July 19, 2015

Cruz adds Slobodien to U.S. Senate Office as Communications Director, Watson as Media Booker

Rachael SlobodienU.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) announced on Friday that he has named Rachael Slobodien as his new Communications Director and Heidi Watson as Media Booker and Press Assistant.

Slobodien previously worked at The Heritage Foundation as Manager of Media Affairs where she led the regional communications team and crafted messaging and strategy for Heritage’s Institute for Economic Freedom and Opportunity.

She has previously served as Press Secretary to then-U.S. Rep. Barbara Cubin (R-WY), as Senior Media Associate at Heritage in 2010 and as Communications Manager at the National Taxpayers Foundation.

A native of Little Rock, Slobodien holds a Bachelor’s degree from Washington and Lee University.  She is currently earning a Law Degree from The George Washington University.

Watson most recently worked as Press Assistant for the House Committee on Small Business, where she led social media efforts and contributed to graphic design and messaging under Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH).

Watson moved to Washington, D.C. from Oklahoma in January 2015, she first interned for U.S. Rep. Dave Brat (R-VA). Prior to working on the Hill, her experience includes serving as Constituent Services Manager and Assistant Appointments Director for former Oklahoma Speaker of the House T.W. Shannon. She also worked as Campaign Assistant during Shannon’s bid for the U.S. Senate in 2014.

Watson earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Oklahoma and is a native of Ardmore, OK. (PF tipster)

July 12, 2015

Remainders: Gleischman to GPG; Mason to Albright-Stonebridge; Haulsee to Senate HELP Cmte; Litman to Google

RemaindersHere are some recent items that we missed:

  • Max Gleischman has joined Glover Park Group as Vice President.  He was most recently Director of Communications and Spokesperson for U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Samantha Power.  Previously, he served as Communications Director for then-Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) and for former U.S. Sen. Russ Feingold (D-WI).  (PF tipster)
  • Julie Mason, currently the White House Director of Special Projects in the Office of Vice President Biden, has started working as Vice President for Communications at the Albright-Stonebridge Group.  Previously she was Communications Director for Dr. Jill Biden, spokesperson at AOL Time Warner and a communications staffer in the Clinton White House for five years.  (Politico “Playbook)
  • Pinehurst, NC native Taylor Haulsee has been named Deputy Press Secretary for the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee for Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-TN).  She previously worked at FP1 Strategies.  (PF tipster)
  • Riva Litman has joined Google’s global communications and public affairs team in DC.  She was previously Communications Director for House GOP Conference Chairwoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA).  (Politico “Influence”)

May 04, 2015

House aide Maloney Joins Sen. Murphy’s office as Press Secretary

Laura MaloneyLaura Maloney has joined the office of U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) as Press Secretary.  She was previously Communications Director for U.S. Rep. Elizabeth Etsy (D-CT).

Maloney is a native of Wolcott, CT and a 2012 graduate of Colby College.  (PF tipster)

April 01, 2015

Phalen Named Communications Director for House Homeland Security Committee

Susan PhalenHouse Homeland Security Committee chairman Michael McCaul (R-TX) named Susan Phalen as the new Communications Director for the committee.

From 2011-2015, Phalen served as Communications Director for the House Intelligence Committee.

Before that she headed communications for the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction and spent eight years at the U.S. Department of State as Senior Advisor to the Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs.  During that time, she deployed to Iraq nine times.

Before that she was Communications Advisor to the U.S. Ambassador to the OECD in Paris.  She also worked in the U.S. Senate and the U.S. House early in her career.

She got her start in radio on the island of Guam.

She is a 1992 graduate of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.  (PF tipster)

January 04, 2015

Sen. Thune Announces Staff Changes

U.S. Sen. John Thune (MTP)U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-SD), the 3rd ranking leader in the incoming U.S. Senate majority as chairman of the Senate Republican Conference, announced several staff changes for the new Congress:

Brendon Plack, who has been serving as Sen. Thune’s Deputy Chief of Sstaff, has been named Staff Director of the Senate Republican Conference. Plack will also continue to oversee operations in Thune’s DC-based personal office. Plack, a South Dakota native, has served on Thune’s team in various capacities for the past 10 years, including Thune’s Legislative Director, Policy Director for the Senate Republican Conference, and energy analyst at the Senate Republican Policy Committee.

Ann Marie Hauser has been named Deputy Sstaff Director of the Senate Republican Conference. Most recently, Hauser handled public affairs strategy for the financial regulatory consulting firm Patomak Global Partners. Prior to that, she served as managing vice president at JDA Frontline, Communications Director for Gov. Tim Pawlenty’s presidential bid, Vice President of Corporate Communications at JPMorgan Chase, Communications Director for U.S. Sen. Mike Johanns (R-NE) and Director of Public Affairs at the U.S. Department of Commerce and spokesperson at the U.S. Department of Treasury in the George W. Bush administration.

AshLee Strong, Sen. Thune’s national Communications Director, has been promoted to Senior Communications Director. She will continue to serve as Thune’s chief spokesperson and will coordinate Thune’s national message in his leadership office and across his committee assignments. Previously, Strong served as Press Secretary for Sen. Thune, Press Secretary for Congresswoman Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), communications aide for the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee and as an aide at the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy in the George W. Bush administration.

