Portrait of Kendra Burns-Edel

Kendra
Burns-Edel

Junior Associate

Kendra specializes in public affairs and government relations and provides counsel to corporations and non-profit organizations.

Prior to joining Gonring, Spahn & Associates, Kendra worked as a Senior Political Accounts Supervisor at Kaufman Legal Group, a campaign finance firm in Los Angeles. In this capacity, she oversaw the treasury and compliance of 50 candidates, elected officials, ballot measure committees, and union PACs including U.S. Senator Kamala Harris, Attorney General Xavier Becerra and Speaker Emeritus John A. Perez. She was responsible for managing committee bank accounts, preparing campaign finance disclosure reports and overseeing income and expenditures while ensuring compliance with campaign finance laws.

Kendra has held volunteer and internship positions with Planned Parenthood, Amnesty International, United to End Genocide, Direct Relief international and former Congressmembers Lois Capps and Wally Herger. In her spare time, she tutors special needs students, canvasses and phone banks for political campaigns and hosts non-profit fundraisers and donation drives.

Kendra earned her B.A. in Political Science and Sociology with a Minor in Global Peace & Security from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Kendra was raised on a ranch in Northern California and currently resides in Los Angeles.


Portrait of Steve Caplan

Steve Caplan

Chief Strategy Officer

Steve brings a wealth of experience at the nexus of politics, advertising and strategic communications to the firm in his role as Chief Strategy Officer.

Prior to joining GS&A, Steve was Founder and Principal Strategist at Message, an award-winning strategic communications and marketing agency in Hollywood. At Message, Steve and his team worked with an array of clients, including Fortune 100 brands, local governments, not-for-profits and the entertainment industry. The agency won Video Campaign of the Year (Silver) from Ad Age/Modern Healthcare in 2015, and developed nationally recognized content to support a number of complex public policy and social change initiatives.

Prior to launching Message, he was a Partner at GMMB, one of the nation’s leading cause marketing firms, where he oversaw creative development and strategic efforts for clients including; the California Endowment, the Motion Picture Association of America, and the California Department of Alcohol and Drug Program’s widely acclaimed “Me Not Meth” campaign.

Steve spent nearly seven years as executive vice president of the Association of Independent Commercial Producers (AICP), where he represented approximately 270 of the nation’s leading commercial production companies for this $5 billion-a-year industry.

He also has extensive experience in politics at the national, state and local levels. He was a leading player in the election of then Philadelphia Mayor Edward G. Rendell, and later served as Assistant Deputy Mayor in his office.

A lifelong Angeleno, he has long been active in community and civic affairs. He has served on several boards and commissions including Film LA, where he was vice chair.

Steve attended the University of California, Santa Barbara as an undergraduate and earned his masters degree from the Fels School of Government at the University of Pennsylvania. Steve met his wife Tina on the campaign trail. She now heads up partnerships and strategic initiatives at USC Annenberg, and they have two children.


Portrait of Jennifer Gonring

Jennifer Gonring

Chief Executive Officer

Jennifer runs the firm’s operations and is lead strategist in positioning key philanthropic and policy objectives. She has distinct experience in non-profit growth strategies, directs message development, develops communication tactics and manages execution. Partnering with major institutions, foundations, corporations, as well as individual efforts, she delivers a steady campaign mentality to her work, significantly increasing clients’ visibility and increasing their funding and reach overall. She has served as an advisor for numerous federal, state and local political candidates, committees and campaigns, as well as some of the nation’s leading charitable organizations.

Before co-founding Gonring, Spahn & Associates, Jennifer worked at DreamWorks SKG where she oversaw all the studio’s Corporate Affairs operations and served as Director of Special Projects. There, she managed studio public relations, The Spielberg Family Living Trust, The Katzenberg Family Trust and all aspects of DreamWorks’ charitable giving program. Additionally, she directed all community relations, studio fundraising efforts and special appearances for the studio’s Principals, Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg and David Geffen.

Jennifer is a member of the non-partisan Pacific Council on International Policy, serves on the Board of Trustees of the Charles Edison Fund and serves on the Board of City Year Los Angeles.

She is a graduate of University of Wisconsin-Madison. Her husband is an ethnomusicologist and writer. They have two daughters.


Portrait of Jennifer Lin

Jennifer Lin

Partner

Jennifer specializes in public affairs, with extensive experience in federal, state and local government relations, community outreach and fundraising.  An expert in managing issue advocacy campaigns, Jennifer provides counsel to Fortune 100 corporations, private companies, prominent individuals, philanthropic foundations and non-profit organizations seeking to build coalitions and achieve their policy goals.

Jennifer previously worked at DreamWorks SKG where she directed the company’s government, political and community affairs. She was also responsible for special fundraising events and political giving on behalf of the studio and its principals.

Jennifer is a member of the Getty House Foundation board and has served on the boards of LA’s BEST — Los Angeles’ largest after school program provider — and Women’s Care Cottage, which helps formerly homeless women and their families through housing and supportive services. She was a member of the Board of Directors for the Glendale Chamber of Commerce.

Born in Taipei, Taiwan and raised in South Pasadena, California, Jennifer is a graduate of the University of Southern California, where she received Bachelor of Arts degrees in Political Science and English. She lives in Los Angeles, with her husband Allan Edmiston, a partner at Loeb & Loeb LLP, and their two sons.


Portrait of Marie Lloyd

Marie Lloyd

Senior Associate

With a skill set honed by government, campaign and research experience, Marie provides strategic communications, policy and government affairs counsel to Gonring, Spahn & Associates and numerous clients.

