WL Lists: Power 100 2007

by Editorial

Apart from some wishful, often boastful talk about real estate, high finance here can produce yawns. Money-making isn’t mysterious enough. People such as Steve Case, Rajendra Singh, to give just a few examples, undoubtedly have plenty in the bank to play with (sometimes just by being in the right place at the right time), but that doesn’t entirely account for their influence.

Influence is what makes the difference. High tech, information and security businesses have exploded, increasing the visibility of powerful leaders in these fields such as Robert Stevens of Lockheed Martin. (Regardie rule number two: power is the ability to make others do what you want them to do, to make things happen—like win huge government contracts.) The impact of influence is relative: a top lobbyist in Maryland in the long run can be just as powerful as a name brand on Capitol Hill (as undoubtedly the Podesta brothers understand). The idea and education industries, once overlooked, are partners in the boom.

Consider, too, how big names in journalism who command attention, say a Tim Russert or a Maureen Dowd, are having to make room for bloggers of all kinds. Investigative research specialists like Terry Lenzner and think tank heads—Strobe Talbott in his new guise— are not to be discounted either. Power in the 21st century has become more diffused as the sphere of communications has grown and changed. There now are more avenues in which to extend influence.

Access to decision-makers still carries weight, but knowing who knows whom and how is a tool all its own. Michael Kaiser and Michael Kahn are sure-footed kings in the artistic world but you can be sure they seldom, if ever, tell all they know about managing major institutions and temperaments of renown.

Washington has become a big vibrating collective, unwieldy at times and more powerful than most civic texts bother to tell. The names below help explain why.

Sandy Ain
Partner, Ain & Bank
Ain remains Washington’s top divorce attorney and clients respect him for his honesty and ethics. In the past year, he represented billionaire Steve Rales in his divorce from his wife, Christine. Other clients have included former Maryland First Lady Francis Glendenning and Herbert Haft.

Joe Albritton
Media Mogul
Just when you thought this media mogul couldn’t be more of a player in the media scene, this Channel 7/NewsChannel8 owner stirred up Capitol Hill’s waters this year by launching The Politico. Albritton’s deep pockets, keen eye for journalistic talent and grasp of the future of news consumption could very well be a model for the futures of the profession.

Bob Barnett
Partner, Williams & Connolly
His client list, which has included everyone from Hillary Rodham Clinton to Bob Woodward to Lynne Cheney to Barack Obama, is a virtual “Who’s Who” of Washington. Barnett has earned the confidence of both parties as a trusted confidant and skillful lawyer.

Peter Barris
CEO, New Enterprise Associations
Chances are that, if you’re doing a deal in Washington, you have to deal with Peter Barris. As the head of the region’s top venture capital firm, Barris is the man to turn to for the big transactions.

Wolf Blitzer
Host, CNN’s “The Situation Room.”
Everyone said it couldn’t be done: In a world of increasingly short attention spans, you’re going to host three hours of programming a day? But Blitzer’s sharp command of “The Situation Room”’s tech-savvy news show has set a standard for live reporting and, with a big ratings win in March, CNN is thrilled with his leadership on their flagship news program.

Tom Hale Boggs, Jr.
Partner, Hale & Boggs
Often labeled “King of the Hill,” most still view Boggs as the K Street man to see. His firm, despite a mass exodus of associates, has the highest receipts of any lobbying firm, and includes clients ranging from large corporations to large nations. Through the firm’s foundation, Boggs mentors many protégé’s, including several from his alma mater, Georgetown University.

Julian Bond
Chairman of the Board, NAACP
As chairman of the NAACP, Bond’s role is critical in the wake of the Imus controversy. Known as an outspoken critic of the Republican Party, he is not afraid to speak his mind with an audience of over 150,000 people listening.

David and Katherine Bradley
Chairman, Atlantic Media and Chairwoman, CityBridge Foundation
This power couple sets the gold standard: while he heads up his media congulmerate with some of the sharpest and noteworthy editorial, she runs the family foundation, which is making a “huge investment in early childhood programs.”

David Broder
Columnist, The Washington Post.
Still considered the “dean of the press corps,” Broder’s big picture look at politics continues to teach young, whipper-snapper reporters a thing or two. He’s covered 10 presidents and 25 political conventions and it shows.

