Candidates: Obama Alumni Running for Office or Holding Office

It is thrilling to see so many from this community seek to contribute by running for office, just as Barack Obama did more than 20 years ago.

Recognizing that we share a set of values and experiences but not necessarily the exact same views, the Alumni Association sees our role as spreading awareness of candidates, not endorsing them. We commit to not presuming to speak for the entire alumni community by making endorsements of candidates. We present the candidates here below so that you can learn more about their platforms, alumni connection, and the communities they represent.

The Obama Alumni Association is excited to support and share information about Obama Alumni who are running for office! Visit our resources page to submit your information or learn more.

Click one of the headers below to jump to a category of candidates. Within each category, candidates are listed by state and then alphabetically by surname.

 

Candidates for U.S. Congress

CALIFORNIA

ammar campa najjar.png

Ammar Campa-Najjar

Running for U.S. House of Representatives, CA-50

Support and Learn More: https://www.campacampaign.com/

Election Date: November 6, 2018

His Alumni Experience:

  • Field Director, California, Organizing for America (2012) 
  • White House Intern (2013)
  • Public Affairs Officer, U.S. Department of Labor (2016)

 

Brian Forde2 logo.png

Brian Forde

Running for U.S. House of Representatives, California-45

Support and learn more: www.forde.com

Election Date: June 5, 2018 (primary), Nov. 6, 2018 (general)

His Alumni Experience: 

  • Senior Advisor for Mobile and Data Innovation, The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (2011-2015)
 
SamJammal.png

Sam Jammal

Running for U.S. House of Representatives, CA-39

Support and learn more: http://sam4congress.com/

Election Date: November 6, 2018

His Alumni Experience:

  • Special Assistant to the Under Secretary of Commerce for Industry and Security, U.S. Department of Commerce (2011-2013
 
levi tillemann congress.jpg

Colorado

Levi Tillemann

Running for U.S. House of Representatives, CO-06

Learn more: https://www.leviforcolorado.com/

Election Date: June 26, 2018 (primary); November 6, 2018 (general)  

His Alumni Experience: 

  • Special Advisor for Policy and International Affairs, Department of Energy (2012-2014)
 
Lauren Underwood Logo.png

ILLINOIS

Lauren UnderWOOD

Running for U.S. House of Representatives, il-14

Support and learn more: www.underwoodforcongress.com

Election Date: March 20, 2018 (primary), November 8, 2018 (general)

Her Alumni Experience:

  • Senior Advisor to the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (2016-2017)
  • Special Assistant to the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (2014-2016)
 
ThomasHeckroth Logo.png

IOWA

Thomas Heckroth: IA

Running for U.S. House of Representatives, Iowa - 01

Support and learn more: www.ThomasHeckroth.com

Election Date: June 5, 2018 (primary)

His Alumni Experience: 

  • Special Assistant, Bureau of International Labor Affairs (ILAB), U.S. Department of Labor (2009-2011)    
 
BrentWelder Logo.png

kansas

Brent Welder

Running for U.S. House of Representatives, ks-03

Support and learn more: http://www.brentwelder.com

Election Date: August 7, 2018 (primary), November 6, 2018 (general)

His Alumni Experience: 

  • Regional Field Director in Iowa Caucus, Obama for America Campaign (2008)
  • Regional GOTV Director in Nevada Caucus, Obama for America Campaign (2008)
  • Regional Field Director in New Mexico Primary, Obama for America Campaign (2008)
  • Central GOTV Director in Pennsylvania Primary, Obama for America Campaign (2008)   
 
rufus for congress 2018.png

MASSACHUSETTS

Rufus Gifford

Running for U.S. House of Representatives, MA-03

Learn more: https://rufusgifford.com/

Election Date:  September 18, 2018 (primary); November 6, 2018 (general)

His Alumni Experience:

  • Finance Director, Obama for America (2012) 
  • U.S. Ambassador to Denmark (2013-2017) 
 

Steve Kerrigan

steve kerrigan congress.png

Running for U.s. House of Representatives, MA-03

Learn more: https://www.stevekerrigan.com/ 

Election Date: September 18, 2018 (primary); November 6, 2018 (general)

His Alumni Experience:

  • Chief of Staff, Presidential Inaugural Committee (2009)
  • CEO, Presidential Inaugural Committee (2013)
 
Fayrouz Saad logo.png

MICHIGAN

Fayrouz saad

Running for U.s. house of representatives, MI-11

Support and learn more: https://www.fayrouzsaad.com/

Election Date: August 7, 2018 (primary), Nov. 6, 2018 (general)

