FROM:   Kim Alexander, CVF President
DATE:   April 4, 2001
RE:   25 People Changing the World of Politics & the Net

Hi Folks,

I'm writing to share some accolades with you. This week my work with the California Voter Foundation was recognized by Harvard University, the American Association of Political Consultants and Politics Online, who released a list on Monday of "25 Who Are Changing the World" of Internet and Politics.

It's an honor to have our work recognized in this way and, as you'll see from the list below, CVF is in good company! Below is Monday's news release from PoliticsOnline.

-- Kim Alexander, President, California Voter Foundation, 916-325-2120,


For Immediate Release: April 2, 2001
Contact: Phil Noble,
Telephone: (617) 495-9466
Andy Hoefer,
Phone: (843) 853-3002, Fax: (843) 722-4283


Cambridge, Mass. - In recent years, the Internet and burgeoning information technologies have inexorably altered our body politic, fundamentally changing the way we do democracy. Friday, at the American Association of Political Consultants 2nd Annual Academic Outreach Conference at the Institute of Politics of Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government, PoliticsOnline recognized the best of the best -- the innovators and pioneers who blazed the e-political trails.

PoliticsOnline asked its 25,000 readers and subscribers to name the people, organizations and companies that are changing the world of Internet and politics. From these nominations, twenty-five world changers and five rising stars were selected.

"From the beginning, politics has been about two things - ideas and the people that make these ideas realities," said PoliticsOnline President Phil Noble, an AAPC board member who is spending the spring term in Cambridge as a fellow at the Institute of Politics. "With this announcement, we honor the most innovative ideas and the most influential individuals.

"With so many people doing so much in this field, whittling the list down to so few proved a more difficult task than we ever could have imagined - we thank everyone that submitted nominations, and we congratulate all those that were nominated. As with any list of the best, debate is sure to follow. We certainly hope it well, and that the ongoing conversation about the Internet and politics is carried further."

Noble, PoliticsOnline, NetPulse editor Andy Brack, and other PoliticsOnline affiliates were not eligible for recognition.

The following is the list of honorees.

The 25 Who Are Changing the World

1. Kim Alexander
Cal Voter
Working tirelessly, Ms. Alexander has created this strictly non-partisan "First stop" resource that serves the online public. In addition, by advocating full disclosure of campaign funding and electoral reform, Ms. Alexander and the California Voter Foundation have become powerful, effective advocates for making governmental information available free to the public.

2. Doug Bailey
Freedom Channel
Armed with a great vision and his experience as a consultant, Doug pioneered digital political. Among his creations are the Hotline - the web's best daily newswire -- and -- the streaming video forum for candidates. Most recently, he has taken to training a new generation of voters with He is the gold standard by which all will be measured.

3. Wes Boyd and Joan Blades
Creators of the first online PAC, MoveOn.Org, Wes and Joan gave us the earliest glimpse of the grassroots potential of the Net to raise money and mobilize citizens to a cause.

4. Steve Case & Kathleen deLaski at AOL
AOL is AOL. Steve Case has repeatedly talked about using the Internet to change politics and society as a whole. Kathleen is making this vision a reality.

5. Chris Casey
Casey-Dorin Internet Productions
Chris Casey earned his stripes early as one of the Democratic Party's top online dogs, when he convinced Ted Kennedy and then the rest of the Senate that they needed to be online.

6. Steven Clift
Minnesota E-Democracy, DO-Wire
As the Board Chair of Minnesota E-Democracy and the main man on the DO-Wire, Steve Clift is one of the best known and best-traveled people in the e-politics field, encouraging online discourse wherever he goes in the US and around the world. He is a one-man cyber-rolodex of Internet politicians.

7. Mike Connell
New Media Communications
As the President/CEO of New Media Communications, Mike Connell has played vital roles in the elections on one high profile Republican after another, including the Bush-Cheney campaign.

8. Michael Cornfield
Graduate School of Political Management at The George Washington University
The Democracy Online Project
As the maestro of GW's annual PoliticsOnline conference, one of the industry's premiere events, and as head of the Democracy Online project, Mike is engaged in providing platforms for all of us to make our success stories known and to advance professionally.

9. Matt Drudge
The Drudge Report
The net's best known and best read gadfly has become an unavoidable, and unignorable, figure in American politics. Few have grabbed a hold of the net's gossip/journalism potential more successfully than Matt Drudge.

In 2000, broke ground by conducting the Arizona Democratic presidential primary online - the first legally binding online election. Now, they're putting their experience to work around the world, making their global vision a reality.

11. Ben Green/Al Gore
Commerce One Global Services
Over the last few years, both Ben Green and Al Gore have put together built resumes of unmatched tech suavity. The 2000 campaign cycle brought them together for an impressive, net-driven run for the White House.

12. Jose Maria Figures, former pres. of Costa Rica
World Economic Forum
As pres of Costa Rica, he showed what technology can do in the developing world. As leader of the UN's effort to close the digital divide and the World Economic Forum in Davos, he's proved himself to be a bold visionary who is strategically placed to make a difference in the world....we think he will.

