Ellen's BioEllen Valentino joined Cornerstone’s Maryland team as a senior consultant in December 2019. She brings to Cornerstone more than 30 years of lobbying expertise in Maryland, Delaware and the District of Columbia. Ellen represents diverse business interests from small businesses to the energy sector to beverage companies. She focuses her work on protecting client interests through practical policy change, coalition-building, issue positioning and political strategy.
Prior to joining Cornerstone, Ellen founded and operated her own legislative and association management consulting firm, Valentino-Benitez & Associates (VBA, Inc.), for more than 28 years. As president of the firm, Ellen advocated for clients and built trusted relationships and coalitions to represent their interests in matters before the District of Columbia City Council, the Maryland and Delaware legislatures, and local governments.
In addition to representing various clients, Ellen currently serves as the executive vice president for the Maryland-Delaware-District of Columbia Beverage Association and the Mid-Atlantic Petroleum Distributors Association.
Ellen began her professional career as an executive in grassroots lobbying management with the Greater Washington/Maryland Service Station and the Automotive Repair Association. In 1991, she established her own legislative and association management consulting firm.
A life-long Maryland resident, Ellen is a graduate of Catholic University. She is married to Robert Benitez and they have two daughters.