Steve Case
Even though he left the helm of AOL, Case has been quietly working to revolutionize the health and wellness industry. His star power helped attract Clara Fiorina and other business giants to his latest projects including FlexCar and Exclusive Resorts.

Nicholas Chabraja
CEO, General Dynamics
Whether you support the Iraq war or not, this much is true: It’s making Chabraja a very wealthy man. Falls Church-based General Dynamics employs roughly 81,000 and is one of the largest defense contractors in the world.

Howard Dean
Chairman, Democratic National Party
Known for taking an early lead in the 2004 presidential race through his grassroots/Internet fundraising, Dean has taken this same approach as chair of the leadership party. Since his election, Dean has raised the most money of any DNC chairman in a similar post election period. In his first six months he raised roughly $86.3 million, and as 2008 heats up, so will the dollars.

Placido Domingo
General Director, Washington National Opera
At 50, the Opera’s never looked — and sounded — so good and they’ve got Domingo and his fundraising ability to thank for that. In 2007, this world-famous Spanish operatic tenor is helping the opera produce the American Ring, the largest production ever undertaken by the company.

Maureen Dowd
Columnist, The New York Times
Some people had figured MoDo’s best column days were behind her, but she returned with a vengeance this year by exposing a deep Hollywood rift between donors for Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. With a weakend Bush administration, this scribe’s pen has taken on a new life as she portrays how all politics is a tragic theater.

Leonard Downie, Jr.
Executive Editor, The Washington Post
Some argue that beside the President, Len Downie is the most powerful man in Washington. With the help of Downie, The Washington Post has solidified itself as one of the most powerful papers in the world.

Craig Dubow
CEO, Gannett
Howard Stern may have proclaimed himself the “King of All Media,” but Craig Dubow has him beat. Gannett is the USA’s largest newspaper group in terms of circulation. The company’s 90 daily newspapers in the USA have a combined daily paid circulation of approximately 7.3 million. In addition, Gannett owns nearly 1,000 non-daily publications and USA WEEKEND, a weekly newspaper magazine of approximately 23 million circulation delivered in over 600 Gannett and non-Gannett newspapers.

Ken Duberstein
President, Duberstein Group
After serving as chief of staff to President Reagan, Duberstein has positioned as a “trusted” bipartisan lobbyist who’s more than able to get things done. He remains a key adviser to both the administration and Congressional leadership (a rare feat in this town) and his clients include giants such as GM and Comcast. His many board positions including a stint as vice chairman of the Kennedy Center for Performing Arts and Harvard’s Kennedy School’s Institute of Politics.

Carter Eskew
Partner, Glover Park Group
Eskew has over 20 years of experience in the most high profile corporate and political campaigns, including the role of Chief Strategist for Gore in 2000. At The Glover Park Group, Eskew has directed message strategy and advertising for a range of corporate clients, including the United States Telecom Association, Fannie Mae, and the American Insurance Association’s asbestos campaign.

Richard Fairbank
CEO, Capital One
With a $56.6 million take home last year, Fairbank is one of the highest paid CEOs in the region and worth every cent. He’s grown Capital One into a Fortune 200 company and gotten involved with ownership of the Capitals and Wizards as well.

Frank Fahrenkophf, Jr.
President and CEO, American Gaming Association
This former Republican party chairman may already be the one responsible for the thousands of online gaming addicts, as he successfully lobbied to legalize Internet gambling. Now he’s pushing the envelope further by pushing legislation that would allow sites to operate in the U.S. instead of offshore and able users to gamble with their television sets.

Raul Fernandez
President, Object Video
Raul’s not just another high-tech guy with a lot of money. He’s contributed generously to CharityWorks and is chairing their 100 Point Dinner, which is fast becoming the year’s power dinner.

Howard Friedman
AIPAC President
The New York Times summed it correctly when the referred to AIPAC as “the most important organization affecting America’s relationship with Israel.” As its new president, Friedman steadily growing the 100,000-member grass roots movement who has the ears of Congress.

Thomas Friedman
Columnist, The New York Times
If you find yourself confused about the crazy state of global affairs, fear not: Thomas Friedman is here to help. Friedman has carved out his career by making complicated issues accessible and providing solutions that make every Times reader say, “Why didn’t I think of that first?” In addition, his best-selling book, The World Is Flat recently surpassed 100 weeks on the New York Times Best Seller list.

