It is a tough time for business these days. The shaky economy has caused many companies to tighten their belts, and the cutbacks have hit several Washington offices. But companies in general are reluctant to let their lobbyists go because lobbying usually provides businesses with a high rate of return on investment, especially now as Washington takes on a larger role in shaping the overall economy. Companies use K Street and trade associations to get their message out. But often members and staff value the corporate, in-house lobbyists more because they represent constituencies back home and are more familiar with how legislation will actually affect a company’s bottom line. Here are some names that come up in conversations with congressional aides and other lobbyists.

Sam Adcock, EADS North America. Adcock helps EADS compete in the increasingly tense battle for a share of the U.S. military market, including the multi-billion-dollar Air Force refueling aircraft program.

Cory Alexander, UnitedHealth Group. Alexander’s old employer, Fannie Mae, is out of the lobbying business but the former chief of staff to House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) is thriving at his new home.

{mosads}Victoria Blatter, Merck. Blatter has a lot on her plate this year as Congress eyes health reform, generic drug approvals and patent law.

Abigail Blunt, Kraft Foods. The Obama administration and Congress have signaled a renewed interest in food safety after a string of scares, so Blunt, wife of Rep. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), should have a busy year.

Raymond Bracy, Sarah Thorn, Wal-Mart. Bracy runs Wal-Mart’s lobbying operation.  Thorn is the company’s highly regarded trade lobbyist.

Nicholas Calio, Citigroup. Calio helped the firm navigate the financial crisis on Capitol Hill.

Naomi Camper, Robert Griner, JP Morgan Chase & Co. Camper, a one-time aide to Sen. Tim Johnson (D-S.D.), and Griner, a former Democratic staffer, are at the helm of one of Wall Street’s most powerful Washington arms.

Steven Cortese, Alliant Techsystems. The former appropriations staffer is a thorough advocate for his company.

Rodger Currie, Amgen. This biotechnology giant may have scaled back on its spending in D.C. a bit but  Currie still leads a team of heavy-hitters working issues like health reform and generic drugs.

Greg Dahlberg, Lockheed Martin. President Clinton’s undersecretary of the Army uses his extensive Pentagon and Hill experience to run the defense giant’s well-regarded lobby team.

Alan Davidson, Google. Davidson has led the way for everyone’s favorite Internet search engine as it lobbied on tech policy and the stimulus package.

{mosads}Nancy Dorn, General Electric. Dorn, well-respected on K Street, heads up one of the biggest lobbying shops in Washington.

Matt Gelman, Microsoft. Gelman, a former consultant to House Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-S.C.), is the plugged-in Democratic lobbyist for the Redmond, Wash.-based software giant.

Rich Glick, Iberdrola Renewables. An Energy Department official during the Clinton administration, Glick now helps Democrats on Capitol Hill craft climate-friendly energy policy.

Bob Helm, Northrop Grumman. This former Pentagon comptroller and Senate Budget Committee staffer  oversees Northrop’s extensive lobbying operations.

Ed Hill, Bank of America. Hill is among the best on the actual policy details and nuance of legislation.

Peter Jacoby, AT&T Corp. The phone giant looks to Jacoby for his ties to Democrats.

Tim Keating, Boeing. The former Clinton White House official with strong Democratic ties is proving his mettle in a challenging time for Boeing. Helping Keating is David Morrison, the longtime Senate and House defense appropriations staffer.

{mosads}Kent Knutson, Home Depot. Knutson tackled the stimulus package and is now knee-deep in the fight against the Employee Free Choice Act.

Bill Lane, Caterpillar. Expect to see Lane as a prominent pro-trade voice for business on Capitol Hill as he pushes for passage of the Colombia free trade agreement.

Melissa Maxfield, Comcast. Maxfield once helped get Democrats elected. Not a bad way to build relationships on Capitol Hill. 

Scott Miller, Procter & Gamble. Miller is a key player in trade debates on Capitol Hill.

Betsy Moler, Exelon. Moler is a trusted source to staffers and members on energy matters.

Sean O’Hollaren, Honeywell International. There is life after the Bush White House. The former legislative affairs liaison for 43 has a good reputation with Democrats as well as Republicans.

Ziad Ojakli, Ford Motor Co.
It has been rocky times for the auto industry, but Ojakli has helped smooth the ride for Ford on Capitol Hill. It also helps that the company hasn’t sought bailout money. 

Emmett O’Keefe, Amazon. A former aide to Sen. Byron Dorgan (D-N.D.), O’Keefe now delivers for Amazon.

Michael Paese, Goldman Sachs. Paese just jumped to Goldman from the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association and has close ties to Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.).

John Pemberton, Southern Co. Pemberton, a former EPA official, leads a team of lobbyists that plays a big role in crafting energy policy on the Hill.

Joe Seidel, Mary Whalen,  Credit Suisse. Seidel, a former counsel on the House Financial Services Committee, and Whalen, a long-time counsel to the firm, lead the Swiss banking giant’s efforts.

Jimmy Williams, Icahn Associates LLC. A former staffer to two of Washington’s most powerful Democrats — Sen. Dick Durbin (Ill.) and then-Sen. Joe Biden (Del.) —  Williams is Icahn’s new one-man Washington office.

Howard Woolley, Verizon Wireless.
Woolley is a long-time telecom lobbyist and a reliable voice for his company on Capitol Hill.

To see The Hill’s Top Lobbyist: Hired Guns click here

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