File photo: Denise Civiletti

Attorney and former U.S. Rep. Lee Zeldin has formed a strategy, public relations and crisis management firm. The company, called Zeldin Strategies, will “help individual and corporate clients expand, prosper, and maximize their full potential,” Zeldin said in a press release issued by the company last night.

Zeldin is the company’s chief executive officer, according to the announcement.

The new company was incorporated in New York on Jan. 5, New York online business database records show. There is currently no record of the firm’s registration as a lobbyist on file with the New York State Commission on Ethics and Lobbying in Government or with the clerks of the U.S. House or Senate, according to online records.

The former four-term congressman is looking to leverage not only his experience in Washington, D.C., but also his performance in his 2022 campaign for New York governor, a race he lost to incumbent Democrat Kathy Hochul 53-47%.

Zeldin prevailed in 49 of the state’s 62 counties — including Nassau and Suffolk — but Hochul’s dominance in traditionally Democratic New York City and population centers in Westchester, Albany and Erie counties, with wins in five other upstate counties, put the governor over the top by 377,834 votes, according to final results published by the New York State Board of Elections.

According to the statement issued last night by Zeldin strategies, ”Zeldin sent shockwaves across the nation after nearly winning the New York Gubernatorial campaign as a Republican. Laser focused on issues important to New Yorkers, ranging from securing our streets and ending cashless bail, to supporting school choice and parental rights in education, and combating hate crimes and antisemitism, Congressman Zeldin received more votes than any Republican statewide since Nelson Rockefeller 52 years earlier. His efforts led to down ballot success in key Congressional races that flipped the majority in the U.S. House of Representatives from Democrat to Republican.”

Earlier this month, Zeldin announced the launch of a new political action committee, Leadership America Needs PAC. Zeldin serves as chairman of the PAC, acceding to his March 1 announcement.

The new PAC, which filed its original statement of organization with the Federal Elections Commission on Jan. 19, will “focus on engaging new Republican voters, supporting candidates seeking public office from, and helping candidates message to, the Jewish, Asian, Hispanic, African American, and other minority communities” as well as “engaging Millennials and Gen Zs as first time Republican voters in 2024.”

The PAC filed an amended statement of organization March 16, reporting a new office address in East Setauket and a web address, leadershipamericaneeds.com.

FEC online records do not yet have any reports of receipts or expenditures by the Leadership America Needs PAC. The PAC is not a registered committee with the New York State Board of Elections as of this date.

Zeldin, 43, of Shirley, was a state senator when he made a second run for New York’s First Congressional District seat in 2014 — he lost a Republican primary election to Randy Altschuler in 2010. After winning the party committee’s designation, he fought off a primary challenge from George Demos and went on to defeat incumbent Democrat Tim Bishop of Southampton in the general election.

Zeldin chose not to run for a fifth term in Congress in 2022 and instead mounted a campaign to unseat Hochul, a lieutenant governor who was elevated to the state’s top office when longtime Gov. Andrew Cuomo resigned in disgrace in August 2021, amid a sexual harassment scandal.

Zeldin gained national recognition as an outspoken ally of former President Donald Trump and a frequent guest of Fox News hosts. He twice voted against articles of impeachment against the former president and was appointed by Trump to his defense team in the House of Representatives for his first impeachment trial in 2020.

His loyalty to the former president has not wavered. Hours after the mayhem in the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, when a violent mob of Trump supporters summoned to Washington by the outgoing president to protest the certification of the 2020 election results, stormed the building, forcing the evacuation of members of Congress and delaying the constitutional process, Zeldin voted against certifying the election results in Arizona and Pennsylvania. Trump endorsed Zeldin for governor last year and hosted a fundraiser for his campaign.

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Denise is a veteran local reporter, editor and attorney. Her work has been recognized with numerous journalism awards, including investigative reporting and writer of the year awards from the N.Y. Press Association. She was also honored in 2020 with a NY State Senate Woman of Distinction Award for her trailblazing work in local online news. She is a founder, owner and co-publisher of this website.Email Denise.