By The Hill Staff - 09/13/05 12:00 AM EDT
Sometimes it’s better to speed life up, and other times it’s best to slow things down, saving the more ambitious endeavors, like working on Capitol Hill, for a later date.
Such was the case with Amy Singerson, 23, who has been deputy press secretary in Rep. Dennis Rehberg’s (R-Mont.) office for a month. Born and raised in Atlanta, Singerson seemed to be called to the mountains out West in spring 2000, when she graduated from high school early. She fled to Jackson Hole, Wyo., to be a ski bum.
By the fall, she was ready for college at Montana State University in Bozeman, where she graduated this past July. She took her time, graduating in five and a half years because various internships lengthened her college experience.
Politics wasn’t always in her blood. Last summer, she lived on the Texas-Mexico border, where she worked as a general-assignment reporter for the Valley Morning Star of Harlingen, Texas. And this past spring, she got her first taste of politics when she came to Washington for an internship through her university with the Senate Finance Committee, working for Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.).
Singerson admits her political leanings are Republican and she said she knew she would seek a job with a Republican office when school was over. “I wanted the experience and I wanted to get my foot in the door,” she says.
Explaining her switch from journalist to flak, she says, “For some reason, I wanted to travel to the other side of the pen. I love it. Right after school to have something like this is incredible.”
Still, she says, it’s not easy: “The learning curve is from here to the moon.”
Diaz-Balart hires new aides
Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-Fla.) recently hired Kathleen Hennessey to be his D.C. scheduler and Tina O’Hara to be his new staff assistant.
Hennessey, 22, is a native of Rochester, N.Y. She graduated in 2004 from the State University of New York at Buffalo with a dual degree in political science and psychology. Owing to the fact that she had so many advanced-placement credits, she graduated in three and a half years.
Before joining Diaz-Balart’s office, she was a staff assistant in the executive department of the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) where she handled scheduling duties. She began as an intern at the NRCC, and finished with a job.
What does Hennessey like to do when she’s not working?
“Sleep,” she jokes. “I like to be with my friends. I just moved here a year ago, so I still like doing the tourist stuff, and I like to be outside.”
O’Hara, 27, is from New Smyrna Beach, Fla., and had worked as an intern for Diaz-Balart earlier in the year. After graduating from the University of South Carolina in December 1999, she worked as a graphic designer in New York City for two and a half years. In Diaz-Balart’s office, she will be the intern coordinator and the constituent-tour coordinator and will assist staff with research.
Good things come to those who hang on for a while. Earlier this year, the congressman promoted Lauren Robitaille from legislative correspondent to legislative assistant and Miguel Mendoza, who happens to be No. 3 on The Hill’s 50 Most Beautiful People list, to legislative correspondent.
Robitaille, 23, is from Stuart, Fla., and graduated from the University of Florida in 2003. Mendoza, also 23, is a Miami native and also a recent graduate of the University of Florida.