Carpi & Clay helps clients develop communications and legislative strategies that advance their public policy and business development objectives. We have extensive experience in representing clients in transportation and infrastructure, natural resources, environmental regulation, public finance, healthcare, housing and community development, safety and security, education, and international trade.
We are a hands-on team that values integrity, honesty, and hard work.
Carpi & Clay has been providing strategic counsel and implementing effective government relations programs at the federal level for over 25 years.
Our success as federal advocates is grounded in a straight-forward and transparent process of developing and implementing realistic strategic plans that embrace each client’s unique profile. Equally important is our desire to establish and maintain productive communications that make you an integral part of the strategy and to ensure we are meeting your expectations.
We have broad experience in representing clients in transportation and infrastructure, natural resources, environmental regulation, public finance, healthcare, housing and community development, safety and security, education and international trade and commerce. Quite often it’s about acquiring designated federal funding for projects and programs. We have obtained millions in federal funding for our clients. But throughout our decades of experience, we have found sometimes it’s not all about the money. Often a legislative, regulatory or administrative change provides invaluable assistance to your policies, programs and objectives.
We have achieved unprecedented results for our clients, which include:
- Anchor QEA
- California Earthquake Authority
- California Marine Affairs and Navigation Conference
- California Travel and Tourism Commission
- City of Anaheim
- City of Barstow
- City of Encinitas
- City of Newport Beach
- City of Norwalk
- City of Santa Barbara
- City of Vista
- Clayton County Entities
- County of Fresno
- County of Kern
- County of Los Angeles
- County of San Joaquin
- County of Tulare
- Long Beach Water Department
- Mission Springs Water District
- Morro Bay Harbor
- Multnomah County Drainage District
- National Association of Foster Grandparent Program Directors
- Northern Indiana Commuter Transportation District
- Packard Children’s Hospital
- Port of Long Beach
- Port of San Diego
- Port of Santa Cruz
- Port of Stockton
- Port San Luis Harbor District
- Sacramento Regional Transit District
- San Diego County Water Authority
- San Diego State University Research Foundation
- Santa Clara Valley Water District
- Sutter Butte Flood Control Agency
- Stanford Healthcare
- Transbay Joint Powers Authority
- Ventura Port District
- Western States Tourism Policy Council
Ken Carpi manages the Carpi & Clay Washington, D.C. office and legislative activities. With more than 25 years of experience in the public sector, including more than 20 years at the federal level, he plays a major role in developing and implementing effective federal legislative and regulatory strategies. He directs a staff that works to craft successful approaches and develop strategic partnerships that meet, and often exceed, client expectations.
Under Ken’s leadership, the company has been in the forefront of public infrastructure, water resources, port operations, and transportation improvement efforts nationwide. The firm’s clients have benefited from hundreds of millions of dollars in federal appropriations for critical projects.
As legislative director for U.S. Senator Pete Wilson, Ken spearheaded and directed all legislative efforts on behalf of the nation’s largest state. He supervised a large professional staff focused on natural resources issues, transportation funding, housing, and public works projects – all of key importance to the legislative program. Ken also served as the Senior Policy Assistant to Pete Wilson during his tenure as Mayor of San Diego. Ken has a degree in Public Administration from San Diego State University and has completed graduate work in Urban Studies. He holds the rank of Commander in the U.S. Naval Reserve.
Ken is also active in local Washington, D.C. civic affairs. He serves on the board of directors of Green Door, a non-profit provider of behavioral health services to over 1200 people in need.
David Wetmore brings 25 years of hands-on government and Congressional relations experience to our clients along with a record of providing strategic guidance to elected officials on a bipartisan basis. His professional career in government service and private practice has been at the intersection of federal-state-local relations. His experience and expertise include the legislative process, public policy and issue management/development, and strategic planning and communications. David is a direct liaison to the Executive Branch, the Congress, the nation’s governors and their senior staff, industry representatives, trade associations, and corporate officers. He has actively participated in major federal legislation and regulatory decisions impacting states and local governments.
