ABOUT

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Navigators Global is a full-service issues management, government relations and strategic communications firm located in Washington, D.C. Our senior team members have advised Fortune 500 companies, governmental agencies, political candidates and some of the nation’s most prominent elected officials.

 

Founding Principals Phil Anderson, Jim Pitts, Chris Cox and Cesar Conda formed Navigators Global to provide exclusive services to clients whose needs demand solutions beyond the reach of other firms. By creating an elite team of federal lobbyists, political strategists and communications experts, Navigators Global proudly offers a broad range of services, unrivaled performance and proven results.

Phil Anderson

Founding Principal and President

Phil Anderson has 20 years of experience advising corporations, industries and elected officials on public policy issues. During the late 1980s and early 1990s, he held a series of policy and political positions on Capitol Hill, with the National Republican Party and the George H.W. Bush Administration, including serving as Special Assistant to Vice President Dan Quayle and Deputy Assistant to Republican National Committee Chairman Lee Atwater.

 

Mr. Anderson also served as convention manager for Vice President Quayle and Campaign America at the 1996 Republican National Convention and as deputy director of Governor Carroll A. Campbell’s Victory America. Mr. Anderson formed the Financial Services Coordinating Council (FSCC), and later served as its executive director and led the FSCC to important financial services legislative victories.

 

Named one of Washington’s top lobbyists by The Hill, Mr. Anderson has been a frequent media source with commentary appearing in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, National Journal and Investment News. He has also appeared on CBS 60 Minutes II, CNN, CNBC, FOX NEWS and ABC.

 

In 2004, Mr. Anderson was selected to the advisory board of George Washington University’s Institute for Politics, Democracy & the Internet. Mr. Anderson is a graduate of Virginia Tech, where he serves as a guest lecturer on politics and advocacy.

Jim Pitts

Founding Principal

A veteran of five presidential campaigns, Jim Pitts brings more than 25 years of experience working at the highest levels in the White House and Congress, and directing federal lobbying and opinion leader campaigns. He specializes in several fields, including energy, tribal affairs, high-tech, homeland security, international relations, and overall public relations and policy strategies.

 

Mr. Pitts previously served as the executive director of the Financial Services Coordinating Council (FSCC). Prior to joining the FSCC, he served as chief of staff to U.S. Senator Spencer Abraham (R-MI). Mr. Pitts is a veteran of two former administrations, Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, where he held a number of senior-level executive branch positions in the White House, Department of Housing and Urban Development, the Department of Energy and the Department of Labor.

 

In 1995, he entered the world of journalism as deputy publisher of The Weekly Standard, helping to launch one of the nation’s most respected political opinion publications. Named one of the top Washington lobbyists by The Hill, Mr. Pitts has been a frequent media source on political events. His commentary has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, ABC News’ Nightline and C-SPAN’s Morning Journal.

 

Mr. Pitts is a graduate of the University of South Carolina.

Christopher Cox

Founding Principal

Chris Cox was most recently a special assistant for legislative affairs for President George W. Bush and brings more than a decade of legislative and political experience in senior positions in the White House and the U.S. House of Representatives.

 

At the White House, Mr. Cox managed and developed legislative strategy on behalf of the president, including taxation, international trade, defense, war on terror, intelligence, foreign policy and veterans’ affairs. He was an integral part of the lobbying campaigns that led to the signing into law of two tax bills, two supplemental appropriations bills, two cycles of defense appropriations and authorizations bills, and new authorization and appropriation of two major presidential initiatives – Global AIDS Relief and the Millennium Challenge Account.

 

An experienced hand in Congress, Mr. Cox served as chief of staff for U.S. Representative Mike Rogers (R-MI) and U.S. Representative Robin Hayes (R-NC). Prior to that, Mr. Cox served four years as legislative director for then-U.S. Representative and current U.S. Senator Saxby Chambliss (R-GA).

 

Mr. Cox has been named one of Washington’s top lobbyists by The Hill. He received a Juris Doctor from the University of Illinois College of Law and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University of Illinois.

Cesar Conda

Founding Principal and Policy Advisor

Cesar Conda returned to Navigators Global as founding principal after serving as the first chief of staff for U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL). According to The Weekly Standard, Mr. Conda is “a well-known and highly regarded policy wonk, with experience in the executive branch as well as on Capitol Hill.”

 

Mr. Conda served in the Bush-Cheney White House as Assistant to the Vice President for Domestic Policy, where he was “instrumental in devising the Bush tax cuts” according to columnist Robert Novak. He was an advisor to the presidential campaigns of Mitt Romney in 2008 and Bob Dole in 1996. Mr. Conda spent 18 years on Capitol Hill as a senior aide to three U.S. Senators, and was Republican staff director of the Senate Small Business Committee. Roll Call included Mr. Conda in its “Fabulous Fifty” list of the most powerful congressional staffers. In 1999, Mr. Conda received the “Congressional Staffer of the Year Award” from the Information Technology Industry Council.

