A results-oriented energy advocate, Samantha “Sam” McDonald joined Kanner & Associates in April 2022 as Vice President and took over the firm as President in December 2023. 

Prior to Kanner and Associates, Sam served for over three years as a Legislative Director the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association where she managed both the federal hydropower and natural resources portfolios on Capitol Hill.  She also served as the CEO-appointed Secretary of the National Preference Customer Committee and served on the Board of Directors for the National Endangered Species Reform Coalition as well as served as an advisor for NRECA’s Political Action Committee, ACRE.    

Sam also worked for over five years on both regulatory and legislative issues as the Government Relations Director at the Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA). During her time at IPAA, she helped facilitate several regulatory victories pertaining to the Endangered Species Act and grew the public relations campaign known as ESA Watch. Before that, she worked on Capitol Hill for six years for three separate congressmen, most recently as a legislative assistant to Rep. John Fleming, (R-LA) where she handled the Congressman’s legislative portfolios on energy, natural resources, and agriculture, among others.  She was also the Congressman’s point-person to the House Natural Resources Committee, and during his Chairmanship of the Subcommittee on Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans, and Insular Affairs.  


Sam holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Scranton and master’s degree in legislative affairs from George Washington University’s Graduate School of Political Management.