Who We Are

Joe Kefauver

Joe Kefauver
Managing Partner

With over 20 years of political experience in government affairs, campaign management, lobbying, trade association relations and issue management, Joe Kefauver has a comprehensive approach to supporting his clients.

Prior to starting the Parquet Public Affairs, Joe was Vice President of Public Affairs for Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. where he oversaw all state and local government matters for the world’s largest corporation. In his capacity there, Joe was responsible for prioritizing and developing the company’s legislative and political agenda, their interaction with Governors, Attorneys General, Mayors and legislative leaders, as well as executing the company’s aggressive store expansion program. Additionally, Joe played a leadership role in many of the company’s major strategic initiatives such as environmental sustainability and expansion of healthcare programs and led a team of 50 professionals.

Joe also served as the Director of Government Affairs for Darden Restaurants, Inc. based in Orlando, Florida. At Darden, Joe oversaw the company’s federal and state government relations programs as well as their political involvement including managing their Political Action Committee.

Joe is an alumnus of the University of Maryland and received his graduate degree from The Catholic University of America in Washington, DC.

Rick Van Warner

Rick Van Warner
Senior Partner

Rick Van Warner has more than 30 years of service industry experience as a consultant, corporate executive, and communications professional. He has helped various senior leadership teams develop strategies to effectively manage, communicate and enhance performance during challenging periods of change or crisis.

Van Warner is the former editor-in-chief and associate publisher of Nation’s Restaurant News, where he chaired the annual Multi-Unit Food Service Operators (MUFSO) conference, and co-founded NRN Online.

Van Warner began his career as a daily newspaper reporter, covering national and local politics, among other subjects. He also has previous experience as a social worker counseling troubled youth. A graduate of Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, he serves on the board of directors of Tijuana Flats Burrito Co. and is a past board member of several national industry organizations.

 

Chandler

Carson Chandler
Partner

As the Public Affairs Director for Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer for more than five years, Chandler served as a senior advisor to the Mayor, responsible for the development, implementation and communication of a wide variety of signature projects for the City of Orlando.  He also served as the staff director for the Mayor’s leadership role in the U.S. Conference of Mayors and other high-profile national organizations. In doing so, Chandler has built relationships with hundreds of America’s mayors, members of their senior staffs and national organizations dedicated to local and state government.

Previously, Chandler was the Vice President of a Washington, D.C.-based communications and government relations firm.  He also served as a press official in both the United States Senate and House of Representatives.  Most notably, he served as Deputy Press Secretary for U.S. Senator Bob Graham where he also handled media relations for the Congressional 9/11 investigation.

A University of Florida graduate, Chandler began his career as a television news reporter and anchor, earning an Emmy award while working for the ABC-TV affiliate in West Palm Beach, Florida.

Chandler’s background in multiple communications and government disciplines, combined with his track record for cultivating public-private partnerships, allows him to offer clients a unique skill set that includes both the creation of winning messaging and the capacity to determine the best strategy for delivering that message to decision makers.

 

J-Wetzel-Headshot

Jason Wetzel
Partner

Prior to joining Parquet, Jason was director of government relations for a leading Fortune 500 company. In this role, he managed issues that impacted the company in legislatures and municipalities across the Midwest. Jason built strong relationships with elected leaders while developing expertise in complex areas such healthcare, land use, sustainability, taxes, and utilities.

Wetzel also served as vice president of government relations for the Ohio Grocers Association, where he developed and implemented a legislative agenda on behalf of OGA’s 400 member companies. Jason began his career as a newspaper reporter covering city, county and business issues. Wetzel then worked as a legislative aide and press secretary in the Ohio Senate, coordinating a victorious state senate campaign in Cleveland, Ohio.

Jason completed his BA degree in journalism, graduating Magna Cum Laude from Kent State University.

 

Ava Henderson, Public Affairs Manager

Ava Henderson
Public Affairs Manager

Ava Henderson has diverse experience in event management, community relations, social media and marketing. Prior to joining Parquet Public Affairs, Henderson served as the Director of Events for the Seminole County Regional Chamber of Commerce, managing over 80 events a year, including corporate banquets, trade shows, community events, membership meetings, award ceremonies, and more. She also supervised the production and publication of public relations materials, managed relationships with event sponsors and community partners, and served as the chamber liaison on various committees.

Henderson is a University of Florida graduate with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration, Marketing and a Minor in Mass Communications. She also served as the Promotions Director for the American Marketing Association, UF Chapter.

 

Rachel Moalli Public Affairs Manager

Rachel Moalli
Public Affairs Manager

Rachel Moalli has past experience in digital marketing and politics. Previously, Moalli worked as an Account Director at IZEA, specializing in digital marketing initiatives for several Fortune 500 companies. Moalli’s political experience includes working at a digital media firm specializing in running online marketing campaigns for several political candidates and advocacy groups.  Moalli currently serves as the Government Relations chair for Ad2 Orlando, the young professional division of the American Advertising Federation.

A University of Central Florida graduate, Moalli majored in Political Science with a minor in Mass Communications.

 

 

Brandi Abraham, Chief Research Associate

Brandi Abraham is a former public affairs intern with the U.S. State Department in Frankfurt, Germany, where she assisted the U.S. Ambassador to Germany and the Consulate General with press schedules, media events, and social media accounts.

Abraham has extensive experience in social media, as well as experience in event management and public policy data analysis. She was an on-the-ground campaign manager for a pharmaceutical industry ballot measure supporting a Fortune 500 company.

A Louisiana State University graduate, Abraham majored in International Relations with a concentration in Global Studies. She speaks fluent German and is a recipient of the Bengal Legacy Scholarship.