From New Jersey Monthly, November 2004 - Garden Variety, p.27 Party Animal
NOT LONG AFTER GRADUATING from Pemberton Township High School, Ed Gillespie got his first job on Capitol Hil - parking cars in the Senate lot. This month, as chairman of the Republican National Committee, Gillespie hopes to drive George W. Bush back to the White House.
Gillespie, 43, whose father, Jack, until recently owned a tavern in Browns Mills, stands out from the suited spin doctors on America's political stge as a blue-colar guy. Well known in Washington as a skilled political strtegist, he's taken on the campaign role of Bush-adminstration pit bull.
After high school, Gillespie attended Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. (also the alma mater of Democratic National Committee chairman Terry McAuliffe). Gillespie took the reins of the GOP in July 2003, and in the ensuing sixteen months helped the party set a presidential campaign fund-rasing record.
Earlier this year, at a church assembly on the campaign trail, Gillespie tapped into his roots. "Growing up in the southern-New Jersey-Pennsylvania area," he said, "I acquired a strong sense of family, work, neighborhood, and community."
When he completes his tenure as chairman, Gillespie plans to return to his own bipartisan lobbying firm, Quinn-Gillespie & Associates, which he co-founded with Jack Quinn, a former White Hosue counsel to President Bill Clinton.
- Bil Kelly