Agency

Our Team

Parkside’s team consists of a diverse group of seasoned professionals with decades of collective experience in public and strategic affairs. With offices in New York City and Albany, we battle daily at the crossroads of media, business, government and politics.

And we win.

Copyright 2019 The Parkside Group | All Rights Reserved

Saima Anjam - Vice President

Saima Anjam is an experienced organizer and advocate who has shaped policies in New York to protect the state’s most vulnerable residents.

As Senior Director of Advocacy for the New York Immigration Coalition, Saima helped direct advocacy campaigns in support of driver license equity and in support of expanding funding for legal services and access to health care. Prior to joining the NYIC, she served as Director of Public Policy for the New York State Coalition Against Domestic Violence, where she managed statewide lobbying efforts that passed critical legislation to end child marriage, protect the rights to access emergency assistance, expand access to WIC and critical funding streams, and improve reporting of abuse, among other accomplishments.

Saima also spent a decade shaping environmental policy at two of New York’s leading environmental organizations: Environmental Advocates of New York and the New York Public Interest Research Group (NYPIRG). At EA, she oversaw the group’s environmental health work and led the group’s efforts to reduce the impacts of toxic chemicals and solid waste on the health of all New Yorkers. At NYPIRG, she oversaw campus and community organizing efforts on Long Island and in Queens.

She has given back to the community through her service on the boards of Upper Hudson Planned Parenthood, Planned Parenthood Hudson Peconic, and American Muslim Health Professionals. She also taught English as a Second Language for Literacy New York’s Office of New Americans.

Tim Costa - Senior Associate

Tim Costa is a communications professional who guides Parkside's corporate, electoral and non-profit clients on press and social media strategy.

Throughout his career as an Emmy-nominated journalist for CBS News and 60 Minutes, as well as a public relations consultant, Tim has worked at the nexus of media, advocacy and politics from Washington, DC to Philadelphia to New York City.

Experienced in managing both crisis communications and planned media campaigns, Tim helps Parkside's clients define their brands in the world's most competitive media environment.

Wade Dansby - Creative Director

Wade Dansby brings multidisciplinary design experience to his role overseeing Parkside Group’s award-winning creative department. After honing his skills in print, digital, and broadcast media for over a decade as a Senior Creative at an international design, advertising, and branding agency, he now develops award-winning original content for a variety of clients across all of our practice areas.

Wade has been creating cutting-edge design on behalf of major and local cultural, non-profit, and commercial brands for decades. He earned his design degree from North Carolina State University College of Design.

Harry Giannoulis - President

Harry Giannoulis has provided the strategic vision that transformed the Parkside Group from a small startup company into a multi-faceted strategic communications and public affairs firm that has served over 500 clients.​

As co-founder of the Parkside Group, Harry Giannoulis has worked on over 225 winning campaigns and public policy initiatives. Because of these successes, City & State called Harry the #1 political consultant in New York in 2019. He has been previously featured on both City & State’s Power 100 List and the New York Observer’s Political Power 80 List.

Serving as the principal strategist for New York’s DemocraticSenate Campaign Committee, Harry has overseen the election of Democrats in seats long held by Republicans in every corner of the state. In 2018, Harry worked with a dedicated team of staff, volunteers, labor leaders, elected officials and progressive activists to deliver the largest Democratic Senate majority in more than a century.Harry managed the Committee's voter contact plans, including social media, television, direct mail and polling.

His clients have included Fortune 500 companies in the energy and insurance sector, as well as major real estate firms seeking understanding of the intricacies of city and state government. On their behalf, he has won approvals for multi-billion dollar land-use projects, negotiated hundreds of millions of dollars in economic incentives, and directed the largest independent expenditure campaign in New York history. As a result, he has been featured on both City & State’s Power 100 List and the New York Observer’s Political Power 80.

In government, he was appointed New York State Ombudsman by Governor Mario Cuomo from 1990 to 1994 and was responsible for managing the Governor’s twenty-one regional offices throughout the State. He later served as an executive of a leading provider of services to people with developmental disabilities and mental illness and as a Commissioner on the New York City Taxi & Limousine Commission, having been appointed in 2000.

