Fresh off her surprise win in Colorado's June 30 Republican primary, 3rd Congressional District nominee Lauren Boebert has added key staffers, including veteran campaign and state GOP operatives.
Boebert, the restaurant owner and first-time candidate who defeated five-term U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton in the primary, has added lead policy adviser Kristi Burton Brown, finance director Shana Kohn Banberger and communications director Laura Carno to her team, her campaign said.
Carno told Colorado Politics that the campaign won't have a traditional campaign manager but will instead be managed by a team.
She noted that Burton Brown and Kohn Banberger's deep connection to the Colorado Republican Party — Burton Brown is state vice chairwoman and Kohn Banberger has been a top staff member for years — should dispel questions about the party's commitment to Boebert after she unseated a longstanding congressman.
"To me what this says is, the party is 100% on board," Carno said. "It’s all hands on deck."
In addition to her party position, Burton Brown, a constitutional law attorney, co-sponsored the first attempt to add a "personhood" amendment to Colorado's constitution when she was a teenager, and last year she spearheaded an unsuccessful attempt to recall state Rep. Tom Sullivan, D-Centennial. As a policy analyst, she's had a hand in legislation guaranteeing free speech on campuses and a law aiding victims of human trafficking, as well as advised lawmakers on state budget cuts. The Centennial resident home-schools her two children and serves on the boards of nonprofits devoted to education for at-risk and rural students.
Kohn Banberger, who has experience on local and statewide campaigns, spent five years as executive director of the state party and is currently director of party operations and member services, a job she expects to keep through the campaign.
Carno, a senior fellow with the Independent Women's Forum, has been handling media strategy for local and state-level candidate and issue campaigns for years. She's been interviewed on the CBS Evening News, Fox News Channel, CNN, USA Today, NRA-TV, and makes regular appearances on Colorado media outlets. She played a key role in the successful 2013 recalls of two Democratic state senators.
Boebert has also hired Durango resident Jessica Hayden, a recent Fort Lewis College graduate with a degree in political science, to be her scheduler and personal assistant. Boebert said she was impressed with letters of support Hayden wrote during the primary, as well as her determination to create an opportunity for herself in the poltiical field.
Boebert faces former state Rep. Diane Mitsch Bush, D-Steamboat Springs, a retired sociology professor and former county commissioner who lost to Tipton in the last election.