Thursday, November 06, 2008

Profiles of Obama's White House: Senior Adviser David Axelrod

Born: 1955, Lower East Side, Manhattan, New York


  • Graduate of University of Chicago 1977, majored in political science. Interned at the Chicago Tribune during his undergraduate studies.


  • Political consultant based in Chicago, Illinois. He is best known as a top adviser to Barack Obama, first in Obama's 2004 campaign for the U.S. Senate in Illinois and later as chief strategist for Obama's 2008 presidential campaign.
  • Senior partner of AKP&D Message and Media and was a political writer for the Chicago Tribune. Operates ASK Public Strategies.
  • Supporter of Cook County Commissioner Forrest Claypool, who helped Axelrod found his firm (under the name Axelrod and Associates).
  • Longtime strategist for Chicago mayor Richard M. Daley and styles himself a "specialist in urban politics."


  • 1977: Hired by the Chicago Tribune
  • 1981: Became the youngest political writer for the Chicago Tribune
  • 1984: Communications director for US Senator Paul Simon; within weeks he was promoted to co-campaign manager.
  • 1985: Formed a political consultancy, Axelrod & Associates.
  • 1987: Worked on the successful reelection campaign of Harold Washington, Chicago's first black mayor.
  • 2004: Spokesman for the presidential campaign of John Edwards.
  • 2006: Consulted for several campaigns, including for the successful campaigns of Eliot Spitzer in New York's gubernatorial election and for Deval Patrick in Massachusetts's gubernatorial election. Axelrod also served in 2006 as the chief political adviser for Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee chair U.S. Representative Rahm Emanuel for the U.S. House of Representatives elections, in which the Democrats gained 31 seats.
  • 2008: Chief strategist and media adviser for Barack Obama's 2008 presidential campaign.

    Axelrod has early ties with newly appointed Chief of Staff Rahm Emmanuel as they both worked for Paul Simon in 1984 and both spent their early careers in Chicago.

    Interestingly, he specializes in campaigning specifically for black politicians. As reported by the New York Times, he was criticized by Reverend Jeremiah Wright for "while he was expert at promoting black candidates with white voters, he did not know much about relating to the black community...They're spiriting him away from people in the African-American community. David doesn't know the African-American church scene."

    He has a reputation for being cool-headed and having a knack for diffusing things.

    Obviously, by his resume, he is a smart guy and a quick read. So far, it appears Obama is surrounding himself with sharp people.
  • 1 comment:

    Anonymous said...

    THIS is a sharp person? This is no more than a follower and someone who see's an opportunity to advance himself no matter the cost.
    His beliefs are lame and misguided and he is an ideologue.