Boards & Affiliations
Maryland State Senator (Senate Majority Leader 2011-2013), 2003-2013
- Joint Committee on Federal Relations, 2003-2013
- Joint Committee on Information Technology and Biotechnology, 2009-2013
- Spending Affordability Committee, 2011-2013
- Workgroup to Consider Gaming Expansion, 2012
Maryland Chamber of Commerce (2019 – Present; Policy Committees: Business Regulation & Operations; Energy & Environment; Taxation)
State Law Resources (Board of Directors 2018), 2015-2018
Montgomery Hospice Board of Directors, 2007-2011
BlackRock Center for the Arts Board of Directors, 2007-2010
Gaithersburg-Germantown Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, 1999-2001
Rutgers University (Rutgers College), B.A.
George Washington University School of Law, J.D.
A triple threat for Compass, Rob serves as a Principal for Compass Government Relations and Compass Public Relations and as the Managing Member for Compass Law. With nearly 30 years of legislative, lobbying, and advocacy experience at the federal, state, and local levels of government, and over 20 years practicing law in D.C. and MD, Rob plays a leading role in managing the Compass leadership team and nurturing the firm’s enterprise growth and innovation.
An expert on energy, tax, business regulation, and procurement matters, Rob lobbies for clients in Maryland, Delaware, and Washington, D.C. As a former Maryland State Senate Majority Leader and State Senator for ten years, Rob understands the inner workings of state government. Prior to becoming a State Senator, he spent close to a decade on Capitol Hill – both as a lobbyist and senior staffer for U.S. Rep. Frank Pallone, Jr., who is now the Chairman of the Energy & Commerce Committee.
Rob has represented legal clients in nearly every sector, ranging from accounting firms to physician practices, trade associations, and nonprofits. Rob advises clients on general business, employment, and commercial leasing matters, helping them form and grow companies, draft corporate governance documents, and provide counsel on various contract issues. He has been recognized as a Super Lawyer since 2016.
Having run for office at the state and federal levels, Rob has extensive media and communications experience. For nearly a decade, he has helped clients with various grassroots advocacy efforts to affect and shape public opinion on a range of issues. Rob has also worked with clients to develop innovative strategies to convey their message before traditional media, digital media, and other venues.
Rob served in the U.S. Army Reserve from 1995 to 2003 and received his jump wings in 2000. He is a member of various nonprofit boards, including those with a focus on the arts, healthcare, renewable energy, and public safety. He is married to Hannah Powers Garagiola, the founder of Compass Advocacy, and has five children and a Jack Russell Terrier named Oyster. In his spare time, he enjoys boating, traveling, reading, and cooking.
- Business Regulation
- Taxation & Fees
- Grassroots & Political Campaign Strategy
- Public Affairs & Coalition Building
- Business Law
- Contracts & Commercial Leases
- Employment/Labor Law