David joined Carpi & Clay in 2007 following twenty years in senior government positions and as director of a national trade association representing state officials. His leadership on behalf of our clients has produced notable success in securing funding, regulatory relief and legislative achievements in health care, defense, infrastructure, public lands management and research and development, to name a few. David is the only person to have served as the chief Washington, DC representative for two California governors, spanning eight years, working for Governors Pete Wilson and Arnold Schwarzenegger. As the State’s chief federal policy advisor, he was the frontline resource and liaison to California’s 55-Member Congressional delegation and the White house. He coordinated all aspects of California’s federal policy agenda and directed specific strategies that secured changes in federal law that achieved policy objectives and boosted California’s share of federal funds. Early on, David honed his local government experience and issue expertise as Senator Pete Wilson’s chief liaison to California’s state local government leaders and elected officials.
In addition to his California experience, David has 6 years’ experience directing all government relations and federal regulatory activities for a national association of public officials, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. In this capacity, he represented all the states’ elected and appointed insurance commissioners at the state, federal and international level on health care, tax policy, financial services legislation, catastrophe and terrorism risk insurance programs, and trade agreements.
David graduated with a double major in Political Science and French from San Diego State University. He is also a graduate of the Institute d’Etudes Politiques, Aix-en-Provence, France. David serves on the Board of Directors of the California State Society.
Julie Minerva is a recognized leader on infrastructure investments and has worked on a variety of transportation and water resources projects across the country. A former Legislative Assistant to the late Congressman Robert T. Matsui, she has represented transit agencies, commuter railroads, short line railroads, ports, harbors, water districts, flood control agencies, cities, counties, airports, joint powers authorities, and private enterprises to advance critical infrastructure needs at the federal level. Julie has successfully executed legislative and regulatory strategies for a broad range of infrastructure interests including rail line relocations, light-rail extensions, bus storage maintenance facilities, fleet replacement, recapitalization of commuter rail service, airport facilities, innovative finance, economic development, levees, dams, shorelines, navigation channels, environmental restoration, and base reuse. Her advocacy efforts on behalf of infrastructure investments includes working with the US Department of Transportation, and its modal administrations such as the Federal Transit Administration and the Federal Railroad Administration, the US Army Corps of Engineers, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the US Bureau of Reclamation, the US Environmental Protection Agency, the Office of Management and Budget as well as the US Congress. Since joining Carpi & Clay in 2016, Julie has secured nearly a billion dollars in direct federal assistance for transportation and water clients.
Julie’s two-decade career in Washington, DC has ranged from Capitol Hill to AmLaw 200 law firms, to where she is today with Carpi & Clay’s concierge government relations practice. Julie’s hands on approach has helped prepare clients to testify before Congress, has coached new legislative staff through the nuances of complex issues, and has advised clients on navigating the everchanging politics of Washington. Julie’s extensive portfolio of experience covers client interests in 25 states and American Samoa. From helping to build an intermodal station in Auburn, Maine to advancing clean water supplies in rural New Mexico, to enhancing rail operations in Northwest Indiana, to reducing flood risks in the Pacific Northwest, Julie’s proactive approach has been integral to revitalizing aging infrastructure and building new investments. This broad geographic and issue experience and the relationships that have been built along the way, both within Congress as well as at the agency level, are a tremendous resource to the work that she does for the firm’s clients.
Julie’s success on advancing infrastructure projects caught the attention of Washingtonian magazine, which named her one of Washington’s “Top 40 under 40” lobbyists. She has served as a monthly columnist for the Floodplain Management and Liability Reporter, is a regular contributor to The Levee Was Dry blog, coauthored the “New Starts Handbook,” a guide for congressional staffers navigation the FTA’s Capital Investment Grant process, and organized the first “New Starts Day on the Hill” for the Capital Investment Grant Working Group. She is also a frequent guest speaker at national infrastructure conferences and a regular participant at infrastructure industry meetings such as the American Public Transportation Association, the Capital Investment Grant Working Group, the American Association of Port Authorities, the National Waterways Conference, and the National Association of Flood and Stormwater Management Agencies. In September 2019 Julie was named to the Board of Directors for the National Waterways Conference.
Julie graduated from Santa Clara University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science and theatre, with a dance emphasis.
