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Shop Talk: Kaine Camp Takes Form

Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo

Former Virginia Gov. Tim Kaine (D) has rounded out his Senate campaign’s senior staff as he revs up for a competitive open-seat race with former Sen. George Allen (R).

In a statement Wednesday, Kaine announced six additions to his team — all women — and said that Press Secretary Brandi Hoffine will take on a new role as communications director.

Lily Adams takes over as press secretary after holding the same position in the office of Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.). Adams was deputy press secretary in 2010 for then-Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland’s re-election campaign and served on Creigh Deeds’ 2009 Virginia gubernatorial campaign.

Also joining the campaign are field director Ally Coll, who most recently worked on the campaigns of Washington Sens. Patty Murray and Maria Cantwell; political director Tyee Davenport, who has been serving as deputy political director at the state Democratic Party; and Northern Virginia political director Sindy Benavides, who was national director of community outreach at the Democratic National Committee.

Nicole Gyorfi Titus, the director of digital media, joins the campaign after serving as director of business development for new media firm Blue State Digital. Dawn Hillard, the operations director, has served in the same position for the state party since 2009.

Warren Picks Bay State-based Spokeswoman

Elizabeth Warren’s campaign announced Tuesday the addition of Alethea Harney as press secretary for Warren’s challenge to Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown (R).

Harney joins the Democrat’s campaign from the office of Massachusetts Treasurer Steven Grossman, where she held the same position. Harney previously served as director of communications and public affairs for Gov. Deval Patrick’s team that tracked how federal stimulus money was spent in the state.

Harney was a senior staffer on Vice President Joseph Biden’s 2008 presidential campaign in Iowa and served on the national advance team for Sen. John Kerry’s (Mass.) 2004 presidential campaign.

The Tufts University graduate was an associate vice president at Rasky Baerlein Strategic Communications, where she worked on several successful statewide issue campaigns.

Beefing Up in New District

Rep. Jason Altmire (Pa.) announced Wednesday the addition of Angela Ruslander as campaign manager, as he begins a redistricting-forced race with fellow Democratic Rep. Mark Critz.

Ruslander has worked as manager, fundraiser and field organizer for campaigns at all levels, including Congressional races in Iowa and New Hampshire. She also served for more than three years as a senior staffer for Rep. Bruce Braley (D-Iowa).

Ruslander joins Abigail Silverman, an Altmire fundraising assistant and director of new media, in Altmire’s Ross Township headquarters. Altmire’s 2010 campaign manager, Rachael Heisler, is currently serving as a political adviser and finance director.

“I am confident that we have put together a team of highly-skilled and experienced campaign professionals unmatched anywhere in the country,” Altmire said in a statement. “Angela’s well-rounded experience is perfectly suited to the unique nature of the 2012 election in the newly-drawn 12th Congressional District.”

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