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Twenty-pound-notes.jpg This article is part of the Lobbying Portal, a sunlight project from Spinwatch.

Qorvis is 'one of Washington's best-known lobbying and public relations firms'.[1]


In March 2011 The Huffington Post reported that "in the last two months, more than a third of the partners at Qorvis have left the firm to start their own lobby shops, partly because of the firm's work on behalf of such clients as Yemen, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and the Central African nation of Equatorial Guinea, say former employees".[1]

Online Reputation Management

According to the Huffington Post:

One of the methods used by Qorvis and other firms is online reputation management -- through its 'Geo-Political Solutions' (GPS) division, the firm uses '"black arts" by creating fake blogs and websites that link back to positive content, "to make sure that no one online comes across the bad stuff," says [a] former insider. Other techniques include the use of social media, including Facebook, YouTube and Twitter.[1]

Highlighting Middle Eastern countries sovereign rights to manage dissent

In 2011 Qorvis helped frame the kingdom's crackdown on protests by highlighting statements made by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, in which she emphasized America's commitment to Bahrain and affirmed its "sovereign right" to invite security forces from other countries. Clinton's comment that the government is "on the wrong track," however, was omitted, notes the Sunlight Foundation's Paul Blumenthal.[1]

Promoting the Saudis' shared values post 9/11

Saudi Arabia entered into a $14 million a year contract with Qorvis shortly after 9/11 to clean up its image. Qorvis's PR blitz "helped reduce the number of anti-Saudi articles and speeches"... "which allowed the Bush administration to keep ties to the kingdom close", says Kevin McCauley, editor of O'Dwyer's Public Relations, the leading PR trade publication in the US.

Qorvis launched a TV campaign with ads on political talk shows featuring a procession of Saudi royals appearing alongside U.S. presidents, to highlight Riyadh as a close ally. Other TV spots, which ran in 14 American cities, touted the "shared values" of the United States and Saudi Arabia. The firm also shuttled Saudi officials on whirlwind tours of major media outlets, and broadcast ads promoting the 9/11 Commission finding that there was "no evidence that the Saudi government as an institution or senior Saudi officials individually funded [Al Qaeda]"—while omitting the report's conclusion that "Saudi Arabia has been a problematic ally in combating Islamic extremism." "[2]

In an article published on 7 January 2016, it was revealed Qorvis was one of the various Washington based PR firms helping the Saudi government to shore up its public image in the wake of the execution of Shiite cleric Sheik Nimr Baqr al-Nimr. This was according to the Foreign Agent Registration Act filings, in which Qorvis is listed as one the 'active foreign principles for Saudi Arabia', and which shows a retainer of $240,000 per month, the highest of any firm on the Kingdom's payroll.

The services it provided were as follows: 'Drafted and/or distributed news releases, weekly newsletters, fact sheets and/or speeches to promote Saudi Arabia, its commitment towards counterterrorism, peace in the Middle East, and other issues pertinent to the Kingdom.'

Qorvis also outsources $55,000 a month of this work to Targeted Victory LLC, a digital consulting firm. [3]





Senior Consultants

Managing Directors

Jennifer Baskerville | Carrie Blewitt | Lisa Bushey | Cassie Elliot | Jennifer Haber | Karen Hanretty | Michael Hillegass | W. John Moore | Stefan Nagey | Seth Thomas Pietras [4]



Defense/Government Contractors


Health care



Publications, Contact, Resources and Notes






  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Marcus Baram,Lobbyists Jump Ship In Wake Of Mideast Unrest, accessed 28 March 2011
  2. Putting Lipstick on a Dictator. 2007-05-07.  Mother Jones
  3. Eli Clifton, Washington's Multi-million dollar Saudi PR Machine, Rightweb.IRC, 7 January 2016, accessed 19 January 2016
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 People, Qorvis website, accessed 28 March 2011
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 Qorvis, Case Studies, accessed 30 March 2011