Robert J. Garagiola

Principal, Government Relations
President, Law & Public Relations

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

Professional Fire Fighters of Maryland Educational & Training Fund Board of Directors, 2021-Present

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


Rutgers University (Rutgers College), B.A.

George Washington University School of Law, J.D.

Robert J. Garagiola

Principal, Government Relations
President, Law & Public Relations

A triple threat for Compass, Rob serves as a Principal for Compass Government Relations, President of Compass Public Relations and the Managing Member of 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.

Government Relations

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 over a decade, 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 Ranking Democrat of the Energy & Commerce Committee.

Law Practice

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.

Public Relations

Having run for office at the state and federal levels, Rob has extensive media and communications experience. For over a decade, he has helped clients with various grassroots advocacy efforts to affect and shape public opinion on a range of issues. Rob has become adept at employing various grassroots tools, including phones, e-mails, text messages, and other platforms to advance client issues. He has also worked with clients to develop innovative strategies to convey their message before traditional media, digital media, and other venues.

Additional Background

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.

Practice Areas

Government Relations

  • Business Regulation
  • Energy
  • Healthcare
  • Procurement
  • Taxation & Fees

Public Relations

  • Communications
  • Grassroots & Political Campaign Strategy
  • Public Affairs & Coalition Building


  • Business Law
  • Contracts & Commercial Leases
  • Employment/Labor Law

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