Skip to content

Shop Talk: Blueprint’s Fresh Look

Amy Niles Gonzalez and several other former strategists at MSHC Partners recently launched the website for Blueprint Interactive, a new media strategy, marketing and design firm. Gonzalez, president of the new firm, most recently was president at MSHC, where she worked on campaigns for Democrats including former Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (N.Y.) and Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (Ariz.).

Blueprint Vice President Emily Williams worked as a senior account executive at MSHC and was online advertising campaign manager for President Barack Obama in 2008. Cameron Cook is online strategies manager, Nick Rivers is lead developer, Yussi Pick is director of online strategies, and Darin Senneff is art director. Each previously worked at MSHC.

“It’s been a wild couple of months and between new clients and recurring work, we managed to launch a site for ourselves,” the firm said in a recent email. “It’s not a page you go to once to find our phone number and never come back. It’s a resource for non-profits, advocacy groups, and other organizations to succeed online, a showcase of our best work and what we can do to help your cause.”

Greco Heads South

The Democratic National Committee announced its senior leadership team for the national convention in Charlotte, N.C.

The 2012 Democratic National Convention Committee is led by CEO Stephen Kerrigan, who also ran the site selection committee. Kerrigan was a longtime staffer for the late Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.) and chief of staff for the 2004 convention host committee in Boston as well as for President Barack Obama’s Inaugural Committee.

Kristie Greco, a longtime top aide to Rep. James Clyburn (D-S.C.), will serve as communications director. Travis Dredd is the committee’s chief of staff, Treshawn Shields is deputy chief of staff, and Cameron Moody, a veteran of four conventions, is a senior adviser. Theo LeCompte will serve as chief operating officer, Eureka Gilkey is director of intergovernmental affairs and outreach, and Kevin Monroe of the Charlotte mayor’s office will be Gilkey’s deputy.

Other staff hires are Zoe Garmendia as director of credentials, Kelsey Larus as director of housing, Andrew Binns as director of technology and Alejandro Rodriguez as director of special projects.

GOP Convention Firm Staffs Up

GOP Convention Strategies announced recent additions to its team in preparation for the 2012 Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla. They include Bill Greener, a founding partner of Greener and Hook and the 1996 RNC convention manager, John Milne, a senior vice president for mCapitol Management, and Rick Shelby, a longtime lobbyist and former RNC national campaign director. Greener and Milne worked for convention services firm Take ’08 at the last convention in Minneapolis-St. Paul.

New Stance at Three Point

Three Point Media partners Mattis Goldman and Mo Elleithee will announce today that Clare Gannon has been named partner at the full-service strategic media firm.

Gannon previously served as vice president at political media firm Doak, Carrier, O’Donnell, Goldman & Associates and in 2004 was deputy national press secretary at the Democratic National Committee.

She has worked for candidates in Rhode Island, Iowa, California and New Mexico.

Early State Hires

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney hired Sara Craig to serve as Iowa state director on his presidential campaign-in-waiting. Craig served as Romney’s central Iowa field director on his 2008 campaign and was western Iowa field director for the state GOP in 2006.

Romney also brought on veteran public relations consultant Mark DeMoss as a senior adviser. The Philadelphia native is president of the DeMoss Group.

Former Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman hired Joel Sawyer as his South Carolina state director, CNN reported. Sawyer resigned as executive director of the state GOP and announced the move in an email to the party’s executive committee. He previously served as communications director and speechwriter for former South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford.

Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum also announced new hires. Jamie Johnson was hired as Iowa state coalitions director, where she will manage Santorum’s statewide coalitions and grass-roots efforts. And Ames native April Baylor will serve as assistant to Iowa State Director Cody Brown.

In New Hampshire, Kristin Beaulieu and Tyler Carlisle were brought on as field representatives.

Pawlenty’s Youth Movement

Former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty made his first South Carolina staffing hire and also added a top Iowa staffer.

As CNN first reported, Pawlenty hired Kurt Pickhardt, most recently operations director for the South Carolina GOP, as state political director. CNN noted Pawlenty was “bypassing the traditional route of hiring an entrenched political consultant to help steer the primary operation,” looking instead to youth.

Pawlenty also hired former U.S. Attorney Matt Whitaker to chair his Iowa Steering Committee. reported Pawlenty played up Whitaker’s role as a tight end on the 1991 Iowa Hawkeyes team that played in the Rose Bowl, losing 46-34 to the Washington Huskies.

What’s in a Name

Ryan Erwin & Associates and Casteel, Erwin & Associates announced Sunday that they are unifying the firms and will now be known as RedRock Strategies.

The firm’s office locations remain the same: Las Vegas, where Ryan Erwin is based; Austin, Texas, where Corbin Casteel is based; and Washington, D.C.

Submit campaign staffing news and tips to Shop Talk here.