Who We Are
GuidePost Strategies utilizes years of political and policy expertise to advise clients.
As the conventional lanes of public policy and business as usual continues to shift, GuidePost Strategies draws upon years of experience advising leading officials, organizations, and causes to offer unmatched guidance. What makes our approach unique is that we understand what moves opinions outside of the Beltway; attitudes that ultimately drive opinions and news inside the Beltway.
What We Do
Phil Cox has two decades of experience directing political and issue advocacy campaigns, grassroots, communications and public affairs efforts, and is one of the nation’s most experienced political operatives, having directed more than one hundred campaigns in nearly every state and every level, including a presidential super-pac and campaigns for U.S. Senate, House, and Governor. From 2011-2014, Phil served as Executive Director of the Republican Governors Association, serving as a senior political and policy adviser to the nation’s 31 Republican Governors, while directing more than $250 million in support to candidates in all 50 states. He currently serves on the Board of the Mitch McConnell-aligned Senate Leadership Fund, which spent more than $150 million in 2016 helping to strengthen the GOP Senate majority. The Boston Globe called him “a force for the GOP”, The Washington Times “a Republican Kingmaker”, and Politico recently named Phil one of its “50 Politicos to Watch.” He is a graduate of the University of Virginia, and lives in McLean, Virginia, with his wife and two children.
Marie Sanderson began her public service career on Capitol Hill for United States Senator Thad Cochran in 2003, where she served as Legislative Assistant and Deputy Press Secretary on the staff of the Appropriations Chairman. Following her tenure on Capitol Hill, Marie began working for Governor Haley Barbour where she served as the Policy Director to the Governor. From 2010-2015, Marie served as Policy Director for the Republican Governors Association (RGA) and the Republican Governors Public Policy Committee (RGPPC), working with Governors, Chiefs of Staff, and their policy teams to facilitate and advocate for best practices and good policy in both state and federal policy to governors, candidates, think tanks, Congress, the Administration and other political organizations. Marie has served in a number of roles including advising the U.S. House and Energy and Commerce Committee’s Medicaid Task Force and the FCC’s Intergovernmental Advisory Committee. In 2017, in addition to her professional roles, Marie was “Sherpa” for USUN Ambassador Nikki Haley, an unpaid position with the US Presidential Transition, preparing and guiding the current Ambassador for her nomination to be confirmed by the U.S. Senate.
Marie currently is Partner at 50 State LLC, Principal at Cardinal Group Policy, and Senior Advisor at IMGE. Marie serves on several boards and commissions and was recently appointed by Governor Phil Bryant to the Mississippi Arts Commission. She and her husband, Brian, have two sons and one daughter.
Liesl Hickey is a veteran political strategist who has spent her career helping Republicans expand their reach in swing areas across the country. This election cycle, she has been an advisor to the National Republican Congressional Committee, Right to Rise Super PAC, Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers, Congressman Mike Coffman and Clear Path Action Fund. She is partner in Patchwork Creative, a boutique political and advocacy media firm. She is a fellow at the University of Chicago’s Institute of Politics and a contributor to the Wall Street Journal’s “Think Tank.”
During the 2013-2014 cycle, she was the Executive Director of the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC), where she oversaw a historic 13-seat pickup. This new Republican majority–the largest since 1928–included a large number of members representing traditionally Democratic constituencies. During her tenure at the NRCC, the committee grew its online fundraising by over 400%, created a strategy and data division to run more effective campaigns, and focused its offensive efforts on electing a diverse Republican class.
In 2011 and 2012, Hickey led the NRCC’s Patriot Program, a dedicated effort to re-elect Republican incumbents in competitive districts. During this cycle, she raised an unprecedented $6M for members’ campaigns and helped navigate their efforts through a tough political environment. Hickey served as a consultant to the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) in 2010. Hickey was previously Chief of Staff to then-Rep. Mark Kirk (IL), where she helped author the “Suburban Agenda,” a first-time effort by national Republicans to craft a set of policies targeted at independent, suburban voters–a program that was instrumental to surviving the 2006 Democratic wave election. Hickey has worked on many congressional and statewide races across the country and served as Senator Peter Fitzgerald’s Finance Director during his successful 1998 campaign.
Hickey also was a Senior Director for Campaigns at Bono’s ONE Campaign during the 2008 cycle where she oversaw a $40M presidential advocacy effort to fight global poverty and disease. Hickey is a 1996 graduate of Southern Methodist University. She lives on Capitol Hill with her husband and three children.
Ryan Canfield brings over a dozen years of public policy and appropriations experience working on Capitol Hill and in the Executive Office of the President. Serving as a Special Assistant to the President for Legislative Affairs, Ryan worked with more than 140 Members of Congress from both sides of the aisle in the U.S. House of Representatives and managed various legislative initiatives regarding national security, tax reform, transportation and infrastructure, budget and appropriations negotiations, financial services andcriminal justicereform. As part of his Executive Office experience, Ryan also served in the Office of Management and Budget providing analysis and counsel regarding all matters related to Congressional appropriations for both the House and Senate and worked directly with House and Senate Leadership, Members of the Committees on Appropriations and their professional staff to implement the priorities of the President. During his ten years on Capitol Hill, Ryan served in the U.S. House of Representatives as the Legislative Director for the then-Chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, Congressman Hal Rogers (R-KY) and worked for Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart (R-FL) with a portfolio that included budget, defense, trade, tax, telecommunications, foreign affairs, healthcare, and financial services issues. Ryan earned a Bachelor of Science in Political Science from the University of Wisconsin and resides in Washington, D.C., with his wife Caroline.
