Democracy in Action

Independent Work in Political Communications Since 1989 

Under the DEMOCRACY IN ACTION label I have sought to educate citizens about the political process and their role in making it work.  I have focused particularly on American presidential campaigns.  Currently I'm tidying up loose ends on my P2012 website, which builds on my work on the 1992-2008 campaigns. 

One question I get asked frequently is "is there a partisan or ideological leaning to my work?"  Simply put, no.  I'm interested in how political entities from across the spectrum are communicating their ideas.  My work has focused on understanding what makes for effective campaign communications and on visual aspects of political communications (images that resonate).  Many of these projects grew out of my studies at The George Washington University, where I graduated with a B.A. in Political Communication.  I have also earned a certificate in graphic and web design from the CDIA at Boston University in Washington, DC.

Field Guide to the 1992 Campaign
Vote America
Photodog on the Trail, 1996
Cover-ing The Campaign (2000 Exhibit)
P2004 W & the Dems, 2004 Campaign
The Race for the 2008 Republican Nomination
The Race for the 2008 Democratic Nomination
Exhibit: Obama on the cover: The first year.

I have had the opportunity to observe democracy at work in other countries, and am very interested in more such experiences.  As a member of Students for Solidarity and Democracy in Eastern Europe, I visited Poland during the transition from communism.  It was an exciting time as people debated whether a "third way" could be found between capitalism and socialism and the country opened to foreign  investment and influences.  In 1993 I observed the election where New Zealand adopted the Mixed Member Proportional system of voting.  The United States is a great democracy, but we can always do better, and there are things we can learn from other countries, even as they learn from our example.

In addition to my projects on presidential campaigns, my longest running endeavor is the Campaign Literature Project, a library of campaign literature from all U.S. Senate and gubernatorial races going back to 1989; I've also gathered materials from many U.S. House races.  One of my long-term goals is to analyze these materials across election cycles.  It will be instructive to see how campaign literature is evolving and what the differences are from cycle to cycle.

If I can be of assistance or if you can offer any support or materials that would be of use to any of these endeavors please feel free to contact me.                                                                              

                            DEMOCRACY IN ACTION
                            U.S. Mail:
                            P.O. Box 19007
                            Washington, DC  20036-9007
                            (202) 462-0145

What is the first part of politics?  Education.  What is the second?  Education.  And the third?  Education.    --Jules Michelet, French historian