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Revitalizing State and Local Blogging

Session Type(s): Panel

Training Tag(s): Local, Media / Journalism / Blogging

Starts: Saturday, Jun. 9 3:00 PM

Ends: Saturday, Jun. 9 4:15 PM

Room: 552

Since the historic 2006 and 2008 election cycles, state and local blogospheres all around the country have been fragmenting and decaying to the detriment of the progressive movement. This panel will examine the challenges that surviving blogs face; discuss short-term projects that would help state and local bloggers strengthen their audience, reach and income through the rest of the 2012 cycle; and explore what can be done to sustain the Netroots community at the state and regional level long-term.

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Andrew Villeneuve

Andrew Villeneuve

Andrew is the founder and executive director of the Northwest Progressive Institute (NPI) and the Second Vice Chair of the King County Democrats, as well as a columnist for Reporter Newspapers. NPI’s projects include Pacific NW Portal, NPI Advocate, In Brief, the Olympia Newsriver, and Permanent Defense.

Andrew has helped organize opposition efforts to a long list of right wing initiatives in Washington State, beginning with Tim Eyman’s Initiative 776. Since 2002, his perspective has been sought by many of Washington State’s best-known newspapers, television, and radio stations. Andrew is a Netroots Nation veteran, having attended all six conventions to date (Las Vegas, Chicago, Austin, Pittsburgh, Las Vegas, Minneapolis).

my website


Kari Chisholm

Kari Chisholm

Kari Chisholm, president of Mandate Media, is an experienced campaign staffer, media strategist, political consultant, and interactive web developer. Over the last decade, Kari has worked with nearly 200 campaigns in over 20 states at every level.

In addition to his work as an internet strategist for campaigns across the country, he runs the award-winning state blog, He is also the founder of the nationally recognized progressive blog aggregator,

my website

Phillip Martin


Phillip Martin has worked in Texas politics for ten years. Most recently, he served as Policy Director for the Texas Legislative Study Group. Phillip led a team of ten policy analysts in evaluating every bill that came to the floor of the Texas House and completing projects such as Texas on the Brink. Over the last six years, Phillip has also been a writer and contributor for the popular Texas political blog, Burnt Orange Report. Phillip attended the University of Texas at Austin and got his Master’s in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School.

my website

Laura Packard

Laura Packard

Laura is a partner in the progressive digital consulting firm, PowerThru Consulting.

She has consulted for and trained progressive non-profits and political campaigns around the country, covering online strategy development, organizing and outreach, fundraising, messaging, advertising and social media.

Laura is a veteran of numerous political campaigns and organizations over the past decade, including serving as internet communications director for Senator Stabenow’s re-election in 2006, running the largest PAC in Michigan (Coalition for Progress) in 2007, interim executive director for the New Organizing Institute in 2008, communications for the AFL-CIO in Arkansas in 2009, new media director for the Bill Halter for Senate primary campaign in 2010, and director of the Secretary of State Project in the remainder of that year.

Laura was originally a political blogger and co-owner of from 2005-6. She later created and set up the 50 State Blog project for BlogPac in 2007.

my website

Bob Plain


Bob Plain is the editor/publisher of, since 2005 the best place on the web or otherwise to find news and commentary about the issues that matter most to progressives in Rhode Island. He took over the site earlier this year after parting ways with the mainstream media.

my website

Angelica Rubio


Angelica is a political junkie and blogger at She is also currently in the process of finalizing a 501c3 application for her organization, Center for Advocacy Rights and Engagement (CARE) in rural New Mexico. She is also a freelance writer and was recently published in the journal of North American Congress on Latin America, providing insight on the media’s negative use of the term “illegal” in the ongoing immigration debate.

my website

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