Starting Line has some exciting news to share with our readers today: we will be partnering with Progress Iowa throughout 2016! I (Pat) will also be joining the Progress Iowa team as their communications director, while still also running Starting Line.
I’m really excited about this new venture that I think will benefit both organizations greatly, but more importantly do even more to advance the progressive message in Iowa. When I started Iowa Starting Line back in January of 2015, my goals were to provide a unique look on Iowa politics from a former campaign staffer’s perspective and use the site to help promote progressive ideas and shift the online discussion in Iowa – an area where Republicans did very well in 2014.
I believe we’ve been very successful in that mission. Compare the later months of the 2014 campaign – where Republican websites and operatives often shaped the Iowa media debate – to now. The Iowa progressive presence is considerably more robust than the conservatives on the blogs, Twitter, Facebook and independent news sites. By partnering with Progress Iowa, I believe we’ll take that advantage to a whole new level going into November.
I’ll still be doing my regular reporting for Starting Line, including the independent analysis and straight reporting that has brought many here, including many Republican readers. Progress Iowa and I will work together on various issue projects and do a lot of research for some more in-depth articles.
On a personal note, I’m very happy to start working with Matt Sinovic, who I think has done an incredible job in building up Progress Iowa over the years. And it will just be nice to be working out of an office with other people for once. If my regular readers have noticed a drop-off in the quantity and quality of posts recently, you’re not imagining things. The last month I finally hit the wall in what I can accomplish working from home and setting my own deadlines – not the most productive setup, as you can imagine.
Here is the press release sent out today:
Pat Rynard Joins Progress Iowa As Communications Director
New Partnership Between Progress Iowa and Iowa Starting Line
DES MOINES, IOWA – Pat Rynard has been named the Communications Director for Progress Iowa, the organization announced today. Along with joining the progressive advocacy group, Rynard’s website Iowa Starting Line will also be partnering with Progress Iowa on projects going forward.
“We’re very excited to have Rynard join us at Progress Iowa,” Matt Sinovic, Executive Director of Progress Iowa, said. “Rynard is an excellent writer and reporter with a wealth of Iowa political experience and insight that will help our efforts to push forward a progressive agenda.”
“I’m happy to be joining the Progress Iowa team to help advance the cause of progressive issues in the state of Iowa,” Rynard said. “Progress Iowa has become the go-to Iowa organization for in-depth knowledge and advocacy for the biggest issues facing Iowa’s working families, young people and seniors. By combining our strengths, I think we’ll be able to move the debate forward on many key progressive causes.”
Rynard has worked in Iowa politics and campaigns for over a decade, including Hillary Clinton’s caucus campaign in 2008. He’s managed several high-profile State Senate campaigns, as well as serving as the Senate Majority Fund’s field director in 2012. He launched IowaStartingLine.com in January 2015, which quickly became the most-read independent political news site/blog in Iowa. His Iowa Caucus coverage garnered national attention and the site has retained strong readership throughout 2016.
Rynard will retain editorial control over Iowa Starting Line while working for Progress Iowa as a consultant, and will still provide much of the same independent campaign and issue coverage and analysis readers enjoy about Starting Line. The two organizations will work together on many research and issue projects.
Progress Iowa is a nonpartisan multi-issue progressive advocacy organization with a network of nearly 70,000 progressives. Year-round, Progress Iowa advocates for a stronger middle class, first-class public education, and fairness for all Iowans under the law.
by Pat Rynard