Her Alumni Experience:

  • Special Assistant for the Office for Civil Rights and Civil Liberties, U.S. Department of Homeland Security (2009-2010)
  • Advisor to the Assistant Secretary for Intergovernmental Affairs, U.S. Department of Homeland Security (2010-2011)
     

Elissa Slotkin

Running for U.S. House of Representatives, MI-8

Support and learn more: www.elissaforcongress.com

Election Date: November 6, 2018

Her Alumni Experience:

  • Acting Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs & various other roles, U.S. Department of Defense (2012-2017)
 
HaleyStevens Logo.jpg

Haley Stevens: MI

Running for U.S. House of Representatives, MI-11

Support and learn more: www.haleystevensforcongress.com

Election Date: Aug. 7, 2018 (primary), Nov. 6, 2018 (general)

Alumni Experience:

  • Briefing Director to Vice Presidential Nominee Biden, Chicago, IL, Obama for America (2008)
  • Senate Confirmations and Cabinet Designees, Obama Transition Team (2008-2009)
  • Chief of Staff, U.S. Auto Rescue Taskforce, U.S. Department of the Treasury (2009-2011)
  • Advisor, U.S. Economic Development Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce (2011-2012)   
 
DanFeehan Logo.png

minnesota

Dan Feehan

Running for U.S. House of Representatives, mn-01

Support and learn more: www.danfeehan.com

Election Date: November 6, 2018

His Alumni Experience:

  • White House Fellow, U.S. Department of Defense (2013-2014)
  • Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense (Readiness), U.S. Department of Defense (2014-2015)
  • Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense (Readiness), U.S. Department of Defense (2015-2017)
 
Screen Shot 2017-09-16 at 9.43.15 AM.png

MISSOURI

demarco Davidson

Running for U.S. House of Representatives, MO-01

Support and learn more: www.DeMarco4Congress.com

Election Date: August 7, 2018 (primary), November 6, 2018 (general)

His Alumni Experience:

  • 2008 Obama Campaign, Field Organizer in MO
 
AndyKim Logo.png

NEW JERSEY

Andy kim

Running for U.S. House of representatives, nj-03

Support and learn more: www.andykimforcongress.com

Election Date: June 5, 2018 (primary), November 6, 2018 (general)

His Alumni Experience

  • Director for Iraq, White House National Security Council (2013-2015)
  • Iraq Country Director, Office of the Secretary of Defense - Policy (2013)
  • Strategic Adviser to Commanding Generals David Petraeus and John Allen, Afghanistan, Department of Defense (2011)
  • Iraq Foreign Affairs Officer, Department of State (2009-2011)
 
malinowski for congress nj.png

Tom Malinowski

Running for H.S. House of Representatives, NJ-07

Learn more: http://www.malinowskifornj.com/

Election Date: November 6, 2018

His Alumni Experience: 

  • Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor (2014-2017)
 
deb haaland congress.png

new mexico

Debra Haaland

Running for U.S. House of Representatives, NM-01

Support and learn morehttps://debforcongress.com/

Election Date: June 5, 2018

Her Alumni Experience:

  • Native American Vote Director, New Mexico, Obama for America (2012) 
 
photo.jpg

TEXAS

Colin Allred

Running for U.S. House of Representatives, TX-32

Support and learn morehttps://www.colinallred.com/

Election Date: November 6, 2018

His Alumni Experience:

  • Special Assistant to the General Counsel, Department of Housing and Urban Development (2016-2017)
 
Screen Shot 2017-09-15 at 12.22.32 PM.png

ADRIENNE BELL

Running for U.S. House of Representatives, TX-14

Support and learn more: www.Bell2018.com

Election Date: March 6, 2018 (primary)

Her Alumni Experience:

  • 2012 Obama Campaign, Field Organizer, Houston, Texas 
 
EdMeier Logo.png

ED meier

Running for u.s. house of representatives, tx-32

Support and learn more: www.edfortexas.com

Election Date: November 6, 2018

His Alumni Experience:

  • Senior Advisor to Deputy Secretary of State, U.S. Department of State (2009-2012)
 
lindsey davis stover for congress.jpg

VIRGINIA

Lindsay Davis Stover

Running for U.S. House of Representatives, VA-10

Support and learn morehttps://www.lindseyforcongress.com/ 

Election Date: November 6, 2018

Her Alumni Experience:

