A proud conservative, Kaloogian served as Assistant Republican Leader in the California State Assembly during his six years in office. He was chairman of the CalPERS oversight committee where he proposed converting the public employee pension system to a defined contribution plan in 1995, which would have eliminated all unfunded liability exposure. That plan was adopted as model legislation at the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) and became law in nine states across the nation.
Assemblyman Kaloogian served as Chair of the Budget Sub Committee on Natural Resources, and Vice Chair of the Banking and Finance Committee. He was also a member of the Judiciary, Local Government, Governmental Organization, Health and Human Resources, and Revenue and Taxation committees. He was chosen to represent California as the State Chair for the National Council of State Legislators and the State Chair for the ALEC. He was a member of the American Council of Young Political Leaders and the Atlantic Bridge. Speaker Newt Gingrich appointed Assemblyman Kaloogian as a delegate to the National Summit on Retirement Savings.
Assemblyman Kaloogian was named the Legislator of the Year for the nation in 1997 by ALEC. During his service he was also awarded the legislator of the year by the CA Pro-Life Council, the American Electronics Association, the CA Chiropractic Association, the Golden State Mobil Homeowners League, CA School Board Leadership Council, the Save Our Land Values Coalition, and the Fairbankds Ranch Republican Women’s Federated. He received the Samuel Adams award from the Local Government Council, and was named the Women’s Resource Network Champion. Assemblyman Kaloogian was rated A+ by the National Rifle Association, the National Federation of Independent Businesses, and the Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse. He also received 100% ratings from the CA Chamber of Commerce.
After serving the maximum number of years in office under term limits, he joined Hillsdale College in 2001 where he continues to serve as the Western District Director for Planned Giving, helping supporters of the college avoid taxes and increase income by using Charitable Remainder trusts and Gift Annuities. In keeping with Hillsdale’s philosophy that everyone should be involved defending freedom, Mr. Kaloogian remains a political activist as a leader in numerous conservative causes.
In 2003, he launched the historic Recall Gray Davis Committee, which helped recall Democratic Governor Gray Davis – the first recall of a statewide official in California history. Kaloogian made countless national media appearances advocating on behalf of the recall effort, resulting in 1.2 million signatures being gathered to qualify the recall.
Kaloogian has also worked to defend our troops by launching Move America Forward. M.A.F. supports our troops and their missions in the war on terror against attacks from Michael Moore and MoveON.org. M.A.F. has sent millions of dollars worth of care packages to our deployed troops.
Considering Ronald Reagan to be his greatest political hero, Kaloogian not only served as member of the Ronald Reagan Legacy Project, but he also went on to lead the Defend Reagan Committee, persuading CBS/Viacom not to broadcast a miniseries smearing President Reagan.
Kaloogian has appeared on FOX News, CBS, ABC, NBC, CNN, and MSNBC and has been published in National Review, the Wall Street Journal, and Human Events among others. Mr. Kaloogian has worked with an array of national conservative leaders on a host of pertinent public policy issues facing America, including Congressman Jack Kemp, former Attorney General John Ashcroft, and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich.
Howard is married to Martha, and has a step son, Alex. They have two dogs named Ezekiel and Solomon. Howard obtained a B.A. from Michigan State University and a Juris Doctor from Pepperdine University School of Law. He is admitted to practice law in California, Michigan, the United States Tax Court, and the Federal Court for the Southern District of California. He has also taught law as an adjunct professor at the Thomas Jefferson School of Law.
Sal Russo is recognized as one of America’s premier political strategists and the leading architect of the Tea Party Express and its explosive and historic success in American elections. He has been a fixture on national and local media as the foremost expert on the Tea Party movement and an analyst regarding state and national politics.
As an ardent believer in liberty, Mr. Russo was an active member of the Free Speech Movement while studying at the University of California, Berkeley in 1964. His conservative activism led to a meeting with actor Ronald Reagan, who related to his activities due to his own student demonstrations in his youth at Eureka College.
Mr. Russo then volunteered to work on Ronald Reagan’s 1966 gubernatorial campaign, after which Mr. Russo went on to serve as a special assistant to the Governor in Sacramento. After three years in the Governor’s Office as a personal aide to Reagan, he became chief of staff to a member of the California Legislature for six years. His successful outreach to normally Democratic constituency groups brought landslide victories at every election. Mr. Russo has also been an advisor to several Republican presidential campaigns since 1976, and was intimately responsible for directing the re-election effort of President Ronald Reagan in California in 1984.
He assisted Congressman Jack Kemp in his 1988 presidential campaign and also served as the head of Campaign for a New Agenda, the political action committee formed by Jack Kemp to promote conservative social, cultural and economic issues. He also was instrumental in working with Mr. Kemp in forming Empower America, the conservative think tank headed by conservatives Jeanne Kirkpatrick and Bill Bennett. In 1978 Mr. Russo directed the first statewide campaign in America to run on the issue of supply side economics, the campaign for Governor of State Assemblyman Ken Maddy two years before the economic theory was adopted by presidential candidate Ronald Reagan.
Mr. Russo’s firm, Russo Marsh + Associates, Inc. has been at the forefront of some of the most prominent national, state and local campaigns, including the election of Governor George Deukmejian, California (1982), for whom he served as Deputy Chief of Staff; Senator Alfonse D’Amato, New York (1992); and Governor George Pataki, New York (1994). He also founded the Recall Gray Davis Committee in 2001, which was the leading organization to recalling the first sitting Governor in decades.
Mr. Russo holds a B.A. in Government from California State University, Sacramento, and a J.D. from McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific. He serves as a member of the Statewide Advisory Council for the Center for California Studies, California State University (1996-); the McGeorge School of Law’s Institute for Legislative Practice Alumni Advisory Board (1995-); and the Kenneth L. Maddy Institute Advisory Board, California State University, Fresno (2000-). He has belonged to the International Association of Political Consultants since 1982 and served on the Board of Directors (1986-1992). He is the Founding Chairman of Tower of Youth, a Sacramento regional youth-run organization that sponsors and supports the communication arts for teenagers (1986-).