Meet Our Team.

Tony Simon, Partner

Tony Simon began his political career fifteen years ago as the Political Director for a US Congressman and later as the Field Director to the Senate Minority Caucus in Georgia. Over the next four years he played a central role in helping Republicans reach a majority status in both the Senate and House earning the title of Executive Director to the Senate Majority Caucus and later Deputy Chief of Staff to the House Speakers Office.

Following his work in Georgia Simon has served as a consultant to numerous legislative campaigns, state parties and as a member of National Finance Committee to the Republican Governors Association. He also served on the National Finance Committee and as Co-Chairman to the 45th Presidential Inaugural Committee.

As the founder of ConnectSouth Public Affairs, Simon has helped lead the company’s growth efforts into a national model for comprehensive, ethical government affairs work.

Tony currently resides in Atlanta, Georgia with his wife Jessica, their two daughters and son, and is an active member of Northside United Methodist Church.

Paul Bennecke, Partner

Paul’s experience reaches across all fifty states having worked with governors, legislative caucuses, party committees, federal candidates, Super PACs, ballot initiatives, Fortune 1000 companies, and not-for-profit organizations. Paul has managed over $500 million in political and issue advocacy and has directed and/or consulted for more than 80 successful campaigns.

Paul is a Partner at ConnectSouth, a multi-state public affairs firm based in Atlanta, Georgia. ConnectSouth represents a variety of Fortune 1000 companies, associations, municipalities, and not-for-profit organizations.

Paul recently completed four successful years as Executive Director of the Republican Governors Association. During his tenure, Republicans captured a historic high thirty-four states and raised a record $280 million. Throughout his career, Paul has helped elect sixty-one governors and served governors in 43 of the 50 states.

From 2007-2010, Paul served the Republican Governors Association (RGA) as Deputy Executive Director and Political Director where he managed RGA’s political operations including candidate recruitment, independent expenditures and candidate-committee coordination.

From 2001-2006, Paul served as Executive Director of the Georgia Republican Party and Political Director for former Georgia Governor Sonny Perdue’s successful gubernatorial campaign. He would later lead his cousin’s 2014 U.S. Senate race, David Perdue, who successfully became Georgia’s junior senator.

Paul is married to Jen Englert Bennecke who served as a special assistant to Georgia’s First Lady, ran a state agency for two governors, and now serves and/or advises on numerous charitable boards and ballot initiatives. They reside in Atlanta with their three boys: Barron (age 7), Nate (age 2) and Jackson (age 1).

Bo Moore, Partner

Bo Moore focuses on complex regulatory affairs and procurement issues in the State of Georgia and Southeast. He has worked on legislative affairs issues in Georgia for more than 20 years. Prior to joining ConnectSouth, Bo led the State Government Affairs practice at McKenna, Long and Aldridge, now Dentons, in Atlanta for almost 12 years. He has managed regulatory solutions for clients, such as DuPont, Southwest Airlines, Ford Motor Company; the Atlanta Falcons, Southwire, Xerox, Sunovion Pharmaceuticals, Cisco, CA, Nextera Energy, Georgia Aquarium, Georgia-Pacific, Northside Hospital and IGT, just to name a few. He regularly represents numerous Fortune 500 companies, hospitals, healthcare companies, trade associations, technology companies and other businesses that interact with State governments on a regular basis. He currently serves on the Republican Governor’s Association National Finance Committee and remains active in Georgia political and business circles.

Bo was a member of U.S. Senator Paul Coverdell's staff and served as Political Director for Coverdell's campaign and political activities. He also served as a key strategist for Senator Phil Gramm's Presidential campaign that was co-chaired by Senator Coverdell.

Bo is a graduate of the University of Georgia Terry College of Business with a Bachelor of Business Administration. Bo currently resides in Atlanta with his wife Leah and two children Tripp and Lillie. He is an active member in Northside Methodist Church, GA Chamber of Commerce, Lovett True Blue Leadership Georgia (2006) and Piedmont Driving Club.

Edens Davis, Partner

Edens Davis has strong issue-area expertise in economic development, transportation, natural resources, and health care policy and is a trusted advisor to key decision-makers across the state of Georgia. He utilizes his rare combination of extensive background in strategic and grassroots campaigns and actual public policy development and implementation to successfully achieve the diverse needs of his clients.

