Best Small-Business Lobbyist (2009)

Richard Lipsky

Lipsky the lobbyist is usually found on the steps of City Hall: He's the guy in the suit, with a shock of dark hair and a brush mustache gone gray, talking nonstop into a cell-phone device in his ear. In a city where lobbyists get paid big bucks to whisper quietly to influential politicians, Richard Lipsky will have none of it. He barks, bellows, and bites. When handed the microphone at a rally, he's as good a rabble-rouser as an irate Bronx tenant. This is not how lobbyists are supposed to do business, but Lipsky has long gone his own way. Victims who can attest to the sharpness of his bite include the likes of Wal-Mart—defeated three times in its bid to find sites for giant local box stores. Another un-lobbyist-like tool is his nonstop blog—cloyingly dubbed ""—which regularly takes journalists to task on subjects ranging from Israel to school testing. He may also be the only lobbyist now working City Hall to hold a Ph.D., which he sometimes can't help showing off: His blog posts often include words like "avidity"—which he knows the press corps will have to look up.


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