Ed Gillespie
Partner, Quinn & Gillespie
Anyone who’s considering a GOP bid for ’08 has consulted this Republican power lobbyist. Recently Fred Thompson and Newt Gingrich have come in for lunch and seek Gillespie’s approval. With his democratic better half Tom Quinn, they have mentored many promising K Street stars.

Dan Glickman
Chairman, MPAA
This former Secretary of Agriculture proves that in Washington there are room for sequels. The force beyond the popular milk, beef and pork ads, Glickman brought the same enthusiasm to the MPAA and successfully created campaigns to prevent piracy and encourage people to attend movies.

Donald Graham
Chairman, The Washington Post Company
The newspaper industry has seen better days, but Graham remains committed to maintaining The Post’s reputation as a premier news product. Under his stewardship, The Washington Post Company has maneuvered nicely to accommodate the growing online news audience while expanding its political coverage in a town that simply just can’t get enough political fix.

Gilbert Grosvenor
Chairman, National Geographic
After joining the staff of National Geographic as a picture editor, Grosvenor worked his way up to being the fifth in his family lineage to serve as the Society’s president. He also is a member of the board of visitors of Duke University’s Nicholas School of the Environment; chairman emeritus of the foundation board of the Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf; former vice chairman, President’s Commission on Americans Outdoors; and former member of The President’s Commission on Environmental Quality.

Bryce “Larry” Harlow Jr.
President & Managing Director, Timmons & Co.
Bryce Harlow, who established the White House’s first congressional lobbying office, passed the baton to his son in 1972, who is known as being of the most “trusted and fair” lobbyists on the hill. Before taking the helm at Timmons & Co. (a firm started by a another farther and son team), Harlow had respectable stints in the administration.

John T. “Til” Hazel
Partner, Reed, Smith, Hazel & Thomas
Year after Year, Til Hazel is called upon as the man to see in Northern Virginia. Known for being well connected in the planning and zoning branches of the local government, Hazel, as well as his son Johnny, have been a part of many lucrative development projects. More recently, his alma mater, George Mason University named a law building after him, which sits on land he helped acquire for the school.

John Hendricks
Founder, Discovery Communications
Despite a rocky executive shake up, Discovery still remains the Disney for the region and one of the largest worldwide media companies. Though he only controls 2% of the stock, internally he has a lot of say and helped bring in new CEO David Zaslav from NBC.

Michael Herrald
Regional President, PNC Bank
After a shaky merger with Riggs Bank, Herrald restored faith to the employees and successfully marrying the two banks. PNC started 2007 the same way they rang in 2006, with a 30% increase. In addition, with his lovely wife Susan, he serves on the boards of many foundations around town and spreading the wealth.

Catherine Hughes
Chairperson, Radio One
Known for spinning straw into gold, Hughes started out in the radio business when she had no budget to hire on-air talent for her show. Slowly she started squirreling away profit and acquiring local radio stations, one of which was later acquired by Radio. Hughes went on to become the CEO, grow the company, take it public and then walked away with over $300 million.

Walter Isascson
President and CEO, Aspen Institute
One of the most successful journalists of our time with stints as Chairman of CNN and managing editor of Time magazine, Isaacson has taken his passion and intellectual curiosity to the Aspen Institute and made it one of the leading think tanks. Each summer he draws Washington biggest names at the Institute’s symposium.

Bob Johnson
Many thought after Bob Johnson stepped down as Chairman of BET and purchasing the Charlotte Bobcats, he would say adios to D.C. With recent investments in various projects such as restaurant with Café Milano owner Franco Nuschese. His Kennedy Center Honors pre-party, which had the who’s who of Washington and Smokey Robinson dancing on his living room floor, proves he attracts celebrity power, a rare commodity in this town..

Sandy Johnson
Washington Bureau Chief, Associated Press.
The Russerts and Matthewses and Blitzers of the world may get all the fame and glory, but the Associated Press’ national coverage continues to be the backbone of America’s news operation. Every news organization knows it: AP usually has the story first and Johnson makes sure they get it right.

Vernon Jordan
Senior managing director, Lazard Freres & Co. LLC
Jordan sits on perhaps more corporate boards than any one else in the country and he’s remained an active player around town. He’s a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations and, in 2006, Jordan was a member of the Iraq Study Group.