Marie previously worked in the Communications Office of Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, where she served as a Communications Deputy and on the record spokesperson. In addition to briefing and staffing the Mayor during interviews and events, she played leadership roles in advancing the Mayor’s top legislative priority, the $1.6 billion state film tax credit; L.A.’s multi-million dollar public information campaign for water conservation; and initiatives to clean L.A.’s streets, protect the environment and reform city government. She also served as the point person between the Mayor’s Office of Communications and other Mayoral departments, 37 quasi-independent city agencies and external stakeholders.

Marie has produced major events for stage and live broadcast including high-profile news conferences, formal addresses and musical performances.

Marie is also experienced in on the ground crisis communications management and served as Chief Information Officer in the Los Angeles Emergency Operations Center. Marie’s campaign experience includes Garcetti for Mayor and Bobby Shriver for Supervisor. Her prior research experience includes American political and labor history, city planning, industrial economies, social development and poverty in Sub-Saharan Africa.

She earned her B.A. with a concentration in Urban Studies, Anthropology and Urban Planning from Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts and a post-baccalaureate certificate from UC Berkeley’s College of Environmental Design.


Portrait of Charlotte Milner-Barry

Charlotte Milner-Barry

Associate

With a background in public affairs, events, and development, Charlotte specializes in philanthropic advising, cause-based communications, and engaging next-generation philanthropists. At Gonring, Spahn & Associates, Charlotte oversees the management of key accounts and provides strategic guidance on giving strategies.

Prior to joining the firm, Charlotte worked in the UK for 6 years, providing philanthropic advice to high net-worth individuals and building a community of next-generation donors at The Funding Network. Most recently, Charlotte managed the launch of GenGive, a platform to equip families with the tools to cultivate their social awareness and give effectively. She also worked for a national nonprofit supporting at-risk teenagers, delivering their communications and fundraising strategy.

She has written policy papers on foster care and school-to-work transitions that have been published by the British Government and is a leading spokesperson on engaging young philanthropists, having been a guest speaker at three international conferences focusing on family philanthropy.

Charlotte holds a Bachelor’s degree in History with Honors from the University of London, School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) and grew up in Tokyo and Hong Kong.


Portrait of Kevin Ryan

Kevin Ryan

Partner

Kevin manages our Washington, D.C. office and brings more than twenty-five years of public affairs, political and communications experience to the firm. He manages several accounts and specializes in government relations, communications and message development.

Before joining the firm, Kevin worked as a Management Supervisor for The Rogers Group, a public relations firm in Los Angeles. There, he managed media relations for the company’s largest public sector account, First 5 California. In this role, he developed statewide communication strategies, coordinated press events and wrote speeches and talking points for First 5 California staff and their nationally recognized spokesperson, Rob Reiner.

Prior to that, Kevin worked as Deputy Press Secretary for California Governor Gray Davis. In that role, he wrote press releases, served as a spokesperson, and accompanied the Governor to press conferences and media appearances.

Before moving to Los Angeles in 2002 to consult on the NBC political drama, “Mr. Sterling,” Kevin spent more than eight years on Capitol Hill, serving first as the Personal Aide and Research Assistant to Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan (D-NY) and then as Campaign Manager and Chief of Staff to Congressman Anthony Weiner (D-NY). With the Congressman, Kevin managed a staff of twenty in Washington, D.C. and in New York City, handled the Congressman’s Science Committee work, and coordinated all his political events and outreach, including the management of press events and television and radio bookings in Washington, DC.

Kevin earned his JD and MPA degrees from Syracuse University’s School of Law and The Maxwell School of Public Affairs, and has an MA in Politics from the Catholic University of America. He has his Bachelor of Arts degree in Government from St. Lawrence University. His wife, Julie, is a partner at Acceleron Law Group. They have two children.


Portrait of Andy Spahn

Andy Spahn

President

Andy has spent more than 30 years in the entertainment, political and non-profit arenas. He has advised business and government leaders at the highest levels and his counsel is sought by Fortune 100 executives, elected officials and philanthropic organizations.

Before co-founding Gonring, Spahn & Associates in 2006, Andy served as the Head of Corporate Affairs and Communications for DreamWorks SKG, where he was the direct liaison to Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg and David Geffen in all work related to corporate, media, government and community relations, new business development, internal affairs, real estate and all charitable and political matters.

Prior to DreamWorks, he served as Executive Vice President of The David Geffen Company as well as President of The David Geffen Foundation. His previous positions in national politics and the non-profit world include: National Finance Director for U.S. Senator Gary Hart’s presidential campaign, Chief of Staff to California State Controller Gray Davis and Special Assistant to the Chairmen of the Democratic Senatorial and Congressional Campaign Committees. Additionally, he co-founded and served as President and CEO of the Environmental Media Association, an entertainment industry non-profit organization created to raise public awareness of environmental issues.

Andy has been profiled in the Wall Street Journal, is recognized as one of the top Democratic fundraisers in the country, was named one of the “Biggest Political Players” by The Hollywood Reporter and one of POLITICO’s “50 People to Watch.” He frequently serves as a trusted source of information to the national press corps on politics and philanthropy.

In 2009, Andy was appointed by President Barack Obama to the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities. He has served as a National Finance Committee member for the Democratic National Committee, and as a member of the “Speaker’s Cabinet” for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. He also sits on the Board of the Geffen Playhouse.

Andy has been a longtime advocate for normalization of U.S. relations with Cuba and has traveled there for more than two decades. He has led delegations of civic leaders, business executives, and artists on cultural exchange missions, and has helped bring Cuban artists and musicians here to the United States to perform and exhibit their work.

He is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley. His wife, Jennifer Perry, is the Executive Director of the Children’s Action Network in Los Angeles. They have two daughters: Angela and Kaysea.