Government Relations Director
Elizabeth Hennes serves as the Government Relations Director at the Afriat Consulting Group, Inc. (ACG) where she supports the firm’s coalition-building, fundraising, and brings strong ties and relationships with local and state elected official’s offices, community stakeholders, and organized labor.
Prior to joining the team at ACG, Elizabeth served under Chair Mark Gonzalez at the Los Angeles County Democratic Party, the largest local Democratic Party in the nation, representing over 3.1 million Democrats across the County. As Director of Operations, she managed communications and operations for the Party’s 600+ Central Committee membership, planned and executed all major fundraising events, and oversaw new initiatives such as the candidate recruitment Training And Advancement Program.
Elizabeth also is an experienced political fundraiser, including working on two winning campaigns during the 2022 election cycle. She also facilitated training and leadership programs with the New Politics Leadership Academy for veterans and alumni of domestic service programs to explore and support their pathway to run for elected office.
Prior to her start in politics, Elizabeth served as Program Manager for the education nonprofit City Year Los Angeles, where she managed teams of AmeriCorps Members that provided no-cost tutoring and mentorship opportunities for underserved students in schools across the Los Angeles Unified School District.
Elizabeth is a resident of Los Feliz and is a graduate of UC Berkeley. She can be reached at 818.742.5802 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mike Ai serves as the Senior Director of Public Affairs at the Afriat Consulting Group, Inc. (ACG) and has a wealth of experience in advocacy, community relations, and local government arenas. Mike serves as a strategic advisor and advocate, helping clients navigate the complex and ever changing political landscape. He offers strong knowledge of both the legislative and administrative processes and plays a key role in the firm’s coalition-building and community outreach efforts, drawing on deep and long-standing relationships with community stakeholders.
Prior to joining ACG, Mike worked for Equality California, the largest statewide LGBTQ+ organization in the country. As EQCA’s Political and Special Projects Manager, Mike helped to elect a record number of pro-equality candidates at the local, state and federal levels of government. He helped deliver on successful advocacy efforts for the organization in both the legislative and campaign fields, including expanding the organization’s statewide field operations.
Mike has extensive experience in L.A. City Hall, where he served as Legislative Deputy and Director of Advance to former Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. In this role, Mike helped craft the Villaraigosa administration’s positions on legislative matters relating to planning and land use, economic development, innovation technology, trade, travel and tourism, and the L.A. Convention Center. He also provided policy development support on key economic initiatives such as the New Business Tax Holiday, a benchmark policy to support business growth in the City.
Mike also worked as the Deputy District Director for L.A. Councilmember Mike Bonin in Council District 11 (on Los Angeles’ Westside), where he oversaw strategic outreach to key constituencies including the technology community, seniors, women, progressives, environmentalists, and the Latinx and Jewish communities. He also played a key role in several the Councilmember’s landmark policy achievements to improve access to transit and alternative modes of transportation for residents across the City.
Mike is a resident of West Hollywood, a former West Hollywood City Council appointee and is a graduate of UCLA.
Mike can be reached directly at 818-422-0828 or via email at email@example.com.
Brandon Zavala serves as the Senior Government Affairs Manager at the Afriat Consulting Group, Inc. (ACG), where he supports the firm’s coalition-building, community-outreach and advocacy on behalf of clients.
Prior to joining the team at ACG, Brandon served as the Campaign Manager for Christy Smith for Congress (Special & General) – the most expensive and competitive House race of the 2020 election cycle, garnering more than $30 million dollars in direct and outside spending. Throughout the Special Election, Brandon led the campaign and consultant team through press cycles where the campaign was directly engaging with the President of the United States on Twitter, in the Press, and in a widely covered incident where the campaign successfully worked to ensure the opening of a polling location in a predominately African-American and Latino community.
Previously, Brandon held the role of Accounts Manager at Method Campaign Services where he managed day-to-day execution of constituency engagement and press objectives for clients including: Los Angeles Unified School District, Members of Congress, state legislators, real estate developers, non-profits, city council and independent expenditure campaigns. Prior to this, Brandon worked at SEIU Local 1000 and as a staffer on various political campaigns.
