Chris Bender

Chris Bender
Adjunct Professor

Employer: Adfero

Title: Vice President

Social Media Handles: @cseanbender and LinkedIn

Chris Bender is Vice President at Adfero, one of Washington’s leading strategic communications and public affairs firms, working with a driven, talented team to build and execute client campaigns that reach audiences and move needles. His team designs and executes policy, regulatory and public relations strategies to grow, maintain or expand markets critical to Adfero’s customers. He sees public affairs as an essential business function, shaping the political and policy landscapes and guiding public perception. His approach includes quantifying public affairs work in financial terms, linking advocacy and communications strategies to organizational targets.

Chris' 15-year career spans the public, private and non-profit sectors and includes leadership roles in strategic communication, policy and advocacy. Before joining Adfero, he led North American public affairs for the global biotech company Novozymes, focusing on its energy, agriculture and household care portfolios. He helped craft the company’s external narrative, turning complex science into compelling stories, and expanding connections with key third-party stakeholders from NGOs to academic institutions. Chris previously served as press secretary and speechwriter for United States Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ). He also served as communications director for Washington, DC Deputy Mayor Eric Price and speechwriter for Washington, DC Mayor Anthony Williams.

Chris serves on the Executive Committee for the Public Affairs Council and is a member of the National Press Club. He is past chair of the Biotechnology Industry Organization’s communications committee, as well as past vice chair of the American Cleaning Institute’s communications committee.

When not at Adfero, you can find him running, cooking meat on his smoker, watching UCLA basketball or visiting the Old Town Alexandria Farmer’s Market. As a San Diego native, he’s not sure how he feels about the Chargers now that they’ve moved to Los Angeles.


M.P.S., The George Washington University, The Graduate School of Political Management

B.A., University of California, Los Angeles

Classes Taught

Corporate Public Affairs
Issues Management