Jake Herring - Vice President & Deputy General Counsel

Jake Herring has successfully tackled complex issues before city and state government on behalf of corporate clients, labor unions, and local government alike.​

At the Parkside Group, he advises corporate and labor clients at both City Hall and the State Capitol, building upon more than ten years of advocacy work in both the public and private sectors. Prior to joining the firm, he served in senior capacities in New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Office of State Legislative Affairs and in both the Finance & Member Services divisions of the New York City Council. In the de Blasio’s administration, he served as principal counsel for the city’s Albany lobbying office and as the principal state lobbyist for several city agencies, including the Department of Finance and the Law Department. He also oversaw the confirmation process for Mayoral appointments to a variety of state boards and authorities, including the Metropolitan Transportation Authority and the City University of New York.

Before joining the de Blasio administration, Jake practiced law and represented dozens of clients before city and government including market leaders in the social services, higher education, and healthcare sectors. His work included navigating the city’s land use approval process, securing millions of dollars in vital funding for non-profit organizations, and representing clients before agencies such as the Department of Consumer Affairs, Health Department, Mayor’s Office of Film, and the State Liquor Authority. He began his career as a Legislative Representative for the United Federation of Teachers and served as an aide to Senator Franz Leichter.

Dan Katz - Executive Vice President & General Counsel

Dan Katz has put his legal, legislative, and political acumen to work for Attorney General Andrew Cuomo’s office, Assemblyman Jeff Dinowitz, and as Political and Legislative Director of New Yorkers for Lawsuit Reform.

As General Counsel to the Parkside Group, he manages the firm’s Albany office and provides representation to a wide array of advocacy, corporate, labor and non-profit clients before New York State government. Dan offers these clients advice and counsel on a myriad of subjects, including procurement, regulatory, and legislative matters. He advises clients with more than $150 Million in state contracts, passed landmark legislation to reform municipal procurement, won the elimination of surcharges on insurance policies, and helped protect the rights of victims of medical negligence to sue for damages.

Dan Katz - Executive Vice President & General Counsel

Dan Katz has put his legal, legislative, and political acumen to work for Attorney General Andrew Cuomo’s office, Assemblyman Jeff Dinowitz, and as Political and Legislative Director of New Yorkers for Lawsuit Reform.

As General Counsel to the Parkside Group, he manages the firm’s Albany office and provides representation to a wide array of advocacy, corporate, labor and non-profit clients before New York State government. Dan offers these clients advice and counsel on a myriad of subjects, including procurement, regulatory, and legislative matters. He advises clients with more than $150 Million in state contracts, passed landmark legislation to reform municipal procurement, won the elimination of surcharges on insurance policies, and helped protect the rights of victims of medical negligence to sue for damages.

Benjamin Kern - Vice President & Associate General Counsel

Ben Kern is an attorney and advocates with a distinguished track record of representing corporate and non-profit clients before state government.

His advocacy work has secured millions of dollars in budget funding on behalf of clients in New York and New Jersey as well as the enactment of numerous legislative initiatives. He has organized legislative coalitions, drafted regulatory changes on behalf of a state agency, and worked on legislative matters and labor law litigation for multiple global law firms. As a result of these efforts, he has been named a Super Lawyers top-rated attorney in Government Relations, a Super Lawyers Rising Star in Government Relations, and a 40 Under 40 Rising Star by City and State.

Prior to beginning his government relations career, he worked in the Executive Chamber under Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, at the New York Democratic Senate Campaign Committee and in the Capitol Hill office of Congressman Maurice Hinchey. He also conducted research and translation work for the Justice Department’s Office of Special Investigations in support of their mission to ensure that perpetrators of Nazi atrocities are brought to justice.

Spencer Lee - Vice President

Spencer Lee is Vice President of the Parkside Group, where he oversees the firm’s Public Affairs practice. In this role, Spencer has overseen multi-million dollar advertising and coalition-building efforts that have resulted in major victories for high-profile political, advocacy, and corporate clients.

Spencer's experience waging complex public affairs efforts spans multiples sectors including transportation, commercial development, technology, healthcare, finance and more at the municipal, state and federal level. His expertise in data analytics, grassroots mobilization, and stakeholder engagement enables advocacy groups, corporate clients, and labor unions to build public support for their agendas.

