Team Washington, D.C.
Chief of Staff
Don Cravins, Jr., 40, a native of Southwest Louisiana, joined Sen. Landrieu’s team in 2009 as Staff Director and Chief Counsel of the United States Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship. In that role, Don oversaw all activities of the Committee including supervising its staff, developing policy and legislation affecting small businesses throughout America and advising Sen. Landrieu and the 19 senators who sit on the committee about issues before the committee. Since 1998, Don has been a practicing attorney. In 2004, he was elected to the Louisiana House of Representatives. At that time, he and his father, Louisiana State Senator Don Cravins, Sr., made Louisiana history by becoming the first and only father and son to serve in the Louisiana Legislature at the same time. In 2006, Don was elected to the Louisiana Senate for the seat vacated by his father, and reelected in 2008 with over 70 percent of the vote. In 2008, Don ran for Congress in the 7th Congressional District of Louisiana. In March of 2012, Don completed five months of active duty officer basic training with the United States Army. Upon completion, Don began service as a Judge Advocate with the Louisiana Army National Guard. Don graduated from Louisiana State University with a degree in Political Science and attended the Southern University Law Center, where he graduated with honors in 1998. Upon graduation from Law School and while studying for the Louisiana bar exam, Don served as the Deputy Campaign Manager for U.S. Senator John Breaux. Don and his wife, Attorney Yvette Puckett Cravins, have three children: Dominique Claire (13), Trey (11) and Chloe Denise (2). The Cravins reside in Washington, DC, and Opelousas, La.
Elizabeth Leoty Craddock
A native of Delhi, Louisiana, Elizabeth (Liz) joined Senator Landrieu's office in 2006. Currently, as Legislative Director and Counsel, she coordinates the Senator’s legislative affairs; developing legislation on behalf of the Senator and providing vote recommendations. In addition, she handles campaign finance issues and ethics for the Senator. Liz’s background is in energy, environmental, agricultural and trade issues – the issues she originally worked on for the Senator. Prior to serving in Senator Landrieu's office, Elizabeth worked for U.S. Congresswoman Karen Thurman, D-Dunnellon, and Congressman Dale Kildee, D-Flint. Elizabeth received her B.A. in Political Science and B.S. in Public Relations from the University of Florida, and earned her J.D. from Tulane University Law School. She is a member of the DC bar.
Liz has family in West Monroe and Tallulah, LA. She is the proud mom of two adorable boys and married to a Texas Democrat.
Senior policy adviser
Ben Billings serves as Senior Policy Advisor for Homeland Security and Disaster Recovery. In this capacity, he advises the Senator on transportation and border security, counter terrorism, customs and maritime enforcement, and immigration, as well as a range of disaster management issues.
After working as a Legislative Aide to Senator Landrieu , Ben worked for four years on the Senate Homeland Security Committee, where he served as Staff Director for the Subcommittee on Disaster Recovery. Previously, he worked in the U.S. House of Representatives, the Law Enforcement Defense Division of the Texas Attorney General's Office, and the Political Asylum Project of Austin. He holds an M.A. in National Security and Strategic Studies from the U.S. Naval War College, M.A. in International Peace and Security from the University of London-King's College School of Law, B.A. in History from the University of Texas at Austin, and Certificate in Weapons of Mass Destruction from the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences. Ben is a native of New Orleans.
Elizabeth Weiner joined Senator Landrieu’s D.C. staff in 2009 and currently handles coastal and oceans policy, Corps of Engineers and waterways navigation issues, animal welfare, and appropriations matters. Previously, Elizabeth served as the Senator’s Executive Assistant. She also interned in Senator Landrieu’s D.C office in 2005 and was the Press Assistant for the Senator’s 2008 re-election campaign. She is a New Orleans native and graduated with honors from Louisiana State University with a degree in Public Relations and Political Science.
Peter Gwynn-Sackson joined Senator Landrieu’s team in April 2011. He manages Sen. Landrieu’s healthcare, agriculture, and fisheries portfolios. Previously, Peter worked in the House of Representatives in a similar role for Rep. Kendrick Meek (D-Fla.). Peter is a 2006 Teach For America corps member and graduated with a B.A. in Economics from University of Florida.
Zephranie Buetow joined Senator Landrieu's office in March of 2012 and handles civil rights, second amendment, law enforcement, veterans and defense related issues. Zephranie earned B.A. in Speech Communications from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. She also earned a M.S. in Communications from Illinois State University; a M.A. in Cultural and Educational Policy Studies from Loyola University Chicago School of Education; and a J.D. from Loyola University Chicago School of Law.
Zephranie is veteran of the Illinois National Guard and a Chicago native.
Libby Whitbeck joined Sen. Landrieu's staff in May 2011. She handles the Senator's foreign policy and child welfare portfolio. Libby previously served as a Legislative Correspondent for Senator Landrieu. She has also worked on nutrition policy for the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition & Forestry under Chairman Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas. Libby has a B.A. in Political Science and Minors in Swahili and Business Administration at Boston University.
Clayton is a native of Baton Rouge and graudate of LSU. He joined Senator Landrieu's staff in 2011 and currently works on energy and environment issues. At LSU, he majored in Political Communications, with a minor in Business Administration.
Megan Blanco, a Bossier City native, rejoined Sen. Landrieu's team in June 2011, after serving as an intern in 2006. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, with a B.A. in Political Science. Directly after graduation, Megan joined Teach For America as a 2008 South Louisiana Corps Member, teaching in the East Baton Rouge Parish School System. She then served a third year as a School Board Fellow with the Leadership for Educational Equity.