Edens has held a variety of positions over nearly a decade in Georgia politics. He began his career as a young political staffer for USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue's successful re-election campaign as Governor. He used that experience as a springboard to work with the Republican Governors Association on races across the country. In 2010, he became a key member of then-Congressman Nathan Deal's gubernatorial campaign. Upon Gov. Deal's election to office, Davis served on the transition team and he served as a senior policy advisor for Gov. Deal, overseeing critical issues areas such as natural resources, transportation, economic development and agriculture. During his time in the Governor's Office, Davis developed policy, helped shepherd bills through the legislative process and became a trusted liaison for agency heads in those respective policy areas.

Most recently, Davis served as a senior advisor to Governor Greitens in Missouri during his inauguration and transition. In that role, he helped usher in the first Republican administration in Missouri in nearly a decade. He splits his time between Jefferson City and Atlanta to help lead ConnectSouth’s Midwest efforts.

Edens graduated from Emory University with a bachelor of arts in Political Science. He and his wife, Kirsten and their son are active at Capital City Club, Peachtree Presbyterian Church, and several other charitable organizations in Atlanta. When he is not influencing policy makers across the country, he enjoys hunting and fishing on his family’s pecan orchard in middle Georgia.

April Byrd, Associate

April possesses a strong business background with experience managing millions of dollars in annual revenue for one of the nation’s largest specialty retailers to overseeing operations of her family’s construction company. In 2002 she had an opportunity to work in the Salisbury Campaign office for Elizabeth Dole’s successful US Senate Campaign. Two years later April worked in Lima, OH for the 2004 Bush/Cheney campaign.

In 2011 April became a preferred fundraising vendor for the NC House Republican Caucus following the 2010 election when Republicans won majorities in both chambers of the NC Legislature. She stepped down from her family business and started April Byrd Consulting.  April has raised money for over a dozen NC House Members including the former House Majority Leader. In addition to successfully raising money for NC House Members she has been a fundraising consultant to NC Supreme Court Justices, NC Court of Appeals Judges, three US Congressional Candidates, The Jesse Helms Center, and a 501c4 Independent Expenditure Committee. During the 2016 Election, April worked on over a dozen events for National and State candidates. Through her extensive political work April has built solid relationships with elected officials and their staff at the state and local level in North Carolina.

April attended the University of Georgia and has a BA in Economics. April resides in Cornelius, NC outside of Charlotte with her yellow Lab, Faith. She stays active in the Lake Norman Community through Lake Norman Baptist Church and is an active member of Northstone Country Club.

Kristen Casimir, Associate

Kristen Casimir serves as a Government Affairs Associate in the Atlanta Office. She is a highly enthusiastic, client-focused individual with a demonstrated history of creating strategic alliances in politics and the hospitality industry. Before joining Connect South, Kristen was the External Affairs Coordinator at the Secretary of State’s Office, where she collaborated with high schools across Georgia to ensure student participation in the Student Ambassador Program, having previously served as a Campaign Manager for multiple political campaigns.

Throughout her professional career Kristen has committed herself to developing and maintaining strong relationships with critical stakeholders, agency heads, and both local and state elected officials. Her work in government has given her extensive knowledge of constituent needs and has allowed her to make an impact both in the office and within her community.

Kristen received her B.A. in the Andrew Young School of Public Policy from Georgia State University. She was born and raised in Massachusetts and currently resides in Vinings, GA.

In Partnership with Capitol Resources

Clare Hester

Capitol Resources, LLC founder, Clare Hester is recognized as one of Mississippi’s top lobbyists. She is a force at the Mississippi State Capitol, waging and winning multiple political and legislative campaigns each year for and against propositions on behalf of businesses and trade associations.

Clare has extensive experience in developing grassroots initiatives and building coalitions for legislative and other politically related causes. She consistently demonstrates the political acumen to recognize opportunities for compromise and facilitating consensus.

Clare’s array of direct legislative, agency and longstanding political relationships, her command of the political battlefield, and her leadership skills propel the Capitol Resources team’s winning legislative efforts. She is an expert in devising smart strategies, refining tactics and ensuring the most effective implementation possible.

Henry Barbour

Henry leads Capitol Resources lobbying efforts in numerous states around the country. He is recognized as one of the top strategic political operatives in the country. Henry’s extensive experience and success in state and national campaigns brings Henry into contact with a diverse array of leaders, policy makers and political insiders.

