DNCC and Milwaukee Host Committee Announce New Hires for Convention

May 23, 2019 by Dan McCue

The Democratic National Committee on Wednesday announced a series of new hires to handle preparations for the party’s 2020 presidential nomination convention in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

The convention itself is being held at the Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee July 13-16.

Debra Alligood White is joining the Democratic National Convention Committee as chief of staff.

In that role the former senior vice president and general counsel for Planned Parenthood will manage the day-to-day operations for planning and executing the convention.

At Planned Parenthood, Alligood White was part of a leadership team that oversaw approximately 500 employees and a budget of $175 million.

Prior to joining Planned Parenthood, the Harvard University and UCLA Law School graduate spent more than two decades practicing law.

Also joining the Democratic National Convention Committee staff are Jorge Neri, who will serve as director of public engagement, and Teresa Vilmain, who will be a senior advisor.

Neri brings a wealth of regional and national political experience to his new position, and has spent more than a decade working with Democratic stakeholders at the local, state and national levels.

Jorge led Hispanic outreach at the White House under President Barack Obama and served as state director for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 Nevada operation. Most recently, Jorge worked as campaign manager for Daley for Mayor, where he led a staff of more than 50 and served as spokesperson for the campaign.

Vilmain is a political strategist from Wisconsin and is active in the national progressive movement.

Among other posts she’s held over the years, Vilmain served as state director in Wisconsin for the Gore-Liebermann campaign in 2000. She also served as the general election strategist for the DNC over the 2004 presidential cycle.

In addition to these hires, the Convention Host Committee also announced key additions to its senior leadership team on Wednesday.

These include Liz Gilbert, who will serve as host committee executive director; Shirley Ellis and Martha Love, who will be senior advisors to the committee; Marcus Switzer, who will be the committee’s finance director; and Alex Lasry, who’ll be the committee’s finance chair.

“I’m humbled and excited to work with such an experienced and diverse team,” said DNCC CEO Joe Solmonese in a written statement. “I have no doubt in my mind that this team will play key leadership roles in successfully organizing one of the most consequential conventions to date.”

Solmonese said Wednesday’s announcement is just the beginning and that there are still a number of important positions to fill.

Additional hires, including members of the technical leadership team, will be announced in the near future, the DNC said.

“I couldn’t be more excited about the team we’ve put together to make sure next summer’s convention is a success,” said DNC Chair Tom Perez in a written statement. “By the time the balloons drop in July, I’m confident our nominee will be in the best position to defeat Donald Trump.”

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