Categories: Insight

Community Voices: Working Women Stories with Jenna Paladino

Welcome to the Catalyst’s Community Voices platform. We’ve curated community leaders and thinkers from all parts of our great city to speak on issues that affect us all. Visit our Community Voices page for more details.


Click the arrow above to listen to the full long-form interview.

Say hello to Working Women Stories. In this fifth episode of our series, host Jessica Rivelli, the founder of Working Women of Tampa Bay, talks with Jenna Paladino, founder of Paladino Public Affairs.

Paladino founded her firm in 2014 and is a registered lobbyist, working primarily as a solo practitioner. Her firm specializes in lobbying, advocacy and communications in healthcare policy.

Paladino tells the story of how she fell into healthcare advocacy and lobbying when she began working with the MS society in 2007, and how that turned into a full-blown business. They discuss the changing healthcare industry and the challenges ahead for Paladino and her clients as federal healthcare legislation like the Affordable Care Act is eroded by court decisions and piecemeal changes.

Paladino shares the many misconceptions about lobbying, including the lifestyle, the clients, and the partisanship that’s generally involved. She takes clients on both sides of the aisle, and operates on the ethos that anyone willing to make fundamental positive change is worth helping. Paladino talks about the challenges of spending 60+ days each spring in Tallahassee and Washington D.C. while balancing the demands of being a mother and a wife.

Paladino’s advice to budding entrepreneurs? You need help. Whether it’s picking up your kid from kindergarten, balancing the books or having a sounding board to develop business strategy, entrepreneurs shouldn’t go it alone. Especially as a solo entrepreneur, Paladino advises seeking help early and often, and that spouses can only serve as business sounding boards for so long.

Paladino shares some of her proudest moments from the last legislative session, her passion for the big picture of policy, and what comes next.

Megan Holmes

Megan Holmes is managing editor of the St. Pete Catalyst. By day, Megan writes, project manages and practices untraining her oxford comma habit at the St. Pete Catalyst. By early morning and late night, she lives at CrossFit9 with a barbell in her hands. She believes that exercise is the greatest prescription for every ailment, but that a hot cup of coffee and a nice sour beer will do in a pinch. She loves all things local – so you might spot her trying out a new eatery, biking around this beautiful city, or walking her beloved Shiba Inu, Max.

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