  • White House Liaison, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (2011-2012)
  • Senior Advisor for Strategic Communications to the Secretary, U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (2012-2013)
 
TalleySergent.png

WEST VIRGINIA

Talley Sergent

Running for U.S. House of Representatives, Wv-02

Support and learn more: www.talleysergent.com

Election Date: May 8, 2018 (primary), November 2018 (general)    

Her Alumni Experience: 

  • Director of Strategic Initiatives, U.S. Department of State (2009-2013)
  • Advance Associate, Executive Office of the President (2009-2013)
 

Candidates for State Government

January Contreras

Running for Attorney General of Arizona

Support and learn more: https://www.januaryforaz.com    

Election Date: November 6, 2018

Her Alumni Experience:

  • Senior Advisor to Secretary Napolitano, U.S. Department of Homeland Security (2009)
 
jeff bleich CA lt gov.png

Jeff Bleich

Running for Lieutenant Governor of California

Learn more: http://www.jeffbleich.com/

Election Date: June 5, 2018 (primary); November 6, 2018 (general)

His Alumni Experience: 

  • Founding Member and California Co-Chair, Obama for America National Finance Committee (2007-2009)
  • Co-Chair, Advisory Committee on Higher Education, Transition Team (2009)
  • Special Counsel to the President (2009)
  • U.S. Ambassador to Australia (2009-2013)
 
Steve Dunwoody Logo.jpg

Steve Dunwoody

Running for California State Assembly 54th District

Support and learn more: www.dunwoodyforcalifornia.com

Election Date: June 5, 2018

His Alumni Experience: 

  • 2007-2008 Field Organizer, Iowa, Obama Campaign
  • 2008 Field Organizer, Nevada, Washington State, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Kentucky, North Carolina, Obama Campaign
  • 2008 Deputy Outreach Director, Michigan, Obama Campaign
  • Special Assistant to Deputy Secretary of Energy, U.S. Department of Energy
  • Administrative Assistant, National Security Council, The White HouseSpecial Assistant for Budget and Appropriations, U.S. Department of Defense
     
 
Buffy-Wicks-Logo_tr_2000.png

Buffy Wicks

Running for CALIFORNIA STATE ASSEMBLY, DISTRICT 15 (eAST bAY)

Support and learn more: https://buffywicks.com/ 

Election Date: November 6, 2018

Her Alumni Experience:

  • State Director, Obama for America (2007-2008)
  • Deputy Director, White House Office of Public Engagement (2009-2010)
  • National Director of Operation Vote, Obama for America (2011-2012)
 
Rochelle-Galindo-Logo-2017.png

Rochelle Galindo

Running for colorado STATE House, district 50

Support and learn more: www.galindoforcolorado.com

Election Date: November 6, 2018

Her Alumni Experience:

  • 2012 Obama Campaign, Field Organizer, Weld County, Colorado
 
Jena Griswold Logo.jpg

Jena Griswold

Running for Colorado Secretary of State

Support and learn more: www.jenaforcolorado.com

Election Date: November 6, 2018

Her Alumni Experience:

  • Deputy Voter Protection Director in Colorado, Obama for America Campaign (2012)       
 

Dylan Roberts

Running for Colorado State House, District 26

Support and learn more: www.dylanroberts.org

Election Date: November 6, 2018

His Alumni Experience:

  • Field Organizer, Colorado, OFA (2008)
  • Deputy Field Director, Colorado, OFA (2012)
 

Phil Weiser

Running for Attorney General of Colorado

Support and learn more: www.philforcolorado.com

Election Date: November 6, 2018

His Alumni Experience:

  • Deputy Assistant Attorney General, Antitrust Division, Department of Justice (2009-2010)
  • Senior Advisor, Technology & Innovation, White House (2010-2011)
 

Cedric McMinn

Running for Florida State Representative, District 109    

Support and learn more: www.ElectCedricMcMinn.com

Election Date: August 2018

His Alumni Experience:

  • Political and African American Outreach Deputy Director, Tampa Bay, FL area (2008)
 
John Norris Logo.png

John Norris

Running for Governor of Iowa

Support and learn more: www.norrisforthepeople.com

Election Date: November 6, 2018

His Alumni Experience:

  • Chief of Staff, U.S. Department of Agriculture (2009-2010)
  • Commissioner, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (2010-2014)
  • U.S. Minister-Counselor Agriculture, United Nations Food and Agricultural Organization and the World Food Program (2014-2016)
 
