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June 30, 2009

2008 GOP Convention Communications Director Burns Launches Compelem

Compelem Former 2008 Republican National Convention Director of Communications Matt Burns announced the formation of Compelem Strategies, LLC, a full-service communications firm helping non-profit, corporate and political clients develop and execute aggressive, campaign-style public relations strategies and tactics.  Compelem is headquartered in Saint Paul, with strategic partners in New York and Washington, D.C.

Compelem and its strategic partners offer clients: organizational and campaign communications strategy; media relations and crisis communications counsel and training; ghostwriting; Web 2.0 expertise, including social media and online advertising strategy development; public opinion research, including polling; grassroots and grasstops organizing; and other critical communication services. 

Current and past clients of Compelem Strategies include: a successful candidate for national elected office; an organization requiring detailed research services; and a nonprofit conducting post-campaign analyses of implemented strategies.  Burns’ communications work in Washington, D.C., New York and Minneapolis-Saint Paul, gives Compelem fresh relationships with media outlets across the country. 

Prior to founding Compelem, Burns was the 2008 GOP convention’s chief spokesman, developed the convention’s strategic communications plan, and built and led a team of 200 veteran communicators, including professionals from some of the country’s top public relations firms.  From 2005 to 2007, Burns served as Press Secretary at the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) in Washington, D.C., where he was national spokesman for the 235,000-employee agency and the cabinet secretary.  Earlier in his career, Burns was a spokesperson in New York Gov. George Pataki’s administration.  Burns resides in St. Paul, Minn.  (PF tipster)

June 26, 2009

Boles Named Director of Media Relations at AT&T's DC Office

AT&TMargaret Boles will join AT&T's Washington, DC office as Director of Media Relations, effective Monday, June 29, 2009.  Boles brings to AT&T eight years of telecommunications and technology experience, most recently as Vice President of Communications of COMPTEL, overseeing all communications and marketing for the association.  She also brings valuable print, broadcast and online journalism experience through various positions ranging from web producer for magazines to associate editor for Telecommunications Reports., where she developed extensive expertise on federal and state telecommunications policy issues.  In addition to serving as a public policy spokesperson, Boles’ responsibilities will include developing and managing AT&T’s public policy strategy for online and social media outlets, and coordinating federal and state public policy communications.  (PF tipster)

June 25, 2009

NAVA Hires New Staff

NAVA, the Association for Insured Retirement Solutions has hired two new members of their communications team. Danielle Holland will be the assistant vice president for communications and public affairs and Brad Mascho will be the new communications director.

Holland spent the better part of 10 years on Capitol Hill, working for members of both the House and Senate. She also worked at CNN and the FOX News Channel. For the last two years, Holland has been the primary spokesperson for the AARP's economic security and retirement planning team. She will now be the primary day-to-day contact for traditional media.

Mascho spent five years on the Hill working for Financial Services Committee member, the late Rep. Paul Gillmor (R-Ohio). Mascho also served as communications director for Rep. Mike Turner (R-Ohio) and then ran Rep. Steve Austria's (R-Ohio) successful campaign. In his new role, Mascho will focus on new media and NAVA's grassroots efforts. 

Holland and Mascho will be part of a new ramped up media presence and will also be working on a major rebranding, including a name change. (PF Tipster)

June 22, 2009

Allen Named Communications Director for Hagan; Saunders Promoted in Landrieu's Office

Aaron Saunders Aaron Saunders has been promoted to Communications Director for Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA).  He previously was Landrieu’s Press Secretary. Before that, Saunders worked for Sen. Ted Stevens (R-AK), as Communications Director, as well as for the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee during Stevens’ tenure as chairman.  Saunders succeeds Stephanie Allen, who has joined the staff of Sen. Kay Hagan (D-NC), as Communications Director.  Allen previously was a News Researcher, Reporter and Account Manager at Congressional Quarterly. Before that, she worked at the Houston Chronicle, The Facts and Texas Weekly. (CQ’s “People on the Move” column)

Senate Banking Committee Names Two for Top Communications Posts (Majority Staff)

Senate Banking Kirstin Brost has been hired as Communications Director for the majority staff of the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee. For the past four years, Brost was spokeswoman for the House Appropriations Committee.  Justine Sessions has been hired as Press Secretary for the majority staff of the Banking Committee. Sessions was Deputy Press Secretary to Sen. Chris Dodd (D-CT).  (CQ’s “People on the Move” column)

June 16, 2009

Mulhauser, Former Aide to Lautenberg, Breaux and Torricelli, Heads to Senate Finance Committee

Mulhauser Scott Mulhauser has been appointed Senior Adviser and Counsel to the Senate Finance Committee, directing the panel’s media operations under Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT).  Mulhauser served in the same capacity for U.S. Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ).  Before that, he worked in the offices of Sens. John Breaux (D-LA) and Robert Torricelli (D-NJ).  (CQ’s “People on the Move” column)

June 15, 2009

JOB OF THE WEEK: Communications Director - U.S. Rep. John Shadegg (R-AZ)

Shadegg Congressman John Shadegg (R-AZ) seeks a proactive Communications Director with significant Capitol Hill experience.  Candidates should have an established relationship with the press and working familiarity with issues such as health care, energy and national security. Responsibilities include developing and implementing an overall communications strategy, managing the DC press team, writing press releases, statements, op-eds, and developing new media opportunities.  Ideal candidates will have impeccable writing skills and a strong ability to maintain and develop media contacts. This is not a junior position. Salary will be commensurate with experience.  Please send resumes to [email protected]. (PF tipster)

Kiki McLean to be Managing Director at Porter Novelli

Kikimclean Porter Novelli announced that Kiki McLean will be part of their senior team. She has been hired as partner, global head of public affairs and managing director of the agency's Washington, D.C. office. 

Most recently, Kiki served as a partner of the Dewey Square Group. She also served as an advisor to Gore, Kerry and both Clinton campaigns. She is frequently seen on television as a political and current events commentator. 

McLean succeeds longtime Porter Novelli executive Carolyn Tieger, who announced her retirement earlier this year. (PF Tipster)

June 14, 2009

Producer for Lars Larson Named Communications Director for AUL

AUL Heather Smith has been hired as Director of Communications at Americans United for Life. Smith most recently was a producer for “The Lars Larson Show,” a nationally-syndicated radio program.  (CQ’s “People on the Move” column)

Cantwell Aide Dohl Named Communications Director for Rep. Doggett

Doggett Sarah Dohl has been hired as Communications Director and Press Secretary for U.S. Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-TX). Dohl was previously Speechwriter and Deputy Press Secretary to Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-WA).  (CQ’s “People on the Move” column)

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  • 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

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