We’re bringing together an epic panel of local, state and national political and government professionals to dish on what freelance communications opportunities exist and when (campaign time versus non-campaign time) as well as what traps or faux pas to avoid (working for free when you don’t actually want to work for free, for example).
If you’ve ever wondered whether you should dip your toe into the political/government freelance communication waters, don’t miss this amazing opportunity to learn from our own esteemed political insiders.
Lisa Griffin is President of Griffin Media Management, a 13-year, full-service communications business for local to international clients. She has also worked as a national journalist for U.S. News & World Report where her stories made national headlines and she flew on Air Force One. She worked at the United States Congress as a communications director for a U.S. senator and representative. She has also worked for representatives of the U.S. Supreme Court, The White House, international technology companies, local Austin businesses and more.
Christine Garrison Rodriguez is an Austin native and University of Texas graduate who worked as a journalist for seven years before stepping into the political world she once covered. From 2005 to 2012 she worked as a freelance consultant, managing communications, media relations, social media and fund-raising for political campaigns, caucuses and advocacy groups in Texas. In early 2005, Christine began publishing a weekly email for friends and acquaintances, listing the best jobs in and around state government. That service project grew into Christine’s List, a subscription-based site with now 5,500 members. Today Christine’s List includes Texas jobs in “Advocacy, Information and Public Administration.” In January 2013, she and two friends from the world of progressive campaigns and causes saw a need to help their peers stay employed and launched Texas Blue Pages, a free online resource for progressive job-seekers.
A.J. Bingham is a consultant with a leading Austin-based public sector procurement consulting firm. Prior to that, he was legislative director for one of Texas’ top lobbying firms, representing private and public sector clients on a range of state and local policy matters. Additionally, he is an adjunct professor at Concordia University’s MBA program, teaching Business, Society and Public Policy. He also serves on the City of Austin's Urban Transportation Commission (representing District 1). In the community, he serves on the boards of the Long Center, Caritas of Austin, Trail of Lights Foundation, LBJ Future Forum, and Young Men's Business League of Austin. He also serves as the Chair of Advocacy & Government Affairs for the Greater Austin Black Chamber of Commerce. He was a finalist in the 2013 Austin Under 40 Awards Government & Public Affairs category.
Jennifer Perkins is a seasoned government and public affairs counselor with more than two decades of private, non-profit and public sector experience. As principal at Cogent Public Affairs, she helps refine strategic communications, marketing, and public affairs efforts on behalf of clients in energy, water, transportation and the non-profit spheres. Throughout her career she’s served as a campaign manager/finance director, chief of staff for the California State Assembly and corporate affairs specialist as well as positions in the nonprofit and communications agency arenas.
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