Michael Kahn
Artistic Director, The Shakespeare Company.
Politicians are great, but it’s Hollywood celebrities that we really crave to know. Chances are that, when a serious actor comes into town, it’s Khan’s doing. Under his leadership, the Shakespeare Company has helped attract such talent as Kevin Spacey and Dame Judy Dench, which helps explain why the Company has turned into a world famous drama center.

Ron Kaufman
Chairman, Dutko Worldwide
Presidential candidate Mitt Romney shocked voters when he raised a staggering $24 million dollars for his campaign and Kaufman was at the front of Romney’s Washington operations. In addition, he built Dutko as the only firm in Washington capable of offering clients a 50 state public affairs strategy.

Jim Kimsey
Some are quick to underestimate the less celebrated former AOL chairman, but since leaving his post he’s been applying his energy and determination to several boards including the Kennedy Center and Georgetwon University. In addition, through his foundation he’s also making great efforts to reform the public school system.

Bobbie Kilberg
President, Northern Virginia Tech Counsel
Considered to be one of the most powerful women in technology today, Kilberg presides over a the nation’s largest technology council, boasting 1,110 companies and 188,000 employees in Northern Virginia.

Andrew Kohut
Director, Pew Research Center
There isn’t a day that goes by that Pew Research Center’s studies are not mentioned in the media. Kohut not only helps to gauge the public opinion on everything from public opinion on current issues to voting trends throughout the election but also gives valuable interpretation of the data which is very influential in the press.

Robert Kogod
He’s worth over half of a billion dollars but he can’t give away his money fast enough. He donated $25 million to the Smithsonian Patent Office Building and has myriad buildings named after him (Kogod Center for the Arts at Sidwell Friends, Kogod Mayo Clinic Program on Aging and the Kogod Theatre at the University of Maryland-College Park).

Brian Lamb
Quiet and humble, Lamb has helped turn C-SPAN from staid to seriously enthralling. In the past year, he’s pushed Congress to allow C-SPAN cameras greater access to the legislative process and his “Q&A” interviews remain one of the most insightful and reasoned in a town where shouting frequently overtakes substance.

Wayne LaPierre
Executive Vice President, National Rifle Association
The NRA has always had its spot and power platform on the Hill, but in the wake of the tragic Virginia Tech massacre, gun control has once again become a controversial issue. LaPierre, an outspoken influential Republican, will be at the forefront of the debate.

Debra Lee
Chairman, BET
Lee proves that hard work does pay off. This Harvard Law School grad has slowly but steadily advanced within BET and currents sits atop one of the most powerful mediums for African-Americans.

Jim Lehrer
Anchor, PBS
News anchors come and go, but Lehrer proves that the best things come to those who wait. He’s been at the helm of PBS’s signature evening newscast for over thirty years and is consistently at the top of everyone’s list when it comes time to pick a presidential debate moderator.

Ted Leonsis
Leonsis is Washington’s Renaissance Man, getting involved in everything from to The Washington Wizards to Georgetown to Lincoln Holdings. His latest adventure – movies – has earned him a debut out in Sundance.

Terry Lenzner
Chairman, Investigative Group, Inc.
If you thought Google was good at digging up dirt, you haven’t met Lenzner. Considered to be Washington’s private C.I.A. this is the guy former President Bill Clinton’s lawyers hired to investigate Ken Starr.

Ted Lerner
Real Estate developer & Principal Owner of the Washington Nationals
One of the largest real estate portfolios in the country, but he still managed to quietly acquire ownership of Washington’s exciting new baseball franchise. As the Nationals grow and grow the neighborhood around them, expect Lerners’ star to continue to rise.

Tony Lewis
President, Verizon
Under Lewis’s direction, Lewis has made the baby bell a tight ship in terms of operations As a leading employer in the region, he’s implemented a program where the employees are allowed to volunteer and donate millions of dollars to many deserving non-profits.

Fred Malek
Founder, Thayer Capital
Although he struck out with his bid to purchase the Washington Nationals, Malek’s still turned Thayer Capital into one of the largest hedge funds in town. Oh, and having the president’s ear doesn’t hurt, either…

J. W. Marriot
Chairman, Marriott International
In an age of faceless conglomerates, J.W. Marriott still remains the man behind the four billion hotel chain. The brand has no intentions of slowing down their growth has been acquiring brands, such as the Ritz Carlton, and expanding their portfolios to include residences.

