Heidi L. Hertz

Principal, Cozen O'Connor Public Strategies


(804) 762-6920

(804) 762-6950

Recent Publication:

Virginia Viewpoint - May 17, 2024

As the saying goes, “April showers bring May flowers.” In Virginia, they also brought a new budget.

Heidi brings over 15 years of experience in Virginia state government working across multiple agencies and most recently serving as the deputy secretary of Agriculture and Forestry in the Office of Governor Ralph S. Northam.

Prior to joining Cozen O’Connor Public Strategies, Heidi worked to advance policy and budget priorities supporting Virginia’s first and third largest industries, agriculture and forestry. Heidi provided strategic direction for rural economic development, farmland and forestland retention, and ensuring that all Virginians have access to safe, healthy foods. Previous roles with the Office of the First Lady Dorothy McAuliffe, the Virginia Foundation for Healthy Youth, and Virginia Department of Health specifically focused on policies and laws impacting children, youth, and families at the state and federal level related to health, education, and access to services.

Heidi works with clients to provide insight on Virginia’s political processes and representing their interests before the Virginia General Assembly, the Virginia Governor’s Office, and numerous state agencies. She is skilled at developing advocacy strategies to activate grassroots coalitions and engage both the business community and the public sector.

Heidi has served on a variety of nonprofit boards including Shalom Farms in Richmond, Virginia and is active on the Virginia Tech College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Alumni Board. She holds a Bachelor of Science from Virginia Tech’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and a Master of Science from James Madison University. She is a native of Lunenburg County and a resident of the city of Richmond where she lives with her family.


Cozen O’Connor Makes Strategic Public Strategies Practice Addition with Hire of Former Virginia Deputy Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry Heidi Hertz

January 12, 2022

The former Virginia deputy secretary of agriculture joins as a principal and will assist with lobbying efforts, serve as a liaison between clients and key members of government, and analyze legislation at the local, state, and federal levels.


Virginia Viewpoint - May 17, 2024

May 17, 2024

As the saying goes, “April showers bring May flowers.” In Virginia, they also brought a new budget.

Virginia Viewpoint - April 19, 2024

April 19, 2024

In bipartisan fashion, Governor Youngkin and legislators have agreed on a fresh start to negotiate a new two-year budget.

Virginia Viewpoint - The Power of the Pen

April 05, 2024

With only a few days remaining to act on legislation that passed during the regular session, Governor Youngkin has issued a flurry of vetoes including several that stymie Democratic priorities from this session.

Virginia Viewpoint: A Curtain Call -- Or A Budget Brawl?

March 12, 2024

The General Assembly has officially adjourned sine die, marking the end of a whirlwind 60-day legislative session while leaving the door open for an extended skirmish over the budget.

Virginia Viewpoint: The Budget Battle Begins

February 23, 2024

This week, the House and Senate each voted on their changes to the Governor’s introduced budget – with some noticeable differences between the two chambers and omissions that wipe out most the Governor’s top tax priorities. It sets the stage for a potentially lengthy budget gridlock between the Democratic majorities in the General Assembly and Republican Governor Glenn Youngkin.

Virginia Viewpoint: The Race to Crossover

February 12, 2024

Like a two-minute drill that football fans may see heading toward halftime in the big game this weekend, the Virginia General Assembly is in a similar race against the clock – a deadline colloquially referred to as Crossover.

Virginia Viewpoint: A Whole New Ballgame

January 29, 2024

Barring a few exceptions where unanimous consent is granted for new bills, legislators in the General Assembly have officially finalized their legislative agendas for the 2024 session.

Virginia Viewpoint - January 12, 2024

January 12, 2024

The Virginia General Assembly gaveled the 2024 Legislative Session into order this week with no shortage of significant changes. The first day of session included a landmark moment in the legislature’s 405-year history when Del.

Virginia Viewpoint - December 20, 2023

December 20, 2023

Governor Glenn Youngkin presented his 2024 – 2026 biennium budget to the Virginia House Appropriations, House Finance and Senate Finance & Appropriations Committees on Wednesday, December 20.

Virginia Viewpoint: Virginia 2023 Election Results

November 08, 2023

Virginia Democrats sweep the General Assembly, now have majority in both chambers.

Industry Sectors


  • James Madison University, M.S., 2006
  • Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, B.S., 2004

Awards & Honors

Trailblazer of the Year Award, Greater Richmond Fit4Kids, 2018

Friend of the Family Nutrition Program, Virginia Cooperative Extension, 2017

Sown in as Commonwealth Council on Bridging the Nutritional Divide Councilmember, 2014

Young Dietitian of the Year Award, Virginia Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, 2013

Young Alumni Award, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, 2013

Virginia Tech State Health Commissioner Agency Star Award, 2009 and 2010


Co-board chair and board member, Shalom Farms, August 2015-Present

Virginia Tech College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Alumni Board, January 2015-Present

Development board member, Children’s Museum of Richmond, June 2014-Present

Board member, Program Committee Chair, Prevention Connections, June 2012-Present

Member, Weight Management Dietetic Practice Group, 2006-Present

Member, American Dietetic Association, 2003-Present