Brandon was appointed to the United States Electoral College for the 2020 election, casting one of California’s 55 electoral votes for President and Vice-President of the United States. In 2014, Brandon was appointed by the Mayor of Palmdale to serve on the Mobile Home Rental Review Board for a 3-year term, the youngest appointee in city history. Brandon lives in Santa Clarita with his longtime partner, Bryan.
Brandon can be reached directly at 818.450.2777 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Aaron Green, one of Los Angeles’ most respected political advocates, serves as the President of the Afriat Consulting Group, Inc. With extensive relationships and expertise in the political arena, he is the firm’s primary conduit to the City and County of Los Angeles as well as the City of West Hollywood. Aaron provides ACG’s clients with access to elected officials, their staff and to senior-level public agency personnel. He serves as a trusted advisor to many of the region’s leading decision-makers.
Since joining the firm in 2009, Aaron has spearheaded some of the ACG’s leading initiatives. On behalf of his clients and through his advocacy, community outreach and team-management expertise, ACG has entitled millions of square feet of real estate, won municipal contracts valued at hundreds of millions of dollars and guided clients through the difficult process of getting legislation passed.
Prior to his work at ACG, Aaron managed the advocacy and public policy department for the Valley Industry and Commerce Association (VICA), one of the preeminent business groups in Southern California. In his post Aaron was VICA’s key policy analyst and lobbyist, responsible for the political advocacy that fostered a stronger business environment in the region.
Aaron volunteers much of his free time to civic and political activities and has served on the boards of civic, political and non-profit organizations. He was the youngest board member ever elected to the board of the Child Care Resources Center, where he provided governance and oversight to the organization’s $140 million annual budget. He serves as Chair of the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce’s PAC. He has been named as one of the “40 under 40” business leaders by the San Fernando Valley Business Journal.
Aaron can be reached directly at 818.450.2779 or via email at Aaron@Afriat.com.
In the course of our lives we rarely come across the people whose impact was felt quite like that of Steve Afriat. Over his decades-long career, many worked with him, had been his close friend and had been his clients for years, if not decades. Steve’s legacy will be one of friendship, caring, success, integrity and fighting for change. His work helped shape Los Angeles’ skyline, transform policy and politics, and set the standard for what it means to be a trusted advocate.
Steve was a pivotal advisor, influencer and fixture in local politics for nearly 40 years. He served as Chief of Staff to then L.A. City Councilmember Zev Yaroslavsky in the early 1980s. He founded the Afriat Consulting Group in 1985. He was one of the most sought-after campaign consultants throughout the 1990s and 2000s, winning dozens of campaigns, including the approval of more than $2 billion dollars’ worth of bonds in the City of L.A. for vital services like police and fire stations, libraries and parks. In the City of West Hollywood, he held a perfect record of winning candidate campaigns and ballot measures.
The Afriat Consulting Group with Steve at the helm entitled some of the most well-known development projects in L.A. during his tenure. He played a pivotal role in entitling more than 14 million square feet of projects, including the original Metropolis in DTLA, the nationally recognized Ten Thousand building in Century City, and the Red Building at the Pacific Design Center, amongst many others. Steve had a great sense of pride for the role he played as a co-founder of the very first Los Angeles Aids Walk in 1985.
The Afriat Consulting Group continues to operate in Steve’s name and honors his legacy through our work, our commitment to our clients, and our resolve to do right by the communities we call home.
Tina Vartanian serves as the Public Affairs Director at the Afriat Consulting Group, Inc. (ACG), where she manages the firm’s community outreach, political, and campaign activities. Since joining ACG, she has successfully assisted clients with Request for Proposals (RFP) procurements, the entitlement of controversial development projects, among other successes.
Before ACG, Tina was the Senior Policy Associate at the Alliance for Children’s Rights – a nonprofit advocating for the rights of vulnerable children, young adults, and families impacted by foster care. In this role, she spearheaded the organization’s policy work in Los Angeles. Additionally, Tina has served in several political posts. She worked at the prestigious advocacy firm, Kyle House Group in Washington D.C. and interned for then-Senator Barbara Boxer.
