Quantcast Meet RGA Staff « Republican Governors Association

Mike Adams – General Counsel and Deputy Executive Director

madams (at) rga.org

A graduate of the University of Louisville and Harvard Law School, Mike has served the RGA as General Counsel since January 2007. In addition to law firm practice, Mike has served in a number of political and governmental positions, including Deputy General Counsel to a Republican governor, and Counsel to the U.S. Deputy Attorney General.

Jane Batson - Director of Events, Executive Roundtable

jbatson (at) rga.org

Prior to joining RGA, Jane was Executive Meetings Manager, at the Direct Marketing Association (DMA).  At the DMA Jane managed all C-level and Board of Directors Events throughout the United States.    Prior to the DMA, she was Conference Services Manager at the Four Seasons where she oversaw State visits and delegations, including visits by the King of Jordan and Dali Lama.  Jane began her career at the US Chamber of Commerce working for the National Chamber Foundation, followed by becoming the Manager of Corporate Programs.  Jane is a graduate of Randolph-Macon College in Ashland, VA.

Paul Bennecke – Executive Director

Twitter: @PaulBennecke

Paul’s experience reaches across all fifty states having worked with dozens of gubernatorial and legislative campaigns. Prior to joining the RGA, Paul was the founding principal of Red Clay Strategies, a public affairs and issue advocacy firm. He provided strategic counsel and services to companies, trade associations, and was a senior consultant to several Republican candidates, Super PAC’s and Party Committees for local, state, and federal elections.

From 2007-2010, Paul served the Republican Governors Association (RGA) as Deputy Executive Director and Political Director. He managed RGA’s political operations including candidate recruitment, independent expenditures and candidate-committee coordination. Before RGA, Paul was Executive Director and Political Director of the Georgia Republican Party and Political Director for Georgia Governor Sonny Perdue’s successful gubernatorial campaign in 2002.

Laura Ciciarelli - Director of Operations

lciciarelli (at) rga.org

Laura serves as the RGA Director of Operations after spending the past two years at the RGA, organizing the internship program and assisting the Governors Liaison with the coordination of meetings and conferences. Laura is a graduate of Wake Forest University in Winston Salem, NC with a Bachelor’s Degree in political science and Spanish. She is a native of Wall, New Jersey.

Danielle Cleveland – Executive Roundtable Coordinator

dcleveland (at) rga.org

Danielle is the RGA’s Executive Roundtable Coordinator. Prior to joining the RGA, she worked on the Mitt Romney for President Campaign as the Wisconsin State Office Manager and served as an intern in the office of Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker. Danielle graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Carthage College and is a native of Madison, Wisconsin.

Jodi Comunale – Director of Events

jcomunale (at) rga.org

Prior to joining RGA, Jodi was Manager, Programs & Events at the State Government Affairs Council (SGAC).  At SGAC, Jodi programmed and executed two Annual Conferences along with numerous other networking and educational events throughout the year.  Prior to SGAC, Jodi was Senior Conference Manager at the Direct Marketing Association where she oversaw a portfolio of conferences.  Jodi began her career at the US Chamber of Commerce working in the fundraising department. Jodi is a 2004 graduate of Clemson University in South Carolina where she majored in Marketing with a concentration in Communications.

Juliette Crowther – Events Coordinator

jcrowther (at) rga.org

Juliette serves as the RGA Events Coordinator, helping organize the RGA’s numerous events, meetings and gatherings of Republican governors across the country. Prior to joining the RGA, she interned in the office of Louisiana Congressman John Fleming. Juliette graduated with a degree in political science and French at Tulane University in New Orleans and is a native of Shreveport, Louisiana.

Stacy Day – Deputy Press Secretary

Twitter: @StacyJDay


Stacy serves as Deputy Press Secretary for the Republican Governors Association. A Wisconsin native, Stacy’s previous experience includes time as an intern in Governor Scott Walker’s office and as a staff member for former Governor Tommy Thompson’s 2012 U.S. Senate campaign. Stacy earned degrees in journalism and political science from the University of Wisconsin.

Amy Allman Dean – Southern Regional Director for Executive Roundtable

adean (at) rga.org

Prior to joining RGA, Amy was Vice President of Marketing at Ogilvy Government Relations.  Previously, Dean spent six years working in various positions in The White House for the George W. Bush Administration, including Director of The White House Visitors Office, Associate Director of Legislative Affairs and Staff Assistant in the Office of the Vice President.  Amy also worked for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security as Director of Legislative Affairs and as Special Assistant, Legislative Affairs for the U.S. Department of Treasury.  A native of Dallas, Texas, Dean received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Emory University.

