Howard Wolfson and Kevin Sullivan are our interview guests this week.
Show produced by Katherine Caperton
Original Air Date: May 7, 2011 on SiriusXM Satellite Radio “POTUS” Channel 124. Click above to listen
Howard Wolfson and I go back to the 1990’s in Washington, D.C. We competed for the title of worst poker player in our weekly game of political types with thin wallets, and mine got thinner than Howards.
Howard was, back then, executive director of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. But as I found out over various losing poker hands, Howard was also a baseball fan of the highest order, and also a critic of rock music critic with truly professional chops. His yearly Top Tens were eagerly awaited by his long list of followers looking for Christmas gifts of the best songs of the year.
But that’s the Howard most people don’t know. He gravitated back to New York, worked for Chuck Schumer during his Senate Run in ’98 and then helped a certain First Lady, Hillary Rodham Clinton, take over Pat Moynihan’s Senate State in 2000.
After Hillary was reelected in 2006, her sights turned to the White House, and Howard was there, by her side, until that day on June 7, 2008, when she finally said “Although we weren’t able to shatter that highest, hardest glass ceiling this time, thanks to you, it’s got about 18 million cracks in it.”
Now, as Deputy Mayor of New York City, Howard has another high-profile boss, the three-term Mayor, Michael Bloomberg, who himself has to beat back persistent rumors that he may make a run for the presidency. Howard’s presence at his side, and the experience he has in national campaigns, tends to feed speculation doesn’t do a lot to damp those down.
Also on our broadcast this week, we talk to Kevin Sullivan, the former Director of Communications for President George W. Bush. It’s a role that few people truly understand outside White House circles. It’s not the press secretary, who spends so much of his or her time on camera. Rather, it’s the behind-the-scenes operator who works to match Administration policy with public positioning. Kevin, who now runs his own firm, Kevin Sullivan Communications, held prior titles of Vice President of Communications for the Dallas Mavericks and NBC Sports, and Senior Vice President of Corporate Communications for NBC Universal. Check out Kevin’s blog for more insights into the mind of a man who each day helped shape the message of the 43rd President of the United States.
On our Polioptics broadcast on SiriusXM Satellite radio, must also review the breaking news of the death of Osama bin Laden and how that affects New York City as well as some of the other issues that arrive on his doorstep. These include the rebuilding of the World Trade Center site, the debate over bike lanes in New York, the state of the New York City media community in general, and how social media tools like Twitter evolve the role of the modern media spokesman.