Chris Matthews
Host, MSNBC’s “Hardball”
Sure he’s loud and loves to interrupt, but Matthews still brings a level of history, institutional knowledge and wit to “Hardball” that’s unmatched in television punditry. With the 2008 presidential campaign heating up, expect his insight to shape Washington’s attitude toward candidates. Is a “Meet the Press” gig in the works when Russert steps down? Stay tuned…

Terry McAulliffe
Political Strategist
If he wins the election for Hillary, he’ll be the next Karl Rove. If he loses the election, he’ll walk away with a big paycheck. This prodigious fundraiser is still a powerhouse in the DNC.

Walter Mossberg
Columnist, The Wall Street Journal
Bill Gates may be powerful but what about the guy who tells if you if Bill Gates’s stuff is any good? As the world increasingly turns to computers for just about everything, Mossberg’s personal technology column is an influential arbiter of trends and tastes.

Fernando Murias
Managing Partner, Price Waterhouse Coopers
As leading manager of a Big Four accounting powerhouse, Murias has the responsibility making sure that his brand is well positioned, with community activity both networking and philanthropic. “You have to realize that you still have to make money to donate money,” he says.

Allen Murton
President, George Mason University
Under Murton’s tenure, GMU has become Virginia’s fastest growing university with student enrollment climbing to 29,000. Murton’s leadership is enough to make you think that the school’s Cinderella run in the 2007 NCAA College Basketball Tournament wasn’t a fluke. Steady cultivation of some of the nation’s best talent in all fields is paying dividends.

Tony Nicely
Chairman, Geico
The gecko has become as familiar an animal to some Americans as Garfield. Nicely understood that the spokeslizard would catapult Geico into insurance company giantism, and increased his company’s advertising budget strategically — and with enormous payoff.

William Niskanen
Chairman, Cato Institute
Niskanen is the crime dog McGruff of politics; his organization, CATO, accepts no government funding in its quest to broaden the parameters of public policy debate and allow consideration of the traditional American principles of limited government, individual liberty, free markets and peace.

Bill Novelli
Executive Director of AARP
As we boomers age rapidly and in great numbers, the AARP may well become one of the most powerful forces on the planet; Novelli has made it his mission to explore the economic changes in social security and prioritize the continued well-being of the millions of American senior citizens.

Joel Oxley
General Manager, WTOP
Everyone told Oxley that he couldn’t move the beloved WTOP (which was tapped out at $20 million in revenue based on audience size) from AM to FM airwaves. He didn’t listen and doubled WTOP’s revenue with the switch.

Milton Peterson
Chairman, the Peterson Companies
Peterson took a huge $2 billion gamble on the development of Washington Harbor which has more than paid off and Peterson Companies is one of the largest, private-owned development companies in the region.

Jim Pitts
Partner, DC Navigators
Frequently named as one of the top lobbyists by The Hill newspaper for his ties to the energy and financial worlds. One of his largest clients include lobbying for Indian gaming. He’s strategically been backing both Romney and McCain, and firming his position in the RNC. In addition, his role as deputy publisher of The Weekly Standard, a political opinion, gives him another platform.

John Podesta and Tony Podesta
President and CEO, Center for American Progress And President, Podesta Group
The fourth and final White House Chief of Staff under President Bill Clinton, John Podesta currently presides over a progressive organization dubbed “a think tank on steroids” by this liberal wag. Brother Tony has small businesses and non-profits lining up for lobbying help from Podesta. He also helped with major Democratic wins in the last election.

Abe Pollin
Chairman, Verizon Center
It turns out that Pollins’ heart is as big as his wallet. Not only is he one of Washington’s most influential businessmen, but he and his wife also started the Sister to Sister organization to raise awareness about women’s heart disease. Pollin’s political savvy also helped him rescore $50 million from the city to renovate the Verizon Center.

Doug Poretz
Founding Partner, Qorvis Communications
As his firm – the second fastest growing in the country — continues to add such clients as Saudi Arabia and Halliburton, Poretz has become the P.R. maven of Northern Virginia and the guy to talk to about the Washington’s region blossoming region.

Russ Ramsey
Managing Partner, Ramsey Asset Management
This king of venture capital recently joined the Board of Regents for George Washington University. He’s a heavy fundraiser for such charities as Boys and Girls Club, Big Brother, Big Sister, Make a Wish Foundation and Venture Philanthropy Partners.