Prior to joining the firm, Spencer served as Director of External Relations for the New York State Senate Democratic Conference. He began his political career on the 2008 Obama campaign before moving on to field and campaign management positions on races in Virginia, Illinois, and New York. Before entering government, he managed the successful re-election campaign of Sen. Joseph Addabbo (D-Howard Beach).

Donald Lewis -Digital Designer & Web Developer

Donald Lewis creates winning digital strategies for political and issue campaigns by helping our clients optimize their web presence. His work blends design savvy and expert programming into sleek and effective communications tools, enabling our clients to educate the public and key stakeholders, to mobilize tens of thousands of citizens to contact policymakers, and to remain on message across a variety of channels.

Donald brings over a decade of experience in digital design and development, and he is thrilled to apply his cutting-edge skill set to our clients’ important causes and campaigns.

Donald Lewis - Digital Designer & Web Developer

Donald Lewis creates winning digital strategies for political and issue campaigns by helping our clients optimize their web presence. His work blends design savvy and expert programming into sleek and effective communications tools, enabling our clients to educate the public and key stakeholders, to mobilize tens of thousands of citizens to contact policymakers, and to remain on message across a variety of channels.

Donald brings over a decade of experience in digital design and development, and he is thrilled to apply his cutting-edge skill set to our clients’ important causes and campaigns.

Madeleine Lohr - Junior Associate

Madeleine Lohr is a mathematician by training who applies her quantitative skills and insights to Parkside’s targeting and data analysis operation.

Most recently, Madeleine served as a Data Fellow for a US Senate Campaign where she managed statewide Voter Databases and reported to senior staff on data metrics. Madeleine has also served as a Junior Economic Analyst for a US Congressional candidate and as a Field Intern for the Democratic Party of Virginia. She has advanced programming skills and is proficient with a multitude of software platforms. Madeleine has a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics and Data Analytics from Hollins University.

Veronica Ng - Vice President

Veronica Ng is Vice President of the Parkside Group, where she works with clients in the firm’s public affairs and political campaign practices. A veteran communications and field operative, Veronica mobilizes grassroots movements and develops strategic messaging to help Parkside’s clients gain a competitive edge.

Prior to joining the firm, Veronica honed her skills for nearly a decade while working in senior roles with top elected officials in New York. Most recently, she served as Director of External Affairs to Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul, where she worked closely with media and local groups around the state to promote the Lieutenant Governor’s legislative initiatives and key policy issues. Prior to that, Veronica worked as an External Relations Associate for the New York State Senate Democratic Conference, following stints as Campaign Manager for State Senator Toby Stavisky and Communications Director for then-City Council Member Mark Weprin. Veronica holds a BA from Hunter College.

Veronica Ng is joining the Parkside Group as Vice President, where she will work with clients in the firm’s public affairs and political campaign practices. A veteran communications and field operative, Veronica will mobilize grassroots movements and develop strategic messaging to help Parkside’s clients gain a competitive edge.

Prior to joining the firm, Veronica honed her skills for nearly a decade while working in senior roles with top elected officials in New York. Most recently, she served as Director of External Affairs to Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul, where she worked closely with media and local groups around the state to promote the Lieutenant Governor’s legislative initiatives and key policy issues.

Prior to that, Veronica worked as an External Relations Associate for the New York State Senate Democratic Conference, following stints as Campaign Manager for State Senator Toby Stavisky and Communications Director for then-City Council Member Mark Weprin.

Veronica holds a BA from Hunter College.

Jorge Perez - Senior Associate

With a background in electoral campaigns and grassroots engagement, Jorge helps service some of the Parkside Group’s most high-profile local, state and national campaign clients.

Jorge’s political experience prior to joining the Parkside Group – which includes field organizing on Congressional races, research at a renewable energy non-profit, and internships on Capitol Hill and in the New York City Council for Finance Committee Chair Julissa Ferreras – has helped him service our clients’ daily needs while also keeping an eye on the bigger picture.

Joe Reubens - Partner

The Washington Post called Joe Reubens a campaign veteran while he was still just 25 years old. By the time he turned 29, he’d helped defeat nine incumbent officeholders in multiple states. Joe Reubens has earned his reputation as one of the Democratic Party’s top political operatives by consulting on, and winning, some of the toughest electoral contests in the nation.

