In the first quarter of 2014, Ballard Partners reported serving 150 legislative and 146 executive clients, with estimated maximum earnings of $2,447,875 in legislative and $2,167,886 in executive advocacy fees for a total of up to $4,615,761 — making it one the top three largest grossing firms in Florida.
Ballard’s team of 13 registered agents boasted such marquee manes as firm founder Brian Ballard, former State Rep. Michael Abrams; Monica Rodriguez, named one of Florida Trend Magazine’s Legal Elites; and Mathew Forrest, who spent nearly a decade serving public officials such as West Palm Beach Mayors Lois Frankel, Joel Daves and Nancy Graham.
At the top of Ballard’s client list is gambling giant Resorts World Miami, which gave Ballard $83,000 each for legislative and executive representation. Resorts World has been aggressively pushing the Legislature to consider expanding gambling in the state, as well as beginning construction a major development in Miami-Dade County at the former Miami Herald tower. Gaming technology group GTECH was also a client, giving up to $39,999 each for legislative and executive advocacy.
Just behind Resorts World as Ballard’s second-largest Q1 client is Miramar-based medical technology firm Automated Healthcare Solutions, with $75,000 for legislative fees, with the same for executive.
Coming in at the $49,999 category in legislative fees is the Public Health Trust and United States Sugar Corporation, Florida’s leading agriculture concern. In addition, U.S. Sugar provided up to $49,999 in executive fees.
Making up the bulk of Ballard’s top customer list, with such prominent names as International Speedway Corporation, Southern Wine & Spirits and the Donald Trump Organization — each giving Ballard a maximum $39,999 for legislative and executive fees.
Ballard was also instrumental in this session’s disputed trauma center issue, as key players Safety Net Hospital Alliance and Tampa General were top Q1 clients — also delivering the firm up to $39,999 in fees each for legislative and executive services.