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O'Dwyer's Newsletter - June 20, 2011 - Vol. 44 - No. 24 (download PDF version)

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Centcom, the U.S. Central Command based at MacDill Air Force Base, is taking proposals through late June for PR, monitoring and media analysis of its operations, primarily in Iraq and Afghanistan.

The sweeping contract will cover a 24/7 monitoring and engagement operation, from broadcast TV and newspapers in various languages, to blogging, social media and overall analysis of public and media opinion of the command’s interests.

SOS International is an incumbent for some of the work outlined in the solicitation, while Fulcra Worldwide, the Rendon Group and other companies have provided similar support to the military.

Knowledge of media mapping, conducting research on foreign communicators like journalists and religious leaders, experience with social networking, blogs and online forums, and developing sources are among the experience the military is looking for in a contractor.

Centcom put out a feeler for interested parties last spring. Since then, Gen. James Mattis has taken over as commander, replacing Gen. David Petraeus, who was tapped by the president last June to oversee the Afghanistan war.

Proposals are due June 27. The government hopes to make an award as soon as July 15. Information on the RFP and pitch process is at at this link:


Baron Hill, the five-term Indiana Democratic Congressman who was defeated by Republican Todd Young in November, is now senior VP in APCO Worldwide’s government relations practice.


In his 10-year service on Capitol Hill, the Hoosier was a member of the Armed Services, Joint Economic, Science & Technology and Energy & Commerce Committees.

Earlier, he was a state Congressman for eight years and financial analyst at Merrill Lynch.

Hill, 57, expects his “lasting networks” that he built in Washington will benefit APCO clients as they work the political landscape.

He also becomes a member of APCO’s International Advisory Council.


Joe Lockhart, the former Clinton White House press secretary who founded Glover Park Group in 2001, is slated to join Facebook as VP of global communications.


Lockhart’s appointment comes weeks after reports that the social networking giant was in discussions with former Obama press secretary Robert Gibbs. It also gives Facebook political and PR experience at a time of scrutiny over privacy issues and a rumored IPO for the company.

Lockhart, along with Al Gore staffers Michael Feldman and Carter Eskew, built Glover Park into a Democrat-heavy PR and public affairs shop with operations in New York and Washington, D.C., that handles corporate, political and issues work.

At Palo Alto-based Facebook, which he is slated to join July 15, he'll report to global VP of communications Elliott Schrage, an attorney who moved to Facebook from Google in 2008. He’ll manage the company’s corporate, policy and international communications teams.

Brandee Barker, a former Zeno Group VP, left Facebook after four years in November.

Lockhart, a former journalist, worked on the agency side at Bozell Sawyer Miller in the early ’90s in between stints in politics with Dukakis-Bentsen in ’88 and the Clinton-Gore reelection in ’96. He was a producer and assignment editor/manager for SKY TV, CNN and ABC.


The transit agency for suburban San Francisco is casting a net for a PR agency to assess its communications operation and provide a strategic communications plan for the organization.

The Contra Costa Transportation Authority issued an RFQ on June 10 for an audit and plan for its media relations, website, fact sheets, public outreach, events and other PR tasks.

The Authority’s governing body is considering a ramp up of its communications and sees the audit and plan as an initial step to moving forward on that potential expansion.

The open RFP was sent to more than 50 agencies, including Ketchum, Fineman PR, Fenton, Landis Comms and Solem & Associates.

Contra Costa County counts more than one million residents.

Proposals are due July 14. Download the RFP at

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