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Perry picks up five former Pawlenty staffers in Iowa

Texas Gov. Rick Perry today announced additional staff joining his campaign’s Iowa leadership team, including five former members of former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty‘s 2012 presidential campaign.

Matt Whitaker, formerly Gov. Pawlenty’s Iowa chairman, will join the Iowa Perry campaign as statewide co-chairman, serving alongside current statewide chairman, Robert Haus.

“We have a strong Iowa team that will help me take my vision to get America working again all across the Hawkeye State,” said Perry. “I am proud to have these top-notch individuals leading our efforts in Iowa, helping carry my record and vision for job creation and fiscal conservatism to caucus voters.”

Whitaker is managing partner of Whitaker Hagenow GBMG law firm in Des Moines. He served as the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Iowa from 2004 to 2009. Whitaker also earned a bachelor’s degree, law degree and master of business administration degree from the University of Iowa. As an undergraduate, Whitaker was a tight end on the 1990 Big Ten Champion football team and played in the 1991 Rose Bowl and the 1991 Holiday Bowl.

Gov. Perry also named several individuals to the Iowa field team, including:

  • Rob Anderson, Central Iowa, formerly served as regional field director on the Pawlenty campaign; received bachelor’s degree from University of California, Santa Barbara
  • Robert Crawford, Statewide Volunteer Coordinator, formerly served on the Robertson for President campaign and has worked as a Realtor in Virginia, California and Iowa; attended University of Iowa
  • Rachelle Crawford, Des Moines Headquarters, formerly worked as an educator in Virginia; earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Iowa
  • Gabe Haugland, North Central Iowa, served in the U.S military and led more than 50 combat missions in Operation Enduring Freedom; was a previous Cerro Gordo County organizer for Pawlenty; received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Iowa and a law degree from Drake University
  • Travis Holler, Northwest Iowa, formerly served as a regional field director for the Pawlenty campaign and aide to Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell; received a bachelor’s degree from George Washington University
  • Annie McEniry, Northeast Iowa, formerly worked as a fundraiser for the Republican National Committee, legislative correspondent for U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley’s Senate Finance Committee, and served on the Iowa Branstad-Reynolds 2010 campaign and the McCain-Palin presidential campaign; received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Iowa
  • Dane Nealson, Central Iowa, former served as a field representative on Pawlenty campaign, served as chairman of Iowa Federation of College Republicans and worked on Huckabee for President campaign; received bachelor’s degree from Iowa State University
  • Drew Selden, Southwest Iowa, served as scheduler and researcher on Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley 2010 campaign and worked as PGA Tournament Director in West Palm Beach, Fla.; received bachelor’s degree from Iowa State University
  • Mike Thom, Southeast Iowa, formerly served as field representative for Pawlenty campaign and legislative clerk in Iowa House of Representatives; received a bachelor’s degree from Iowa State University and master of public administration from Drake University

Perry previously announced Matt Gronewald as state director, Haus as state chairman and Ruth Haus as a senior consultant.

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