She holds a Master of Public Administration (MPA) from California State University, Long Beach and a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from California State University, Northridge.
Tina can be reached directly at 818.450.2774 or via email at email@example.com.
Aaron Green, one of Los Angeles’ most respected political advocates, serves as the President of the Afriat Consulting Group, Inc. With extensive relationships and expertise in the political arena, he is one of the firm’s primary conduits to the City and County of Los Angeles as well as the City of West Hollywood. Aaron provides ACG’s clients with access to elected officials, their staff and to senior-level public agency personnel. He serves as a trusted advisor to many of the region’s leading decision-makers.
Aaron’s extensive relationships with community, business, environmental and labor leaders across the region enable him to build broad coalitions when advancing his clients’ initiatives. Combining his significant experience in community relations, advocacy, grass roots organizing, campaign management, digital media and a network personal relationships with leading decision-makers and influencers, Aaron directs the firm’s coalition-building campaigns, which are vital components to the success of any major development or infrastructure project.
Before VICA, Aaron worked as an accounts and branch manager for a healthcare staffing firm based in Los Angeles, managing more than 100 external employees and providing services to many of the region’s leading healthcare providers. A second-generation Angelino, Aaron completed his bachelor’s degree in political science at Hamilton College and participated in study abroad programs at Oxford University and in Washington, D.C.
Aaron volunteers much of his free time to civic and political activities and has served on the boards of civic, political and non-profit organizations. He was the youngest boardmember ever elected to the board of the Child Care Resources Center, where he provided governance and oversight to the organization’s $140 million annual budget. He has been named as one of the “40 under 40” business leaders by the San Fernando Valley Business Journal. Describing Aaron, the Business Journal said simply: “Aaron Green knows politics”.
Aaron can be reached directly at 818.450.2779 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Steven Afriat is an expert in public policy, political strategy and governmental decision-making. Formerly Chief of Staff to then Los Angeles City Councilman now retired County Supervisor, Zev Yaroslavsky, Afriat was also a Chief Legislative Aide to the California Legislature and has vast experience in public affairs. Afriat has been recognized for his years of service with appointments to many boards and commissions. He served an unprecedented tenure as President of the Los Angeles County Business License Commission and currently serves as President of the Los Angeles County Civil Service Commission.
Willing to dig his heels in for a cause, Afriat seeks to build successful coalitions engendered to boost clients’ interests. Throughout his professional career, Afriat has developed a formidable network that spans from Los Angeles and Sacramento to Washington DC. Afriat brings over 40 years of political and governmental experience to benefit clients and is a strategist who recognizes that to achieve success, sound planning and knowledge of the process and personalities go hand-in-hand. As a result, Afriat calls upon a lifetime of experience, not only as Council Office Chief of Staff but as an Assemblyman’s deputy, Consultant to the Legislature, community organizer, high school teacher and businessman. That’s why decision-makers rely on him.
Afriat was assigned by then-Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan the responsibility of organizing a coalition favoring City Charter reform. This watershed appointment marked Afriat’s emergence as the consultant of choice for City officials. Afriat went on to manage the Proposition K campaign approving new Parks & Recreation assessments; Measure DD, garnering a two-thirds vote for Library bonds; Proposition F for Fire and Animal Services, the highest approval margin of any City bonds at the time; and Proposition Q, which Afriat managed after two unsuccessful attempts by others, garnering a two-thirds vote approving $600 million for Police and Fire services.
It is the same winning philosophy that the Los Angeles City Council came to rely upon which Afriat delivers to all his clients. Since 1985, he has gained approval of many high-profile projects, successfully shepherding millions of square feet of development projects, and hundreds of millions of dollars of Government Contracts. Renowned for his strategic and technical expertise, Afriat puts his clients first and consistently achieves results.
Steven Afriat can be reached directly at 818.450.2771 or via email at email@example.com.