ACEC 2017 Annual Conference

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AMERICAN COUNCIL OF ENGINEERING COMPANIES
1015 15th Street, 8th Floor NW, Washington DC 20005-2605 - P: 202.347.7474 - F: 202.842.2436 - E-mail: meetings@acec.org

Featured Speakers

Donna Brazile 

Renowned Political Stategist and Commentator, Former Interim Chair of the Democratic National Committee

Donna Brazile

Veteran political strategist Donna Brazile is the former interim Chair of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and the author of the New York Times bestseller Hacks: The Inside Story of the Break-Ins and Breakdowns That Put Donald Trump in the White House and the 2004 best-selling memoir Cooking with Grease: Stirring the Pots in American Politics. She is a co-author of the forthcoming book entitled For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Politics.

Ms. Brazile has devoted her life to working for progressive change, responsible governance, and the advancement of all people in a society that is fair and equitable. Brazile first got involved in politics at the age of nine when she worked to elect a City Council candidate who had promised to build a playground in her neighborhood; the candidate won, the playground was built, and a lifelong passion for political progress was ignited. Brazile has worked on every major presidential campaign since 1976 and in 2000 Ms. Brazile became the first African American woman to serve as the manager of a major party presidential campaign, running the campaign of former Vice President Al Gore.

Ms. Brazile loves working with young people, encouraging them to vote, to run for office, and to work within the system to strengthen it. She has lectured at over 200 colleges and universities across the country on such topics as “Inspiring Civility in American Politics,” “Race Relations in the Age of Obama,” “Why Diversity Matters,” and “Women in American Politics.” In 2013, Ms. Brazile was appointed by President Obama to serve on the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board. She is also the proud recipient of more than ten honorary doctorate degrees from major colleges and universities, including her alma mater Louisiana State University. In October 2017, Ms. Brazile was the recipient of the W.E.B Du Bois Medal, Harvard’s highest honor in African American studies. Brazile has served as an adjunct professor at Georgetown University since 2002 and spent the fall of 2017 serving as a Joan Shorenstein fellow in Media, Politics and Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School.  Howard University appointed Ms. Brazile as the 2018-2019 Gwendolyn S. and Colbert I. King Endowed Chair in Public Policy. In this role, Brazile will develop and host a five-part lecture series to engage the Howard community on several subjects, including politics, voting, criminal justice reform, and civility.

O, The Oprah Magazine chose Ms. Brazile as one of its 20 “remarkable visionaries” for the magazine’s first-ever O Power List. In addition, she was named among the 100 Most Powerful Women by Washingtonian magazine, Top 50 Women in America by Essence magazine, and received the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s highest award for political achievement. In 2016, Ms. Brazile was awarded Wonk of the Year from the Kennedy Political Union at American University. In March 2018, Black Enterprise awarded Ms. Brazile with the Barbara Graves Legacy Award. 

Ms. Brazile has worked passionately on behalf of her beloved hometown of New Orleans. In the aftermath of the two catastrophic hurricanes that devastated the Gulf region, Ms. Brazile was appointed by former Governor Kathleen Blanco to serve on the Louisiana Recovery Board to work for the rebuilding of the state and to advocate for the Gulf recovery on the national stage. Ms. Brazile was also appointed by New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu to serve on the Tricentennial Commission.

Ms. Brazile was formerly a contributor to ABC News and CNN. Ms. Brazile was the recipient of a Daytime Emmy Award for Outstanding Daytime Program, Good Morning America (2016-2017) in connection with her work with ABC. She has also been a syndicated newspaper columnist for Universal U’Click and a prolific writer with articles appearing in nearly every major newspaper in the nation. She moonlights as an actress and is especially honored to have made three cameo appearances on CBS’s The Good Wife, and two cameo appearances on Netflix’s series House of Cards. She most recently appeared on BET's Being Mary Jane. Ask her and she’ll tell you that acting, after all, is the key to success in politics.

Ms. Brazile is the founder and director of Brazile & Associates LLC, a general consulting, grassroots advocacy, and training firm based in Washington, DC.

 

Dana Perino

Former White House Press Secretary, Political Commentator, New York Times No. 1 Best-Selling Author, and Host of Fox's The Daily Briefing with Dana Perino

Dana Perino

Dana Perino is a revered political commentator and journalist, New York Times best-selling author, and a former White House Press Secretary. She currently hosts The Daily Briefing with Dana Perino, and is a co-host on the hit show The Five, both on the Fox News Channel. The Five has won its time slot every day since it started in July 2011 and last year finished as the fifth most-watched program in all of cable. Part of an ensemble cast, some viewers have nicknamed Perino “The Voice of Reason” on The Five. A Fox News political commentator, she also appears weekly on other Fox programs. 

Before joining Fox, Perino served as the first Republican woman to be press secretary of the United States. She spent more than seven years as part of the administration of President George W. Bush, joining right after the 9/11 attacks as a spokesperson for the Justice Department. A year later, she was pulled to the White House and stayed until the last day of the Bush administration. As press secretary, she handled interactions with the White House press corps and advised the president on communications. President Bush has said that whenever he did a press conference or interview, Perino made sure he was never surprised by a question. She describes her approach to the position as a 50-50 mindset – half the effort went to defending and advocating the position of the president and the United States, and the other half was defending and advocating the media’s access to the president and the government. Perino continues to be active with the Bush Center in Dallas and joyfully says her motto is, “Once a staffer, always a staffer.”

After her years in the White House, Perino went from speaking on behalf of the nation to speaking for herself. Not only becoming a commentator on current events and foreign policy, she also published And the Good News Is…Lessons and Advice from the Bright Side, which debuted as a No. 1 New York Times best-seller and remained on the list for more than three months. Her newest book, Let Me Tell You about Jasper . . .How My Best Friend Became America's Dog, was released in October 2016 and reached the No. 10 spot on the New York Times nonfiction best seller list. Her other publishing credits include editorial direction for Things that Matter by Charles Krauthammer and The Time of Our Lives by Peggy Noonan. She is also the host of the podcast “I’ll Tell You What” alongside Fox News political editor Chris Stirewalt. Hugely popular, the podcast was made into a limited-run TV show in the fall of 2016, marking the first time Fox turned a podcast into a series.

In 2010, President Obama appointed her to serve on the Broadcasting Board of Governors, which complemented her passion for advocating for individual and economic freedom, especially for women in Africa. Since leaving the White House, Perino and her husband, Peter McMahon, have volunteered in South Africa and Congo. In 2014 they spent a week at a charitable hospital and came back to America to broadcast their findings and appeal for additional help. 

To express her gratitude for the opportunities she’s been afforded, Perino started Minute Mentoring, a program for young women that’s like speed dating between mentors and mentees. She also serves on the board of Companions for Heroes, which matches rescue animals with first-responders and veterans managing post-traumatic stress.

Perino was born in Wyoming and raised in Colorado. She has a masters degree in public affairs reporting from the University of Illinois – Springfield. Before the Bush Administration, she worked as a daily news reporter, as a press secretary on Capitol Hill, and in the private sector for global public relations companies.

AMERICAN COUNCIL OF ENGINEERING COMPANIES
1015 15th Street, 8th Floor NW, Washington DC 20005-2605 - P: 202.347.7474 - F: 202.842.2436 - E-mail: meetings@acec.org