Lobbying World

• Former Rep. Paul Hodes (D-N.H.) is returning to Shaheen & Gordon as of counsel. Hodes served two terms in the House and ran for the Senate in 2010, but was defeated. The ex-lawmaker was an assistant attorney general in the criminal justice division of the New Hampshire Attorney General’s office and also worked as a special prosecutor for the state. Hodes first joined Shaheen & Gordon in 1996.

• Mike Forde and Bill Smith have joined Cornerstone Government Affairs to help open a new Chicago office. This will be the firm’s sixth office nationwide, joining Cornerstone’s branches in Washington; Baton Rouge, La.; Des Moines, Iowa; Houston; and Jackson, Miss. Forde comes to the firm from Mayer Brown. Before that, he was general counsel to the Illinois Office of the Comptroller. Smith once served on the legislative division of the Community Bank Association of Illinois and was selected as a member of the Illinois Supreme Court’s foreclosure crisis commission.

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• Ramona Oliver has joined the National Education Association as the senior director of the union’s Center for Communications. Oliver has been director of communications for the Service Employees International Union and EMILY’s List. She has also worked for former Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell (D) and the Democratic Governors Association.

 • Ronald Eckstein has joined the Washington office of Rasky Baerlein Strategic Communications as an associate vice president. Eckstein was press secretary to Sen. Ben Nelson (D-Neb.). He also has been a speechwriter for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and was communications director for Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.). 

• Joseph Corcoran has joined OCC as first vice president and head of government relations. Corcoran comes to the equity derivatives clearing organization from NYSE Euronext, where he was chief counsel in the stock exchange’s Regulation and the Office of Legal and Government Affairs. He was counsel for Schiff Hardin before coming to NYSE and has also worked at the Securities and Exchange Commission as a special counsel in the division of market regulation.