The New York Times called Henry “fiercely competitive” and a “savvy tactician.”

As Mississippi’s elected RNC National Committeeman and a leader of the Republican National Committee, Henry is active in Republican circles throughout the country, with particular focus on the Republican Governors Association. His experience provides clients with unique insight into Republican administrations across the country; and his campaign experience helps drive the strategies he crafts to ensure results for Capitol Resources’ clients.

John Lundy

John Lundy is widely respected throughout the Gulf South and Washington, DC. He leads our federal lobbying team on behalf of an impressive array of clients, expertly maneuvering through the complexities of the federal government and the US Senate and Congress.

John’s experience as a Senate chief-of-staff provides the foundation for lasting relationships with key leaders throughout Mississippi, the Gulf South and the entire country.

When he’s not lobbying Congressional leadership and the Gulf South region’s delegation, John ensures our entire Capitol Resources team is fully engaged on behalf of our clients in fields as diverse as transportation, defense, telcom and agriculture.

Toby Roth

As an attorney and the former chief–of-staff for one of Alabama’s most successful governors, businesses, associations and organizations look to Toby for insight and leadership on their Alabama advocacy efforts.

Toby leads our Alabama office providing clients with a thorough understanding of the Alabama political and policy landscape, and effective relationships with policymakers.

He is experienced in devising smart strategic action plans for clients, achieving their short-term goals while supporting their long-term objectives.

Reed Branson

Reed is on the ground at the Mississippi Capitol every day, advocating on behalf of clients and anticipating opportunities for clients.

Reed focuses on energy, health care, transportation and a host of issues impacting non-profits.

With a background in political journalism, Reed is particularly adept at listening to multiple sides of a debate and crafting effective messages and win-win strategies, as well as assisting clients as they prepare for and respond to media crisis.

Brewser Brown

As an advisor to one of the nation’s recognized reformers – former Governor Jeb Bush – Brewser has fought the battles that make a difference.

In addition to his impressive work in education reform, Brewser has also represented Fortune 100 financial and technology companies.

Today, he provides our clients with winning representation at the Florida statehouse, seizing opportunities that are unique to a state as large as Florida.

Spence Flatgard

Spence, a seasoned attorney, provides clients lobbying service on the federal and the state level, focusing on telecommunications and energy issues, among others.

He is adept at establishing and running political action committees for clients. We rely on Spence to craft legislative language to support clients’ needs.

With expertise in election and campaign finance laws, Spence assures our team members and clients are compliant with applicable states’ lobbying laws and regulations.

Adam Haddox

Adam’s keen knowledge of Louisiana’s executive and legislative branch and its key leadership brings valuable insight and advantage to Capitol Resources’ clients, particularly those with a business presence in the Gulf South.

Adam provides clients with exceptional strategic planning, targeted communication with critical decision-makers, and unparalleled advocacy on a broad spectrum of public policy issues.

With experience in industries ranging from architecture to cable and manufacturing to transportation, Adam produces winning results for clients by matching their needs with the goals of Louisiana policymakers.

John P. Hagood

John’s extensive work as a senior ranking lawyer in the Alabama state government gives him the ability to drill down into the details of regulations and legislation on issues ranging from the environment to taxation.

John’s relationships throughout state government provide Capitol Resources’ clients with direct access to key decision makers.

His common sense approach to creative problem solving provides clients with turnkey solutions for all of our clients’ government relations needs.

Conrad Lucas

Conrad Lucas’s deep roots and extensive background in West Virginia politics come as a major asset to Capitol Resources’ clients. As Chairman of the West Virginia Republican Party, Conrad oversaw the historic takeover in both chambers in the state legislature and near federal sweep by the Republican Party. When elected, Conrad was the youngest state party chair in the nation.

As an attorney and former policy analyst for an education think tank, Conrad has vast experience in legislative analysis and policy development. Early in his career, Conrad also served as an aide to Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV).

Conrad serves on a variety of community boards including a local economic development authority and was awarded the Governor’s Community Service Award. He earned his bachelor’s and doctorate degrees from Vanderbilt, a master’s from Harvard, law degree from Tulane and a certificate in international law at the Sorbonne. While at Tulane, Conrad also earned a certificate in environmental law and served as a Senior Moot Court Justice.

Lee Ann Mayo

Lee Ann’s tireless advocacy at the statehouse on behalf of Capitol Resources’ clients is unmatched in the halls of the state Capitol. And what’s even more impressive is that she advocates for and represents clients in both Louisiana and Mississippi.

Lee Ann focuses on an array of issues – education, corrections, procurement and healthcare among them, spending her days talking to legislators of both parties and many backgrounds.

She succeeds by mastering the nuances of complex issues and relentlessly making the case with policy leaders.

Additionally, Lee Ann is a member of Gulf Coast Business Council, American Telemedicine Association, and an associate member of MS Press Association.

Adam Nickas

Adam knows politics from the ground up, having recruited candidates, walked precincts, and crafted strategies and messages that produce measurable results.

In his role at the Tennessee Republican Party, Adam worked with legislative candidates across Tennessee, successfully building majorities to ensure a fiscally sound, business-friendly Tennessee General Assembly.

Today, Adam applies those same tactics as he works the halls of the Legislative Plaza in Nashville on behalf of Capitol Resources’ clients, providing exceptional strategic planning, targeted communication with key critical decision-makers, and unparalleled advocacy on a broad spectrum of public policy issues.

Darrell Scott

Darrell T. Scott. Scott, who has 15 years of government and public affairs experience, has most recently served in the administration of Governor Nikki Haley as both the chief of staff for the SC Department of Employment and Workforce (DEW) and interim chief of staff at the South Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ).

While serving as the chief of staff at DEW, Scott became widely known as a reformer in state government, solving many complex problems, while providing common sense business solutions. During his service at DEW, the agency paid off a nearly $1 billion federal loan, reduced improper payments by more than 350% and restructured workforce operations enabling hundreds of thousands of South Carolinians to find new jobs. He was most recently tasked by Governor Haley to help with reform efforts at Department of Juvenile Justice. As vice president of public policy and communications at the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce, Scott worked on behalf of business and industry on a multitude of issues that delivered a $2.2 billion return on investment for the business community in the 2012-2013 legislative sessions. Prior to that, Scott served as the legislative director for U.S. Congressman J. Gresham Barrett in Washington, D.C.

As an active member in his community, Scott currently serves on the boards for Leadership South Carolina, United Way of South Carolina and Palmetto Health Children’s Hospital Foundation. A native of Columbia, Scott is a graduate of Clemson University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and a minor in Economics.

Clayton Stanley

You’re likely to find Clayton in the halls of Capitols around the South – be it Nashville, TN or Jackson, MS – fighting on behalf of Capitol Resources’ clients. Clayton’s background in both running a businesses and leading local, state and federal political campaigns gives him invaluable context to craft and implement solutions to achieve real solutions for our clients. And as a native of the historic border-town of Corinth, MS, Clayton is sharply attuned to the historic, cultural and political nuances of both Tennessee and Mississippi.

In addition to lobbying, he has significant experience doing business and economic development on behalf of clients and communities throughout the Mid-South. Clayton is active in Republican circles across the country, with particular focus on the Republican Governor’s Association where he serves on the National Finance Committee.

Clayton is the past President of The Alliance, Alcorn County Mississippi’s economic development organization. He also serves as a board member of the Commission on the Future of Northeast Mississippi and serves as Chairman of the Magnolia Hospital Foundation.

Ray Sullivan

Sullivan has worked at the highest levels of government and political campaigns. He served as chief of staff for the Governor of Texas managing a staff of 260. Prior to that he worked as communications director for Rick Perry’s 2012 presidential campaign and conducted interviews with Sean Hannity, Andrea Mitchell, Megyn Kelly, John King and many others. In 2002, he founded Sullivan Public Affairs, an Austin, Texas-based government and public affairs firm, providing legislative and media relations consulting, strategy and implementation.

Sullivan served as a national spokesman on the 2000 Bush-Cheney campaign, as Deputy Communications Director for Texas Governor George W. Bush (1995-1998), and as a state press director for Bush-Quayle 1992. He has worked at Karl Rove+Company and on the Washington, D.C. staffs of U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX), U.S. Rep. Sam Johnson (R-TX) and U.S. Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA).

Sullivan graduated from San Diego State University with a business marketing degree and took MBA courses at American University while working on Capitol Hill.

He and his wife Leslie Rawl Sullivan – a successful professional fundraiser – are parents of two young children and reside in Austin.