Lib Dems appoint three senior Campaigns heads

The party’s reorganisation of its Federal campaign team continues, with the appointment of three senior campaigns posts.

Jake Holland, Shaun Roberts and Victoria Marsom are to head the three new central teams, reporting to Hilary Stephenson as Director of Elections and Skills.

From a Cowley Street memo:

Head of Campaign Development – Jake Holland
Key Objectives: to research, test and deliver cutting edge campaign techniques and to maximise uptake through a well planned and coordinated training and support system.

Head of Ground Communications – Shaun Roberts
Key Objectives: to develop effective messages, visualisation and artwork for ground communications, to fully participate in the party’s message development, to ensure wide uptake of materials and to provide a central support framework for strategically important non parliamentary elections.

Head of Strategic Seat Operations – Victoria Marsom
Key Objectives: to develop and communicate the Party’s target seat strategy for 2015, to communicate and garner support for the project and provide support for the most winnable seats. To coordinate central support plans for key non parliamentary elections including European Elections.

Each will now be fully involved with the recruitment of their respective teams.

Congratulations to Victoria, Shaun and Jake.

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15 Comments

  • Can someone post a tree show how these people are all connected to everyone else? How do these people relate to the new Marketing person and to Helen Duffett?

    And most importantly how are these people all connected to Clegg, the ministerial teams, Farron and the policy teams? If there is one thing we can learn from the last 12 months or so it’s that campaign team must never ever be allowed to work separately from the core policy teams. I’ve never heard an explanation for why MPs were signing NUS pledges while our core policy/negiotating teams knew that we’d already been stitched up by Labour and Conservative over the Browne report.

    We do have a fantastic opportunity if we can get our act together. I want to hear encouraging news that the staff know this, not just party members.

  • And – can you give us some background on these people?

  • Chris Keating 28th May '11 - 7:58pm

    Maria – they are all very experienced Campaigns Department staff – Shaun and Victoria have been campaigning for the Party for about a decade. But perhaps the forums are a better place to discuss this.

  • @Jennie, Shaun, Victoria and Jake are actually not that kind of campaigns staff… and they’re good people who understand what goes on on the front line, so din’t dismiss them before they’ve had a chance. (Oh, and Shaun is one of the best leaflet setters around at the moment!)

  • None of these people are new. They are the same old people with slightly modified job titles that were doing the jobs at the General Election, so they can already be judged on their records.

  • More centralisation may not be the answer right now …. unless it’s born of necessity to save money. In any event, best wishes to all 3.

  • I agree with Maria M. At one time there used to be a “people tree” on the Lib Dem website under the heading “Our People” which gave a whole diagram of who was who and who did what in the Lib Dem scheme of things in the Party. Why was that removed? I would like to see it reinstated on the website for those of us who have given up looking on the website because it has become so boring! There is very little new information on it and that only appears in the centre section of the Home page.

  • The “Who We Are” section does not cut it I’m afraid – it is not enough because it is selective. We need to get back the “Lib Dem Party Structure” diagram to which I was referring in my previous post.

  • Kevin Colwill 29th May '11 - 6:44pm

    Any chance there might be an end to it’s us or the Tories/Labour bar charts??

    Personal view I know but that particular message is a bit of a red rag to me!!

  • Congrats to Jake, Shaun and Victoria. Having worked with all three of them (and Hilary) I can vouch that they are among our very best campaigners and the party’s campaigning is in safe hands.

  • We also need a better media operation. We’re relying too heavily on organisers and grassroots activists with no professional media experience to run complex press campaigns at a local level – i.e., where it counts. Many organisers have only undertaken the basic media training sessions offered at conference, and are then expected to deliver complex press campaigns while doing a million other jobs. By contrast, Labour and the Tories are stuffed to the gills with professional spin doctors (including many of their PPCs and MPs). The result: we get obliterated in every air war.

    Better media training for organisers and key activists would be a start, but we also need a more pro-active regional press operation that occasionally shows its face in constituencies, actively roots out good stories and provides close monitoring of what press releases are going out. I understand the budget limitations, but even with these restrictions we could be doing a lot better.

  • Alan Muhammed Alan Muhammed 31st May '11 - 12:09pm

    It’s a good idea overall and these are good people who just get on with it and work well together, which is something that would be untried and untested in a new team. It may actually be adding an extra layer to the chain of command, but so what? I’d argue that’s actually right for this kind of organisation, because now with a smaller department and organisation overall, exercising an acceptable degree of control and steer, is more important while still appearing to be receptive to the wider environment (i.e. campaigners).

    To those who are criticising the fact we’ve not turned to the market and this is the same team of people as before, you have to remember that supposed experts that could come in from the outside a. often won’t be able to exercise political judgments, particularly internal ones (which I’ve seen) b. simply won’t put in the hours – i.e. 9-14 hour days as typical days and possibly weekends. Most people in the regular market wouldn’t stand for uncontracted hours in quite the same way.

    This delivers super, SUPER good value. It attempts to add structure to unstructured problems, which could be interesting if the titles are actually formally implemented and aren’t just a naming exercise.

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