Rep. Chris Dorworth, R-Lake Mary, has landed at a lobbying firm after being ousted from office in one of the biggest upsets in Florida’s Nov. 6 Election.
Dorworth will join powerful lobbying firm Ballard Partners, leading its new Orlando office.
Dorworth, who was scheduled to become House Speaker in 2014, lost his race to a political newcomer, Mike Clelland, by a couple hundred votes.
The one-time Speaker-to-be proved to be one of the most prolific fundraisers—collecting money from a broad slate of special interests and outspending his opponent more than 7-to-1.
Now, Dorworth will join a firm that represents many of the same interests that poured money into his political coffers.
Ballard Partners is one of the most successful lobbying firms in the state, taking in more than $3 million in lobbying fees this year from a broad slate of interests that court state lawmakers.
“Having the opportunity to join Florida’s leading public affairs firm is an incredible beginning to the next chapter in my career,” said Dorworth. “I look forward to contributing to the already exceptional team at Ballard Partners and building a strong, first class public affairs presence in Central Florida.”
State law prohibits Dorworth from lobbying the state Legislature for at least two years.
Dorworth joins outgoing House Speaker Dean Cannon among recent House leaders that have jumped from lawmaking to lobbying.
Cannon recently launched a lobbying firm in Tallahassee.
See press release below
Ballard Partners Expands; Dorworth To Lead New Orlando Office
~Central Florida office will be the sixth for the firm in Florida ~
TALLAHASSEE – Florida’s leading government affairs firm, Ballard Partners, today announced the opening of their sixth office location in the state. Former State Rep. Chris Dorworth will be managing the Orlando-based office where he will lead and expand Ballard Partners’ lobbying efforts in the Central Florida area.
“We’re thrilled to have Rep. Dorworth join our team and spearhead the opening of our new office in Orlando,” said Brian Ballard, president of Ballard Partners. “Chris’ leadership and knowledge of the issues facing Florida and the Orlando area will be an enormous asset to our firm and our clients.”
“Having the opportunity to join Florida’s leading public affairs firm is an incredible beginning to the next chapter in my career,” stated Dorworth. “I look forward to contributing to the already exceptional team at Ballard Partners and building a strong, first class public affairs presence in Central Florida.”
Dorworth, from Lake Mary, served three terms in the Florida House of Representatives (HD-34). He was elected Chairman of the Central Florida Legislative Delegation, which is comprised of all representatives and senators from Orange, Volusia, Seminole, Osceola, Brevard, Lake and Polk Counties. Having served in many leadership roles, Dorworth was Chairman of the Rulemaking and Regulation Subcommittee, Co-Chairman of the House Reapportionment Committee and Vice Chairman of the Appropriations Committee for the 2010-2012 term.
During his years in the Florida Legislature, Dorworth worked to pass hallmark legislation revamping the state’s regulatory and rulemaking system, and helped overturned a Governor’s veto to see the bill (HB 1565) become law in November 2010. He chaired the first Rulemaking and Regulation Subcommittee to oversee the implementation of HB1565. Dorworth led the effort to pass the constitutional amendment and implementing legislation for what became Amendment 4 on the 2012 ballot. He also spearheaded several pieces of landmark legislation to prevent childhood sexual violence, including the repeal of statute of limitations on child molesters and the creation of the nation’s strongest mandatory reporting law.
In addition to his legislative experience, Dorworth has an extensive private-sector background as a developer for the Madison Christopher Holding Company in Central Florida. An active community and state leader, he has served on the board of Enterprise Florida, as Chairman of the Seminole Community College District Board of Trustees, as Chairman of the Seminole Soil & Water Conservation District, and as Vice-Chairman of the Seminole County Planning and Zoning Commission. Dorworth has a Master of Business Administration from Duke University and a Bachelor of Arts in political science from the University of Florida.
The team at Ballard Partners has been cited by national and Florida publications as the leading public affairs firm in the state. The Florida-based lobbying firm, with offices in Tallahassee, Jacksonville, West Palm Beach, Tampa, Miami and now Orlando, combines extensive government experience with unwavering advocacy to maximize clients’ results.