September 24, 2012

Former Gov. Perdue Flack Takes New Job

FtD_webJon Romano has been named the vice president of communications for the Campaign to Fix the Debt. Most recently, Romano served as the director of communications for North Carolina Governor Bev Perdue (D-NC), where he provided daily communications guidance and strategic direction. He also served as the campaign manager on a mayor's race in Boston and was the chief of staff to a Boston City Councilor.

According to the press release, The Campaign to Fix the Debt is a non-partisan movement to put America on a better fiscal and economic path. The Campaign will mobilize key communities who want to see elected officials step up to solve our nation's fiscal challenges. (PF Tipster)

January 23, 2012

Ortman to Creative America

First reported Friday in Politico‚Äôs Morning Tech Report, U.S. Department of Homeland Security deputy press secretary Chris Ortman has left to become communications director for Creative America, a grassroots organization uniting the entertainment community and others against content theft.

Prior to joining DHS, Ortman has held communications positions at the 2008 Democratic National Convention Committee in Denver and the Change to Win labor coalition.

Ortman is a native of Omaha, Nebraska, and a graduate of Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio. (PF Tipster/Politico)


March 27, 2009

Join the Democratic Communicators Network

Dcnetthreadname If you are a Democrat PR pro, you should join the Democratic Communicators Network (DCNet). DCNet offers a distinguished speakers series, training seminars, mentoring, roundtable discussions, job postings and networking opportunities to strengthen the Democratic message-making team. 

There are 400 members and a newly launched Web site. It's a great way to network and meet other fellow Democrats too.

Communicators who work for political organizations, PR firms or other groups that support Democratic causes can join DCNet as well -- you just need a personal reference from a current member. (PF Tipster)

October 06, 2008

Educating the Educators

A new online community that will bring together marketing, PR, design, public affairs and general communications professionals who work in the education sector launched today. Educommunicators is for people who are part of a non-profit, trade association, government agency, corporation, PR agency and media outlets who specialize in education.

This is a way to share best practices, issues and ideas, news and developments and general thoughts on education and education reform.

Here is how you can find out more information:

Web site: Educommunicators
Blog: Educommunicators Blog
Facebook: Join the Educommunicators Group
LinkedIn: Join the Educommunicators Group
Listserv: E-mail [email protected]

(PF Tipster)

July 09, 2008

Happy Hour Tonight


Looking for something to do tonight?

Join Institute for Politics, Democracy & the Internet and MySpace for

"MySpace on the Hill" Happy Hour
Tonight - Wednesday, July 9
Top of the Hill
319 Pennsylvania Ave, SE
Washington, DC
Open to Communications Directors, Fundraisers, Political tech world, Press, etc...
RSVP to [email protected]

January 19, 2007

Grassroots Disclosure Dropped From Ethics Reform Bill

Grassroots_1 As we noted earlier this month, a new group called the Free Speech Coalition was fighting a proposal in Congress that would mandate reporting by any group involved in paid efforts to stimulate grassroots communications -- a proposal that would have had a major impact on DC firms that run grassroots campaigns for clients. 

Looks like the group's efforts worked.  The Wash Post reports this morning that the provision was struck from the Senate Ethics bill last night, after furious lobbying by the "o
dd coalition that included the American Civil Liberties Union, the Traditional Values Coalition, the American Conservative Union and the National Right to Life Committee."  The provision had also raised the ire of bloggers, who were concerned it might affect them.

October 06, 2006

New Coalition Pushes Direct Flight to Beijing

Capitaltocapital A new advocacy group called the "Capital-to-Capital Coalition" has been pretty visible in the last two weeks, placing a number of full page print ads in the Washington Post.  The group says its mission is to establish "a non-stop passenger air route between Washington, D.C. and Beijing, China," and it appears to be doing a number of things to advance its cause, including:

  • Commissioning a survey that says -- surprise -- the American public overwhelmingly wants a direct route between the U.S. and China
  • Getting all the former U.S. Trade Representatives to pen a supportive letter to acting Transportation Secretary Maria Cino (a letter that they featured in a print ad this week)
  • Getting a George Mason economics professor to commission a study showing that the route would generate 3,400 to 4,100 new jobs in the D.C. area.

The coalition website suggests that United Airlines is the lead player -- as they'd be the ones actually operating the flight --  and they've signed up ex-FAA Jane Garvey and James Bennett of MWAA as the co-chairs, along with a host of other allies.  Finally, it appears from this that APCO is doing the PR for the coalition.

September 20, 2006

New Coalition is Patently Awesome

Remember how a big patent lawsuit against Research in Motion earlier this year threatened to cut off CrackBerry (left) service?  Today, Joe Crea of Legal Times tells us about DC's new Coalition for Patent Fairness, "a patchwork of 45 companies from the technology, financial services and manufacturing industries."

On the lobbying side, the group is led by Mark Isakowitz of Fierce Isakowitz & Blalock, while Mayer Brown Rowe & Maw partner Andrew Pincus tells Crea that "he's focusing on the substantive arguments for patent reform." Chlopak, Leonard, Schechter is handling PR for the coalition, but I couldn't find a coalition website.

Coalition members include Apple Computer Inc., the Business Software Alliance, Comcast Corp., Dell Inc., the Financial Services Roundtable, Hewlett-Packard Co., Intel Corp., Microsoft Corp., Oracle Corp., TechNet and Time Warner Inc.

Per Crea, the coalition "has spent the better half of 2006 building momentum and educating Congress members about concerns the group has about the current patent system. Isakowitz says in the coming year he expects the Senate to act on patent reform legislation introduced by Senate Judiciary Committee members Orrin Hatch, R-Utah and Patrick Leahy, D-Vt."

The group has its work cut out for it.  It's up against the pharmaceutical industry, led by trade group PhRMA.

September 14, 2006

New Coalition: America Ain't So Bad

Wash Post's Judy Sarasohn reports on a new coalition hitting the scene, this one designed to promote American tourism to foreigners.  Discover America Partnership is described as a "multimillion dollar advocacy campaign designed to boost the number of visitors -- by 10 million a year -- to the United States:

Their aim is to help improve America's image abroad and bolster national security by introducing more people from other countries to us. "In the effort to win hearts and minds, we have a unique card to play," Jay Rasulo , chairman of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts, said in a statement. "That card is an invitation . . . to visit America, meet our people and experience our values."

The group has a large board, including reps from National Restaurant Association, Anheuser-Busch, Travel Industry Association of America, American Hotel & Lodging Association, and other tourism companies.

So who's running things?  PR is being handled by Fleishman-Hillard; lobbying by BKSH's Charles Merin and Monument Policy Group's Stewart Verdery.

About the Authors

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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.
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