Alex Gorsky (NR)
J&J's chief executive gets on the list by virtue of turning around the tidal wave of recalls the company was flooded with under predecessor Bill Weldon. Now the New Brunswick giant's McNeil subsidiary is making money selling off some of those brands, like Rolaids, to Sanofi.
Dale J. Florio (50)
Sources were lukewarm about lobbyists, and only Florio's name came up with any enthusiasm. The Princeton Public Affairs Group head remains well connected with the GOP and Christie, which is the name of the game right now.
Joseph N. DiVincenzo Jr. (30)
The county exec is "a practical pol who knows county government better than anyone." Christie's greatest ally in Essex County helped keep Cory Booker out of the governor's race, but "has he played footsies with Christie so publicly that when Dems regain the front office … will that be forgotten?"
David J. Satz (34)
The sentiment of sources was that Satz is the player in a challenged Atlantic City casino industry otherwise devoid of power. "In the shark-infested waters of the industry, he is universally disliked by competitors. He must be doing something right," says a source about the well-connected Caesars senior VP.
Anthony R. Coscia (57)
A better transit system is a must, post-Sandy, and this Amtrak board member can best make the case for bringing funds to New Jersey. The law firm leader is respected by both parties. "Coscia's grasp of issues, problem-solving reputation and disarming style is his entree to the White House, Statehouse and C-suites across the country," says one source.
Wayne Hasenbalg (65)
The "CEO of fun" is charged with improving the tourism climate at a time when Sandy has left many wondering if it can rebound. As though that weren't enough, there's the Super Bowl, the F1 races and Wrestlemania closing in. He'll get whatever help he needs to make sure those are successes.
Robert Marino (35)
As the state gears up for implementation of a health insurance exchange in 2014, whatever form it may take, Marino will have influence and a voice in the discussions. "They're going to be the driver," says one source of the state's largest health insurer.
Robert Hariri (NR)
The "colorful" CEO of Celgene Cellular Therapeutics is a "man in motion," whether pioneering the use of stem cells or flying fighter jets. A big supporter of Christie, the neurosurgeon and serial entrepreneur is "politically well liked." "He's the guy on the move," says a source. "The guy's the real deal."
Jeff Chiesa (14)
Sources call the attorney general "very strong, influential and highly regarded," but as one insider points out, "It wouldn't be a positive to have a lot of corruption in a year the governor's being re-elected," even if the governor made his name busting corruption as U.S. attorney. Maybe next year.
Jeff Brindle (NR)
Guidance from ELEC's executive director will be critical in the election year, because of ever-increasing pressure on executives to donate to campaigns, and the complicated pay-to-play rules that govern such involvement. A business owner who makes the wrong contribution "all of a sudden (is) shut out of state competition" for bids.