Meet Our Team.

Shawn Foster

President & CEO

Shawn Foster brought a wealth of political and government experience to Sunrise Consulting Group when he started it 20 years ago. Having worked inside the state and federal echelons of government for over 20 years, Shawn has built unique relationships and gained powerful knowledge to achieve successes for his clients.

Shawn began his political and government career in Sarasota and Manatee Counties. Shawn was the student body President and graduated from USF-Sarasota. Shawn started in the legislative process working for a State Representative in Sarasota County.

Shawn served as Congressman Gus Bilirakis’ District Director for six years. This experience allowed Shawn to become well acquainted with not only the numerous issues being debated in Washington, but the opportunity to become engrained in the issues facing the State of Florida.

Prior to working for Congressman Bilirakis, Shawn served as a Senior Legislative Aide for State Senator Mike Fasano. In addition to his work inside government, Shawn has an astute political background as he has managed and consulted on numerous political campaigns over the past 20 years.

Shawn started lobbying in 2006 and was previously the Managing Partner for the Tampa Bay office for the Southern Strategy Group. He is well versed in the political efforts of both the private and public sectors.

Shawn’s Community Service includes:

  • United Way of Pasco County – Past Chairman
  • United Way of Florida – Board of Governors
  • Community Service Council of West Pasco – Past President
  • Feeding Pasco’s Elderly – Founding Board Member
  • Lighthouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired
  • Association of Florida Colleges


Gene McGee


Gene has over 30 years of experience working for and with local and state government in Florida.

Before providing consulting services to a broad array of large corporate stakeholders for over 20 years, Gene served as Legislative Affairs Director for the Florida Department of State where he successfully secured over $50 million in state funding annually for Cultural and Historic Preservation projects. He worked to pass the most sweeping elections reform legislation in a decade, served on the State Council for Competitive Government, and passed legislation reducing the corporate filling fees by 25%.  While at the Department of State, Gene was appointed Director of International Relations and led the state’s efforts in areas such as protocol, sister-city and sister state activities, and consular corps interaction.  Gene was instrumental in the legislation that created Enterprise Florida and has served as an appointed Board Member of: Enterprise Florida, the Partnership on International Trade and Economic Development of Enterprise Florida, and the Florida Export Finance Corporation.

In additional to his agency work, Gene worked in the Florida Legislature as a Staff Director in the House Republican Office and was instrumental in passing legislation aimed at forcing competition in the delivery of state services including creation of the State Council on Competitive Government.  He was also a leader in legislation creating the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice.  Gene has extensive knowledge of mental health, substance abuse and child welfare policy issues, and led the Transition Team for the Department of Children and Families by Governor Charlie Crist in 2006.

Mr. McGee also served as Chief Deputy Clerk of Courts in Citrus County where he supervised activities in courts and records.  While there, Mr. McGee oversaw a massive technology modernization campaign that converted the office to open systems computer architecture and pioneered electronic public access to records in the county.

Active in politics for over 30 years, Mr. McGee served as Field Director for Florida House Campaigns in 1992 and 1994 and Director of State Senate Campaigns for the Florida Republican Party during the 2002 cycle


Andrew Kalel

Government Affairs Consultant

Andrew brings a unique and deep understanding of the intricacies of local and state government to Sunrise Consulting. Andrew’s family has been a part of Florida’s legislative and regulatory process for many years and has a firm grasp on the importance of building lasting relationships.  He also is a critical thinker, thoughtfully crafting strategy to engage decision makers in a variety of subjects.

Andrew started his career in and around state government as an undergraduate in college, holding positions with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, in the Secretary’s office of the Florida Lottery, and as a court-appointed auditor for the Justice Administrative Commission. In these roles, he was exposed to executive decision makers and the workflow process of large state agencies with multi-million-dollar budgets impacting every day Floridians.  He interned for the Florida Sheriffs Association, the House of Representatives, and with Security First Insurance Company, one of Florida’s top five, Florida-based property insurance companies.

After college, Andrew leveraged his knowledge of state government to work in the private sector in a project management position under Jason Gonzalez at Shutts & Bowen. There he supported large government affairs projects for the firm by liaising with the Executive Office of the Governor, as well as assisting with tracking legislation and gathering and analyzing political research.

Over his career Andrew obtained both his insurance adjuster, and broker license. He has worked as a catastrophe adjuster after Hurricane Matthew, and as a daily claims adjuster. Andrew continues to stay abreast of insurance public policy, and emerging industry trends.

Before joining Sunrise Consulting Group, Andrew was the joint Legislative Affairs Director for the Offices of Criminal Conflict and Civil Regional Counsel (Offices). Andrew was successful in building these agencies’ first legislative program and devised a strategy to increase awareness of the agencies’ mission, purpose, and policy and budgetary needs. During his tenure, the offices saw an over a 30% increase in funding and passed several pieces of legislation that were critical to agency operations and the clients the offices serve.