JOHN PUDNER Executive Director
John Pudner was the oldest of 9 children growing up in a 3 bedroom house in inner city Richmond, VA where he attended the same Catholic, military high school as Donald Trump’s chief strategist Steve Bannon. Now the father of 9 children, John Pudner learned at a young age the importance of timing, negotiating and diplomacy. More importantly, he learned how to live on a shoe-string budget. Those early life lessons helped put him on the national political scene when in the 2014 primaries, he jump-started the campaign of Dave Brat, who would ultimately unseat U.S. Majority Leader Eric Cantor in one of the most unprecedented upsets in political history. Later in the general election of the same year, he would help defeat a 32-year incumbent state senator in Alabama’s general election. He managed campaigns for almost three decades. His now-famous strategy of outsmarting instead of outspending the opposition was born out of a hobby of extrapolating statistical data on sports teams. With an affinity for numbers and grassroots initiatives, John became known as the go-to-guy to help upstart candidates that didn’t have the financial backing needed to play in the political sandbox. During his career, he won 3 out of every 4 races in which he was involved. John’s corporate successes included turning out hundreds of residents to numerous zoning hearings to stop big-money developers from overrunning small businesses and residents by violating local ordinances. Bannon and Pudner developed a relationship over their shared efforts to keep the inner city commitment of their alma mater, and Bannon later hired Pudner as sports editor to launch Breitbart Sports. In turn, Pudner alerted Bannon and other key media outlets about his launch of Dave Brat’s campaign to ultimately shock Majority leader Eric Cantor.
But through all his successes, John Pudner saw firsthand the influence of money on politics—the manipulation of the system and the loopholes that didn’t favor a transparent election— one in which only select major corporate donors and union bosses were the true winners. With a desire to now recreate the system instead of circumventing it, John Pudner will lead this team of ex-political wonks to help change the very industry in which they once thrived.