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The original Snyder is dead and therefore ineligible for political office (except in Philadelphia, maybe). And we, as the most recent incarnation of the storied Pennsylvania political name, aren't likely to venture from our safe vantage point in cyberspace out onto the messy field of political battle. But if Simon Snyder, Pennsylvania hero, should rise from the dead - or from this page - and once again seek high office office, we are sure the former governor would want these Democratic operatives strategizing, organizing, spinning, and otherwise making mischief on his behalf. That is, if Snyder chose to run as a Democrat.

 

Campaign Manager

Mary Isenhour: may have worked in more states than nearly any other top operative in the field.  Served with the Kansas Democratic State Committee and had a major hand in getting the HDCC off the ground.  In 1990, she helped the Democrats take back the House for the third time in State history.  In 1996, she is credited with helping turn the Wisconsin Senate from Republican to Democrat... now she's working on turning PA...

 

Field Organizer

Brett Cott:  Brett has turned down big -and well deserved- raises from others to stay in the Keystone State.  Cott currently runs the HDCC legislative field program which has been recognized by the DLCC, DNC, DCCC.  Other states have been instructed to model their field program after what Cott has done in Pennsylvania.  Prior to working in PA, Cott served as Executive Director of the Kansas Democratic State Committee and worked for the Wisconsin Senate Majority Leader.

Mike Walsh:  routinely under-recognized for his organizing skills, Walsh was Field Director for Hoeffel '96 and has been working for Allen Kukovich ever since, with a short stint as advance staff for Bradley for President.  If Walsh can pull off a Kukovich victory in the Lt. Governor's primary, keep an eye on his  next move. We sure will. 

 

Political Director

Sandi Vito:  widely credited with putting Pennsylvania in the Gore column.  As NARAL Executive Director, she turned made the organization into an effective force in Pennsylvania politics.  Served as Chief Staff to Tina Tartaglione and Democratic State Committee.  Ran the 2000 Coordinated Campaign to great effect.  Now, she's Deputy Campaign Manager for Rendell for Governor. 

 

Direct Mail

Ross Bates, BatesNeimand:  may not do the most mail for Pennsylvania Democrats, but he may be the best.  Bates handled all the mail for Connie Williams and kept busy with the caucuses.

 

TV & General Consulting

Neil Oxman, The Campaign Group:  doing a good job of raising Casey's negatives without hurting Rendell too much.  We're impressed.

Ken SmuklerAs we wrote in the "Top Operative" feature, "this veteran Democratic strategist has been involved in numerous high profile campaigns including former Congresswoman Marjorie Margolies-Mezvinsky. He’s a fixture in Southeast Democratic politics with an excellent grasp of what it takes to get someone elected. He brings all the ingredients of a top political consultant into his races."

 

Press

Ken Snyder:  currently on loan from Vince Fumo -- managing New Jersey's Bob Torricelli.  Some could call that masochism.  We call it a challenge and huge opportunity.  Ken is at the top of his game and is widely regarded and respected by Republicans and Democrats alike.  With roots going back more than a decade and more than four states, keep an eye on Snyder's next move.  It'll be big. 

 

Finance

Mary Askelson: played a finance role of Bill Bradley for President and is now Regional Finance Coordinator for the DCCC, overseeing numerous competitive congressional races.  After college, Askelson served as field manager for the Minnesota State Senate Caucus and then as a legislative aide.  In 1998, she became Deputy Finance Director for the Freeman for Governor campaign.  Finance Director for the Pennsylvania Coordinated Campaign in 2000.