Joel Bailey (left) is a new hire in Rep. Doris Matsuis office, while Mara Lee and Kyle Victor are moving to new roles in the office.
Bailey, also 28, gained most of his political experience from working as a Congressional staffer. Before being hired by Matsui, the Indiana native worked for then-Rep. Baron Hill (D-Ind.), who lost his re-election in November.
But the gig, where he worked for three years, gave him the necessary ties to Matsui’s office. Not only were both lawmakers on the House Energy and Commerce Committee, but their offices were located across the hall from each other.
“I had become friends with some of the Congresswoman’s staff, so I already knew everyone prior to joining the office,” Bailey said.
After graduating from the College of Charleston in 2005, Bailey started an internship with Rep. Nick Rahall (D-W.Va.) He did his next internship at the Glover Park Group, a D.C.-based communications firm, which turned into a full-time job. But after Hill won his election in 2006, Bailey seized the opportunity to get back into politics.
“I had always wanted to work on the Hill ever since middle school, which is kind of lame now that I think about it,” Bailey said with a laugh.
Victor also started his political career on the Hill, but in the Senate. After graduating from Whittier College in 2002, he secured a job with Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) He stayed in the office for five years and covered small-business issues.
“I graduated shortly after 9/11 and was looking for a job in the financial industry, but the job market in that sector was scarce,” Victor said. “I was always very interested in politics so I looked for a job on Capitol Hill, and I was fortunate enough to be hired by Sen. Carper.”
The 30-year-old, who hails from Delaware, left for Matsui’s office in 2007. He worked as a senior legislative assistant, where he handled energy, technology and small-business issues. He was promoted at the end of January.
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Following the speeches from elected officials, the crowd stands at long tables as they dig into BBQ, brunswick stew, cadillac rice at the Law Enforcement Cookout at Wayne Dasher's pond house in Glennville, Ga., on Thursday, April 17, 2014.