Meet the Staff-Marisa

November 9, 2007

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Marisa McAuliffe works in the Chief of Staff’s office for the Democratic National Convention Committee. Marisa moved to Denver this past summer, but already she has become a vital part of the community. When Marisa is not at work, there’s a good chance she’s giving back to the Convention host city. In this staff profile, Marisa shows us around the Denver Rescue Mission, where she volunteers her time after work. The DNCC has an internal monthly community service challenge to track hours of service completed by staff — and October was Marisa’s month to shine.


Meet the Staff

November 2, 2007

From time-to-time, the DNCC will introduce you to our hard-working staff. Check out this video of Colorado local and Public Affairs Assistant Dan Watson.

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Meet the Producers- Mark Squier

October 31, 2007

On Monday, the DNCC announced the expansion of the team that will bring together the 2008 Democratic National Convention. Along with the staff that will consist of hundreds and the volunteer corp made up of thousands, the Executive Producers for the August 25-28, 2008 Convention are Ricky Kirshner and Mark Squier.

Click here to read the DNCC’s official announcement.

Yesterday, we profiled Ricky Kirshner.

Today, we focus on Mark Squier.

Mark has been a media consultant and a strategic advisor for Democratic candidates for 25 years. During that time, Mark has worked on some of the most high profile races around the U.S. Mark has produced ads for over 20 current and former U.S. Senators, Governors and Members of Congress including: Sens. Tom Harkin of Iowa, Daniel Akaka of Hawaii, Bob Graham of Florida and former Governors Ann Richardson Texas and Cecil Andrus of Idaho.

In addition to being one of the most respected consultants in Washington, DC, Mark co-founded the media consulting firm McMahon, Squier, Lapp & Associates (MSLA) in Washington, DC .

With all these qualifications to be the Executive Producer of the 2008 Democratic National Convention, we felt we needed to ask him some tough questions:

squier2Q: Take yourself back to age 5. Where were you likely to be found on a typical Saturday?
A: Eating pancakes – watching Redskins football – playing soccer.

Q: What one person had the greatest influence in setting you on this career path?
A: My Dad – A.K.A. Bob Squier – who is considered one of the founders of political consulting. He was a filmmaker first and came to work in politics in 1968 – electing many Senators, Governors, Congressmen, even working on President Clinton’s re-election in 1996. Out of college I went to work for him and it was awesome. He was very upbeat a lot of fun – and taught me everything.

One of my first memories of being interested in what my father did for a living was when he took me to see Face The Nation on CBS. I was 9 and Dad was working for Hubert Humphrey. I can still remember Vice President Humphrey’s distinctive voice. Boy that really dates me!

Q: When you’re cooking for the kids, what’s on the table?
A: Mac and Cheese – out of the box of course.

Q: What’s one thing every successful candidate has in common?
A: Confidence and comfort with themselves.

Q: Why should America tune in to the 2008 Democratic National Convention?
A: The 2008 convention is the beginning of the fall campaign and it will be an excellent chance to see what the Democratic Party stands for and what it plans to do to get our country back on track. And for people to learn how they can get involved and make a difference. There is too much gripping and not enough action – and that is a direct result of apathy – which I can’t stand. It’s easy to sit on the sidelines and complain – it’s much harder to roll up your sleeves and get involved.

Q: Mountains or monuments?
A: Easy – Mountains – I ski. And Colorado has the best.

Q: Do you ever get tired of red, white and blue?
A: No. If you aren’t a student of this country’s history – and really learn about what symbols like our flag and colors stand for – and the sacrifices that have been made and that are being made to protect and preserve our country – then you shouldn’t work in politics.

I’ve actually worked overseas politically – I’ve seen other systems up
close.

Yes – we do have problems with our system – nothing is perfect.

But it is by far the best one on the planet.


Meet the Producers-Ricky Kirshner

October 30, 2007

Yesterday, the DNCC announced that Ricky Kirshner and Mark Squier will serve as Executive Producers for the Democratic National Convention in August.

Click here to read the DNCC’s official announcement .

Ricky Kirshner has produced some of the biggest events in TV history including the 2007 Super Bowl halftime show, the Tony awards, GQ Man of the Year awards for NBC, the Rose Parade and of course Ricky was the Executive Producer to every Democratic National Convention since 1996.

We asked Ricky some questions to get his take on some of the most pressing issues of the day. Click here for Mark’s Q&A.

Ricky

Where did you grow up?
South Orange, NJ

Q: What was your first job?
A: Job?? Well, unpaid, I was a Page at the DNCC in 1976 in NYC. Then, an
intern at Good Morning America. First job out of college was as a Budget
Controller for ABC News 20/20

Q: You’re a busy New Yorker. What’s the best quick bite in Manhattan?
A: People that work with me would find this one pretty funny. I am very careful about what I eat and eat very plain food. So, I cant give you a great answer like some cart on a street corner or Papaya King. Its usually a turkey sandwich or a salad…sorry, boring answer. I’ll be at Jimmy Johns and Cheesecake Factory a lot in Denver.

Q: What drives you to get out of bed every morning?
A: My son usually jumps on me.

Q: What keeps you coming back to the Democratic Convention?
A: The excitement of doing an event this big and being watched by so many people. It’s what I love about what I do: live TV and live Events. The adrenaline rush of being on and hoping it all works. It is a function of a lot of preparation and working with a lot of great professionals.

Q: You’ve heard a lot of speeches over the years – presumably some better than others. In your opinion, how long is too long?
A: When the orchestra has to play you off, its too long. Elaine Stritch at the Tony Awards (she might still be talking) was too long.

Q: You’re normally a behind-the-scenes guy. If you were to star in a one-man show, what would it be called? And who would you ask to produce it?
A: My wife, Rina, would definitely produce it. She knows me better than
anyone, she understands my sense of humor and she knows what I’m really about. But, I must say, it would be pretty boring. When I’m not working I like to be home with my family. Usually wrestling with my son, or talking to my daughters. The soundtrack would be SPRINGSTEEN (told ya I was from Jersey).

The title of my one-man show: IF YOU SEE ME ON TV, SOMETHING WENT WRONG!!

I’m really a guy that likes to be behind the scenes.