Eric Yaverbaum, a New York PR executive whose wife is suffering from multiple sclerosis, is using his public relations acumen to start his own grass-roots campaign in support of stem cell research.
Yaverbaum is asking caretakers, patients and friends to send him their old shoes and notes (Jericho Communications, 304 Hudson St., Suite 700, New York, N.Y. 10013) for President Bush, urging him not to veto legislation supporting stem cell research. He'll deliver the notes to the White House and donate the shoes to charity after making sure that they are seen.
"We can't have a 'Million-Caretaker Walk' in Washington. We have to be home when we're not working," Yaverbaum said.
The head of Jericho Communications, Yaverbaum is the author of "Public Relations Kit for Dummies" and "Leadership Secrets of the World's Most Successful CEOs."
While many scientists and others believe stem cells might hold the key to cures of many diseases, Yaverbaum acknowledged that even if research is expanded now, any results would probably come too late for his wife, Suri Nisker, 42.
"I want to make sure . . . I do everything I can to make a difference," he said.
The House voted last month to approve a bill that would repeal the limits that Bush imposed when he announced the first federal funding for stem cell research in 2001. Bush, who has said he opposes federal funding for research that involves destroying embryos, has vowed to veto the bill if it passes the Senate.
Former U.N. Enovy Joins Quinn Gillespie
Quinn Gillespie & Associates is bringing on Stuart Holliday, most recently U.S. ambassador to the United Nations for special political affairs, to head the lobby shop's international practice.
Holliday will oversee the company's foreign government and international trade clients and international business as well as provide foreign policy counsel to domestic clients. Representing foreign interests, Holliday will be registered under the Foreign Agent Registration Act (FARA), Ed Gillespie said.
"It's a big area. We've not been in it much in the past," Gillespie said in an interview.
Holliday also will be subject to a one-year ban on lobbying the State Department.
Before working at the United Nations, Holliday was coordinator of State's Bureau of International Information Programs and principal deputy assistant secretary for public affairs. He also served as associate director of presidential personnel at the White House.
Holliday began working for then-Texas Gov. George W. Bush in 1998 as assistant policy director. He was a policy adviser to then-vice presidential candidate Richard Cheney in 2000. Holliday won't be lonely for Republican colleagues: Gillespie, for one, is the former chairman of the Republican National Committee. "Having served the president for more than seven years in Austin, Washington and the U.N., Stuart knows the Bush administration well," Gillespie said in a statement.
Postal Official to U.S. Strategies
Paul Van Coverden, the veteran director of the U.S. Postal Service's government relations office, has opened up shop at U.S. Strategies Corp. As senior vice president of USSC, Van Coverden will create a new practice focusing on the $900 billion mailing industry, federal and postal workforces, government procurement and such.
"I think there's a huge opportunity out there" dealing with postal issues, said USSC chief executive Eric Hanson.
JPMorgan Chase Hires Ex-Senate Aide
Naomi Gendler Camper, most recently the banking and tax aide of Sen. Tim Johnson (D-S.D.), is joining the private banking world. She's signing up with JPMorgan Chase as co-head of federal government relations, with Stephen Ruhlen, a former deputy assistant for legislative affairs to Vice President Cheney.
At JPMorgan Chase, she succeeds Victoria "Penny" Rostow, who is leaving, a bank statement said, "to pursue other interests in the financial services field."
Financial Dynamics Appoints Senior VP
Tom Gentile is moving to Financial Dynamics Business Communications next week as a senior vice president, one of five Fleishman-Hillard folks who have left over the past 18 months for Financial Dynamics. Stanley Collender, managing director of Financial Dynamics's Washington office, home to the company's public affairs practice, also came from Fleishman-Hillard.
At Fleishman-Hillard, Gentile worked with such clients as AARP, the Library of Congress and the Office of the First Lady.
Gentile said it "wasn't a decision easy to make" to leave Fleishman-Hillard but the move will allow him to expand into dealing with financial issues.
Also moving about . . . Scott Corely has joined Microsoft's D.C. office as the company's Senate Republican lobbyist. He previously worked for the Information Technology Industry Council and as an aide to Sen. George Allen (R-Va.). Corely succeeds Lori Otto, who left for Starbucks Corp.
Mary Ann Gilleece, formerly a managing director of Van Scoyoc Kelly, has joined Holland & Knight as a partner in the law firm's public policy and regulation group. Gilleece earlier was counsel to the House Armed Services Committee and a deputy undersecretary of defense.
Brian Reardon, previously a senior aide at the White House's National Economic Council, has joined Venn Strategies as a principal. Reardon earlier served as staff director and chief economist of the Senate Republican Policy Committee and was lead tax lobbyist for the National Federation of Independent Business.