Mar 12, 2024 - Politics & Policy

Exclusive: Biden alumni launch Latino arm at consulting firm

Sandra Amado Gomez and her daughter Aylen Agostina Gomez registers a woman to vote during halftime at the championship game of soccer Sept. 20, 2020 in Raleigh, N.C..

Sandra Amado Gomez and her daughter Aylen Agostina Gomez register a woman to vote on Sept. 20, 2020, in Raleigh, N.C. Photo: Jason Armond /Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

Former Latino aides from the Biden White House are starting a team at a New York-based consulting firm to engage Latinos in politics, policymaking, and business.

Why it matters: Political consulting firms have been criticized for superficial Latino voter engagement or failing to have candidates reach out to Latinos as the diverse voting bloc becomes less predictable.

Zoom in: Tusk Strategies tells Axios it will launch a Hispanic engagement vertical to better assist clients in tapping "the Latino community's rapidly growing political, social, and economic influence."

  • The Latino engagement team will include Cristóbal Alex, previously the White House Deputy Cabinet Secretary under President Biden and the founding president of the Latino Victory Project.
  • Bernadette Carrillo, the former director of Intergovernmental Affairs to U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo, and Maria Restrepo, former senior associate director to Vice President Kamala Harris, will be part of the team.

The intrigue: The firm said it would help clients with "culturally competent marketing and communications in English and Spanish," Puerto Rico and Mexico business development, and government procurement and contracting.

What they're saying: "I applaud Tusk Strategies for lending their expertise in legislative and regulatory campaigns with their cultural know-how," Martin Cabrera, CEO and founder of Cabrera Capital Markets and Cabrera Capital Partners, said in a statement.

  • Janet Murguía, president and CEO of the civil rights group UnidosUS, said the new venture will help corporations and organizations understand that engaging the Latino community is "an indispensable component" of their marketing success.

Between the lines: The new vertical reflects Gen X and millennial Latino consultants' desire to enable Latinos to be policy influencers, New Mexico Democratic political consultant Sisto Abeyta tells Axios.

  • "The previous generation of Latino consultants didn't mentor enough. This is a major shift," he said.
  • Abeyta said the new generation of Latino consultants also wants to share what they've learned after serving in the White House, where few Latinos have gone.

The other side: A number of firms have teams that help clients reach out to Latinos about consumer products and corporate imaging but few GOP-based firms have dedicated teams that target Latinos.

Don't forget: The total economic output of U.S. Latinos reached $3.2 trillion in 2021, inching closer to Germany's entire output and staying ahead of India, the world's most populous country.

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