Mercury is expanding its team with three senior additions.
Al Barias, Randy Minniear and LaVar Young will be based in the bipartisan public strategy firm’s Westfield office, Mercury said Wednesday.
“Bringing this team into our operation is critical to our growth in New Jersey and beyond,” partner Mo Butler said in a prepared statement. “Each brings an expansive knowledge from both a local and a state government perspective, which will help our clients in the fields of health care, education and beyond.”
Barlas comes on board with 15 years of government experience, having served as chief of staff to state Sen. Kevin O’Toole and, before that, as legislative director for then-Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon, the firm said. Additional posts include as chief of state for state Sen.-Elect Kristin Corrado, chairman of the Essex County Republican Committee, and campaign manager for several North Jersey legislative and county elections.
Coming from the health care sector, Minnear was most recently executive vice president of external affairs for CarePoint Health, where Mercury said he was responsible for managing day-to-day operations for the health care system. Before that, Minnear spent more than 10 years as senior vice president of government relations and policy for the New Jersey Hospital Association.
With nearly 20 years spent advising local governments, public agencies, nonprofits and political campaigns, Young comes to the firm from serving as director of the Office of Civic and Social Engagement for Gov. Phil Murphy’s New Jersey Department of Education, Mercury said. He was also the New Jersey state director for the Black Alliance for Education Options.
In 2020, Mercury has expanded its team with such notable additions as former U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer of California, former U.S. Rep. Jeff Miller of Florida and Andrea Mead, former communications advisor for President Barack Obama and Pennsylvania Govs. Tom Wolf and Ed Rendell.