Frederick Hill has been named Sen. Thune’s Communications Director for the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee. Hill most recently served as Deputy Staff Director for Communications to Chairman Darrell Issa (R-CA) on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. Hill has worked for Issa for the past 13 years.

In addition, Rachel Millard will continue to serve as Thune’s Communications Director for state press. Millard, a native of Chamberlain, SD, and graduate of Creighton University, has served on Sen. Thune’s personal staff for over five years and previously served as press secretary for Sen. Thune, internal communications adviser at the Senate Republican Conference, and legislative correspondent for Thune.  (PF tipster)

Jordan Departs House Small Business Cmte for U.S. Sen.-elect Lankford

D.J. JordanPolitico’s “Playbook” reports that D.J. Jordan is leaving the House Small Business Committee, under chairman Sam Graves (R-MO), and has been named Communications Director for U.S. Sen. James Lankford (R-OK).

Jordan previously served as a press aide for U.S. Rep. Robert Aderholt (R-AL), as well as working for CNN and Fox News.

He is has a B.S. degree from Liberty University and a Master’s degree from The Johns Hopkins University.

He is a native of Chesapeake, VA. (Politico “Playbook” and PF reporting)

Doheny Moves from House to Senate

Tom Doheny (color)Politico’s “Playbook” reports that Tom Doheny has been named Communications Director for U.S. Sen. Deb Fischer (R-NE).

Doheny has been Communications Director for U.S. Rep. Renee Elmers (R-NC) since 2011.  Doheny took leave in 2014 to serve as Colorado Victory Communications Director for the RNC.  Before that he was Communications Director for the Delaware Republican Party.

He is a 2007 graduate of Hampden-Sydney College and a native of Fairfax Station, Virginia.  (Politico’s “Playbook”)

Speaker Boehner Moves Fritz from Political Role to Speaker’s Office

Cory Fritz with BoehnerCory Fritz, a longtime aide to Speaker John Boehner (R-OH), has been named Press Secretary in the speaker’s office, with special responsibility for dealing with White House media.

Fritz has led communications for Boehner’s political committee for the past four years, serving as Ohio Press Secretary for Boehner before that.  Earlier he was Speechwriter for former U.S. Sen. George Voinovich (R-OH).  (PF tipster)

November 24, 2014

Former Boehner Flack Buck Returning to Work for Chairman Ryan at W&M Committee

Brendan BuckPolitico’s Jake Sherman reports that Brendan Buck is returning to Capitol Hill to serve as Communications Director for the House Ways and Means Committee, under incoming chairman Paul Ran (R-WI).

Buck previously served as Press Secretary for Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and most recently was vice president at America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP).  Buck worked for Ryan as traveling press aide after he was named the vice presidential nominee on the Romney-Ryan campaign.

He’s a native of Atlanta and a graduate of the University of Georgia.  (Politico)

October 31, 2014

Sen. Cardin Names Zink Press Secretary in State Office

Ben CardinU.S. Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) has hired Tim Zink as Press Secretary, based in his primary state office in Baltimore.

Previously, Zink advised the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) on communications strategies following oil spills and toxic releases in our nation’s oceans, most notably the 2010 BP/Deepwater Horizon spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Before that he directed communications and marketing for the National Fish & Wildlife Foundation, a congressionally chartered non-profit organization, and the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership, a groundbreaking coalition of fishing, hunting and environmental organizations.

He also previously managed media relations for Trout Unlimited, the country’s foremost organization devoted to the protection of cold water resources.

Zink began his career as an environmental journalist, helping launch Blue Ridge Press, a syndicated column service publishing on environmental issues, and assisting the magazine and television operations of the National Geographic Society.

He holds a B.A. in Journalism from Washington & Lee University.  (PF tipster)

About the Authors

  • FOLLOW US: @potomacflacks
  • Matt Mackowiak - Site Manager
    Matt Mackowiak is a Washington, D.C. and Austin,TX-based Republican strategist and communications consultant and President of Potomac Strategy Group, LLC. In his career he has managed a winning Congressional campaign and worked in the U.S. Senate, at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, at a leading international PR firm, on a presidential campaign in Iowa and in White House presidential advance. Follow him on Twitter - @MattMackowiak

    Laura Gross - Contributor
    Laura Gross is currently president of Scott Circle Communications. She has served as deputy director of communications at the DNC, was Gov. Howard Dean's Communications Director and she worked in the press office at USAID during the Clinton administration. Her experience also includes time in the PR department of National Public Radio and she was part of Vice President Gore's advance team when he was in The White House.
    Follow her on Twitter: @ScottCircle

    Blain K. Rethmeier - Contributor
    Blain K. Rethmeier is currently the Senior Vice President for Public Affairs for the American Insurance Association (AIA). Rethmeier joined AIA from the White House where he served as Special Assistant to the President for Communications and directed communications for the National Economic Council and Homeland Security Council. Prior to joining the White House, Rethmeier served as Press Secretary for the Senate Judiciary Committee.
    Follow him on Twitter: @BlainR

    This is a personal group blog whose contents in no way reflect the views of any author's employer.

    Got a tip? Email Matt, Blain or Laura (anonymity guaranteed)

    Potomac Flacks Founder and Author Emeritus: Adam Kovacevich
Powered by TypePad