Jay Cranford, a policy aide to Speaker John Boehner, is leaving the Hill to join the lobby shop Clark Lytle & Geduldig as a partner in May.
The newly minted lobbyist will work on the firm’s existing clients, but he also will focus on building an energy and technology practice. In addition to his work for the Ohio Republican’s leadership team, Cranford previously served as staff director of the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources.
It’s also not his first time in the private sector. He was director of government affairs for both the National Ocean Industries Association and the El Paso Corp.
“We’ve been waiting patiently to bring on the right partner at the right time,” firm co-founder Steve Clark said. “Jay is the perfect addition. We have set ambitious goals and we know we can meet them together. We feel like we got the best guy in the draft.” The firm says Cranford will carefully abide by the one-year lobbying ban that applies to former staff.
Last fall, as the midterm elections approached, Roll Call reported that Cranford was among a cadre of top GOP staffers that lobbyists, corporate executives and headhunters had on their wish lists because of their connections to top House Republicans.
Cranford has advised Boehner on a number of issues including energy, environment, telecommunications, agriculture and science.
Former Rep. Deborah Pryce (R-Ohio) also is affiliated with the firm. And Cranford won’t be the only one-time aide to Boehner at the shop: Partner Sam Geduldig worked for the Ohioan as well as for then-Rep. and now-Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.).
The firm also recently brought on Amy Wren as vice president of external relations. Wren worked in the George W. Bush and Obama administrations and most recently was a Congressional liaison with the U.S. Trade and Development Agency.
Clark Lytle & Geduldig’s lobbying revenue under the GOP-controlled House has soared. In the first quarter of this year, the firm’s Lobbying Disclosure Act receipts will total more than $800,000, compared with $434,000 for the first quarter of last year when Democrats ran the House.
Their clients include MasterCard, Univision, Verizon and Allstate.
Other former Hill colleagues who are now in the private sector called Cranford a good fit for the firm. “He’ll be a valuable asset to the firm and his future clients,” said Brian Kennedy, a former Boehner press secretary who is now a senior managing director at Financial Dynamics. “You would be hard-pressed to find an individual who is more knowledgeable and widely respected by Members and staff on both sides of the aisle.”
Added Amos Snead, a partner at Story Partners: “Having worked with both Jay Cranford and Sam Geduldig in House leadership, I can’t think of a better fit for each of them.”
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Each year since 1990, CQ Roll Call has reviewed the financial disclosures of all 541 senators, representatives and delegates to determine the 50 richest members of Congress. This year's report, derived from forms covering the calendar year 2012, shows it took a net worth of $6.67 million to crack the exclusive club.