Leadership Institute

Robert Arnakis and Ryan Adams

Robert Arnakis

Robert Arnakis is the Senior Director of Domestic and International Programs for The Leadership Institute, the nation’s premier public policy training organization. Robert oversees divisions which provide political education and training to tens of thousands of activists, elected officials, and political staffers.

Robert's 15 years of grassroots organizing, campaign, fundraising, and communications experience has established him as one the country's top political trainers.  His background includes serving as campaign staff on presidential, congressional, municipal, and initiative-focused campaigns.

In addition to Mr. Arnakis’ domestic work, he is frequently asked to aid international delegations. His body of work includes training NGO's, government officials and political party leadership from over three dozen countries including: Great Britain, Canada, Iraq, China, India, Cambodia, Azerbaijan, Mongolia, Serbia, Nigeria, Bolivia, Nicaragua, and Peru. Most recently Robert worked with party leaders in East Timor, the world's youngest democratic country.

Raised in Lake Tahoe, CA, Robert attended Biola University where he majored in sociology and political science. He enjoys traveling, the San Diego Padres and University of North Carolina basketball. Robert is married to Adrian Arnakis and they in Springfield, Virginia with their miniature dachshund, Victor Arnakis. 

Ryan Adams

Ryan Adams currently serves as Governmental Relations Director for the Alabama State Personnel Department. In this capacity Adams is responsible for shepherding legislation through both chambers of the Alabama Legislature to benefit the 30,000+ state employees of Alabama.

During the 2016 Primary election in Alabama, Adams took a leave of absence for SPD to serve as Political Director for Senior Alabama Senator Richard Shelby. In an ever worsening climate for incumbents, Adams assembled a political team that routinely shattered records in terms of grassroots operations.  In under eight weeks Team Shelby made over 250K voter contacts. On Election Day, Adams’ team pushed Richard Shelby to virtual reelection with a vote share of 65% in a 5-way race.

Formerly, Adams served as Executive Director of Alabama 2014 PAC. This political action committee helped to successfully fended off the Alabama Education Association effort to oust the fiscal conservative leadership in the state legislature.

Previously, Adams was a Grassroots Training coordinator with the Leadership Institute in Arlington, VA. During his time at LI, he traveled the country and trained thousands of conservatives in the art of grassroots campaigning.

Before joining the team at the Leadership Institute, Adams served at the Deputy Political Director during the 2010 election cycle, he recruited and supervised a regional field staff throughout northern Alabama, and assisted in planning and implementing the party's 2010 Ballot Security Initiative, the largest undertaking of its kind by any political party in the state.

Prior to the 2010 election cycle, Adams served as a Victory Field Representative where he was embedded with a congressional campaign and oversaw the implementation of its grassroots strategy. After the 2008 election, Adams served as the grassroots coordinator for several highly contested state legislative races. Adams is native of Brookhaven, Mississippi. He attended Mississippi State University where he received both his Bachelors and Masters degrees in Political Science. He is an avid fan of Southeastern Conference football, the Mississippi State Bulldogs (Hail State!), and the Alabama Crimson Tide (Roll Tide!). Adams is married to the former Rachel Bunning and they reside in Pike Road, Alabama with their English Bulldog, Biscuit.


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