PROVEN

FP1 Strategies is a public affairs, advertising, grassroots and media relations firm founded by
Terry Nelson, Jon Downs, Danny Diaz and Rob Jesmer.

Terry Nelson

Terry Nelson has consistently demonstrated high levels of success in both the strategic and tactical areas of campaigns. He has played a senior role in the last four elections and was named one of "Politics Fabulous Fifty" -- a listing of the fifty most influential political operatives in Washington.

Nelson has worked in the last two presidential campaigns and been a general and media consultant on numerous House, Senate and Gubernatorial campaigns around the country. In 2010, he was the Senior Advisor to the National Republican Senate Committee.

Terry also has a long history in public affairs. He has conducted national campaigns on behalf of Wal-Mart, the American Chemistry Council and Pfizer. He has also worked with the US Chamber of Commerce, Disney, Fox Entertainment, the National Association of Manufacturers, AHIP and InBev.

Terry served as the National Political Director for Bush-Cheney 2004 where he was responsible for directing the messaging for the mail and phone program, grassroots organization, turning out the vote, and coalition outreach. This effort produced a historic increase in turnout for President Bush.

Terry graduated from the University of Iowa. He lives in Falls Church, Virginia with his wife, Marci, and their three children.

Back to top

Jon Downs

An award winning writer and producer, Jon Downs develops strategy and advertising for political candidates and issue campaigns across the country. He was previously the founder of Bright Media Inc.

Downs has worked to elect candidates to office at all levels of government, overseeing the creative process from concept to filming and editing to placement. His ads have won numerous Pollie Awards from the American Association of Political Consultants and Jon was named one of the top ten political operatives to watch by Politico.

Downs has also designed messaging and communications strategies for a number of high-profile issue campaigns, ranging from energy independence to patent reform. He employs all mediums – TV, radio, print and online – to inform opinion leaders, persuade voters and influence decision makers.

An experienced political operative, Downs served as Executive Director of two target states for Bush-Cheney 2000, as Deputy Campaign Manager and Political Director for Mark Earley’s 2001 Virginia gubernatorial campaign and in the Office of Congressional and Public Affairs at the United States Department of Justice.

Jon graduated from the University of Wisconsin. He lives in Vienna, VA with his wife, Alicia, and their daughter, Maret.

Back to top

Danny Diaz

Danny Diaz is a co-founder of FP1 Strategies LLC, a public affairs, advertising and media relations firm in Washington, D.C. Diaz specializes in high-level media strategies for national, state and local political candidates, and issue campaigns for corporate clients and trade associations.

Diaz was a senior advisor to Romney for President. As an advisor to Governor Romney's campaign, Diaz played a central role in communications, response planning and strategy.

In 2010, Danny Diaz was a lead consultant on two of the most closely watched political races in the country, Susana Martinez for Governor and Mark Kirk for U.S. Senate. Diaz was previously the founder of Diaz Communications LLC.

Prior to that, Diaz was the communications director of the Republican National Committee (RNC). As the chief communications strategist for the RNC, Diaz crafted and implemented messaging initiatives, and directed earned media campaigns from the national to local level.

As the Republican Party's national spokesman, Diaz was regularly interviewed by television, radio and print journalists with national and international media outlets. Diaz managed a division with a multi-million dollar budget and dozens of staff. RNC Communications incorporated an aggressive press, research and e-campaign operation, including specialty, regional, broadcast and online media. Diaz also oversaw staff deployments and field operations based on strategic communication needs.

At the RNC, Diaz played a lead role directing and managing a number of initiatives such as the delegate selection process, research, data gathering and testing on Democratic candidates, the committee's transition from the primary to general election campaign, the RNC's role in both the Democratic and Republican conventions, as well as Election Day activities.

Prior to that, Diaz served as deputy communications director for John McCain 2008. As a senior member of Senator McCain's campaign staff, Diaz was instrumental in crafting the campaign's overall communications strategy, including the development of key messages, rapid response tactics, and outreach to mainstream and specialty media outlets.

Before joining the McCain campaign, Diaz served as deputy communications director at the RNC. As such, he was responsible for overseeing the committee's regional media efforts and served as the primary communications liaison to state party committees and third-party groups. Diaz also played a key role in developing and implementing a strategic media plan to advance the nominations of two Supreme Court nominees – John Roberts and Samuel Alito, in addition to managing the committee's independent expenditure program and anti-vote fraud efforts.

In 2003 and 2004, Diaz served as southwest regional press secretary for Bush-Cheney '04 directing all press operations in nine victorious states. He was also a member of the campaign's National Hispanic Working Group.

During the 2002 cycle, Diaz served as the deputy press secretary for the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC).

Before joining politics, Diaz was a public relations account executive at The Bomstein Agency and an associate with RMR & Associates.

A native of Washington, D.C., Diaz received a bachelor's degree in Communication from George Mason University. He resides with his wife, three daughters and son in Vienna, Virginia.

