Janet Dewey, executive director of the Air Bag and Seat Belt Safety Campaign, knows the value of a good visual to enhance the power of her message. She recently sent a memo to folks in her organization:

"The Air Bag & Seat Belt Safety Campaign is searching for a photo to include on the Campaign's newly designed air bag safety flyer," she wrote. "Specifically, we need a vehicle crash scene where clearly there is a victim (ideally a child) being worked on by paramedics/police/other, or being put into an ambulance. If the victim in the picture is an adult, it would be best if that is not apparent."

"We are working on a very tight timeline and would appreciate your immediate response. If you have a picture that fits the above description, please contact Madalene Milano and Greer, Margolis, Mitchell, Burns & Assoc. . . . She can then determine how best to receive your suggested photo(s)."

Hey, maybe some shots of Mini-Me from the Austin Powers movie would do?

Never mind, Dewey said yesterday, "we have a picture that will work." It's "a crash scene and it has two vehicles and two emergency people working on a person." What about the kid angle?

"You can't tell whether it's a child or adult," she said, but it "conveys the tragedy," which in turn vividly conveys the message that people need to pay much more attention to auto safety to prevent this trauma.

A Higher Calling Than Clinton?

White House deputy counsel Cheryl Mills, who surprised observers when she turned down a chance to be the first woman and first minority White House counsel, is said to be getting close to a deal for a most major job with Oxygen, which calls itself a "converged online cable-TV network, all in the service of women," according to its Web site.

The operation has a heavy-duty group of backers, including CEO Geraldine Laybourne, who built Nickelodeon, and producers Marcy Carsey, Tom Werner and Caryn Mandabach, who created some memorable female TV characters, including Roseanne, and "talk-show titan Oprah Winfrey." At this point the operation is a "family of Web sites--Thrive Online, Moms Online, Electra, Ka-ching, The Lab, plus Oprah Online, which joins us later this summer " to talk about issues such as raising a family, finding a job, health and financial matters and such.

Changing of the Guard

Moving up. . . . At the White House, Mark Lindsay, who used to be counsel to former representative Louis Stokes (D-Ohio), is to head the White House office of management and administration. Lindsay has been the deputy head of the office since June. Bradley J. Kiley, who has held several key jobs at the Democratic National Committee, moves in to be the new deputy head of the office.

Moving out. . . . Highly regarded Democratic veteran B.J. Thornberry, now the right-hand person to Department of Housing and Urban Development Deputy Secretary Saul Ramirez, is leaving to become executive director of the Democratic Governors' Association, replacing Katy Whalen, who went to Harvard. Thornberry, former executive director of the DNC and former deputy chief of staff at the Department of Interior, held several positions in Colorado state government before moving to Washington.

Also leaving HUD is Steven A. "Scoop" Cohen, deputy assistant for public affairs, and the first Clinton campaign volunteer in Little Rock, where he was a deputy to George Stephanopoulos (who nicknamed him). Cohen, who worked in the White House press office and in Hillary Rodham Clinton's office, is to be a vice president at a public relations firm.

Heavy-Handed, This Podesta

Folks at the White House were wondering who Chief of Staff John D. Podesta had taken a swing at when he showed up at work last week with his heavily bandaged hand in a sling. Another theory, given what the hand looked like, was that Podesta, known for his cooking, somehow mangled it in a meat grinder or, more likely, his Bass-o-matic. Turns out it was corrective surgery to improve flexibility.

Just a Clique Away

Speaking of Podesta, business must be good at his old firm, podesta.com, now being run by his brother, Tony. The operation has just hired seven new staffers--all women--from the Hill and the administration.

The group includes: Sheila Nix, who has been most recently chief of staff to Sen. Bob Kerrey (D-Neb.); Anne Lewis, a former Senate aide and assistant secretary for public affairs at the Labor Department in the Clinton administration; Pat Lewis, who worked in the Clinton White House press shop and more recently headed the office of public and media outreach at the Department of Agriculture; April Lehman, since 1991 a legislative assistant for House Majority Leader Richard K. Armey (R-Tex.); Amy Henderson, legislative counsel for Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Tex.) who's handled Senate Commerce Committee matters on telecom, high-tech and transportation issues; Kristin Leary, former Senate aide and more recently legislative director for the United Mine Workers of America; and, Jennifer Hogan, former 1996 Dole campaign worker and more recently an aide on the Senate Republican Policy Committee.