QuentinPalfrey logo.png

Quentin Palfrey

Running for Lieutenant Governor of Massachusetts

Support and learn more: www.quentinpalfrey.com

Election Date: November 6, 2018

Alumni Experience:

  • Voter Protection Director, Ohio, Obama Campaign (2008)
  • Deputy General Counsel for Strategic Initiatives, U.S. Department of Commerce (2009-2011)
  • Senior Advisor for Jobs & Competitiveness, The White House Office of Science & Technology Policy (2011-2013)                                          
 

Nate Loewentheil

Running for Maryland State delegate, District 46

Support and learn more: www.nateforstate2018.com

Election Date: June 2018 (Democratic Primary)

His Alumni Experience:

  • Policy Advisor & Senior Policy Advisor, National Economic Council, White House (2013-2016)
  • Special Assistant to the President, National Economic Council (2016-2017)
 
 
alec ross governor logo.jpg

Alec Ross

Running for Governor of Maryland

Support and learn more: https://alecross.com/

Election Date: June 26, 2018 (primary); November 6, 2018 (general)

His Alumni Experience:

  • Convener for Tech and Media Policy, Obama for America (2007-2008)
  • Senior Advisor for Innovation to the Secretary, State Department (2009-2013)
 
 
Wiley Nickel Logo.jpg

Wiley Nickel

Running for North Carolina State Senate, District 16


Support and learn more: www.wileynickelfornc.com

Election Date: November 6, 2018

His Alumni Experience: 

  • National Advance Staff, Obama for America (2008)

  • Event Manager (Southern Ball & Staff Party), Presidential Inaugural Committee (2008-2009)

  • National Advance Staff, The White House (2009-2010)

  • Advance/Events Consultant, Democratic National Committee (2010-2011)

  • National Advance Staff, The White House (2011-2012)
     

 
steve-dettelbach.jpg

STEVE DETTELBACH

RUNNING FOR ATTORNEY GENERAL OF OHIO

Support and learn more:

https://act.myngp.com/Forms/-6633857233442370816

Election Date: November 6, 2018

His Alumni Experience: 

  • US Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio (2009-2016)
 

Betty Sutton: OH

Running for Governor of Ohio

Support and learn more: www.bettysutton.com

Election Date: November 6, 2018

Her Alumni Experience:

  • Administrator, Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation (2013-2017)
 

Candidates for Local and Municipal Office

TonyWashington.png

Tony Washington

Running for Tax Collector of Jefferson County, Arkansas     

Support and learn more: www.tonywashington.net

Election Date: May 22, 2018 (primary), Nov. 6, 2018 (general)  
 
His Alumni Experience: 

  • 2008 Political Director Arkansas, Obama for America Campaign    

 
george stern jeff co clerk.gif

George Stern

Running for Clerk and Recorder of Jefferson County, Colorado

Learn more: http://www.georgesternforcolorado.com/

Election Date: November 6, 2018

His Alumni Experience: 

  • Intern, Office of the White House Counsel, The White House (2015)
 

LIsa Hunter

lisa hunter ward 6.jpg

Running for District of Columbia City Council, Ward 6

Learn more: https://www.lisahunterforward6.com/

Election Date: June 19, 2018

Her Alumni Experience:

  • Field Organizer, St. Louis, MO, Obama for America (2008)
  • Special Assistant, U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (2010-2013)
 

Ashwani Jain

Running for MARYLAND'S Montgomery County Council, At-Large

Support and learn more: http://www.voteashwanijain.com/

Election Date: June 26, 2018 (primary); Nov. 6, 2018 (general)

His Alumni Experience:

  • Maryland Field Coordinator, Obama for America (2007-2009)
  • Maryland Student Director, Organizing for America (2009-2012)
  • Presidential Personnel Staff Assistant for Outreach and Recruitment, Executive Office of the President, The White House (2014-2015)
  • Deputy White House Liaison, Office of the Secretary, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (2015-2016)
  • Director of Outreach for the Cancer Moonshot Summit, Office of the Vice President, The White House (2016)
  • Associate Director of External Affairs, Office of the Secretary, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (2016-2017)
 
Paul Monteiro logo.png

Paul Monteiro

Running for cOUNTY eXECUTIVE OF pRINCE gEORGE'S cOUNTY, mARYLAND

Support and learn more: www.paulforprincegeorges.com

Election Date: June 26, 2018 (primary), Nov. 6, 2018 (general)

His Alumni Experience: 