A graduate of New York University’s prestigious Masters program in political campaign management and a former consultant to progressive organizations like EMILY’s List, the Human Rights Campaign and 21st Century Democrats, he has worked on competitive state legislative, countywide, congressional, and statewide political and 527 campaigns in seven states, from the streets of Brooklyn to the deserts of Nevada.

At the Parkside Group, he has provided dozens of candidates throughout New York and New Jersey the smart strategy and creative messaging that has made the difference for them on Election Day. And, he’s used those same skills to help labor unions, independent expenditures, and advocacy groups to more effectively educate and mobilize key constituencies.

Susana Silva - Vice President

Whether it’s helping our clients deal with the complexities of ever-changing lobbying regulations, managing the smooth operations of our multiple offices, or overseeing the administrative work of the business, Susana Silva has been an integral part of the Parkside Group’s success for many years.

Prior to joining the company, Susana worked in the financial services industry serving as an Executive Assistant at Delta Bank and Merrill Lynch and as a Banking Officer at Citigroup after receiving a degree in International Business from Pace University.

Susana Silva - Vice President

Whether it’s helping our clients deal with the complexities of ever-changing lobbying regulations, managing the smooth operations of our multiple offices, or overseeing the administrative work of the business, Susana Silva has been an integral part of the Parkside Group’s success for many years.

Prior to joining the company, Susana worked in the financial services industry serving as an Executive Assistant at Delta Bank and Merrill Lynch and as a Banking Officer at Citigroup after receiving a degree in International Business from Pace University.

Evan Stavisky - Partner

One of the Northeast’s best-known political and legislative strategists, Evan Stavisky has guided countless high-stakes electoral and government relations campaigns. Described as “politically wired” by the New York Post, he has been repeatedly named as one of the 100 most influential New Yorkers by City & State, which wrote about his “deep understanding of New York government as well as its political stakeholders.”

At The Parkside Group, he oversees the firm’s government relations and public affairs practice areas. He has successfully represented a variety of clients in legislative, procurement, and regulatory matters before state and local governments in New York. His work has led to major technology companies overcoming antiquated regulations, public health groups beating the tobacco industry, the passage of critical alternative energy legislation, and the daily fantasy sports industry in New York being saved from extinction.

After serving as Chief of Staff to a New York State Assemblyman, Evan began his career in the private sector winning scores of political campaigns across New York State. For many years, his insights into government and politics have been routinely featured in many New York and national media outlets.

Paul Thomas - Partner

Paul Thomas develops and executes multifaceted government relations efforts for the firm’s clients that engage community stakeholders by building upon skills and relationships he developed over many years as a senior aide to several high-ranking elected officials. He now advises non-profit organizations, educational and cultural institutions and Fortune 500 companies on a variety of budgetary, legislative, and procurement efforts.

Before joining the Parkside Group, Paul served as Assistant Director of Intergovernmental and Community Affairs under then-Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, as Chief of Staff to Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie, and as a senior aide to State Senator Kevin Parker.

Prior to his work in the Legislature and Attorney General’s office, Paul served at the New York City Council, where he played a key role in the municipal budget process, helped lead staff efforts to create the city’s Anti-Gang Violence Youth Initiative, and worked to expand the city’s Family Justice Center to help victims of domestic violence.

Norah Yahya - Vice President

Norah Yahya is an accomplished advocate with a demonstrated ability to navigate the complexities of the budget process on behalf of some of New York’s leading non-profits.

A former Senior Legislative Financial Analyst for the New York City Council’s Finance Division, Norah oversaw the expense and capital budgets for the New York City Department of Education and the implementation of various Council initiatives, including the Cultural After-School Adventure (CASA) program.

As Associate Director of Government & Community Affairs for the New York Public Library, she organized advocacy campaigns to secure tens of millions of dollars in vital public funding for the Library system. She began her advocacy career in New York working for United Neighborhood Houses, where she lobbied city and state lawmakers on behalf of 38 local Settlement Houses throughout New York.

A passionate educator, with a Masters in Urban Education Policy from Brown University, she serves on the Board of Trustees of La Cima Charter School and previously worked as a Research & Policy Associate for the Annenberg Institute for Education Reform. Earlier in her career, she worked in the Washington office of Senator Dianne Feinstein and for the National Association of State Units on Aging.