‘101st Senator’ Heads to K Street

Posted June 10, 2003 at 4:03pm

Robert Short, the longtime chief of staff to former Sen. Strom Thurmond (R-S.C.), has been hired by family-owned Passport LLC to lead its lobbying efforts in Washington.

Short, affectionately known in the halls of the Capitol as “Duke,” was the man who held Thurmond’s office together in the waning years of the lawmaker’s career.

Short was often referred to as the 101st Senator — by then-Republican Leader Trent Lott (R-Miss.), among others — because he performed so many duties for Thurmond as his health declined.

Passport helps people start their own businesses through its Web site, www.mypassportonline.com. Passport was founded and is run by Duke’s son, Robert “Bo” Short.

Tauzin’s Latest Departures. Two more aides to House Energy and Com-

merce Chairman Billy Tauzin (R-La.) have announced that they are leaving Capitol Hill for K Street.

Linda Bloss-Baum and Jessica Wallace are departing for lobbying jobs after working on a range of telecommunications issues for the panel.

Bloss-Baum, who joined the committee under former Chairman Thomas Bliley (R-Va.), will join entertainment giant Vivendi Universal Entertainment.

Vivendi, the nation’s largest music company, also own some of this summer’s hottest movies — including “Bruce Almighty,” “2 Fast 2 Furious” and “The Hulk.”

Bloss-Baum replaces Stewart Verdery, who left to join the Department of Homeland Security.

Meanwhile, Wallace is off to Comcast, where she becomes the third Republican lobbyist to sign up with the company since it became the nation’s largest cable operator late last year.

Earlier this year, Comcast picked up Kerry Knott from Microsoft and Brian Kelly from the Electronics Industry Association.

Wallace leaves the committee soon after the departure of Tauzin staffer David Marventano. Marventano, the panel’s former staff director, happens to be Wallace’s fiancé.

Marventano, who went to Fluor Corp., was replaced by Dan Bouillette, a well-respected former Tauzin aide who had been lobbying for the Alpine Group.

Close Shave. James Kilts, chairman and CEO of Boston-based Gillette, has been named chairman of the Grocery Manufacturers of America’s board of directors.

Kilts was most recently vice chairman of the organization that represents the nation’s food and beverage product manufacturers.

Veridan Gets New Lobbyist. Timothy Sample, who was staff director of the House Intelligence Committee, has been brought on board at Arlington, Va.-based Veridan as a vice president.

Sample will lead the company’s strategic initiatives in its information solutions division.

He has held a number of intelligence leadership positions in the government, including being the nation’s deputy negotiator for the Strategic Arms Reduction Talks and director of the Central Intelligence Nonproliferation Center.

Cornerstone Launches Military Practice. Cornerstone Government Affairs has brought on a retired Army colonel to launch the firm’s defense policy practice.

Daniel Fleming, who has 23 years of service in combat arms and aviation programs, will serve as vice president.

Fleming was the Army’s top legislative liaison on Capitol Hill, working with the Senate and House Armed Services Committees.

Aerospace Company Hires Legislative Liaison. Boulder, Colo.-based Ball Aerospace has named Erin Hatch as its Capitol Hill representative for its civil and commercial space government relations practice.

Hatch worked as a legislative assistant for Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) and was a space and technology policy analyst at the Congressional Research Service.

Former Lott Aide Lobbying on Project BioShield. David Crane, former senior policy adviser to Sen. Trent Lott (R-Miss.) who’s now a lobbyist at the Washington Group, is advising BioPure Corp. of Cambridge, Mass., on issues related to biological attack defense legislation commonly known as Project BioShield.

According to filings, Crane is joined on the project by three others at the Washington Group, including Carlos Bonilla, former special assistant to President Bush on economic policy.