13. Max Fose & Sen. John McCain
Max Fose did a lot of innovative work for the McCain campaign, raising $1 million online in just 48 hours. McCain's personal commitment to experimenting with online campaigning -- even invited people to the Web site at every opportunity - was a first for so high profile a candidate.

14. Bill Gates & Michael Kinsley
Anything that Bill Gates and Microsoft do impacts the world. MS's Slate, edited by Michael Kinsley, quickly became the hippest, hottest political destination on the web with its unique combination of wry wit and informative content and analysis,

15. Capitol Advantage and the e-advocates
Bob Hansan, President, Capitol Advantage, is an old man in Internet years: At 36, he's one of the grandfathers of Internet politics. In 1986, he opened the doors at Capitol Advantage with pooled resources and basement office space donated by his parents. Fifteen years later, the company - along Pam Fielding and Nicole Durwitz at the affiliated e-advocates - has one of the most impressive client lists in the country.

16. Phil Madsen & Jesse Ventura
The XFL's best known color man has said his election to the Minnesota Governor's Mansion would not have been possible with the Internet. Translation: his election would not have been possible without his in-house Internet expert, Phil Madsen.

17. The Markle Foundation & Pew Charitable Trusts
If there it's a non-profit political dot-com doing good stuff, chances are one or both of the great Foundations fund it. Without the Pew and Markle's shared commitment to political discourse and online democracy, the number of online pioneers would be far, far less. While other mainline foundations have been skittish, these have boldly charged ahead. They are true heroes.

18. Politik Digital
This is the premier German language e-political destination. Their initial focus has been on bringing officials and citizens together through chat and webcasts. They show the savvy and skills needed to dominate and change Germany language online politics.

19. Larry Pupurro
The RNC's Internet guru, Larry pioneered the use of zaplet and other new technology on the road to a Bush victory. Larry shows an understanding and a vision of what a modern political party needs to do with the Internet.

20. Rebecca Fairley Rainey
Rainey is the dean of online political reporters. When the NY Times hired her as the first journalist with the Internet and politics assignment, they broke new ground. Rebecca is still way out in front.

21. Lynn Reed
President of Net Politics Group
Among Lynn's achievements: Webmaster of the Clinton Gore '96 reelection campaign; webmaster of the first inaugural web site in 1997; webmaster for the Bradley campaign in 2000 - the first to raise a $1million online. Lynn went on the produce over two dozen political web sites in 2000. There are none any better on the Democratic side.

22. Votia Empowerment
Sweden's Votia Empowerment has made ground-breaking e-democracy projects come true, making voting and participation possible for members and citizens via letter, fax, telephone and the web, and combining chat, info, forums and active voting. Sweden has been a leader in e-democracy and Votia has led the Vikings online.

23. Stephan Shakespeare/YouGov
The UK is a major player in the world of online politics and Stephan Shakespeare and YouGov are stars. Their unique mix of both news stories, online polling and political commentary provide both great content and an interesting new business model.

24. Son et Lumiere
This Italian company is both a business and political success specializing in building online communities. They use innovative webcast and chat sessions with leading national political and government leaders to attack and build communities around social and political issues.

If you thought Matt Drudge could rake mud, you haven't seen India's, the independent online news site leaving a path of political chaos and disgraced officials in its wake.

The Five to Watch

1. Fritz Bogans
Teenagers for Bush
The head of Teenagers for Bush may be the AAPC's youngest member, but at 16, is already a political veteran. Through its site, his organization helped to organize thousands of Republican youth across the country.

2. Chinese Dissidents
China has become an online powderkeg - the net has provided a new medium for activists to voice their opinions, while the government struggles in uncharted territory, figuring out how to control it all. This is a situation we must all follow closely.

3. Peter Schurman and
The founder of, a unique political portal for young people, looks to be on the fast track as the new head of Young, savvy and bright and teamed up with a proven online powerhouse.

4. Jonah Seiger and Shabbir Safdar
Mindshare Internet Campaigns, LLC
Collaborators since 1994, Seiger and Safdar began as activists in battles over free expression, privacy, and democratic values on the Internet. Together, Seiger and Safdar organized some of the first major online grass roots campaigns and demonstrations. In 2000, Mindshare's client sites received more than 22 million page views. Mindshare has built its name as one of top firms in the country, and we expect big things in the next election cycle.

5. EU-Youth Vote
This is a hot one. At the end of November 2001 EU-StudentVote, the first European online election, will take place. It will allow millions of European students to elect the first "European Student Council", which will represent students to the European Institutions. The goal is one million online votes.


PoliticsOnline is the premier company providing online fundraising and Internet tools for politics. Among the company's many products and services are an award-winning website, the Internet Campaign Manager CD-ROM, Instant Online Fundraiser Version 2.0, a daily news and information service, NetPulse, Weekly PoliTicker, Media Reference Center and many others.

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This page was first published on April 5, 2001 | Last updated on April 5, 2001
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