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Clinton Campaign Hires Black Owned Advertising Firm

by Lauren Victoria Burke /
U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton takes the stage for the Center for Global Business and Government speaker series at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire, on Nov. 10.BRIAN SNYDER / Reuters

Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign has hired Burrell Communications, an African American advertising and media firm.

Based in Chicago and Los Angeles, the firm is owned by two African American women, McGhee Williams Osse and Faye Ferguson, both seasoned marketing and advertising professionals.

 Fay Ferguson, left, and McGhee Williams Osse, co-CEOS of Burrell Communications. Burrell Communications

Burrell Communications, founded in 1971, will assist the campaign in focusing on African American voters, targeting their concerns and issues as Clinton moves forward towards the first primary and caucus tests.

In 2012, African American women showed up big at the polls and delivered the highest voter turnout of any voters, between the ages of ages 18 to 29, in the U.S. electorate.

Though many political observers wonder if that level of voter participation was only possible because President Obama's name was on the ballot, Clinton is expected to fight hard to assemble Obama's coalition of voters as the cornerstone of a winning strategy.

It's likely Burrell Communications' influence will be seen in South Carolina, where Black voters are a big key in a race primarily between Clinton and Sen. Bernie Sanders. (Ms. Williams Osse even completed her completed post-graduate advertising studies at the University of South Carolina.) The South Carolina primary is on February 27th and currently Clinton is polling ahead.

"We choose to be an agency that specializes in the African-American market. This is our DNA – our passion... and we believe that we are responsible to the community to whom we speak – the African-American community; our community," the Burell website reads regarding the company's overall mission. The firm has designed campaigns for major corporations ranging from McDonald's to Toyota to General Mills to American Airlines.

These new hires add to other African American hires who are currently working for Clinton.

The most prominent of those hires includes LaDavia Drane, who is Hillary Clinton's Director of African American Outreach, Marlon Marshall, who is Clinton's Director of Political Engagement, and Karen Finney, Clinton's strategic communications adviser and spokesperson. Finney also worked for Clinton during her run for Senate in 2000.

The campaign also hired well known political veteran Ron Lester to focus on the campaign’s African American polling.


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