  • National Deputy Director for Religious Affairs, Chicago, IL (2007-2008)

  • Associate Director, Office of Public Engagement, The White House (2009-2013)National Director, AmeriCorps VISTA (2014-2015)
  • Acting Director, Community Relations Service, U.S. Department of Justice (2015-2017)        
 

Hans Riemer

Running for re-election for Maryland Montgomery County Council, At-Large

Support and learn more: www.hansriemer.com

Election Date: June 2018 (Primary)

His Alumni Experience:

  • National Youth Vote Director, Chicago (2007)
 
static1.squarespace.png

Ben Shnider

Running for Maryland's Montgomery County Council, District 3

Support and learn more: https://www.shniderforcouncil.com/

Election Date: June 26, 2018 (primary); November 6, 2018 (general)

His Alumni Experience:

  • Field Organizer, Detroit, Obama for America (2008)
  • Field Organizer, Atlanta, Obama for America (2008)
 

Recently Elected or In Office

Elected officials in this section are listed alphabetically by surname.

Assemblyman Michael Blake: NY

New York State Assembly, District 79

Learn morehttp://assembly.state.ny.us/mem/Michael-Blake/ 

In office since: 2015

His Alumni Experience:

  • Deputy Political Director, Iowa, Obama for America (2008)
  • Director of National Labor Outreach, Presidential Inaugural Committee (2009)
  • Associate Director of Public Engagement & Deputy Associate Director, Office of Intergovernmental Affairs (2009-2012)
  • National Deputy Director of Operation Vote, Obama for America (2012)
  • Senior Advisor for the Office of Public Engagement, Presidential Inaugural Committee (2013)
 
Covert.png

Ryan Covert: MI

City CouncilMembeR, New Baltimore, Michigan

Learn more

In office since: November 7, 2017

His Alumni Experience:

  • 2012 Campaign Field Organizer in MI
 
jenny durkan mayor

Jenny Durkan: WA

Mayor of Seattle, Washington

Support and learn more: 

In office since: November 28, 2017

Her Alumni Experience:

  • U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Washington (2009-2014)
 
KellyGonez-logo-website3 (1).png

Kelly FitzPatrick-Gonez: CA

Los Angeles Unified School District Board, District 6

Learn morehttp://www.kellygonez.com/

In office since: 2017

Her Alumni Experience:

  • Policy Advisor, U.S. Department of Education (2014-2016)
  • Communications and Field Organizer, Nevada, Obama for America (2012)
  • White House Intern, Speechwriting (2011)
 

Zach Klein: OH

City Attorney-Elect of Columbus, OH

Support and learn morehttp://zachklein.us/

In office beginning: January 1, 2018

His Alumni Experience:

  • Deputy Director of Management and Administration, Office of the Vice President (2009)
 
Carianna.png

Carrianna Suiter Kuruvilla: MD

Hyattsville, MD City council, Ward 3

Learn morewww.votecarrianna.com

In office since: 2017

Her Alumni Experience:

  • 2007 Iowa caucus staff, 2008 primary/caucus staff (MN, OH, WY, NC), 2008 general election staff (OH & PA)
  • White House Associate - Intergovernmental Affairs (2009)
  • Obama Appointee at the U.S. Department of Labor, most recently as the Director of Intergovernmental Affairs (2009-2017)
 

Senator Eric P. Lesser: MA

Massachusetts State Senate, First Hampden & Hampshire

Learn morehttps://malegislature.gov/Legislators/Profile/EPL0/District

In office since: 2015

His Alumni Experience:

  • Ground Logistics Advisor, Obama for America (2008)
  • Special Assistant to Senior Adviser David Axelrod, The White House
  • Director of Strategic Planning, Council of Economic Advisers, The White House
 

Alfonso Lopez: VA

Re-Elected to Virginia House of Delegates, District 49

Support and learn more: http://www.AlfonsoLopez.org

Re-Election Date: November 7, 2017; will remain in office in 2018 session

His Alumni Experience:

  • Assistant Administrator, Office of Congressional & Legislative Affairs, U.S. Small Business Administration (2010-2011)
  • White House Liaison, U.S. General Services Administration (2011)
 

Nick Melvoin: CA

Los Angeles SChool Board, District 4

Learn more: http://www.nickmelvoin.com/

In office since: 2017

His Alumni Experience:

  • Legal Protection Team Member, Columbus, OH (2012)
  • White House Intern, Domestic Policy Council (2013)