Back to top

Rob Jesmer

Rob Jesmer recently joined FP1 Strategies LLC as its fourth partner. Prior to that, and during the past decade, Jesmer worked at the highest levels of Republican politics.

Most recently, Jesmer was executive director of the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) reporting directly to then-Chairman and Senator John Cornyn. During his four years directing the campaign committee, Jesmer oversaw an effort that netted five seats for Republicans and raised over $200 million.

Prior to the NRSC, Jesmer lived in Texas where he managed Senator Cornyn’s re-election campaign. He spent the 2006 election cycle as regional political director (RPD) for the Southeast at the Republican National Committee (RNC) serving as the liaison between state parties, campaigns and the committee’s chairman. As an RPD, Jesmer’s primary focus was managing the get-out-the-vote operation in Tennessee and Missouri, an effort consisting of 120 staff members and over $10 million spent between the two states.

In December 2002, Jesmer was hired by newly-elected Alabama Congressman Mike Rogers as his chief of staff. In that capacity, he set up Rogers’ office and managed his political activities.

From 1999-2002, Jesmer worked at the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC), first as a field representative for the Midwest, then as the national field director during the 2002 cycle.

Jesmer’s political experience also includes running campaigns in Tennessee, Mississippi, Illinois and Minnesota.

A native of St. Paul, Minnesota, Jesmer earned his bachelor of arts in political science and communications from the University of Saint Thomas. He currently resides in Arlington, Virginia with his wife Kendall, their sons, Jack and Carson, and daughter, Reaves.

Back to top

Joe Mansour

Joe Mansour leads the digital practice at FP1 Strategies where he architects winning online campaigns for his clients.

Most recently, as the digital director at Public Notice later, Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce, Mansour built and managed an eight-person team that ran all online advertising, website development, digital content creation, analytics, and social media monitoring for the organization and its numerous allied groups.

At Public Notice, Joe masterminded the launch of Spendopedia.org, a Wikipedia-like resource of wasteful government spending whose unveiling was featured in The Washington Times. Spendopedia was referred to as “a new sheriff in town... going after the big, wasteful spenders” by Citizens Against Government Waste.

Mansour also oversaw the production over several innovative web series including a parody of The Office about the government’s yearly practice of “use it or lose it,” which won an award from IJ Review for “out of the box” use of digital media.

During the 2012 election cycle, Joe was recruited by DC-London and a coalition of center-right organizations to run a cutting-edge social media war room that tracked social media sentiment on relevant policy issues and then shaped the narrative via compelling content, memes, influencer outreach and other digital tactics.

In 2011, Mansour joined No Labels to run their digital department where he recruited a supporter base of a half-million high-value voters via savvy, low-cost online advertising and organic outreach efforts.

Prior to that, Joe joined the digital agency the David All Group as its first employee in 2007 and helped the firm grow to nearly 20 staff over four years.  In that time he consulted for numerous clients like PhRMA, the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA), Senator Marco Rubio, then-Congressman Jeff Flake, The Heritage Foundation, among others.

Mansour got his start in politics and digital media working as a press aide on Oakland County Sheriff Mike Bouchard’s 2006 senatorial bid in Michigan.

Joe is a graduate of Kalamazoo College, and was born and raised in Michigan.  He currently lives in Alexandria, Virginia.

Back to top

Richard Cullen

Richard Cullen joined FP1 Strategies—a top public affairs and political firm based in Washington, DC—in January 2012.  At FP1, Cullen manages a variety of communications and advocacy campaigns for corporate and non-profit clients. During the summer and fall of 2013, Cullen took leave from FP1 and served as the communications director for Ken Cuccinelli’s gubernatorial campaign in Virginia. In that role, Cullen was the chief spokesman for the campaign and managed the digital, communications and research teams. Before joining FP1, Cullen served as press secretary to Congressman Ben Quayle, a high-profile member of the 112th Congress.   

Prior to joining Quayle’s staff, Cullen was the special assistant to Majority Leader Eric Cantor (then Republican Whip) before joining his press office as communications coordinator.  Cullen also performed political work for the National Republican Senatorial Committee during the 2010 cycle and worked closely with FP1 founder Terry Nelson.

Cullen came to Washington in the summer of 2007 after graduating from Furman University and joined Politico as the assistant to Editor-in-Chief John Harris and then Executive-Editor Jim VandeHei.  He eventually became a reporter for the publication and produced video content including Politico Playback.

Back to top

Ricky Diaz

Ricky Diaz has a proven track record working with high-profile Republican leaders, developing winning messages and strategies for statewide campaigns, government and advocacy groups.

During the 2012 election cycle, Ricky Diaz served as communications director for then-Mayor Pat McCrory's successful campaign for North Carolina governor. After McCrory's historic victory as the first Republican elected governor of North Carolina since 1988, Ricky Diaz served at the highest levels of state government, including as deputy communications director in the Office of the Governor.

