Behind every successful politician, you will find a cadre of support specialists. Among them the campaign director ranks high. In the labyrinthine turns of a long and punishing campaign, he or she is the master strategist, keeping his client out of the brambles and in the eternal sunshine of public acceptance.
Score one for Michele Bachmann’s master pilot
So Bachmann’s recent victory in the Iowa straw poll seems to validate the wisdom of her earlier (June) hiring of Vallejo native Ed Rollins. Rollins has some very serious political cred, having been Mike Huckabee’s national campaign director during the 2008 presidential runup (see our video to the left of this text). He also ran the successful Reagan-Bush campaign in 1983 and had a hand in a number of other campaigns.
Lots of Rollin footprints in Vallejo
Rollin’s bio has enough right angles in it to qualify for a good movie of the week. In the fifties, his father worked in Mare Island Shipyards, and Rollins lived in the Federal Terrace housing project, attending St. Vincent Ferrer Grammar and High School. He also pursued his dream of being a boxer, but his prizefighting days ended when, at age 23 he fought National AAU Champion (and Olympic Bronze medal winner) Bob Christopherson; .
Rollins also studied at Vallejo Junior College, eventually earned his Associates’ degree and transferred to San Jose State University in 1965. Plagued with chronic back problems, Rollins transferred after one semester to California State University, Chico, where he was hired as a boxing coach. At Chico he earned his BA in Political Science, with a second major in Physical Education, in 1968.
Last May, Rollins was the keynote speaker at a Vacaville event celebrating Solano Community College’s 65th anniversary.
A frequent guest on CNN and Fox Networks during the 2008 presidential campaign, we expect to see him once again on the tube as the 2012 presidential campaign ramps up.