Carolyn Walser

Age: 28
Hometown: Arlington, Va.
Political party: Democratic
Relationship status: Single

A lot has changed for Carolyn Walser in a few short years.

While pursuing an international affairs degree from James Madison University in Virginia, a typical night included some ambient sound just outside her dorm room: “The last years of college I lived by the livestock auction, which was fun … Occasionally around 11 o’clock at night you’d hear a ‘mooooo’ or something.”

These days, the executive assistant and director of scheduling to Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) has traded a chorus of cows for a night out on the town with her girlfriends, trying to figure out “if we can get into whatever new restaurant has opened. We just went to Le Diplomate last week, and it was great.”

But just because she’s on a mission to hunt down the hottest new eatery doesn’t mean Walser can’t whip up her own culinary creations.

“I make a mean roast chicken,” she says with a winning smile.

Despite the often-unpredictable hours on the Hill, Walser, who worked for six years as a staffer for former Sen. Jim Webb (D-Va.), tries her best to make time for the gym. She also keeps her caffeine fix in check by balancing buzz-producing beverages with some H2O: “After I drink my coffee in the morning, I will fill up my iced coffee cup over and over and over again with water. And I just try and drink water throughout the day until I wear myself down to drink a Diet Coke.”

Following a hard day’s work, there’s nothing that this Eastern Market resident loves more than curling up in a hammock in the backyard with a good murder mystery.

“I do love to read — a lot,” Walser exclaims. A love of literature might be in her blood: Walser’s dad worked for the Library of Congress for more than two decades.

And it might be especially tough for fellow bookworms to keep up with her come August: “One of my favorite things about recess is I go to the library and get out my recess selections and I will read — not to inflate myself — like a book a night.”

— Judy Kurtz

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