Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty has Washington and his home state buzzing over his decision to leave as head of the influential Financial Services Roundtable.

After five years, it appears that the Republican is headed back into politics and likely considering a run for a third term as governor. One big hint: He is scheduled to meet with big donors this month. …

• An author popular with Washingtonians, Joel C. Rosenberg, is coming out with a new thriller tied to current politics. “The Kremlin Conspiracy,” out March 6, features an American president so focused on Iran and North Korea that he is blindsided by a Russian czar plotting an attack on the Baltic states. Rosenberg said his fans include Vice President Mike Pence, CIA Director Mike Pompeo, former CIA Director Porter Goss, Sen. Marco Rubio, human rights activist Natan Sharansky, Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds, Fox News anchor Shannon Bream, and Jordan’s King Abdullah II.

Alma J. Powell, chairwoman of America’s Promise Alliance and the wife of former Secretary of State Colin Powell, is joining a growing group set to speak at the April 12 Reagan Institute Summit on Education. Others include Jeb Bush, Rep. Virginia Foxx, R-N.C., and former education secretaries John B. King Jr., Arne Duncan, and Sen. Lamar Alexander.

She is a former member of Pres. Barack Obama’s Board of Advisors on Historically Black Colleges and Universities who plans to share her insights as part of a session titled “Next Generation College.” The panel will explore questions on the purpose and future of postsecondary education in light of today’s unprecedented access to information and knowledge.

Alma Powell

“It’s an honor to welcome Mrs. Powell to our lineup of speakers at RISE,” said Frederick J. Ryan Jr., chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute. “She has dedicated much of her life to serving our nation’s youth, and we are looking forward to learning from her vast experience as a presidential advisor on higher education and leader of many outstanding youth-serving organizations.”

• Add a new morning newsletter from Sinclair political analyst and Trump campaign adviser Boris Epshteyn to your list.

Called “Breakfast with Boris,” it highlights three key Washington events of the day and “the bottom line.” It goes with his videos, “Bottom Line with Boris,” aired on Sinclair’s 173 TV stations in 81 markets.

“I am excited to be expanding the Bottom Line with Boris platform with a morning newsletter, Breakfast with Boris. Unlike other daily political rundowns, my goal for the newsletter is to highlight only the top priority items for the day based on the knowledge and information that I have access to," he told us.

"Both Bottom Line and Breakfast with Boris aim to connect with viewers and readers by breaking through the complexity surrounding Washington D.C. and delivering content in a direct and concise way," he added.

Epshteyn offers something pundits can't, a perspective from an insider who still has very strong ties to the president and his team. Consider, for example, his write up today on the staff controversy that has the media buzzing. Here's what is in his Breakfast with Boris newsletter Monday:

WH STAFFING: Extensive coverage of the resignation of former White House Staff Secretary Rob Porter continues. The questions being asked center on what did Chief of Staff John Kelly know and when did he know it. It is clear that President Trump was not aware of the allegations of domestic abuse against Porter until the news broke last week, with the staffer resigning shortly thereafter. President Trump had his representatives express his confidence in Chief of Staff Kelly during the major Sunday television shows.

Bottom Line: Keep in mind the widespread speculation over the last year that Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson were on their way out. Both continue in their jobs and do not appear to be going anywhere. I would caution against jumping to any negative conclusions about the job security of the Chief of Staff. ...

Paul Bedard, the Washington Examiner's "Washington Secrets" columnist, can be contacted at