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Karen Olick is leaving the activist group Americans United for Change for Squier Knapp Dunn, the Democratic media and communications firm.

Effective in March, Olick will run SKD’s direct-mail business as generated by the firm’s Washington, D.C., clients, in addition to serving as a general consultant and strategist. Olick has been the executive director of AUC during a period in which it campaigned against President Bush’s plan to overhaul Social Security, as well as for the first “100 hours” agenda of the new House Democratic leadership. [IMGCAP(1)]

Olick served as a senior adviser to now-Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) in 1992 when Boxer first ran for Senate and then transitioned to her Congressional office as her chief of staff, where she stayed until joining AUC. Olick also has consulted various Senate candidates during her tenure on Capitol Hill.

“Karen will bring proven strategic value to our clients; she knows campaigns, she knows how to bring message and organization together; and she knows how to win,” SKD senior partner Bill Knapp said in a statement.

Barry Good. Barry Rubin, the just-departed executive director of the Nebraska Democratic Party, has been picked up by infoUSA as its director of business development for political, nonprofit and government markets.

Rubin, a longtime Maryland operative who headed west to the Republican stronghold for the 2004 and 2006 cycles to help Nebraska Democrats rebuild their party, will remain in Omaha for infoUSA, which also is based there.

InfoUSA is a provider of business and consumer databases and mailing lists, among its other services.

Feldman’s Temple. Though Democratic operative Roy Temple has been with the Feldman Group since August, he was just recently elevated to partner at the Democratic polling firm.

Temple has extensive experience in the key swing state of Missouri. He worked as a political consultant in Jefferson City prior to joining the Feldman Group, first going to work in the Missouri capital when he joined then-Gov. Mel Carnahan’s (D) staff in 1993.

Temple also is a former executive director of the Missouri Democratic Party and served as chief of staff for former Sen. Jean Carnahan (D-Mo.).

The Feldman Group’s recent winning clients include now-Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland (D) and now-Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio). The firm also handled the independent expenditure campaigns for Maryland, Montana and Rhode Island in the previous cycle for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.

Democrats won those three races.

Rise of the Director. California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) has appointed Linda Ulrich as director of his Washington, D.C., office. Ulrich, 46, had served as deputy chief of staff to Rep. Ken Calvert (R-Calif.) since 1993.

“In a year when California is leading the national debate on issues, such as climate change and health care reform, I am pleased to have Linda on my team,” Schwarzenegger said in a statement.

Nehring the Top. Ron Nehring, a Grover Norquist disciple and longtime Golden State political activist, has been elected chairman of the California Republican Party.

Nehring is based in San Diego, where last year as chairman of the San Diego County GOP he was involved in helping the GOP hold onto the 50th district seat vacated by scandal-plagued former Rep. Duke Cunningham (R).

Nehring replaces Silicon Valley-based Duf Sundheim, a successful fundraiser who helmed the party during a period that included the 2003 gubernatorial recall that brought Schwarzenegger to power and saw him win re-election to a full term last year.

Show Me Temporiti. The Missouri Democratic Party has elected St. Louis-based John Temporiti as its new chairman.

Temporiti has served as chief executive for both Mayflower Transit and the Vanliner Insurance Co., as well chief of staff to then-St. Louis Mayor Vince Schoemehl from 1981 to 1985.

Lane of Enchantment. A veteran newspaper reporter has been hired to be the new communications director for the New Mexico Republican Party.

Charlotte Balcomb Lane worked until last year for the Albuquerque Journal. She also has worked at the Orlando Sentinel. More recently, Lane has been a business development associate at the First National Bank of Santa Fe’s Albuquerque office.

Lane’s father, Ed Balcomb, is a Realtor and former Bernalillo County commissioner who ran for governor in the Land of Enchantment in 1970, losing the Republican primary to a local official named Pete Domenici. Domenici lost the 1970 general election but bounced back two years later and was elected to the Senate, where he has been ever since.

Internet ’08. Personal Democracy Forum has launched, a group blog that will monitor how the Internet is being used by various 2008 presidential campaigns.

The site is set to feature several political operatives with D.C. ties — or ties to D.C. figures — as its resident bloggers, including:

• David All, former communications director for Rep. Jack Kingston (R-Ga.).

• Zack Exley, director of online organizing for Sen. John Kerry’s (D-Mass.) 2004 presidential campaign and a veteran of

• Mindy Finn, Internet director for then-Sen. Rick Santorum’s (R-Pa.) 2006 re-election campaign.

• Nancy Scola, Internet organizer for former Virginia Gov. Mark Warner’s (D) aborted 2008 presidential effort.

• Zephyr Teachout, Internet director for former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean’s (D) 2004 presidential campaign.

• Mike Turk, former e-campaign director for the Republican National Committee.

Josh Kurtz and Lauren W. Whittington contributed to this report.

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