Ricky Diaz previously served as director of media affairs for Chris Christie, leading branding, video production and digital communications strategy for the New Jersey Governor. Prior to joining the Christie Administration, Ricky Diaz led digital advertising efforts for political campaigns, advocacy groups and non-profits as a project manager at CampaignGrid, LLC. He also worked with both the North Carolina and New Jersey Republican Parties to develop digital media, fundraising and advertising strategies.

Ricky Diaz also served as deputy director of communications for U.S. Senator Richard Burr's successful re-election campaign in North Carolina and e-campaign director for Chris Christie's first campaign for New Jersey Governor.

He is a graduate from Vanderbilt University.

Back to top

Jessica Ennis

Jessica Ennis most recently served as the deputy director of operations for Romney for President, Inc., where she oversaw seven departments and a $30 million dollar budget.

Prior to joining Romney for President, Jessica was a regional political director (RPD) at the Republican National Committee (RNC), managing turnout operations in battleground races, and working with campaign staff and party leaders in fourteen states.

In addition to the RPD role, Jessica held leadership positions at the RNC from 2005-2008, which included serving as deputy political director during the 2008 presidential cycle.

Other experience includes managing gubernatorial and congressional campaigns in North Carolina, as well as the Bush-Cheney Victory 2004 effort.

Jessica is a graduate of East Carolina University. She lived in Raleigh, North Carolina for eight years before moving to Washington, D.C., where she currently resides.

Back to top

Alex Johnson

Alex Johnson most recently was a partner at Avalanche Advisors, a boutique state affairs firm. Previously, he served as the founding executive director of both the Republican Legislative Campaign Committee and the Republican Lieutenant Governor Association. He also serves as the president of the board for the American Council of Young Political Leaders.

Johnson will continue his work in state public affairs helping his clients effectively manage their efforts in a multi-state environment. Additionally, Johnson will work closely with candidates and bring to them a robust campaign offering from general consulting and communications strategy to creative and media consulting. He will be closely involved in the Senate race in Wisconsin, as FP1 is serving as the media consultant for Fitzgerald for Wisconsin.

Back to top

Ryan Williams

Ryan Williams has worked at the highest level of politics, most recently serving as a deputy national press secretary for Governor Mitt Romney's campaign for president. In that role, Williams acted as a spokesman for the campaign.

During the 2012 election cycle, Williams also managed communications for Romney's successful primary and caucus campaigns in New Hampshire, Maine, Florida, Nevada, Ohio, Illinois and Wisconsin.

Williams previously served as communications director of the New Hampshire Republican State Committee under former Governor John H. Sununu and as a communications staffer on former Senator John E. Sununu's 2008 reelection campaign.

He also managed candidate and surrogate interviews for Romney's 2008 presidential campaign after serving in his state house press office and working on Romney's 2002 campaign for governor.

Williams is a graduate of Boston College.

Back to top

Trent Wisecup

Trent Wisecup has 20 years of experience providing strategic advice to Republican elected officials, business leaders and industry trade associations.

During his career, Wisecup has served as a strategist and developed advertising for former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander and former U.S. Senator Spence Abraham.

During the 2012 election cycle, Wisecup served as consultant to the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC), managing 13 independent expenditure (IE) campaigns and playing a central role in defending the Republican majority in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Earlier in his career, Wisecup served as chief of staff to former Congressman Joe Knollenberg of Michigan.  From 2003-2005, he was the executive director of Mitt Romney's political action committee (PAC).

In addition to his political work, Wisecup has managed issue advocacy and strategic communications campaigns for General Motors, Philip Morris International, Wal-Mart, Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

From 2008-2009, he helped direct a national advertising and grassroots campaign for the business-led, Coalition for a Democratic Workplace (CDW), which worked to prevent card check legislation from being enacted during the first two years of the Obama Administration.

Wisecup is a graduate of Michigan State University.  He and his wife, Elif, have three daughters, Mercy, Verity and Melody.

Back to top

Lauren Zelt

Lauren Zelt is currently vice president, media affairs at FP1 Strategies.  Prior to joining the firm, Lauren served as the director of media affairs at Mitt Romney for President.  Her duties included managing the candidate's media presence by preparing editorial content for and working with television producers, and strategically placing surrogates and campaign advisors on television and radio.  She also facilitated interviews for Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan on both broadcast and cable television, and managed endorsements for high-profile Mitt Romney supporters.  In addition, she prepared interview briefing materials for the candidate and campaign advisors, and she designed and oversaw media monitoring procedures for the candidate, senior campaign advisors and communications team.  

During her tenure at FP1 and on the Romney campaign, Lauren has facilitated interviews with all major cable and broadcast television news networks.  She has also worked extensively with both local and national talk radio programming, and has placed opinion editorials and facilitated interviews with a wide variety of local, national and specialty publications.

Lauren served as deputy press secretary for television at the Republican National Committee before joining the Romney campaign, following her tenure as a segment producer at the Fox News Channel and various positions at CBS News.  Lauren is a native of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and graduated cum laude from Georgetown University.

Back to top