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Freshman Rep. Jim Costa (D-Calif.) has rounded out his Washington, D.C., staff with a number of Capitol Hill veterans.

Scott Nishioki has come on board as chief of staff. Most recently, Nishioki worked for the American Bankers Association and formerly served as chief of staff to then-Rep. Richard Lehman (D-Calif.) and deputy chief of staff for then-Commerce Secretary Norman Mineta.

Nishioki, a native of Sanger, Calif., graduated from Fresno State University with a bachelor’s in English.

Lisa Shelton has been brought on as Costa’s legislative assistant. In addition to handling issues related to the House Agriculture Committee, nutrition and food stamps, rural development, budget, taxes, health, immigration and trade, Shelton will also serve as the liaison to the Blue Dog Coalition of moderate Democrats.

For the past three years Shelton handled agriculture issues for then-Rep. Baron Hill (D-Ind.). The Los Angeles native holds a bachelor’s in history from Georgetown University.

John Drake, 28, has also joined the Costa team as a legislative assistant. He will handle issues related to water, energy, land use and American Indians and will serve as the liaison to the House Resources Committee. Past jobs have included serving as legislative assistant for then-Rep. Peter Deutsch (D-Fla.).

The San Diego, Calif., native holds a bachelor’s in philosophy from the University of California at Santa Cruz, and he is currently completing a master’s in political management from George Washington University.

Tracy Sherman, 24, has been tapped to serve as both legislative assistant and press assistant for Costa. As LA, she will focus on issues related to education, housing, the arts and minority rights and serve as liaison to the Congressional Hispanic Caucus.

Sherman previously served as legislative correspondent and deputy press secretary for then-House Minority Leader Richard Gephardt (D-Mo.). Sherman, who hails from Portland, Ore., received a bachelor’s in political science in 2003 from Washington University in St. Louis, and she is also pursuing a master’s in political management from George Washington University.

Kerri Hatfield, 22, comes on board as Costa’s executive assistant. She will manage the office and take care of Costa’s schedule. Most recently, Hatfield served as staff assistant for then-Sen. John Breaux (D-La.). The Clovis, Calif., native graduated from the University of Redlands in 2004 with a bachelor’s in sociology. [IMGCAP(1)]

Janaki Dighe will serve as staff assistant. He will man the phones and deal with constituent tours and flag requests. Dighe, 22, hails from Stockton, Calif., and received a bachelor’s in political science and international relations in 2004 from the University of California at Los Angeles.

Boehlert Cements CD. Rep. Sherwood Boehlert (R-N.Y.) announced that Sam Marchio, who had been serving as acting communications director since late last year, has been hired full time.

Marchio, 25, will now officially take over all press and communications responsibilities; he will also handle labor policy for the Member. In a press release, Boehlert said he is very “pleased to offer him this job, and even more pleased that he accepted.”

A native of New Hartford, N.Y., Marchio graduated from Utica College of Syracuse University with a bachelor’s in government and politics. He first joined Boehlert’s office near the end of 2002 as a legislative assistant and deputy communications director, and took over as CD after the departure of Melissa Carlson.

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