Andrew is a New Iberia native and a graduate of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. He joined Senator Landrieu’s team in October 2012 after interning at a top D.C. Government Affairs firm. Andrew currently works on defense, homeland security, disaster recovery, maritime, and judicial issues.
Matthew Lehner joined Senator Landrieu's press team in August 2010 after working as a press/staff assistant for Rep. Melissa Bean (D-Ill.). Previously, he served in Rep. Charlie Melancon's (D-La.) office. A native of Bloomington, Ill., he graduated Summa Cum Laude from Saint Louis University, where he studied journalism and political science. Lehner is also a professional photographer and oversees the senator's visual and multimedia.
Erin Donar joined Sen. Landrieu's team in October 2011 after serving two and a half years as Communications Director/ Policy Advisor for Congressman Dale E. Kildee (D-MI). She previously served as Communications Director for Congresswoman Betty Sutton (D-Ohio) and as Deputy Press Secretary for the House Small Business Committee and it's Chairwoman, Nydia M. Velazquez (D-NY). She is a native of New York, N.Y. and has a B.A. in Political Science from Yale University.
Jacob Sittig, an Iowa, La. native, joined Senator Landrieu’s press team in July 2012. A Magna Cum Laude graduate from Louisiana State University, he received his B.A. in Mass Communication and Political Science. Before joining Senator Landrieu’s staff, he interned with Teach For America and worked extensively with the National FFA Organization.
Natalie Angelo joined Senator Landrieu's team as Projects Director in 2010, overseeing all appropriations and transportation-related issues for the Senator. She previously served as Projects Director and Financial Services Advisor to U.S. Senator Burris (D-IL). Prior to that, Natalie worked as a Professional Staff Member on the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Domestic and International Monetary Policy, Trade and Technology, and spent her earlier years on Capitol Hill in the office of Representative Luis V. Gutierrez (D-IL), working on appropriations and transportation issues. Natalie received her B.S. in Business Administration from DePaul University, and holds a certificate from the Women’s Campaign School at Yale University. She is an active member of the Women’s Congressional Staffers Association.
Office Manager / Executive Assistant
Alicia Williams is originally from Grambling, Louisiana. She is a 1983 graduate of Grambling State University and a life member of the Grambling University National Alumni Association. She also is a member of the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., the Senate Black Legislative Caucus and the African American on the Hill Network. Before joining Senator Landrieu's Washington staff, she was Deputy Campaign Manager during the 1996 election. Williams also has worked 10 years for former U.S. Senator J. Bennett Johnston as staff assistant, systems administrator, projects assistant and projects manager; and for former Lt. Governor Melinda Schwegmann as her executive assistant. She is a member of the First Baptist Church of Glenarden.
Assistant to the Legislative Director
Kristen Granier joined Senator Landrieu's staff in May 2010. She is currently the assistant to the Legislative Director. Kristen was previously a staff assistant and tour coordinator for Senator Landrieu's DC office and interned in the Senator's Baton Rouge office in 2009. Kristen is a native of Brusly, Louisiana and studied International Management at Southeastern Louisiana University.
Executive Assistant to Sen. Landrieu
Alexander Sewell, a Chicago-native, joined Senator Landrieu’s D.C. office in July 2012. Prior to serving in Senator Landrieu’s office, Alexander worked as a Special Assistant in the Obama Administration. Alexander started his career in government with internships in the offices of Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. and House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi. Alexander graduated from Roosevelt University with a B.A. in Political Science in 2011.
Alyson Williams Azodeh
Alyson Williams Azodeh is from Grambling, Louisiana and graduated from the Louisiana State School for the Deaf and Delgado Community College. Before joining the staff of Senator Landrieu, she worked for Former Senator J. Bennett Johnston for 8 years. Areas of responsibility include maintaining office files and input data from outgoing mail. Azodeh is currently a member of the First Baptist Church of Glenarden in Maryland.
Katie Rose Norman
Katie Rose Norman, an Abita Springs, LA native, joined Senator Landrieu’s team in July 2012 and coordinates the Senator’s schedule. Previously, she taught middle school Math and high school Social Studies in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Katie Rose is an alumna of Teach For America . She has a B.A. in Mass Communications from Louisiana State University and a Master of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies from the University of Texas at Arlington.
Assistant to the Chief of Staff
Jaren Hill joined Senator Landrieu's D.C. team in October 2011. Prior to serving in Senator Landrieu's office, she worked for Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, the District of Columbia’s non-voting member. Jaren graduated from Middle Tennessee State University in 2009 with a degree in Mass Communications. She is also a member of the Senate Black Legislative Staff Caucus.
Davis Rhorer, Jr.
Davis Rhorer, a native of Baton Rouge, first joined Senator Landrieu’s team as an intern in June 2011. He graduated from the University of Notre Dame with a B.A. in Political Science and French, and a minor in Japanese. Before coming to Washington, D.C., he worked as a summer file clerk in the Baton Rouge law firm of Taylor, Porter, Brooks, and Phillips, LLP.
Staff Assistant/Tour Coordinator
DerKirra Wilkerson, a native of Ferriday, first joined Senator Landrieu's team in 2010. She served as a staff assistant in the Baton Rouge office before coming to Washington, D.C. to assume the position of tour coordinator. She graduated from Southern University and A&M College in 2002 with a B.S. in Rehabilitation Services. She later earned her M.P.A. from Grambling University before returning to Southern to participate in the Ph.D. program of the Nelson Mandela School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs.