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Intern Spotlight: Annie Adair

Posted July 22, 2016

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As a public policy student, I’ve spent a lot of time studying the intersection of policy, media, and politics, as well as how that intersection shapes the world that we — as consumers and constituents — experience. However, it wasn’t until I started interning for SKDKnickerbocker that I could fully understand the gravity of that intersection and how powerful a singular message could be.

After spending the past three summers in local government and on Capitol Hill, I was excited to intern at a firm where I could see the other side of policy making, especially because it’s an election year.

“After spending the past three summers in local government and on Capitol Hill, I was excited to intern at a firm where I could see the other side of policy making, especially because it’s an election year.”

I was drawn to SKDK for its commitment to progressive values, as well as its ability to navigate a complicated and extremely crowded media environment. After spending the past three summers in local government and on Capitol Hill, I was excited to intern at a firm where I could see the other side of policy making, especially because it’s an election year. Working in the DC office has been a blast so far. It’s most notably broadened my horizon with respect to how far messages can spread, particularly in the age of social media. Given the proliferation of Twitter in this year’s election, it’s been fascinating to track how messages are distributed on such a powerful and vast platform. It’s also definitely made me think about how I can use social media to distribute my message as an individual, with more emphasis on substance and less on retweets of cats.

The project I’ve enjoyed working on the most has been the nomination of Chief Judge Merrick Garland to the Supreme Court. This is a case where one powerful message has really packed a punch, in the sense that it’s kept the issue in the spotlight and continued to garner national attention. One of the key things I’ve learned in studying the politics of public policy is the idea of making something stick. Having a good policy or message isn’t enough – it has to be memorable. Interest over Judge Garland’s nomination has spread far past the circles of SCOTUSBlog readers and Supreme Court wonks, due in part to some of the work SKDK and its allies have done in making ensuring the message sticks. I’ve loved being able to be a part of a team that is shaping and dispersing a powerful message, urging politicians to take action, even if Judge Garland still hasn’t got the hearings he deserves.