As the lead of the firm’s agriculture practice, Donna Jo Denison brings to Cassidy & Associates clients, an intimate knowledge of U.S. policy on food related issues. The daughter of a 4th generation Louisiana farming family, Ms. Denison’s expertise in agriculture and food policy grew out of her tenure as an agriculture policy specialist for two U.S. Senators and her service at the United Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Association. Since leaving Capitol Hill, Ms. Denison has helped her clients address critical food policy issues, ranging from fruit and vegetable provisions in the Farm Bill, to a massive USDA meat recall, to trade issues threatening domestic food producers. Ms. Denison’s tactical legislative skills and agriculture policy expertise make her a tremendous resource to the firm’s clients with interests in front of the House and Senate Agriculture committees, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and other bodies with jurisdiction over food issues. Immediately prior to joining Cassidy & Associates, Ms. Denison served as the Director of Government Affairs for the United Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Association. At the Association, she was responsible for overseeing the implementation of government affairs and regulatory activities, and advocating the views of the fresh fruit and vegetable industry before Congress, the Administration, and the media. She also managed the activities of United’s International Trade Council, which focuses on facilitating cross-border and international trade issues. She presently serves as a member of the U.S. Department of Agriculture Technical Advisory Committee (ATAC) for Trade in Fruits and Vegetables. Prior to joining United, Ms. Denison worked on Capitol Hill for 12 years. She served as a Senior Legislative Assistant for former U.S. Senator J. Bennett Johnston (D-LA) from 1988 to 1995, and then for U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA) from 1996 to 1999. While on Capitol Hill, Ms. Denison worked on several major legislative initiatives including annual appropriations measures; the 1990 and 1996 Farm Bills; the Food Quality Protection Act (FQPA); the 1997 Research, Extension and Education Reform Act; and the Child Nutrition Reauthorization Amendments of 1998. Ms. Denison holds a B.S. in Agriculture Economics with a joint major in Political Science from McNeese State University.