Laura Morgan-Kessler has more than a decade of experience advocating for public entity and association clients on a wide range of issues including water quality and infrastructure, flood control, transportation, public safety, and the environment. She provides them with timely and strategic intelligence on Congressional and federal agency actions and helps develop and implement federal advocacy strategies to accomplish specific goals.
Laura is known for developing partnerships with clients, and her dedication to – and passion for – their issues has proven to be an effective combination for success. She maintains strong working relationships with Members of Congress and their staff, Congressional Committees, and federal agencies including the Army Corps of Engineers, the Bureau of Reclamation, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of the Interior, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. She also works closely with national organizations such as the National Association of Counties, the U.S. Conference of Mayors, and the National League of Cities.
Previously, Laura spent time on Capitol Hill as a legislative staff member for Senator Dianne Feinstein. During her tenure with the Senator, she focused her efforts on issues of importance to Californians such as transportation, water, energy, and the environment. She also supported the Senator’s Energy and Natural Resources Committee portfolio.
A native of Southern California, Laura received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from Wake Forest University. She and her husband live in Northern Virginia with their daughter.
Channon Hanna brings more than 15 years of experience working on federal transportation and infrastructure projects, policy and regulations. Throughout her career, she has represented a diverse portfolio of clients including airports, airlines, public transportation agencies, highway construction companies, national associations, city and county governments and Fortune 500 companies.
She began her career in Washington, D.C. working on the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, working on transportation policy focused on aviation, rail and maritime industries. After leaving the Hill, she worked at the American Public Transportation Association (APTA) and the Airport Council International-North America (ACI-NA), two premiere national associations representing national transportation interests. While serving as the Senior Legislative Representative at APTA, she steered APTA’s federal efforts on reauthorization of surface transportation programs, transportation financing, and tax issues.
During her tenure at ACI-NA, she led efforts to create and execute overall strategies on federal issues such as Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reauthorization, homeland security and facilitation issues. Most recently, Channon has spent the last few years providing comprehensive government relations services to a wide variety of public and private sector clients.
Channon is currently a member of The Road Gang: Washington’s Transportation Fraternity and the Aero Club of Washington. She is also a member of Women in Government Relations (WGR) where she serves as the Chair of the Congressional Outreach Committee, Vice Chair of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee, and a past Chair of the Transportation & Infrastructure Task Force.
Channon has a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Auburn University.
Kerry O’Hare is a strategic advisor to Carpi & Clay and brings over 30 years’ experience working with governors, mayors, Members of Congress, Cabinet level officials, trade associations and the infrastructure stakeholder community. Her background has been in transportation and infrastructure policy where she has excelled at achieving results.
Her experience includes serving as Vice President and Director of Policy for Building America’s Future – a bipartisan coalition of state and local officials advocating for a smart and strategic long-term infrastructure plan to enhance America’s economic prosperity and quality of life.
Prior to joining Building America’s Future, Ms. O’Hare held several different positions at the US Department of Transportation (DOT) including Deputy Administrator of the Federal Highway Administration where she provided executive leadership to an agency with more than 2,500 employees and an annual budget of $40 billion. She also served as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Governmental Affairs and was the chief liaison to state and local officials on behalf of the US Secretary of Transportation.
While at DOT, Kerry was part of a select team that implemented the Secretary’s National Strategy to Reduce Congestion on America’s Transportation Network. This team worked to educate state and local leaders as well as the business community in targeted states about how to develop innovative ways to address traffic congestion.
She is a two-time recipient of the Secretary’s Gold Medal which is the USDOT’s highest award.
Kerry also served for seven years as the Deputy Director in the Office of Federal Affairs for a New York Governor where she devised and coordinated New York’s federal transportation reauthorization strategy. Additionally, she has eleven years of experience on Capitol Hill where she served as Legislative Director to Member of Congress and Legislative Assistant to a U.S. Senator.
Kerry is a Board Member of Building America’s Future, a member of The Road Gang and WTS International where she serves as the Vice Chair of the Legislative Committee and is the Chair of the Mount Vernon Women’s Golf Association.
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