Now a five-time recipient of the Best of the Capitol award for his hairstyle, Marcus Dell’Artino hears — coming up behind him — the sound of rustling hair.
“The competition is getting tougher — and more threatening,” says Dell’Artino, a parter at Phoenix-based FirstStrategic Communications & Public Affairs.
“It’s becoming a fierce battle to hold on,” he says. “(Rep.) Ed Ableser is gaining on me.”
Dell’Artino, who has spent 1 ½ years at FirstStrategic after nine years at Public Policy Partners, scoffed at Best Political Operative Danny Seiden’s suggestion to the Capitol Times that he can be found each night at 9 p.m. in curlers.
“My secret is a head-soothing gel made up of acacia berries and Bud Light,” Dell’Artino says with a chuckle, cautioning readers not to attempt copying his formula.
“It’s too dangerous to mix at home,” he says.
Living with five awards will be similar to what it’s been like with four, he says, best evidenced when he enters a room.
“It’s certainly a topic of conversation among my clients,” he says. “They say, ‘Oooh, it’s the hair guy.’”
Dell’Artino says his girlfriend remains unfazed by his sartorial fame.
“She doesn’t care what I do so long as the house is clean and food is on the table,” he says. “And I’m wondering what she’s going to say when she reads that.”
Great hair can be both an asset and a liability to the task of representing clients to lawmakers and other state officials, Dell’Artino says.
“It cuts both ways,” he says. “I do appreciate that there are nice people out there who voted for me.”
Turning serious if only for a moment, he says what ultimately matters to his clients, which include several Fortune 500 companies, is the hard work he puts in on their behalf.
After all, he did win for lobbying — once. It was second place in 2008. And shoes? Again, only once, last year.
Sounds like Dell’Artino will be hearing that he’s “the hair guy” for some time to come.
As for his age, Dell’Artino played coy, suggesting that’s something only his hairdresser may know for sure.
“I’m 39,” he says, “and I’m sticking to it.”
When Eileen Klein was selected as Jan Brewer’s chief of staff in 2009, the governor praised her as possessing “a wealth of financial, economic and executive level managerial experience.”
That’s all true; but what about her hair?
While Klein has certainly been pivotal in the Governor’s Office, absent from Brewer’s ringing praise was one of Klein’s most immediately striking assets — her impeccably styled golden locks.
Lauded across the Capitol for her enviable style and ceaseless energy, Klein takes the top award this year as an expertly coiffed crusader for the agenda of one of the nation’s most high-profile governors.
Klein is, in fact, so busy that she inquires how long it might take to discuss her laudable locks. “What is your turnaround time on this?” Klein asks. “Within one can of hairspray?”
Before being selected as chief of staff, Klein served as the deputy chief of staff for finance, and director of the Governor’s Office of Strategic Planning and Budgeting.
Prior to joining Brewer’s administration, Klein was chief operating officer for Arizona Physicians IPA by UnitedHealthcare, a $1 billion corporation serving Arizonans enrolled in AHCCCS and ADHS programs.
She has also been an executive committee member of the Arizona Chamber of Commerce and Industry. In 2008, Klein was named the organization’s “Volunteer of the Year.”
Now, to those accolades can be added a mention for bringing a little glamour within the halls of government — something Klein does with aplomb and with effortless ease.
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