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NRCC Names Independent Expenditure Director

Rich Dunn will serve as independent expenditure director for the National Republican Congressional Committee in the 2014 midterms, NRCC Executive Director Liesl Hickey announced Monday.

As IE director, Dunn is tasked with directing the tens of millions of dollars the NRCC will spend on House races. But campaign finance law will prohibit him from directly coordinating with committee staff.

“Rich’s breadth of experience and his shrewd political instincts make him the best person to lead the NRCC’s Independent Expenditure program heading into the 2014 cycle,” Hickey said in a statement.

“I have confidence that Rich and his team will hold Democrats accountable for their failed record and remain on offense in 2014.”

Dunn was named earlier this cycle as the NRCC’s battleground director and previously was chief of staff to Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C. In 2012, Dunn served as political director of the National Republican Senatorial Committee.

In 2008, Dunn was the NRCC’s deputy incumbent retention director. He’s also worked as a staffer to Republican Reps. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota and Chris Chocola of Indiana.

Jesse Ferguson was recently named IE director at the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

RNC Hires New Rapid Responder

The Republican National Committee announced last week that GOP operative Jahan Wilcox is the organization’s new director of rapid response.

His portfolio will include the 2014 midterms and using RNC “research to frame the 2016 presidential debate,” according to a committee statement.

Wilcox did a tour of duty as a spokesman at the National Republican Senatorial Committee in 2012 and he spent 2013 working on the gubernatorial campaign of former Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli.

Axiom Strategies Hires Up

Axiom Strategies, a Kansas City and Washington, D.C.-based Republican consulting and direct-mail firm, announced last week the addition of two new staffers.

Travis Smith comes to the firm after working as a political and Capitol Hill operative for Republican Rep. Kevin Yoder. He previously was a staffer on Sen. John McCain’s 2008 presidential campaign.

Courtney Sheehan, a former recruiter in Overland Park, Kan., is also starting work at Axiom. She will work with corporate clients and in fundraising.

“As our business continues to grow, we are bringing on top-notch professionals,” firm founder Jeff Roe said in a statement. “Our team is committed to winning and providing our clients with a high-level of service.”

Westmoreland Aide Heads to Georgia

Leslie Shedd is leaving her post as Georgia GOP Rep. Lynn Westmoreland’s spokeswoman and is headed to Atlanta to work for the Georgia Victory division of the Georgia State Republican Party as communications director for the 2014 cycle.

Shedd’s deputy, Leigh Claffey, will replace her in Westmoreland’s office.

McAuliffe Selects New State Party Chairman

Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe recently asked Richmond Mayor Dwight C. Jones to serve as the state’s new Democratic Party chairman, per multiple local reports.

The current chairwoman, state Del. Charniele Herring, is leaving the post to run in a crowded Democratic field to replace retiring Democratic Rep. James P. Moran in the 8th District.

Lanny Davis’ Firm Acquired

Levick, a crisis communications firm, announced Monday that it has acquired Purple Nation Solutions, which was founded by Lanny Davis and former Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele.

Both men will stay on with Levick. Davis was named executive vice president and Steele will be a senior strategist.

“Purple Nation Solutions is a natural fit for Levick because their approach perfectly embodies Levick’s view of how to build consensus and communicate trust. This new team brings their bi-partisan, solution-oriented, trust-building approach to our Advocacy and Public Affairs Practice,” Levick President Mark Irion said.

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