WASHINGTON – A Massachusetts native and former Senator Edward M. Kennedy aide was tapped today to take the top post in coordinating the Democratic Party’s national convention.
Stephen J. Kerrigan, who also helped coordinate the Democratic convention when it was in Boston in 2004, has been named as chief executive officer overseeing the 2012 convention in Charlotte, N.C.
“It’s basically everything, start to finish,” he said in an interview.
Kerrigan, 39, grew up in Lancaster, Mass., and graduated from St. John’s High School in Shrewsbury (fun fact: Kerrigan was three years behind future Massachusetts Lieutenant Governor Tim Murray).
At 25, he was elected to the Lancaster Board of Selectmen, and later became Kennedy’s national political director. He was also chief of staff to Thomas F. Reilly, who was Massachusetts Attorney General.
Kerrigan is getting ready to move to Charlotte, where he’ll oversee all operations involving the convention – from security to transportation to housing.
“We’re very excited to bring the 2012 Democratic National Convention to Charlotte where we will re-nominate President Barack Obama,” Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz, chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, said today in a statement. “The team we’ve put together to lead the Convention embodies the diversity and talent of the Democratic Party, and they’ll work closely with our partners in Charlotte to put on an event that showcases the progress President Obama and Democrats have made on behalf of the American people and our vision for the future.”
The Republicans are holding their convention in Tampa, Fla., and it’s no mistake that the Democrats chose Charlotte for their convention. North Carolina, which Obama carried narrowly in 2008, is expected to be a major battleground in the 2012 election.
About Political Intelligence
Glen Johnson is Politics Editor at boston.com and lead blogger for "Political Intelligence." He moved to Massachusetts in the fourth grade, and has covered local, state, and national politics for over 25 years. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.