Kim TuttleTuttle
Lobbyist, John Bardgett & Associates

If there is anyone in Jefferson City who is liked by everyone, it is Tuttle. Often times, the terms “elegant” and “lobbyist” are not synonymous, but Tuttle brings an element of class to the public policy process that is invaluable to her clients. She is known by everyone, but more accurately — everyone wants to know her. (Photo from the St. Louis Regional Chamber & Growth Association)

Kristian StarnerStarner
Lobbyist, Brent Hemphill & Associates
Twitter: @kristianstarner

Starner is a high-energy, positive presence in the Capitol and ultimately is a perfect compliment to Brent Hemphill and together, they make one of the most effective teams for their clients in Jefferson City. She is also extremely popular with the associations she represents.

Mike TalboyTalboy
Director of Government Affairs, Burns and McDonnell
Twitter: @miketalboy

He was one of the most effective minority leaders in the history of the Missouri House and has now extended that success to his new position with  engineering firm Burns and McDonnell. Talboy is a leading Kansas City citizen and an attorney who is one of the most-connected individuals on our list.

Nancy GiddensGiddens
Principal, The Giddens Group
Twitter: @nancygiddens

She is one of the few women who lead lobbying firms, but one chat or high-profile lunch with her and you can see why. High energy and tenacious representation of her clients are some things she is known for, as well as her rural roots. Her firm has several clients in and around the Kansas City area, as well as statewide. If you would like to meet someone who is on the way up in Missouri lobbying, meet Giddens.

Rodney BoydBoyd
Partner, Dentons
Twitter: @rodneyboyd

Boyd is a lawyer-turned-lobbyist who, in addition to representing the Mayor of St. Louis, is frequently the point person for legislative issues involving St. Louis companies. He did countless hours of work passing the “liquor war bill” through the House during last session. He also hosts a radio show on the weekends — listen if you haven’t already.

Scott ChartonCharton
Principal, Charton Communications and Consulting, LLC
Twitter: @scottcharton

Scott is a retired AP capitol correspondent and now owns one the best public relations firms around. He truly knows how to communicate with reporters on behalf of his clients because he was one for so long. Additionally, he is also an innovator in the state for the use of social media.

Sean NicholsonNicholson
Executive Director, Progress Missouri
Twitter: @ssnich

There is one name that can raise the blood pressure of any Republican in Jefferson City, and it is Nicholson. Under his founding and leadership, Progress Missouri has become the biggest thorn in the side Republicans in the Capitol as the group is represented anywhere and everywhere. This veteran of Democratic politics has a knack for making sure his organization is at the center of every big issue in the state.

Travis BrownTBrown
Partner, Pelopidas
Twitter: @pelopidas

Pelopidas is one of the most spoken words in Missouri politics and that is largely due to the vision and drive of Brown. Whatever your feelings are regarding Brown and his organization, one thing is indisputable — they drive a great deal of the conversation in Missouri politics. Outside of politics, Brown is also an author and wine sommelier.

Trent WatsonWatson
Principal, Trent Watson
Twitter: @twatson151

Watson has a way of taking very complex issues and breaking them down for his clients. His roster of clients include several issue sectors with varied interests — many of whom have been with him for several years, likely to the fact he is one of the most down-to-Earth people in Jefferson City.

Zora MulliganMulligan
Executive Director, Missouri Community College Association
Twitter: @mccatweet

In years of lean budgets, there is one portion of state government that is fighting tooth and nail and adding to this list of non-geographic allies because the case is she is making for the return on state investments in community colleges. The aggressive presentation of that message is gaining momentum and Mulligan is a key architect of that message.

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Michael HafnerHafner
Vice President of Government Affairs, Barklage and Knodell
Twitter: @michaelfhafner

Hafner is an operative with an eye on results. He is involved in as many contentious public policy issues as anyone in the state and is extremely well connected. While he has one of the biggest jobs of any operative in the state already, he also has one of the brightest futures of anyone on this list.

Roy TempleTemple
Partner, Groundswell Public Strategies
Twitter: @roytemple

This former member of the Carnahan and Holden administrations is a hard-nosed operative with a steel-trap memory. Temple is also one of the more innovative people in Missouri politics and exhibited that with his founding of the website, Many are clamoring for his more combative style to make a comeback within Democratic ranks.

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Jason HancockHancock
Political Reporter, Kansas City Star
Twitter: @J_Hancock

Hancock has the unique experience of having worked for both the Post-Dispatch and Kansas City Star. Always willing to strike up a conversation, Hancock is one of the funniest press corps members whose humor can also be found on his Twitter feed.

Steve KraskeKraske
Political Correspondent, Kansas City Star & Host of Up to Date, KCUR-FM
Twitter: @stevekraske

No one in Missouri can deliver a jab like Kraske be it in print, on Twitter or on the radio. He has a deep historical knowledge of all of the issues facing both Missouri and Kansas. With Missouri closely watching the aggressive business recruitment moves of Kansas, his place between the two leaves him in even more demand.

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Legislative staff

Chris DunnDunn
Chief of Staff, Sen. Rob Schaaf
Twitter: @4lastingchange

Being the Chief of Staff for an outspoken conservative legislator such as Sen. Rob Schaaf, R-St. Joseph, requires some diplomatic skills, and he is very skilled at using that leverage to be very effective in the Capitol. Dunn is one of the most trusted staff members in the Senate.

Dusty SchniedersSchnieders
Chief of Staff, Senate Majority Leader Ron Richard
Twitter: @d_schnieders

Many did not know what to expect when Sen. Richard unexpectedly ran for floor leader last year, but by all accounts, the floor was ran fairly and efficiently and a great deal of that credit goes to Schnieders. We won’t hold out the fact he is a Chicago Cubs fan against him, he has a great reason — a member of his family played for the Northsiders.

Richard GerminderGerminder
Chief of Staff, Sen. Brad Lager

It has to be a new adventure everyday being the Chief of Staff for the most quotable Senator in the body, but Germinder is a level-headed professional and does a great job for Sen. Brad Lager. He is always in control of the issue the senator is working on and with him being chairman of the senate utilities committee those issues are some of the most complex in the legislature.