Mary Ann Laconte – Finance Director

mlaconte (at) rga.org

Mary Ann became RGA Finance Director after serving as the Deputy Finance Director for the RGA and Director of the RGA’s Statesmen and Cabinet membership programs. Prior to joining the RGA four years ago, Mary Ann was the Major Donor Director at the National Republican Congressional Committee, and also worked with the major donor programs at the National Republican Senatorial Committee, the 55th Presidential Inaugural Committee, and the Republican National Committee. Mary Ann is a native of Houston, Texas and received a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics from Duke University.

David Rexrode - Political Director

drexrode (at) rga.org

David brings a wealth of campaign experience to the RGA as Political Director, which will be crucial in providing assistance and counsel to Republican governors and candidates. Prior to joining the RGA, David served as Campaign Manager for Ken Cuccinelli for Governor, Executive Director of the Republican Party of Virginia, Deputy Campaign Manager for Bob McDonnell for Governor, National Coalitions Director for the Republican National Committee, and Campaign Manager for Congressman Bob Goodlatte.  David is a graduate of James Madison University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in political science and public administration.

Justina Rusch – Governors Liaison

jrusch (at) rga.org

Justina became RGA Governors Liaison after spending the past two years as the RGA Events Coordinator, helping organize numerous RGA events, meetings and conferences. Justina is a graduate of Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge with a Bachelor’s Degree in mass communication. She is a native of Gulfport, Mississippi.

Marie Sanderson – RGA Policy Director

Twitter: @MarieTSanderson

msanderson (at) rga.org

Marie currently serves as Policy Director for the RGA facilitating best practices and good policy at the state and federal levels. She works closely with governors, their staff, Congress, and the Administration. She previously served as a legislative assistant for U.S. Senator Thad Cochran and director of federal policy/policy advisor for Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour.  Marie graduated from Mississippi State University with a major in Marketing and a minor in Public Relations and obtained her MBA from the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia.

Caitlin Schroder – Executive Roundtable Director

cschroder (at) rga.org

Part of the RGA team since 1999, Caitlin leads the RGA’s Executive Roundtable, a membership program that brings together governors with business owners and executives.  Prior to this role, Caitlin served as the RGA’s Director of Recruitment, RGA Finance Director from 2002-2008 and RGA Deputy Finance Director from 1999-2002.  Prior to her time at the RGA, she worked on the National Republican Senatorial Committee and National Republican Congressional Committee joint fundraising dinners as well as in the finance department of the Republican National Committee.  Caitlin attended the Catholic University of America, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in politics.

Jay Shelly – Director of Roundtable Membership Program

jshelly (at) rga.org

Jay currently serves as the RGA’s Director of Roundtable Membership Program. Prior to joining the RGA, Jay worked as a clerk’s assistant at the DC District Court and as an intern  in the Finance Department at the RGA before getting hired full-time. Jay was born in Philadelphia, PA but has lived in Maryland, Virginia, Florida, and New York. He graduated from Hampden-Sydney College in May 2011 with a Bachelor of Arts in History.

Jon Thompson – Communications Director

Twitter: @JonThompsonDC

jthompson (at) rga.org

Jon stepped into the role of RGA Communications Director after serving for the past four years as the RGA’s Press Secretary, a role in which he focused on raising the national profiles of Republican governors and the RGA. Prior to joining the RGA, Jon served as Director of Radio and Television for the National Republican Congressional Committee during the 2010 cycle, and in the press office of the Republican National Committee during the 2008 cycle. Jon is a graduate of UNC Wilmington and a native of North Carolina.

Alden Wood – Regional Recruitment Director and Executive Roundtable Regional Director, Northeast

awood (at) rga.org

Alden is the RGA’s Regional Recruitment Director and Executive Roundtable Regional Director for the Northeast.  In the 2012 cycle, she served as Finance Director for Tommy Thompson’s U.S. Senate campaign.  This is Alden’s second time working for the Republican Governors Association as she served as Executive Roundtable Coordinator from 2010-2011.  She began her work in politics at the Republican National Committee in the Member Services division.   A native of Austin, Texas, she received a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and Government from the University of Virginia.