1986 – 2012 University of Delaware, Director, Government and Community Relations
Rick’s role for 26 years required interacting with local, state and federal governments on behalf of UD. He was responsible for evaluating legislation affecting University operations and securing funding support from the State. UD is a small city with 4000+ employees, its own bus system moving a million passengers/year, a police department, feeding 8000+ people every day, providing housing to 7000+ students, maintaining one billion dollars worth of buildings, internal streets, electric, water and sewer infrastructure, and is the 8th largest employer in the state of Delaware. UD receives over $115M in state support spread to its four campuses each year from Delaware and offers over 300 undergraduate and higher level degrees.
2012 – Present, Independent Contractual Lobbying Consultant
Since retiring from the University of Delaware in 2012 Rick’s clients include the City of Newark, Delaware, The Foundation for Government Accountability (FGA) and the National Rifle Association (NRA). Similar to UD in breadth of business operations the City of Newark has fewer employees and a smaller overall budget but also depends upon the State for some funding and its Charter. The FGA interests include eliminating non-relevant disqualifying criminal history from professional licensing standards and creating small businesses Association Health Plans insurance programs. The focused mission of the NRA is to protect the 2nd Amendment.
One key to lobbying effectively is establishing and maintaining constructive relationships with elected and appointed officials. A second is sharing information for clients based on facts and reliable information to shape good public policy. Maintaining positive relationships while representing challenging clients is almost an art form. Rick’s honesty and existing connections developed over years spent in Dover allow him to lobby elected and appointed officials who may not have agree with the philosophies of a client and still maintain those critical positive relationships.