Andy Koenig brings over ten years of public policy and advocacy experience from the White House, Capitol Hill, and the non-profit sector. Serving as a Special Assistant to the President and Policy Special Assistant to President Donald Trump for Legislative Affairs since February 2017, Andy worked closely with the House and Senate on legislation ranging from tax reform, budget negotiations, health care, workforce development, prison reform, and immigration. Prior to joining the White House, Andy was the Vice President of Policy for Freedom Partners Chamber of Commerce where he advanced grassroots and paid media strategies. While working in non-profit issue advocacy, Andy’s op-eds appeared in the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, the Washington Post, National Review, Forbes, Time, and other publications. Before joining Freedom Partners in 2013, he served in the U.S. House of Representatives as the Policy Director for the House Republican Conference under Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX). During his six years on Capitol Hill, Andy also worked as a Policy Advisor for Representative Mike Pence (R‑IN) and a Professional Staff Member for the Republican Study Committee with a portfolio focused on federal budget policy, taxes, entitlements, and appropriations. Andy majored in Political Science and History at Hillsdale College in Hillsdale, Michigan.
Larissa Martin has been with GuidePost since its inception in 2017. She brings over a decade of experience working with elected officials on both the state and federal level. She has successfully navigated a broad range of political, policy and legislative issues facing corporations, associations and nonprofits across multiple industries.
From 2010-2014, she served as Chief Operating Officer at the Republican Governors Association (RGA). In this role, she worked closely with senior staff from all Republican Governors offices throughout the country and their campaigns.
Prior to joining the RGA, she was at the Republican Party of Florida working on state senate campaigns from 2007-2010.
Larissa is also Vice President at 50 State, LLC where she provides strategic advice and helps clients navigate governor’s offices throughout the nation. She also recently served as Deputy Director of Operations on the 2016 Trump Transition team.
Larissa grew up in Bloomfield Hills, MI., and attended Florida State University, where she earned a Bachelor of Science in Political Science and Criminology and received a Master’s in Applied American Politics & Policy. She resides in Washington, DC., with her husband, Luke.
Generra Peck began her career in public service and politics working for former Virginia governor Bob McDonnell. Generra served on the campaign, transition and as a policy and legislative advisor in the McDonnell Administration. She also held posts in the Office of the Secretary of Commerce and Trade. After the McDonnell Administration, Generra was a vice president in the infrastructure and economic development practice at McGuireWoods Consulting in Richmond, Virginia, advising clients on policy considerations related to infrastructure and public-private partnerships.
Generra most recently served as Policy Director to Ed Gillespie during his 2017 campaign for governor of Virginia. As policy director, Generra oversaw the policy development and issues functions that released more than 20 detailed policy proposals over the course of the campaign.
Generra has a background working on issues related to infrastructure, education, energy, public safety, economic development, technology, finance, and good government. She is also experienced in understanding the intersection between federal and state policy issues.
Generra graduated from the University of Richmond and received her master’s degree from the Darden Graduate School of Business at the University of Virginia. She co-teaches the University of Richmond’s Political Campaign Management Professional Certificate program and has been a guest speaker at the Institute of Politics at the Harvard Kennedy School, and the University of Virginia’s Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy, among others. She lives in Richmond, Virginia.
Laine Striegel most recently served in the Rauner Administration as the Director of Communications at the Illinois State Board of Education and was Governor Bruce Rauner’s Director of Advance. She was also the Director of Advance for Lieutenant Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti on Governor Rauner’s gubernatorial campaign. Prior to her time in Illinois, Striegel lived in Washington, D.C. where she spent over three years working for Congressman Phil Roe (R-TN), most notably serving as his Military Legislative Aide. She left Congressman Roe’s office in 2012 to be Lead Press Advance on Mitt Romney’s Presidential campaign. She also worked on John McCain’s 2008 Presidential campaign before joining Rep. Roe’s office.
Laine received her B.A. in Government from Wofford College and her M.A. in Public Relations and Corporate Communications from Georgetown University. She was a member of the 58th Presidential Inaugural Committee.
Director of Policy Research
Erin Phifer brings years of policy experience at both the federal and state levels to GuidePost. She served in a variety of policy roles for former Congressman Reid Ribble of Wisconsin, advising the Congressman on issues including cybersecurity, tax, financial services and housing, labor, education and foreign affairs. Erin also previously served as Manager of Membership Development and Advocacy for The ERISA Industry Committee, focusing on federal and state healthcare and retirement policies.
Most recently, Erin worked as a Policy Advisor for the Republican Governors Public Policy Committee (RGPPC), working closely with Republican Governors’ staff, as well as facilitating engagement with Administration and House and Senate staff. While at RGPPC, she focused on infrastructure, energy, economic development and tax issues, specifically monitoring federal policies that impacted states.
Erin received her B.A. in Communications, Legal Institutions, Economics and Government from American University in Washington, D.C. She lives in Alexandria, Virginia with her husband, Evan, and dog, Loki.
Director of Operations
Catherine Chestnut brings years of expert project management, political, and issue advocacy experience to provide executive and client support. Chestnut has served as Executive Director to multiple independent political organizations. She was also Deputy Campaign Manager on Eric Greitens’ successful campaign for governor. Chestnut is a graduate of the University of Washington in Seattle.
Director of Operations
Kayla Davey is an experienced client service specialist who supports GuidePost executives in providing top-tier services to our clients. Most recently she worked in a project management capacity for Facilities Resource Group, Inc. and specialized in client relations regarding the procurement and execution of government contracts. Kayla graduated from Clemson University with a B.S. in Marketing and earned a Master’s in Global and Intercultural Studies from Liberty University.
At GuidePost we help our clients manage risk and maximize opportunity. Our political and policy experts provide unmatched counsel to clients seeking to navigate a dynamic federal landscape.