Our Clients

Energy Vault
Lime Inc.
Open Gov
Rollo Motion Inc.
The Data Incubator
Code Smith
Swing Education
Sabio Enterprises
One Medical
App Academy
Echo 360
Café Learn
Edisun Microgrids
Sidecar Health

Where Innovation and Regulation Intersect

Who We Are

Balance Public Relations is a full service strategic consulting firm that supports private and public clients where innovation and regulation intersect. Balance Public Relations takes a holistic view of the legislative, regulatory, and political process to give its clients a competitive edge in achieving their business goals.

Our expertise often enables us to anticipate issues before they arise because of our vast network inside local, state, and federal government and in various administrative agencies. We frequently learn of issues and opportunities before they end up on the public policy agenda, and we are uniquely positioned to respond quickly to provide the best outcome for our clients.

What We Do

Strategic Planning and Advising

We aren't just a lobbying firm; we work with clients to elevate their strategic position. When lobbying is needed, we produce outcomes based on focused, targeted action with policy makers, regulators, and other decision makers.

Sometimes lobbying a single issue isn’t enough. Developing a strategic plan that anticipates threats and targets opportunities is the best course of action for the long run. BPR has developed unique strategic planning processes honed at the Harvard Business School and fine-tuned by over 60 years of combined practical political experience.

Government and Regulatory Affairs

While our firm helps clients craft and advance their policy goals, we also produce work-out solutions to regulatory problems after legislation is implemented. With deep ties to local, state, and federal regulatory staff and leaders, Balance Public Relations has built a foundation to create solutions on the regulatory level that provide immediate relief for complex constraints and dilemmas.

Public Relations

At Balance Public Relations, we thoroughly analyze an organization and its mission. We uncover and promote positive messages propelling an entity's brand. We examine all angles and help our clients advance the most compelling messages to achieve their goals in today's political landscape.

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Dean Florez

Founder, CEO

Dean Florez is the founder and CEO of Balance Public Relations, a full service strategic consulting firm that supports private and public clients where innovation and regulation intersect.

Dean is a seasoned government relations professional. With over three decades of experience and prior service in the California Legislature, he is an expert at guiding established and start up tech companies through regulatory processes and spaces. Over the years, he has demonstrated industry-specific expertise in risk management and policy strategy for marketplace startups in the sharing, gig, on-demand, peer-to-peer and collaborative economy. Dean is a trusted advisor to key internal and external stakeholder groups ranging from executive teams and management, to C-suite, board of directors, investors, and policymakers.​

Dean is also one of the most politically connected players in California advising Governors, U.S. Senators, and Mayors. He serves as a Member of the state’s climate change agency, the California Air Resources Board.​

Dean is the former California Senate Majority Leader and also served in the State Assembly. He is a graduate of Harvard Business School and started politics early as the past UCLA Student Body President. Dean also serves on various early venture funded corporate boards that are impact driven.

Bob Alvarez

Vice President

Bob Alvarez comes to Balance Public Relations after three decades of service in the California State Capitol. Most recently, he was the chief of staff to Sen. Cathleen Galgiani. Prior to that, Bob was a policy consultant for Sen. Richard Roth and he also directed the Senate Majority Caucus under then-Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg. Bob has a history of working with Dean Florez, where he was Dean's chief of staff for six years. In addition to his experience in the Senate, Bob also served as a Deputy Director in the Assembly Caucus for eight years under numerous Assembly Speakers. Bob started his career in Sacramento as a Senate Fellow where he staffed the Senate Committee on Energy and Public Utilities.

Bob is a skilled researcher having organized a wide variety of hearings on complex public policy issues with the aim of achieving specific policy goals. He has also run numerous highly competitive campaigns for assembly and senate candidates throughout California, including Dean's first run for assembly in 1998.

Bob holds a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of California, Los Angeles.

Bob Alvarez head shot
Elaine M. Howle head shot

Elaine M. Howle, CPA

Principal, Chief Strategist

With nearly four decades of public service, Elaine most recently served as the California State Auditor for 21 years from 2000-2021 and as president of the National Association of State Auditors, Comptrollers and Treasurers from 2020-2021.

As the State Auditor, Elaine tackled the state’s most intractable problems, and uncovered fraud, waste, mismanagement, and abuse of power, while providing numerous unbiased and nonpartisan analyses, and thousands of recommendations to improve efficiency and increase compliance.

A certified public accountant and certified government financial manager, Elaine began her career at the Office of the Auditor General in 1983 as a performance/policy evaluator. She later worked her way up to lead the office as State Auditor. Under her leadership, the California State Auditor’s Office grew from a steadfast financial and compliance watchdog into a robust government accountability and policy powerhouse that has been recognized both nationally and internationally.

Elaine is a recognized leader both locally and nationally, having received numerous leadership and impact awards during her tenure as State Auditor. Some of her recent recognitions include the Lifetime Distinguished Public Service Award from the Sacramento Chapter of the American Society for Public Administration, May 2022 and Outstanding CPA in Government Career-Contribution from the Association of Certified Public Accountants, August 2022.

Elaine earned an MBA from California State University, Sacramento and a bachelor's degree from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

Fran Florez

Chief Operating & Financial Officer

Fran Florez is a dedicated community servant whose passion and commitment have inspired countless others. Fran's professional journey includes over three decades of service at Bank of America, where she honed her financial skills and capabilities, followed by roles at PG&E and Mission Bank. Her adeptness in financial matters has not only benefited her employers but also translated into significant contributions to her community. Her political endeavors, including her tenure on the Shafter City Council and as Mayor, as well as her leadership roles on the California High-Speed Rail Authority, reflect her commitment to public service. Fran's 19 years of board service at the Bakersfield College Foundation has left a lasting impact on countless students.

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Liz Gonzales head shot

Liz Gonzales

Relationship Manager

With a wealth of experience exceeding 25 years in government and the public sector, Liz Gonzales is the firm's relationship manager. Liz worked with Dean while he served in the California State Assembly and in the California State Senate. Liz is a natural bridge-builder, skilled at forging partnerships, facilitating communication, and ensuring that the Balance team collaborates smoothly. Liz's grasp of the intricacies and her ability to identify key stakeholders within government processes allow her to navigate bureaucratic landscapes with unparalleled ease. With her years of experience supporting Dean in the legislature and in the private sector, Liz has emerged as the firm's linchpin for effective and efficient collaborations.

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