Marc A. Wilson is a Partner of Top Shelf Lobby, LLC that offers strategic government relations and direct lobbying at the local, state, and federal government levels.

Prior to joining Top Shelf, Mr. Wilson was the Managing Partner of Commonwealth Capitol Group, LLC. While lobbying the Kentucky General Assembly since 2002, he has tackled some of the toughest issues in Kentucky. He has worked on issues ranging from expanded gaming to tax incremental financing and smoking bans to cigarette taxes, and he has helped secure incentives and earmarks for some of Kentucky’s most popular projects. Mr. Wilson’s work took him to five state capitols around the country, including Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Florida, and Nevada. His client list includes companies on the Fortune 500, national and state trade associations, health care facilities, and developers.

A Northern Kentucky native, Mr. Wilson is a graduate and past president of the Alumni Board of Directors of Asbury University in Wilmore, Kentucky. He has a bachelor’s degree in Broadcast Communications with an emphasis in Management.

Mr. Wilson’s community involvement has included acting as a member of the boards of the Kentucky Symphony Orchestra, the Covington Scottish Rite Foundation, Kids Voting Northern Kentucky, The Conservative Forum and The Commonwealth PAC. An active member of the Kentucky Chamber of Commerce, he serves on the Political Involvement Committee and Business Advocacy Committee. He has twice served as Representative Sal Santoro’s appointee to the Northern Kentucky Consensus Committee to advocate for appropriation-based Northern Kentucky projects.

Mr. Wilson is a founding member of the Young Political Leaders of Kentucky and has been a guest lecturer at the University of Kentucky College of Nursing, Chase College of Law at Northern Kentucky University and Asbury University. He is often quoted in regional and national periodicals, commenting on Kentucky Politics and conducting interviews with local and state radio and television news outlets.

Leigh Ann Thacker, a Kentucky native, specializes in lobbying executive and legislative branches of Kentucky government. Leigh Ann’s ability to help cultivate successful client relationships with government officials has resulted in helping clients succeed on a wide range of issues.

Prior to her work lobbying, Leigh Ann served as General Counsel to the Transition Team for the Cabinet for Health Services. Leigh Ann is also a former law clerk for the Kentucky Supreme Court.

Leigh Ann received a B.A. from Western Kentucky University and a law degree from the University of Louisville School of Law. Leigh Ann is a member of several professional organizations including the Kentucky Bar Association, Louisville Bar Association, Young Political Leaders of Kentucky, and the Young Professionals Association of Louisville.

Leigh Ann is experienced at research that provides the hard facts to allow clients to make tough, quick decisions. Through Leigh Ann’s involvement with many political activities and campaigns, she is adept at helping effect change.

Kevin Payton, a native of Frankfort, has spent his entire career as a government relations professional representing interests both in the private sector and within the executive branch of Kentucky government. Kevin’s wide range of legislative and executive branch lobbying experience, particularly in the health care field, has prepared him to affect positive change from a corporate environment to grassroots human service advocacy.

After eight years as a partner in Southern Strategy Group, Kevin became a founding member of Top Shelf Lobby in 2014.  Prior to joining Southern Strategy Group, Kevin served as the Legislative Director for the Cabinet for Health and Family Services. Kevin’s abilities to work within Kentucky’s diverse political climate contributed to many successful and progressive health initiatives achieved by the Cabinet.

In the private sector, Kevin lobbied directly for Children’s Alliance and the Kentucky Association of Regional Programs, both human service provider associations, representing membership on all issues related to Kentucky government. In addition, Kevin represented ResCare, one of Kentucky’s largest publicly traded companies and the nation’s largest provider of services to people with developmental disabilities, as its Director of Government Relations.

Kevin received a B.A. in Political Science from Kentucky State University and a Master’s of Public Administration with an emphasis in Public Policy Analysis from the University of Louisville.  He is currently a volunteer member of the Board of Directors of Prevent Child Abuse KY.

Danny Slaton

Chief of Staff

Contrary to most people’s attitudes towards sausage and lawmaking, Danny Slaton has a deep appreciation for the process of making both. Danny has been in government relations since 2004, after a culinary arts career in fine French cooking. He represents clients before both the Executive and Legislative branches of the Commonwealth. His love of public policy makes him an asset to Top Shelf’s clients, bringing in-depth analysis and attention to detail to our advocacy work.

At Top Shelf Lobby, Danny focuses on the policy-side of our government relations work– primarily in the worlds of health care, media law and the First Amendment, as well as education. He also has an intimate knowledge of Kentucky’s tax policies, both at the state and local levels.

Danny is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts Boston. He lives in Louisville with his wife Elizabeth, his son Henry and daughter Lila. Danny is the Vice President of the Board of Trustees of Down Syndrome of Louisville, as well as Secretary of the State Advisory Panel for Exceptional Children.

Makenzie Williams, a Senior Associate, joined the Top Shelf Lobby team in 2021 after serving for six years as the Finance Director for the Republican Party of Kentucky. A native of Kentucky, Williams graduated from the University of Kentucky with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. She got her start in politics working on the ground level with Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell’s 2014 re-election campaign. Following her time on the campaign, Williams joined Leader McConnell’s Lexington field office, eventually ascending to leadership within the Republican Party of Kentucky. As the GOP enjoyed significant electoral success, Williams seized the opportunity to shift the political landscape of the commonwealth, helping to raise over $30 million for Republican campaigns in her position—an historical achievement unmatched in the organization’s history.

Williams exhibits an exceptional ability to navigate the political process, applying her knowledge of various legislative districts and the issues that matter to elected leaders. This talent has earned her the respect and admiration of leaders in both the House and Senate Republican supermajorities. In her role as a lobbyist, she manages issues for Top Shelf Lobby clients in fields such as Sports Betting, Renewable Energy, Alcohol, and Healthcare. With her combined experience, network of contacts, understanding of the issues, and unwavering dedication to success, Williams is a vital member of the Top Shelf Lobby team.