Mike Klein, President and CEO

A distinguished strategic leader with a keen sense of identifying and mitigating risks and who has helped the organizations and leaders he has served thrive, Mike founded Urban Strategies to be a full-service government affairs and strategic services firm. Designed to be nimble, the Urban team is deep in its understanding of the nexus between government, business, and politics. Mike proudly ensures the firm’s ability to provide fundamental situational awareness to its clients with services needed to develop all the necessary strategies, tactics, and partnerships to navigate the regulatory and political spheres to ensure the client’s goals are accomplished.

Mike’s career spans more than thirty years in the public, private, and non-profit sectors. A problem solver and advocate by nature, Mike served in variety of trusted staff positions for a prestigious list of New York elected officials, including Congressman Charles Rangel, Councilman Stan Michels, and Governor Mario Cuomo, both in his Administration as Governor and as a personal aide for more than a decade following his tenure as Governor. Mike also served as Deputy County Executive in Nassau County for Tom Suozzi, Deputy Director of the NY/NJ Office of Drug Control Policy under President Clinton’s Drug Czar and as a Chief in the City of New York Parks & Recreation Department. He also worked for the Parks Council, where he designed and ran the Parks 2001 campaign, one of the largest advocacy efforts in NYC history, comprised of more than 1,000 business and community groups.

After his notable roles in public life, Mike was a Principal at Dentons US LLP, a global law firm with offices in 60 Countries, where he led the Public Policy team in the NY office. In this role, Mike worked on local, regional, and national issues, and provided government affairs counsel to leaders in the fields of infrastructure, aviation, community development, real estate, energy, transportation, telecommunications, technology, parks/open space, and public safety.

As recognition for his service, Mike has received numerous awards. Notably, he was named to the Power 100 New York City list by City & State Magazine in 2015 and 2016. In 2015, he was named to City & State’s Responsible 100 list in recognition of his work in the community and on the Boards he serves, which include the NYC League of Conservation Voters, Governors Island Alliance, Hunter College Library Foundation, Wellness in the Schools, and NY Midnight Basketball.

Mike attended Canisius College in Buffalo and is a graduate of Hunter College in New York City. Additionally, he finished top of his class from the New York City Leadership Institute. A proud, lifelong New Yorker, basketball player, skier, and enthusiastic traveler, Mike resides on Manhattan’s Upper West Side with his wife. Together, they have three adult children and a rescue dog named Coco.

Francesca Iodice, Research and Policy Analyst

Francesca Iodice is a public affairs practitioner serving client needs as a Research & Policy Analyst for Urban Strategies, LLC. In this capacity, she facilitates stakeholder engagement, coalition building, and partnership development. Additionally, she manages all facets of data and policy analysis to advance strategic data-driven narratives and propel complex projects forward.

Francesca's exceptional grasp of New York's political machinery comes from serving in the New York State Senate, under Senator Alessandra Biaggi, and in the New York City Council, under Council Member Helen Rosenthal. Her legislative experience made her a fierce advocate and tremendous translator of the complex regulatory and policy matters impacting organizations and businesses in New York. Complementing her work for New York's public servants, Francesca has an extensive background in the field of nonprofits, having worked for Lawyer's Alliance NY and the Center for Nonprofit Strategy and Management. Her experience in government and nonprofit organizations helped shape her into the data-driven storyteller and strategic planner she is today.

Francesca graduated Magna Cum Laude from Baruch College's Marxe School of Public and International Affairs, receiving a Bachelor's degree in Public Affairs with a concentration in Law and Policy. Later she pursued a graduate certificate in Urban Affairs from the University of Amsterdam, where she concentrated in urban planning, governance, and property development. As a fourth-generation New Yorker and city resident, Francesca resides on the Upper East Side with her two young children and husband.

Sam Friedman, Innovation & Strategic Development

Coming from a family of small business owners, innovation and business growth projects is part of what Sam loves to do and where he excels professionally. With an industry agnostic mindset focused on innovation, Sam has experience with technology start ups, fintech, management consulting, manufacturing and consumer packaged goods, distribution, retail, real estate and international trade. Sam is enthusiastic about fostering creative collaboration and achieving long term outcomes for businesses and non-profits working in both public and private sectors.

Sam studied entrepreneurship at SUNY Albany. He is an active alum in the Goldman Sachs 10KSB community. Along with his work in Urban Strategies LLC as an Innovation and Strategic Development Specialist, he also works with clients independently through his consulting platform FullValuePotential.com. Sam's expertise is in identifying opportunities, assessing them, and developing practical, step-by-step strategies to bring ideas to life. His careful and thorough approach allows him to create sustainable growth-oriented plans.

Sam, with his fifteen years of experience in consulting and business development, is a trusted advisor to his clients. His approach involves enhancing situational awareness through frequent creative and collaborative work sessions. Sam guides his clients through any challenges and opportunities that arise, ensuring the best possible outcomes. He sets himself apart by maintaining relationships with a vast network of subject matter experts in various fields. Sam is a skilled and flexible leader who works with technical, political, and business leaders to drive conversations and effect transformations.

Although Sam is involved in various professional pursuits, his favorite role is being a devoted father. When he's not engaged in business development or management-related work, he enjoys connecting with other driven individuals, traveling, exercising, listening to music, cooking, dining out and serving ice cream at his parlor in Rockaway Beach. He also loves spending time outdoors with loved ones, playing sports like tennis and golf, and finds joy in taking bike, motorcycle and car rides.


Team of Partners

Our clients have access to an experienced team of experts and strategic partners that amplify our firm's ability to deliver value for them.

Our alliance with these firms and individuals acts as a force multiplier for our clients in critical issue areas across the Tri-State Area.