Diane Rehm
Host, WAMU’s “Diane Rehm Show”
Since Washington’s a national town, the big networks usually get all the big players, but Rehm has turned her WAMU show a must-stop for politicians, authors and thinkers. Rehm’s “friendly but fierce” style has earned her the respect of both her listeners and guests alike, who value the program’s depth and diversity.

David Rehr
President, National Broadcasters Association
Taking the helm in 2005 as NAB president, Rehr hit the ground running and visited as many station groups and individual broadcasters as possible. Rehr has a doctorate in economics from George Mason University and has been named a “Top Association Lobbyist” by The Hill multiple times and has been featured in Beachum’s Guide to Key Lobbyists.

Harry Rhoads and Bernie Swain
Founders, Washington Speakers Bureau
Rhoads and Swain promise that their carefully culled speakers are, quite simply, the most intriguing people in the world. Founded in 1979, the Washington Speakers Bureau has become the world’s number one lecture agency and has revolutionized the lecture industry by setting the standard for commitment, trust, and care.

Joe Robert
CEO, J.E. Robert Companies
Good luck trying to guess Robert’s net worth (most eyes don’t see that far), but his footprint on the real estate market is real and notable. As CEO of one of the world’s largest private real estate investment and finance company, he has his hands in projects as far as South America, Russia and Europe. But as he razes land, he’s also raising hopes and hearts: His charity, Fight for Children, has given away almost $490 million through and he personally has donated $50 million to this cause.

David Rubenstein
Managing Director – The Carlyle Group.
Rubenstein founded the Carlyle Group with Bill Conway, Jr. and Daniel Daniello and, in the process, have not only become billionaires but have also built a roster of associates that includes George H.W. Bush, Frank Carlucci and Ed Mathias that would make the 1927 New York Yankees look like minor leaguers.

Tim Russert
Host, NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
You know you’re good when you’ve got more consecutive championships than the Boston Celtics. With Russert connected to the mic, “Meet the Press” has been the top Sunday morning talk show for nine straight years. Both he and the program were inducted into the National Association of Broadcasters in April and Russert’s pointed questions (bolstered by his vigorous preparation) have made MTP the main course in every political junkie’s regular news diet.

Roger and Vicki Sant
Hallmarks of D.C. social life include the National Zoo, the National Gallery of Art, Wolf Trap and many more; the Sants have given generously to keep these institutions of art and culture alive and running, and continue to make it their mission to support our way of life in an age where philanthropic familes like the Rockefellers are scarce.

Brent Scowcroft
President, The Scrowcroft Group
Born and bred a military man —with a 29-year career made out of it — Scowcroft has served as the National Security Advisor to both Presidents Gerald Ford and George H.W. Bush. From 1982 to 1989, he was Vice Chairman of Kissinger Associates, Inc., an international consulting firm, where he advised and assisted a wide range of U.S. and foreign corporate leaders on global joint venture opportunities, strategic planning, and risk assessment.

Gary Shapiro
CEO of Cosumer Electronics Association
The little joys in life, like being able to see Jennifer Aniston’s pores from space, would not have been possible without Shapiro’s pioneering assistance in one invention: HDTV. His trade association represents some 2000 consumer electronics companies, and he produces and owns the continent’s largest annual trade show, the International CESÒ.

Tom Sietsema
Food critic, The Washington Post.
As Washington’s restaurant scene continues to improve, Sietsema’s reviews can make or break. Still, he’s managed to maintain the respect of the food industry while simultaneously making quality dining understandable for the masses.

Rajendra Singh
Chairman, Telecom Ventures
This billionaire came from virtually nothing but has become a major player in the telecom community and helped launch Teligent, LCC International and XM Satellite holdings, Inc.

Dan Snyder
Chairman, Washington Redskins.
Okay, so maybe they don’t make the playoffs as much as we’d like. But, thanks to Snyder’s leadership, the Redskins continue to be one of the largest — and most profitable — franchises in the NFL. This Snyder’s star power is enough to attract everyone from Tom Cruise to Alan Greenspan to Colin Powell to the owner’s box come game day.

Joe Solmonese
President, Human Rights Campaign
The HRC is the largest LGBT equal rights organization in the U.S., with over 600,000 members; in 2005, Solmonese was elected president, from which position he “envisions an America where GLBT people are ensured of their basic equal rights, and can be open, honest and safe at home, at work and in the community.”

