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Our Team

David Polyansky

David Polyansky is a strategist and communications counselor with professional experience in the political, legal, and public affairs sectors. Over the course of his career, he has been known for taking on tough challenges and helping many of his clients defy great odds.

Most recently, David served as Chief of Staff to U.S. Senator Ted Cruz where he helped guide an office representing over 28 million Texans through numerous pivotal moments, including influencing several major components of the historic “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act” of 2017, the rescue and recovery efforts of Hurricane Harvey up and down the Texas coast, and passage of five Cruz-sponsored bills through the first year of the Trump presidency.

David has served in a senior capacity to four Republican presidential campaigns, including as a senior adviser for Governor Scott Walker’s 2016 presidential campaign and then later joining Senator Cruz’s campaign as a senior adviser for politics and communications.

In 2015 David was awarded “Strategist of the Year” honors by the American Association of Political Consultants (“AAPC”) for his work as senior strategist to Joni Ernst’s historic victory where she became the 51st Republican senator in the new Republican majority and the first woman ever to represent the state of Iowa in Congress – the same election cycle he helped Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin earn her own historic re-election.

David has also worked with advocacy organizations, trade associations, state parties, and a major collegiate athletic department to advance their strategic and communications goals.

He is a six-year veteran of the United States Marine Corps, and in 2004 took a sabbatical from his legal career to join Texas’ 1st Battalion, 23rd Marines for duty in Al Anbar, Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

David is a graduate of the University of Houston Law Center and was previously a practicing commercial litigator in Texas. Today, he resides in Houston, Texas with his wife, Kirsten, and two young children.

Aaron Baker

Aaron Baker’s top skill is knowing real people that have an interest in tough issues.

Aaron serves as Vice President at Axiom Strategies and manages Clout Public Affairs. He’s Axiom’s go-to-guy when it comes to helping corporations deal with their neighbors, customers and competitors.

If companies have a problem, Aaron can help.

Today, Aaron leads Clout’s efforts with a large portfolio of corporate clients in several states. This includes influencing both public policy and opinion through competition research for corporate clients, campaign and organization management, earned media, grasstops outreach and lobbying.
Aaron has worked on campaigns and policies since 2002. He came to Axiom from the office of United States Congressman Sam Graves (MO-06) and previously worked in the Missouri Senate.

Aaron’s experience in the political landscape includes serving as grassroots director and a spokesperson for statewide campaigns for governor, United States Senate and ballot initiatives. His legislative background includes work in healthcare, transportation, utilities, transportation and education reform. In 2016, Aaron was named one of the top ten “game-changers” in Missouri’s campaigns.

A graduate of the University of Missouri, Aaron lives on a farm in Atlanta, Missouri with his wife and four children. The Bakers helped found a non-for-profit ministry in Aaron’s hometown and they are members of the Agriculture Leadership of Tomorrow (ALOT), Farm Bureau, the Missouri Cattlemen’s Association and serve as emergency foster parents.

Kristian Starner

Kristian began her career in politics in late 2008, gaining governmental consulting experience working with one of the top lobbying firms in her home state. Since this time, Kristian worked on a variety of issues for clients in the education, healthcare and agriculture sector.

Looking for a new challenge outside of political consulting, she took a position at Axiom Strategies to broaden her understanding of the campaign process where she cut her teeth on the successful campaign to elect Eric Schmitt as State Treasurer.  Additionally, Kristian helps run Clout Public Affairs and works on the hill with congressional clients to service their franked mail needs.

Kristian has been described as a high-energy and positive presence in the public affairs space, a trait no doubt carried over from her days as a cheerleader at Northwest Missouri State University. Go Bearcats!

Kristian has also lived in Australia where she worked for a multi-national creative advertising agency.  In her free time, Kristian enjoys travelling, being active, practicing yoga and spending time with her family and four nephews.

Maria Jeffrey

Maria Jeffrey joined Clout Public Affairs as Communications Director in 2017, and works with many of Axiom’s clients. She creates and executes strategic messaging strategies, generates and tracks media coverage, and makes sure clients’ communications objectives are met every step of the way.

Maria brings political and communications experience from the private sector, campaigns, and the Hill to her work at Clout and Axiom. Maria was the Political Director of the National Federation of Republican Women through the 2012 presidential election, where she coordinated campaign management schools and organized volunteers. During the 2014 midterm elections she served as the Communications Director for a congressional campaign, and then went on to be the Communications Director for Congressman Walter Jones. Before joining the Axiom family, Maria was a writer for Conservative Review, where she focused on covering Congress, campaigns, and under-reported stories. Maria’s communications experience, dedication, and love of writing serve clients well.

Maria is a Northern Virginia native who loves exploring wineries, hiking trails, and small towns in Virginia. She graduated from Xavier University with a B.A. in Classical Languages, and still occasionally cracks the spine of a Latin book in her spare time.