THE 1868 PUBLIC AFFAIRS TEAM
Leroy Jones Jr.
LeRoy Jones joined 1868 Public Affairs after a distinguished career as a State Legislator, County Freeholder and municipal government administrator. He served four terms in the New Jersey General Assembly – including two years as Deputy Minority Leader – where he worked on the Appropriations, Regulatory Oversight, Solid Waste and Recycling, Financial Institutions and Local Government committees, as well as the Assembly Task Force on Foreign Banking and Task Force on Business Retention and Expansion. He also served on the State House Commission.Click to Read More...
As a two-term Essex County Freeholder, Mr. Jones served as Chairman of the Budget Committee, on the Minority Affairs Committee, and on the Essex County Planning Board.
He served as the City Administrator of East Orange for seven years, where he was responsible for developing the city’s $100 million operating budget, served as the chief liaison between the Mayor and Council, and managed the city’s ten department heads.
He also served in various positions at PSE&G in his professional career, including Business Development Manager, Director of Workforce Diversity and Public Affairs Manager. Prior to that he worked for AT&T Corp. as a Senior Accounting Specialist, Assistant Manager for Corporate Taxes and Internal Auditor.
Mr. Jones is an experienced local, county and state-level public servant and a distinguished corporate executive. His record of developing and implementing strategic and operational corporate plans gives him unique insight into the day-to-day issues facing our corporate clients. His experience as a Freeholder and Assemblyman give him an unparalleled ability to represent the interests of our clients at all levels of government.
Mr. Jones was appointed by Assembly Speaker Shelia Oliver as a Commissioner of the New Jersey Sports & Exposition Authority in 2012.
He is currently the Chairman of the Essex County Democratic Committee, a position to which he was elected in November of 2013. He is also the East Orange Democratic Municipal Committee Chairman, a position he has held since 2002. Mr. Jones served as the Essex County Campaign Director for Governor Jon Corzine’s 2009 re-election campaign, where he helped lead Governor Corzine to one the largest Democratic vote pluralities in the history of New Jersey. He also served as Co-Campaign Chairman for Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo, who won re-election to an unprecedented third term in November of 2010.
Mr. Jones is a Trustee of the Essex County Democratic Committee, a post to which he was appointed by Essex County Democratic Chairman Philip Thigpen in 2002. He was also an Adjunct Professor at Seton Hall University, where he taught Public Policy. He has appeared on numerous public opinion television and radio talk shows and is a frequent expert contributor on Fox Network/ My 9 “New Jersey Now”.
Mr. Jones holds a Master’s Degree in Business Management from the New Jersey Institute of Technology and a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting from Seton Hall University. He lives in East Orange with his wife, Jackie.
George Gilmore, Esq.
Mr. Gilmore joined 1868 Public Affairs in 2010 after most recently serving on New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s Transition Committee and as Chair of the Department of Agriculture Transition Team. He was also a member of the 2011 Legislative Redistricting Committee.
Gilmore has served as Chairman of the Ocean County Republican Committee since 1996 and was Chairman of the New Jersey Republican Chairman’s Association from 2002-2010. He has served as Legal Counsel to the New Jersey Republican State Committee, New Jersey Republican State Senate Office and the Republican Apportionment Commission. He served as Chairman of the Congressional Reapportionment Commission in 2001.Click to Read More...
He was New Jersey Chairman of the Giuliani for President campaign in 2008 and New Jersey State Chair of GOPAC, on which he also served as a member of the National Board of Directors.
A partner in the law firm of Gilmore & Monahan, P.A., Gilmore has served as Municipal Attorney to many communities and several school districts in Ocean County. He also served as General Counsel for the South Jersey Transportation Authority for eight years.
Mr. Gilmore received his undergraduate degree from West Virginia University where he graduated magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa. He received his law degree from Rutgers University School of Law. The proud father of five, George lives in Toms River with his wife Joanne and their two children.
Patrick Torpey brings extensive experience in both politics and policy to 1868 Public Affairs. Over the past 20 years, Mr. Torpey has served both houses of New Jersey’s Legislature serving as Executive Director of the Assembly Republican Majority Committee, a Senior Research Associate for the Senate Majority and a Senior Policy Advisor on the Assembly Republican staff.Click to Read More...
Mr. Torpey has been involved with lobbying the Legislature and Governor’s Office on many issues over the last 15 years and has remained active in electoral politics throughout his career. In 2008 he guided Congressman Leonard Lance to victory for the open seat in New Jersey’s 7th Congressional District. Congressman Lance’s victory was viewed as election night’s biggest Republican upset being one of the only Republican open seat victories nationally that year. He served as an advisor to Rep. Lance’s re-election campaign in 2010, as well.
A member of Governor Christie’s finance team, Patrick served as the Hunterdon County Coordinator for the Christie-Guadagno re-election campaign in 2013. Most recently, he was elected to a two-year term as Chairman of the Hunterdon County Republican Committee.
The unique combination of in-depth political and policy experience provides Mr. Torpey with an understanding of how public policy and real-world politics marry to affect the way decisions are made in New Jersey.
Mr. Torpey is a graduate of Middlebury College and received a Masters Degree in Government Administration from the Fels School of Government at the University of Pennsylvania. He and his wife Nicole reside in Readington Township with their son Liam.
Ms. Rodriguez joined 1868 Public Affairs after many years of collaboration with other members of the firm on a variety of political and public policy initiatives. She is a renowned and respected political strategist and experienced consultant with a concentration in grassroots and grasstops marketing, public relations, government relations and business development.
Ms. Rodriguez has played a key role in numerous high-profile Democratic campaigns at the federal, state and local levels. She served as an advisor on the 2006 campaign for U.S. Senator Robert Menendez, and as a consultant for Jon S. Corzine’s Statewide Hispanic Voter Program for his 2005 and 2009 gubernatorial campaigns.Click to Read More...
In 2000, Ms. Rodriguez coordinated Passaic County’s Latino Base Vote for U.S. Senator Corzine’s campaign. She also served as Paterson’s GOTV coordinator for Congressman Bill Pascrell Jr. in 1998.
Ms. Rodriguez served as Assemblywoman Nellie Pou’s Chief of Staff from 1997 to 2003. She worked closely with the U.S. Census to increase citizen participation effort to avoid undercounting and ensure all communities received fair representation in the New Jersey Legislature during the last legislative redistricting process in 2001.
She was instrumental in building community capacity through numerous positions, including as Director of Paterson’s School-Based Youth Services, as instructor for the Pre-College Consortium Program at New Jersey Institute of Technology, and as Community Outreach Organizer for the Puerto Rican Association for Community Organization (PACO) in Jersey City.
Ms. Rodriguez is a member of the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs’ Local Finance Board. She is a member of the Passaic Valley Water Commission’s Board of Commissioners, and previously held the position of board president. She also serves on the Paterson Parking Authority’s Board of Commissioners. Additionally, she sits on the board of the Statewide Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey. She previously served on the boards of the New Jersey Real Estate Commission and the Paterson Urban Enterprise Zone.
She has been recognized by many organizations for her work in the political and business arenas, as well as for her philanthropic efforts. In 2007, she was honored by the Statewide Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of New Jersey as Professional Services Businesswoman of the Year.
Ms. Rodriguez attended Douglass College in New Brunswick and graduated from William Paterson University in Wayne with a bachelor’s degree in sociology and a minor in business administration. She lives in Paterson, where she was born and raised.
Richard Ambrosino Jr.
Rich Ambrosino brings a unique skill set and 20 years of political and government affairs experience to 1868 Public Affairs. With experience in grassroots organizing, strategic communications, public relations, government/regulatory affairs and public policy, Mr. Ambrosino serves clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies to small businesses, non-profits and municipal governments.Click to Read More...
Mr. Ambrosino joined 1868 Public Affairs after serving as Governor Christine Todd Whitman’s Senior Deputy Director of Communications, spearheading theme and message development in the Governor’s Office. His work helped advance the Whitman administration’s agenda in a variety of areas, including health care, education, senior and veterans issues, and the environment and highlighted Whitman’s accomplishments by meshing strategic communications efforts like direct mail, electronic advertising and earned media with important administration policy initiatives.
Over the past two decades, Mr. Ambrosino has served in various campaigns at the national, state and county level in a wide variety of roles. In 2010 he was a Co-Chairman of Congressman Jon Runyan’s successful congressional race and in 2009 he served as Camden County Campaign Coordinator in Governor Chris Christie’s successful campaign. In 2008, Mr. Ambrosino was named New Jersey’s Delegation Aide to the Republican National Convention by the McCain for President campaign and served as the campaign’s Camden County Field Coordinator.
In 2004, Mr. Ambrosino served as Southern New Jersey Campaign Coordinator for the Bush-Cheney re-election campaign, developing and implementing the campaign’s grassroots strategy in an eight-county region. Ultimately, President Bush improved his performance in Ambrosino’s region over the 2000 election by more than 14 percentage points, the largest such regional improvement in the nation.
From late 1997 to early 1999, Mr. Ambrosino served as Director of Business & External Affairs for the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). Charged with developing a pro-active business and governmental outreach program, he gained invaluable knowledge of the department’s regulatory system and its effect on New Jersey’s economy.
In 1997 Mr. Ambrosino served as Deputy Campaign Manager on Governor Whitman’s successful re-election campaign, managing the campaign’s daily operations. For two years prior, he served as Political Director at the New Jersey Republican State Committee and Executive Director of the New Jersey Victory ‘96 program.
Mr. Ambrosino also serves as a Commissioner of Elections in Camden County, a post to which he was first appointed by former Governor Jon Corzine in 2006. He has been re-appointed by Governor Chris Christie.
A graduate of Temple University with a degree in Journalism, Mr. Ambrosino and his wife Mindy reside in Cherry Hill with their sons, Cory and Luke.
Maria Caputo brings more than 20 years of government, campaign and political fundraising experience to 1868 Public Affairs. Most recently she has had a successful career as a self-employed Event Coordinator and Fundraising Consultant for political campaigns and non-profit organizations.Click to Read More...
Ms. Caputo’s experience includes serving as Fundraising Consultant for the National Republican Congressional Committee, the New Jersey Republican State Committee and various campaigns, including Zimmer for US Senate (1996), Whitman for Governor (1997), Ferguson for Congress (1998), Cornstein for NY State Comptroller (2001) and Kyrillos for US Senate (2012).
Her past government employment includes service in the Office of Governor Christie Whitman and the Office of Mercer County Executive Robert Prunetti. She also served for three years as Manager of Annual Giving for the Central Park Conservancy in New York City.
Ms. Caputo served on the Board of Education at Congregation B’nai Israel in Rumson and worked as a mentor at Big Brothers/Big Sisters. She currently volunteers to coordinate underwriting for the Boys & Girls Club of Monmouth County.
Ms. Caputo earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from Fairleigh Dickinson University and resides with her family in Rumson.
Office Manager/Legislative Monitor
Ellen joined 1868 Public Affairs with an extensive background in business management, public relations, publishing and sales.
Her career includes service as a Statistical Editor for Chilton Publishing, Advertising Manager for AdMatch, and Marketing Director for a New Jersey-based public relations firm.Click to Read More...
In addition to managing the office and business aspects of the firm, Ellen is responsible for monitoring the legislative calendar, tracking the progress of legislation and researching related topics that directly and indirectly effect clients of 1868 Public Affairs.
Ellen is a 10-year member of the National Ski Patrol. She lives in southern New Jersey with her son Alex.
Wendy S. Martinez specializes in providing professional services and resources in the areas of public affairs, public relations, media relations, political consulting, media production in both English and Spanish, development of effective marketing concepts and persuasive engagement strategies that resonate in the Latino market.Click to Read More...
Ms. Martinez spent many years working for the Bergen County Department of Human Services as Director of Policy and Communications, Director of the Office of Multicultural Community Affairs, and as Special Projects Coordinator.
Her professional career also included serving as Director of Public Programs and Communications for Union City, Chief of Staff to New Jersey Assemblyman Brian Stack, Public Information Officer for the City of Newark, and Community Outreach Consultant for the Newark Museum.
Ms. Martinez received her Bachelor’s Degree in Spanish with a Minor in Political Science from Rutgers University.
She currently resides in Montvale.