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Grand Canyon Catch

When it came to selecting his chief of staff, first-term Rep. Rick Renzi (R-Ariz.) turned to former colleague Kevin Messner, currently legislative director to fellow Arizona Rep. Jim Kolbe (R), to lead his Capitol Hill operation.

Renzi and Messner first worked together in Kolbe’s office while Renzi was a law student at Catholic University.

Messner holds a bachelor’s in mechanical engineering from the University of Wisconsin and later went on to receive a master’s in international management from the American Graduate School of International Management’s Thunderbird campus in Glendale, Ariz.

The six-year Capitol Hill veteran has also been employed by General Motors and as a cattle ranch worker.

Budget Brain. The Senate Budget Committee has acquired David Vandivier, the former executive director of the Federation of Independent Credit Counseling Agencies, as director of strategic planning and outreach for the minority.

Vandivier earlier served as senior adviser to the assistant secretary for economic policy at the Treasury Department and as a senior public affairs officer at the White House Office of Management and Budget.

The 32-year-old Franklin, Ind., native also worked in then-Vice President Al Gore’s correspondence office.

A member of Franklin College of Indiana’s class of 1992, Vandivier double-majored in history and American studies, before earning a master’s in theory and the history of international relations at the London School of Economics.

Mosher Magic. The Armenian Assembly of America has snagged veteran Capitol Hill staffer Robert Mosher as its latest director of Congressional relations.

An alumnus of Rep. James Langevin’s (D-R.I.) office — where he served as legislative assistant covering judiciary, tax, budget, banking and commerce issues, as well as advised the Congressman on Armenian issues — Mosher previously was a legislative aide to Rep. Max Sandlin (D-Texas) and then-Rep. Robert Wise (D-W.Va.).

The former legislative correspondent to then-Sen. John Glenn (D-Ohio) will now spend his days advancing Armenian-American issues on the Hill.

Hailing from Ann Arbor, Mich., Mosher is a graduate of Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, and holds a master’s in public policy from Baylor University.

Liking Mike. Idaho Sen. Mike Crapo (R) is adding five new faces to his D.C. lineup this month.

New Legislative Assistant Matt Hughes will take the lead on health care, Medicare, Medicaid, welfare, Social Security, Hispanic and senior issues.

A former director of alliance development for Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, Hughes is hardly a newcomer to Washington-style politicking. He earlier served as Rep. Mark Kennedy’s (R-Minn.) legislative assistant and worked in the Minnesota state Legislature.

Hughes holds a bachelor’s in management from St. John’s University in Collegeville, Minn.

Laura Thurston Goodroe has been tapped to be deputy press secretary.

The Sandpoint, Idaho, native earned a bachelor’s in political science and religious studies at Oregon’s Willamette University before going on to receive a master’s in public administration from the University of Colorado.

A four-year veteran of Rep. Doc Hastings’ (R-Wash.) office, Staci Stevenson joins the Crapo team as legislative assistant advising the junior Senator from Idaho primarily on environment and agriculture-related issues.

An alumna of the University of Washington in Seattle, Stevenson is from Royal City, Wash.

Intern Diana Black gets the green light to become legislative correspondent for education, labor, health and other social issues.

Black, hailing from the Silver State, earned a bachelor’s in international business from Boise State University.

Also joining as legislative correspondent is Shan Han, who will deal with agriculture, environment, natural resources, rural development, American Indian and telecommunications issues.

After graduating from the University of Idaho in Moscow, Idaho, in 1998, Han served as a consultant for several Gem State organizations in addition to completing a stint with now-Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R) during her time in the Alaska state Legislature.

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