Reporter's Notebook: Pressley aide to consult; Arroyo, Linehan add staff

A top aide to City Councillor At-Large Ayanna Pressley is joining a national public affairs and communications firm. James Chisholm, Pressley’s chief of staff, will be heading to Resolute Consulting’s new Boston office as a vice president.

He joined Pressley’s City Hall staff in Jan. 2010, after working on her first campaign. His last day was last week.

Resolute Consulting, based in Chicago, Pressley’s hometown, was founded in 2002. The company, which has worked with heavy hitters like AT&T and Coca-Cola, also has offices in Atlanta, Detroit, Columbus, and Washington, D.C.

Pressley and Chisholm worked together in US Sen. John Kerry’s office, Pressley as a political director and Chisholm as a deputy press secretary. Chisholm has also written for and studied at Connecticut College.

“We are thrilled to expand into the northeast and welcome a person of James’ caliber to the team,” Greg Goldner, Resolute Consulting founder and CEO, said in a statement. “James’s knowledge and experience will further enhance our ability to serve our growing client roster.”

Separately, District 2 City Councillor Bill Linehan has tapped a former candidate for state representative as his aide. Mark McGonagle will start in Linehan’s office on June 4.

McGonagle, who ran for the Fourth Suffolk District seat in the House in 2010, said the new job is a “good opportunity to come home again, so to speak.”

McGonagle is a South Boston native and his wife Kathlin grew up in Dorchester’s Harbor Point neighborhood.

Aside from taking a brief break for the 2010 run for office, McGonagle has worked as a youth development specialist at the Boston Public Health Commission since 2008. In that job, he focused on the issue of substance abuse, something the South Boston neighborhood and parts of Dorchester frequently struggle with.

Over at City Councillor Felix Arroyo’s office, Patrick Sheridan Rossi has joined the team as operations director.

Rossi started last week. His hiring comes after Stu Rosenberg left City Hall earlier this month for a job working on a US Senate race in his native Wisconsin.

Rossi worked campaigns for City Council and the State House, where he once interned. He was the campaign manager for Ed Coppinger, who represents West Roxbury and Roslindale in the House.

Rossi was also the campaign manager for Jim Hennigan’s unsuccessful race for City Council, after District 6 Councillor John Tobin left for Northeastern University.

Rossi attended St. Lawrence University in New York.

Treasurer to bring 15 gallons of ice cream to Jackson turkey fry

Attendees at City Councillor Tito Jackson’s annual turkey fry will get some cool dessert, courtesy of State Treasurer Steve Grossman and Lower Mills’s Ice Creamsmith.

The turkey fry starts at noon this Saturday, May 26, and is scheduled to last until 6 p.m. Between 200 and 300 people are expected to attend the event, which will be located at Jackson’s Schuyler St. home. “If you provide the turkey, I provide the ice cream,” Grossman said he told Jackson.

That means 15 gallons of the homemade stuff, according to Grossman, who toured ice cream parlors while running for treasurer in 2010. The Ice Creamsmith, which prices its wares at $9.95 a quart, was one of Grossman’s stops that year.

Familiar faces, backdrops in US Senate race ads
Dorchester residents are seeing some familiar faces in the television ads for the Massachusetts Senate race.

“Her father was janitor; my father was a janitor,” says Catherine O’Neill, a Savin Hill resident whose statement opens US Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren’s latest ad, which started airing yesterday. O’Neill is active in local politics and recently wrote a politically-themed play, “Murph.” “Big banks, institutions, Wall Street — she’s not afraid of anybody,” O’Neill says later in the 30-second ad.

Sandi Bagley, who once chaired the Ward 15 Democratic Committee, also appears in the ad, saying, “The consumer protection agency she started is vital.” Warren, then a top adviser to President Obama, helped set up the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

The ad also features Warren talking to supporters at Spukies, a pizza shop on Washington Street in Lower Mills. An earlier Warren ad was also shot in Lower Mills, using the former Baker Chocolate Factory as a backdrop.

Warren is expected to be Democrats’ choice to face off this fall against US Sen. Scott Brown, a Wrentham Republican seeking a full six-year term.

On May 9, Brown released his own 30-second ad, which featured an August trip to the Boys and Girls Clubs of Dorchester’s Savin Hill campus. The Dorchester Reporter’s managing editor, Bill Forry, made a cameo appearance in the ad while pulling double duty as a photographer for the newspaper at the event.

Quotes of Note: Marisa DeFranco and Cory Booker
Bay State US Senate candidate Marisa DeFranco and Newark Mayor Cory Booker learned this week what happens when a politician goes off-message: They are forced to confront the sound and fury of a hyperpartisan class within their own party that demands only talking points leave their mouths.

DeFranco, who is vying for the Democratic nomination, took aim at rival Elizabeth Warren and her inability to get a handle on the hoopla surrounding her ancestry. “The problem for me is the campaign’s lack of ability to have a clear and consistent message about this issue.
All true. But it spawned a 92-comment thread on the left-leaning Blue Mass. Group blog, where there was talk of booing and airborne grapefruit if DeFranco takes the stage at the Democratic state convention next month.

Booker, while on “Meet the Press” on Sunday, stepped on the Obama campaign’s strategy to criticize former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney’s time in the private sector. “It’s nauseating to the American public,” Booker said. “Enough is enough. Stop attacking private equity.”

He later filmed an attempt to clarify the remarks, which led one cable television host to quip that it looked like a hostage video.

A hardy lesson for all politicians, whether they’re running for their first campaign or their last: Stick to the prescribed talking points, and nobody gets hurt.

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