 

Prior to his Senate career, Mr. Conda was a tax lobbyist for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Having served on the Board of Directors of the Jack Kemp Foundation, Competitive Enterprise Institute, and Empower America and as co-chair of executive committee of the Susan B. Anthony List, Mr. Conda has deep roots in the conservative think tank community and is described by the Associated Press as one of House Speaker Paul Ryan’s “conservative mentors.” Mr. Conda has successfully represented such blue chip corporate and trade association clients as AT&T, Oracle, Visa, Qualcomm, NextEra Energy, Microsoft, and the American Petroleum Institute, among others.

 

Mr. Conda is a graduate of The College of William and Mary in Virginia.

Andy Keiser

Principal

Andy Keiser was Deputy National Security Senior Advisor to the pre-election phase of the Trump for America transition team, where he prepared and advised the transition’s policy, personnel, and agency action teams on all aspects of the national security portfolio. This included work in the Departments of Defense, State, Justice, and Homeland Security, as well as the Intelligence Community and the National Security Council.

 

Mr. Keiser also served 14 years on Capitol Hill for former House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers – as Chief of Staff, Legislative Director handling cybersecurity and Energy and Commerce Committee issues, and Senior Advisor to the Committee.

 

Mr. Keiser was also the head writer for a nationally-syndicated radio program, assisted in the production of the CNN series “Declassified,” and is President of Americans for Peace, Prosperity and Security (APPS), a social welfare organization dedicated to driving the national security policy debate.

 

Mr. Keiser has a Bachelor of Arts from Michigan State University and a Master of Arts from the United States Naval War College. He is active on various national security-focused policy projects at the Center for the Study of the Presidency and Congress, the Hudson Institute, and the Bipartisan Policy Center.

Ado A. Machida

Principal

Ado Machida leads Navigators Global’s issues management practice. Ado Machida recently served as the Director of Policy Implementation for the Trump Transition effort, where he was responsible for managing the advancement of Day 1/Day 100/Day 200 action plans for the Trump Administration. Mr. Machida and his team developed over two hundred Executive Orders, Secretarial Guidance, regulatory change, and legislative proposals to achieve the campaign promises then-Candidate Donald J. Trump articulated. In addition, Mr. Machida briefed Secretary-nominees on policy issues and guided them through the confirmation process.

 

Mr. Machida previously served as Chief Domestic Policy Officer for Vice President Cheney and as Assistant to the Republican Leader, Senator Bob Dole. He is also the past President of the International Stability Operations Association, which represented 50+ corporate members to both the Executive and Legislative branches. Additionally, Mr. Machida is the former Vice President of Government Relations at defense manufacturer BAE Systems.

 

Mr. Machida is bilingual in English and Japanese and possesses law degrees from Kyoto University and New York University Law School. He also attended Columbia University and Harvard Business School. Mr. Machida resides in Northern Virginia with his wife of 20 years, their six children, and their family dog.

Susan Mboya

Principal and International Advisor

Susan Myboya leads the Navigators Global International Practice.

 

Dr. Mboya served as the President of the Coca-Cola Africa Foundation and as the Coca-Cola Group Director for Women’s Economic Empowerment for Eurasia and Africa. In addition to her global corporate foundation experience, Dr. Mboya has a substantial background in international politics, serving as an advisor to high-level government officials, NGOs, C-Suite executives, and local economic and political leaders.

 

Dr. Mboya has led numerous philanthropic and charitable initiatives, including her work with Coca-Cola’s Replenish African Initiative (RAIN), which provides access to clean water to people in Africa. Additionally, Dr. Mboya specializes in programs that promote entrepreneurship, mentorship, and education to women and young people. She is the founder of the Zawadi Africa Educational Fund, which provides scholarships and leadership training to African girls. She is also a member of the African Leadership Network.

 

Dr. Mboya received a Bachelor of Science from the University of Connecticut and went on to receive a Doctorate in Industrial Pharmacy from the Massachusetts College of Pharmacy.

Susan Nelson

Principal

Susan Nelson has substantial political and legislative expertise, as well as extensive experience working on behalf of corporate clients on business and public policy issues. Before joining Navigators Global, Ms. Nelson was a principal at Gray Loeffler, LLC. She has also held senior positions at other notable public affairs firms, including The Federalist Group and Berman Enterprises, where she served as senior vice president of State Government Affairs.

 

Ms. Nelson brings extensive state and campaign experience to the firm. Most recently she took a sabbatical from the private sector to serve as the national finance director for John McCain 2008, overseeing the entire finance organization for the presidential campaign throughout the primary and general election.

