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Agricultural Acquisition

Rep. Mike Pence (R-Ind.) snagged Matt Lloyd, former president of the Republican Communications Association, to be his new communications director.

The one-time deputy press secretary to Agriculture Secretary Ann Veneman holds a 1996 bachelor’s in agriculture communications from the University of Illinois.

Lloyd, a Normal, Ill., native, is an old hand at Congressional communications, having also worked as press secretary to Rep. Kevin Brady (R-Texas) and then-Rep. Rick Hill (R-Mont.).

Bluegrass Babies. Rep. Anne Northup (R-Ky.) has welcomed a new face to her office and promoted three staffers.

Brooken Smith, former legislative aide to now-Senate Majority Whip Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), joins the Northup team as legislative assistant. He will cover VA-HUD Appropriations subcommittee issues.

A member of Georgetown University’s class of 2000, the 25-year-old Smith holds a bachelor’s in government.

Legislative Assistant Clinton Blair has been promoted to legislative director. He will continue to advise the Congresswoman on Treasury-Postal Service Appropriations subcommittee work and on national defense, transportation, tax and budget issues.

The former aide to Rep. Hal Rogers (R-Ky.) holds a bachelor’s in public administration from Harding University.

Blair, who later went on to earn a master’s in business administration from American University, spent the summer of 2000 working as a marketing intern with the Benetton Formula 1 racing team in England.

The West Liberty, Ky., native is 32.

Becky Ruby gets the formal nod to move up to legislative correspondent, though since the summer of 2002, the multitalented Ruby has served as staff assistant, systems administrator and legislative correspondent.

The 23-year-old from Louisville, Ky., holds a bachelor’s in political science from Middlebury College.

Ruby, who first came to Washington as an intern in the White House press shop, will continue in her systems administrator duties.

Finally, Annie Reed is promoted to legislative correspondent after only three weeks as staff assistant.

Also a Louisville native, Reed earlier worked on the 2002 Northup for Congress campaign. Reed, 22, received a bachelor’s in religion and government from Kentucky’s Centre College.

Fossella’s Friends. Empire State Rep. Vito Fossella (R-N.Y.) recently promoted two staffers.

Former Legislative Director Jennifer Ubelhart becomes policy adviser to the Congressman, with oversight for budget, health care, banking and appropriations issues, among others.

The 31-year-old, who also served as legislative assistant, is a longtime Fossella aide.

A Hofstra University graduate, Ubelhart has also worked as legislative assistant to then-Rep. Susan Molinari (R-N.Y.) and as a research assistant for the Ways and Means Committee.

She and her husband are expecting their first child in April.

Brendon Weiss, 25, takes over as legislative director, covering banking, securities and insurance, telecommunications, and small-business issues.

The former legislative assistant began his Capitol Hill career as a staff assistant to Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.).

Weiss holds a bachelor’s in public administration from Northern Michigan University. He is a Badger State native.

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