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About us

Learn more about us and our firm

Rapoza Associates is a public interest lobbying and government relations firm. Founded in 1984, our firm has a proven, bipartisan track record when it comes working with Congress and the White House, overcoming every division of power, regardless of which party is in the majority.

We know what it really takes to get things done. 

We pride ourselves in our ability to identify tangible outcomes in the ever-shifting and competitive world of D.C. politics. Our hands-on approach and experience working with clients and communities helps us argue the merits of the programs on Capitol Hill–making it clear we’re not just ‘talking the talk’. We know how Congress works and understand what it takes to get bills passed and amendments into appropriations, housing bills, community development legislation, farm bills, and tax legislation.

We work with key federal administrative and regulatory agencies, including the Departments of Agriculture, Health and Human Services, Housing and Urban Development, Labor, Treasury, and the Small Business Administration. We take time to understand the programs, policies, and issues at stake. Established relationships and knowledge of the key players help us understand the concerns of these decision-makers and informs the policy and advocacy strategies we develop and implement.

We understand that facts and figures count.

Now, more than ever, policymakers are skeptical about federal programs and policies. Solid arguments based on research and analysis are key in in making the case to decision-makers in Washington. We produce high-quality, high-impact research and analysis to bolster our arguments and give ammunition to our supporters. You can see the quality of our work first-hand on our Research & Analysis page.

We demystify the process.

In addition to providing expert legislative and policy guidance, Rapoza Associates engages and involves clients from start to finish. We work closely with our clients to define organizational objectives and build their capacity to effectively impact the policymaking process. We are committed to spending the time with clients to develop targeted plans and proposals to suit their goals, mobilize constituencies, and put in place the organizational resources needed to ensure the most effective use of available funds.


We achieve success for our clients, because we believe in the work they do.
 

Our clients work to build stronger communities across the nation – and we support their work by providing them a range of key services, including representation before Congress and federal agencies and consultation on federal policies and programs. The Rapoza firm is built on 40 years of experience in legislative strategy, public policy analysis and action-oriented research.

 

Robert A. Rapoza, President and Principal

Bob Rapoza

Bob Rapoza has more than four decades’ experience as a professional lobbyist and is an expert on the federal budget and appropriations process, with special expertise in federal housing and community development policy. He has been responsible for numerous legislative accomplishments, including sustaining federal rural housing and community development programs, establishing the Intermediary Re-lending Program at the Agriculture Department, increasing funding for community development programs at the Department of Health and Human Services, promoting the creation of a YouthBuild program at the Department of Housing and Urban Development and, most recently, successfully steering the New Markets Tax Credit program to enactment and implementation. He first became involved with housing and community development issues while serving with the Massachusetts Department of Community Affairs.

After moving to Washington, D.C., Bob held executive positions with the Rural Housing Alliance, the National Rural Housing Coalition (which he continues to serve as executive secretary and legislative director), and the Rural Coalition before establishing Rapoza Associates in 1984. A graduate of Boston College and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, he has served on the boards of several housing and community development organizations and has been profiled in the Washington Post and in the authoritative Beacham's Guide to Key Lobbyists

bob@rapoza.org

Paul Anderson, Director of Policy and Research

paul

Paul Anderson works to advance the legislative priorities of community and economic development clients by lobbying Congress and federal agencies on their behalf. Collecting and analyzing data and case studies, Paul also creates policy tools, including comprehensive reports used in the firm's lobbying and advocacy efforts.

Previously he served as Director of Programs at the George Mason University Center for Social Entrepreneurship, and in Congressional Affairs at the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

Paul is a graduate of the University of Virginia with a degree in Political Science.

paul@rapoza.org

Lana Chapman, Office Manager

lana chapman

Lana Chapman has been a key figure at Rapoza Associates since 1992, involved in all aspects of the firm’s evolution and management.

Previously she served as office manager for the consulting firm of Temple, Barker & Sloane (later merged with Mercer Management) and as the administrative assistant to the legislative director of the American Civil Liberties Union.

lana@rapoza.org

Audrey Johnston, Policy Associate

Audrey Johnston

Audrey Johnston works with the firm’s rural housing clients to advocate for federal homeownership loan, grant, and rental housing programs, as well as issues related to the microloan program. In addition to lobbying for these policies, Audrey researches new legislation and regulations that impact rural communities and develops advocacy tools designed to engage members of congress and local communities.

Prior joining Rapoza Associates in June 2015, Audrey worked for the D.C. Rental Housing Commission. She previously interned with the government relations office of Habitat for Humanity International, where she assisted in developing materials to assist affiliates with understanding and obtaining government grant funding and tax credits. Additionally, she interned with the National Associate of State Credit Union Supervisors, where she gained more familiarity with the financial services industry.

Audrey is a graduate of George Mason University School of Law and a member of the Virginia State Bar. She graduated with a B.A. from Stephen F. Austin State University, in Nacogdoches, Texas.

Ayrianne Parks, Director of Policy and Public Affairs

012 Ayrianne Parks works with the firm’s community development clients to achieve their legislative and advocacy goals. Ayrianne also lobbies on federal workforce development and rural water and sewer policy, in addition to appropriations. In this capacity, she creates advocacy materials and messaging, as well as curating content for print and online, aimed at cultivating congressional and public support for the firm, its clients, and their work. She also provides membership development and management support for the NMTC Coalition.

Before joining Rapoza Associates, Ayrianne served as the director of communications at the Association of Farmworker Opportunity Programs. She has previously served as a public affairs manager at the Curley Company, a boutique Public Relations firm, and gained valuable campaign and political experience as a member of the women’s specialty media team during the 2008 presidential campaign, in addition to internships with Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard and in the Sierra Club’s legislative office in Washington, D.C.

Ayrianne is a graduate of Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota with a degree in Political Science and Spanish.

ayrianne@rapoza.org

Beverly Smith, Executive Assistant

beverly smith

Beverly Smith provides administrative office support, membership assistance, and billing. Beverly has worked for nonprofit and for-profit organizations. She has provided assistance in the areas of workforce development, Federal Register information and notifications, public housing and research and has been an oil spill emergency response team member. She is a former member of Capital Toastmasters and received a PST certificate from Gallaudet University.

Beverly@rapoza.org
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