For more than 35 years, Peter J. Berlandi has been a sought-after consultant whose strategic business knowledge, political wisdom and extraordinary fundraising skills have been coveted by major candidates of both political parties, the nation’s Republican governors and an "A list" of America’s top corporations.
Throughout that time, Mr. Berlandi has been a pivotal figure straddling the crossroads where political, business and regulatory interests intersect. Mr. Berlandi’s expertise, in anticipating issues and advising clients on how to negotiate this increasingly adversarial public arena, is truly unique.
There are few consultants who can match Mr. Berlandi’s experience and accomplishments.From the political arena, where he was so successful that he engineered the largest victory margin for an incumbent governor since the 1800's, Mr. Berlandi helped statewide elected officials in Massachusetts navigate often stormy waters in their dealings with business leaders.
Peter Berlandi is a native of Hyde Park, and is a 1965 graduate of Boston College High School. In 1969, he received his bachelor of science degree in political science from Boston State College, which subsequently merged into the University of Massachusetts Boston.
Mr. Berlandi, who was raised in a family where politics was king, nonetheless began his career – and made his initial mark – in the business world. First, he worked for several national insurance companies in Boston.
In 1980, he entered the financial printing business. After five years in sales and management at two national firms, in 1985 he joined Chas. P. Young, the third largest such firm in the country. His first assignment was to open the company’s New England office, which he built into a multimillion dollar subsidiary within two years. In 1987, he became a division president for the firm.
It was during these years that Mr. Berlandi became an influential figure in Massachusetts politics. He was the chief fundraiser and a top political advisor to Attorney General Francis X. Bellotti for 12 years during the late 1970s and 1980s.
In 1988, Mr. Berlandi started his own company, Custom House Street Associates, a business and political consulting firm that represented many major companies.
Mr. Berlandi played his most pivotal role in the much-storied 1990 election for governor. He was chief fundraiser for Mr. Bellotti, a Democratic candidate. After Bellotti’s primary loss to Boston University President John Silber, Mr. Berlandi stunned the political world by bringing his legendary fundraising skills to the flagging campaign of William F. Weld, the long-shot Republican nominee for governor. In a state where just 12% of registered voters are Republican, Mr. Weld scored the century’s most stunning election upset. Mr. Weld credited his win to Mr. Berlandi’s acumen, and to the drove of influential Democrats who also supported Weld after Mr. Berlandi paved the way.
In 1994, Governor Weld was re-elected - with the highest winning percentage since the 1800s.
From 1998 through 2005, Mr. Berlandi was Managing Director of the Bingham Consulting Group, a multimillion dollar enterprise he created at Bingham McCutchen, an international law firm with over 850 lawyers. Under Mr. Berlandi’s leadership, Bingham Consulting became the guiding hand behind critically important decisions that many Fortune 100 companies made in their dealings with regulatory officials nationwide.
His political acumen has also made him a sage political commentator, on both CBS and PBS. He is a sought-after guest lecturer at several Boston universities. He was a political advisor to – and a major national fundraiser for - the Republican Governors Association. He has taught a course in political fundraising at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government, and is a frequent guest lecturer at Northeastern, UMass Boston and Suffolk University. He has been a trustee of the University of Massachusetts and the Judge Baker Center for Children.
Mr. Berlandi, who returned to his own consulting firm in 2005, resides in Plymnouth with his wife Jackie. That year, he also started a mentoring program for Boston College hockey players, an innovation that is increasingly being copied by athletic teams at other colleges.
In addition to his consulting and philanthropic work, Mr. Berlandi finds time to be an avid golfer. He is also a dedicated runner, piano player and a wine maker whose wines have won several awards.