The latest scandal in Springfield – in addition to male sexual harassment of female lobbyists and legislators, is Rauner’s hiring of a digital communications director at $125,000 a year with the money coming from the mental health budget.
Political reporter for the Springfield State Journal Register Bernard Schoenburg writes on it this morning.
But to me Schoenburg buries the lede.
The governor’s previous director of digital communications, BRIDGET SHANAHAN DAVIDSON, who is now director of media relations for the Illinois Education Association, was paid $80,000 annually and worked for the state from October 2016 to July. Her Linked In profile says she “produced social media campaigns and created content to engage followers and grow reach while successfully generating several earned media stories.” She produced Facebook Live events, managed a graphic designer, video editor and production crew, a still photographer and web redesign team – as well as managing Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat, “expanding engagement on all platforms.”
It said she “boosted Facebook reach to more than 2.5 million people during week-long campaign on Illinois budget crisis,” reinforced the governor’s messaging, and trained people from more than a dozen agencies on use of social media.
The Illinois Education Association – I was a member for over 30 years – had Charlie McBarron as Communications Director.
What a piece of work that guy was.
Because I was a local union president who was frequently critical of IEA leadership I was banned from his Twitter and Facebook feeds. That his business, of course. I was also banned from having the link to my blog ever appearing on the IEA website even while he posted links to the anti-union websites of phony news sites funded by the DeVos family foundation in Michigan.
McBarron retired this year and now the IEA has found someone even worse than McBarron – the former digital communications director for Bruce Rauner.
I would predict that IEA members should see no difference as a result of the new hire.