Ward Baker

Founder and President

Ward Baker is the founder and president of Baker Group Strategies.

Most recently, Ward served as senior advisor to the first female Senator-elect Marsha Blackburn in her bid for the U.S. Senate in Tennessee; delivering an 11-point victory and winning 92 of Tennessee 95 counties.

Prior to founding Baker Group, Baker was executive director of the NRSC, the National Republican Senatorial Committee. As executive director, he was credited with helping Republicans hold the Senate Majority with 52 seats. Senator Corker described Ward’s 2016 campaign at the NRSC as “nothing short of remarkable.” Ward was able to keep the majority in a difficult political environment by investing more in digital and research than ever before.

Baker played an indispensable role in winning this majority in 2014 — he was the NRSC’s political director. Republicans gained nine Senate seats under his leadership, the largest wave by either party since 1980. During his tenure as political director, Baker organized what Senate Majority Leader McConnell has called one of the best recruiting classes of his lifetime. Baker also controlled a $100 million political budget and revitalized the NRSC’s $40 million independent expenditure unit. Ward was named the Republican MVP by the American Association of Political Consultants.

Before the NRSC, Ward served as an advisor to over twenty members of Congress and many statewide elected officials. Baker has a wealth of experience running Victory programs and independent expenditure campaigns. During the 2012 presidential election cycle, he was a senior advisor to the Romney campaign. Ward was their official liaison to the Republican National Committee, and he oversaw a $100 million budget. Prior to the 2012 cycle, Baker was a member of Majority Strategies. He has also served as a senior political advisor to Governor Rick Scott’s 2010 campaign, the Republican State Legislative Committee, the Bush-Cheney ’04 campaign in Florida, and Haley Barbour’s successful 2003 gubernatorial campaign in Mississippi. Ward also managed Congresswoman Marsha Blackburn’s 2002 campaign in Tennessee. Ward and his wife Jennifer have one daughter, Lillian.

Chelsea Hawker

Chief Operating Officer

Prior to joining Baker Group Strategies in 2017, Chelsea most recently served as the Deputy Director of the Independent Expenditure Unit of the National Republican Senatorial Committee (NRSC) in 2016. In that role, Chelsea implemented and managed $40 million independent expenditure budget to help ensure a continued Republican majority in the U.S. Senate.

Before moving to the IE Unit, Chelsea served as Chief Operating Officer of the NRSC from 2015 – 2016 overseeing committee operations and projects. Chelsea joined the NRSC in 2013 as Deputy Political Director for the 2014 election cycle where she helped achieve the Republican majority in the U.S. Senate for the first time since 2006.

During the 2012 cycle, Chelsea served as Deputy to the Romney For President Liaison and Senior Advisor, Ward Baker, at the Republican National Committee – managing the $100 million paid voter contact effort across 12 battleground states.

Chelsea has also worked for Majority Strategies, a Republican direct mail firm, and as a Regional Field Director for North Carolina Victory during the 2008 Presidential election.

Peter Lifson

Director of Data & Analytics

Peter Lifson joined Baker Group Strategies in January 2017. Prior to Baker Group Strategies, Peter worked at the NRSC as a Regional Finance Coordinator, where he was part of the team that helped Republicans hold the Senate Majority with 52 seats.

During the 2014 election cycle, Peter worked at Public Opinion Strategies, a national political and public affairs research firm, where he helped provide analysis on research projects for some of the most competitive political campaigns and independent expenditure efforts in the country.

During college, Peter was actively involved in numerous statewide and local campaigns in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Peter is a graduate of the College of William and Mary. Peter currently lives in Arlington, VA and grew up in Huntington, NY.