David Castagnetti is a Democratic political strategist with a Red Sox enthusiast’s ardor for hitting them out of the park. David has worked at the forefront of many of the significant legislative issues of the past two decades; building a long record of success in business, government and politics.
Known as a Democrat who understands how to talk to business, David is widely regarded as a leading legislative strategist who has played a critical role in shaping some of the most significant global policy issues of our time - from trade with China to global e-commerce to health care reform. Recognized as one of Washington's top lobbyists by Business Week, Washingtonian Magazine, The Hill and CQ, he is a trusted advisor to Members of Congress, Fortune 100 CEOs, trade associations and other organizations - who appreciate his street smarts and ability to blend policy and politics while navigating tough issues through difficult legislative and regulatory hurdles.
Before joining the bipartisan firm, Mehlman Vogel Castagnetti Inc., David served as the day-to-day point person to Congressional leaders and Members of the House and Senate for Senator John Kerry's 2004 Presidential campaign. As the Director of Congressional Operations, David provided briefings to both caucuses on the strategy, polling and message of the campaign, while earning plaudits for his sensitive work managing speaking roles at the Convention and surrogate outreach during debates.
Prior to joining the campaign, David was a partner at Bergner, Bockorny, Castagnetti & Hawkins, where he worked with technology leaders and innovative start-ups across Silicon Valley to shape, execute and implement effective strategies to help drive exports while maintaining America's lead in information technology. David also developed valuable experience in corporate mergers and acquisitions, advising Hewlett-Packard in its successful merger with Compaq, NewsCorp. in its merger with DirecTV and Traveler's Insurance in its well-regarded partnership with St. Paul Insurance Company.
A former Chief of Staff to Senator Max Baucus (D-MT), David earned a reputation for integrity while advising the Senator on trade, tax, transportation and high technology issues. He also provided advice and counsel on all matters related to the Finance and Environmental and Public Works Committees.
David also served as Chief of Staff to Congressman Norman Y. Mineta (D-CA) in the House of Representatives, where he served as Chairman of the Transportation Committee. A decade later, David led the successful confirmation efforts to help Mr. Mineta become Secretary of Commerce in the Clinton Administration and Secretary of Transportation for President George W. Bush.
One of the few people to have served in senior positions to Members on both the Senate Finance Committee and House Commerce Committee, David began his career in the Office of Congressman Ed Markey (D-MA). A strong believer in "what-you-see-is-what-you-get." client service, David has instilled that same approach at his firm, where principals do the work without pushing it off on junior associates.
A graduate of Lake Forest College, with a Master's in Public Administration from the John McCormack Institute at the University of Massachusetts, David is an Adjunct Professor at American University. He lives in Bethesda, Maryland with his wife, Ann, and their two sons.