 

Ms. Nelson served as the finance director of the Republican Governors Association, where she was responsible during the 2002 election cycle for overseeing 36 gubernatorial races and raising party funds for them. Her leadership led to record fundraising numbers and victories in the great majority of the races. Before joining the RGA, Ms. Nelson co-owned and operated Eudy Nelson & Associates, a highly regarded Washington, D.C.-based political fundraising company. She also served as national and Political Action Committee consultant to numerous U.S. Senators and campaigns.

Doug Distaso

Vice President of Legislative Affairs – National Security & Defense

After over 25 years in the United States Air Force, Doug Distaso joined Navigators to lead the National Security, Defense & Space Practice. Doug recently retired from assignment at the Pentagon for the United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM), as the Special Assistant to the Vice Commander. In that position, he crafted executive-level interagency engagement strategies designed to increase both the budget and operational authorities of our nation’s most elite warriors. Doug also played the lead role in integrating Special Operations Forces (SOF) into the Third Offset Strategy and the high-end future of war, given explosive growth in technology opportunities globally.

 

Between Doug’s many operational assignments, he was fortunate to serve as a primary legislative affairs lead for two USSOCOM commanders. During that tenure billions of dollars’ worth of SOF aircraft, training capacity, and technology were added to Appropriations Legislation, while military construction projects quadrupled for aviation units. His efforts alone grew the House and Senate SOF Caucus by 300%.

 

From 2000-2015 Doug commanded over 3,500 aviation, maintenance, and support personnel globally. This operational focus allowed successes in counter-terrorism hotspots from Europe to the Pacific.

 

Doug graduated from the United States Air Force Academy and continued his education at Johns-Hopkins University.

Josh Finestone

Vice President of Legislative Affairs

Josh Finestone brings over a decade of legislative and political experience in senior positions in the United States Senate and United States House of Representatives.

 

In the United States Senate, Mr. Finestone managed the Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation portfolio for Senator Dean Heller (R-NV), including his responsibilities as the ranking member on the subcommittee of Consumer Protection, Product Safety, Insurance and Data Security.  He developed and executed policy positions on auto safety recalls, data security breaches and domestic violence in sports.  Mr. Finestone also played an extensive role in Telecommunications, Aviation, Transportation and Tourism policies including issues like Net Neutrality, updating the Communications Act of 1934, Brand USA, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, and Surface Transportation legislation.

 

Prior to that, Mr. Finestone served as legislative director for U.S. Representative Tom Graves (GA-14) – an Appropriations Committee member serving as Chairman of the Legislative Branch subcommittee and as a member  of the Defense Appropriations subcommittee and the Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee.  Mr. Finestone also served as a legislative assistant for U.S. Representative Mike Rogers (MI-8).


Mr. Finestone is a graduate of the University of California, Santa Barbara.

José A. Fuentes

Vice President of Legislative Affairs

José Fuentes has served in all branches of government at the federal, state and local levels. Mr. Fuentes began his career in the U.S. House of Representatives before becoming an advisor to Vice President Dick Cheney and overseeing communications for the United State Agency on International Development (USAID). Following his government service, Mr. Fuentes became the Senior Director of External and Public Affairs for TracFone Wireless, Inc., a telecommunications service provider in the United States. In this position, Mr. Fuentes initiated several strategic programs and managed significant public policy positions before Congress, the FCC and state legislatures.

 

Prior to joining Navigators Global, Mr. Fuentes also served as director for eGov at eMerge Americas, a B2B tech event. He orchestrated bringing both the public and private sector together to discuss innovative ways governments can enhance their citizens through technology.

 

Mr. Fuentes is a graduate of the University of Miami.

Lori Kuhns

Senior Vice President

Lori Kuhns joined Navigators Global in 2003 and oversees the firm’s business operations. Ms. Kuhns teams with the firm’s president and founding principal to facilitate the general administration and financial management of the firm.

 

Ms. Kuhns has over 20 years of experience in government relations project management, administrative services and event planning.  Prior to joining Navigators Global, Ms. Kuhns served in a number of senior-level administrative positions in the financial services and insurance industry.

 

Ms. Kuhns attended Oklahoma State University and is an active volunteer for various political campaigns at the state and local levels.

Samantha Rose

Director, Communications

Samantha Rose coordinates all Navigators Compass activities and leverages communications strategy for legislative campaigns.

 

Prior to joining Navigators, Ms. Rose served as a media and advertising coordinator, developed and implemented an annual marketing plan for an economic revitalization nonprofit, and served as the social media marketing manager for a dining establishment in Southern California. She brings to Navigators Global experience in the communications and marketing arena, with a strong skill set in writing, event planning and execution, and online content management.

 

Ms. Rose is a graduate of University of California, Los Angeles.

Tim Hagood

Staff Assistant

Tim Hagood produces a variety of compelling written communications, including press releases, marketing collateral, and client support materials. He also engages in various research projects and provides support to business operations.

 

Prior to joining Navigators, Mr. Hagood served as the in-house publicist for a small press publisher in Richmond, Virginia.

 

Mr. Hagood is a graduate of James Madison University in Virginia.