Michael Sonnenreich
CEO, Officer of Pharmatrak
With an education spanning two continents and multiple facets — Harvard University Law School, The University of Wisconsin and the University of Madrid — Sonnenreich is eminently qualified to be a CEO of just about anything. The long arm of his international influence involves his being Chairman and CEO of Kikaku America International, president and CEO of Global Communications Corp. Ltd. of London, Vice Chairman of the Board of PharMa International Corporation of Tokyo, a Director of Asset Advisory Services of Zurich, an Advisor of Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies and an Overseer of Tufts University Medical School.

Andrew Stern
President, SEIU
Dubbing him “a different kind of labor chief,” The New York Times Magazine described Stern as a man who “intends to create a new, more dynamic” labor movement. Andy Stern is intent on “forging new organizing models and public policies to reward work fairly,” says Fortune Magazine.

George Stephanopoulos
Host, ABC’s “This Week”
Not everyone thought that the former Clinton aide could make the transition from politics to journalism, but he has convinced even the nay-sayers that he’s got the chops to serve up a great Sunday talk show. Famous for his work ethic, he has made “This Week” more appealing show and the proof is in the ratings.

Strobe Talbott
President, Brookings Insitution
Bill Clinton confederate and fellow Rhodes Scholar, Talbott heads one of the most prominent think tanks in the U.S., the Brookings Institution. Of more than 200 organizations of its kind, its studies are the third most-cited of all public policy institutes by Members of Congress, behind only the Heritage Foundation and the American Civil Liberties Union.

Victoria Toensing
Partner, diGenova & Toensing
Considered a “hot commodity” since her involvement in Lewinsky-gate, Toensing and her partner-husband have been on television over 200 times, making her somewhat of a media always-is. She’s now a fixture on the Geraldo show and shows no sign of fading to the background anytime soon.

George Vradenburg
President, The Phillips Collection and Vradenburg Foundation
If there’s an arts institution in town, no doubt Vradenburg is involved. This former AOL-Time Warner strategic advisor’s commitment to the city’s cultural life has make Washington a place to remain well after office hours.

Chris Wallace
Host, “Fox News Sunday”
Liberals love to complain that Fox News isn’t “really” “fair and balanced,” but hardly anyone doubts Wallace’s even-handed approach to journalism and interviews on his increasingly popular Sunday talk show. This past year, he held his own against an irate former President Bill Clinton and more recently scored the exclusive with Fred Thompson when he first announced his interest in running for president.

Reg Weaver
President, National Education Association
Second-term NEA president Reg Weaver is considered a “demi-god” in his field and has been at the forefront of the “No Child Left Behind” Act and making sure those words ring true. The NEA, with over 3.2 million members, is still the nation’s largest professional employee organization and with education at the forefront of the election, Weaver will certainly have influence.

Vin Weber
Partner, Clark & Weinstock
Former Minnesota republican Congressmen, Vin Weber, is often referred to as “super lobbyist” for his inside-the-Beltway perch, which he uses to launch right-wing initiatives such as the Project for the New American Century and Empower America, which promotes economic well-being and individual responsibility.

Richard Wiley
Partner, Wiley, Rein & Fielding
Wiley and his firm, have received top honors in the annual ratings of D.C. legal practices by Chambers USA: Leading Lawyers for Business. Wiley, recipient of the inaugural Chambers Award for Excellence for his telecommunications regulatory work, was lauded by competitors as “the king of the DC communications bar,” “a lion in the field” and “one of the hardest-working men around.”

Tom Wilner
Managing Partner, Shearman & Sterling
Wilner counts among his cases successfully releasing the twelve Kuwaitis detained at Guantanamo Bay in 2004, which he argued in front of the U.S. Supreme Court, defending the Government of Mexico in the implementation of the North American Free Trade Agreement, and helping the Government of Kazakhstan with trade issues. “It’s hard to find a guy as concerned about the Constitution and the laws of this country,” developer Carter Cafritz shared.

Bob Woodward
Assistant Managing Editor, The Washington Post
Although it’s been over 30 years since his reporting helped topple a U.S. president, Woodward still has some of the best and deepest sources in town. He was criticized in recent years for being too chummy with and soft on politicians, but his latest book, State of Denial, proved that Woodward and his brilliant staff still have the claws to poke the powerful.

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