Menendez Announces Senior Campaign Team


The Menendez for Senate campaign today announced the hiring of senior campaign team members. 

“The stakes in this election are higher than ever as our values are under assault by President Trump and his enablers, including his New Jersey campaign finance chairman Bob Hugin,” said Menendez for Senate Campaign Chairman Michael Soliman. “Bob Hugin supported the Trump tax plan that cut taxes on millionaires like him but raised taxes on ordinary New Jerseyans, and in the Senate he would let Trump do whatever he wants. With the addition of top talent with deep New Jersey roots and a track record of winning campaigns, we’re going to make sure New Jersey has a Senator that will stand up for our values and fights to protect New Jerseyans from Trump’s agenda.” 

Senior campaign team members includes Campaign Chairman Michael Soliman, Campaign Manager Frank Schultz, Deputy Campaign Manager Raphael Chavez-Fernandez, Digital Director Juan Melli, Black Base Vote Director T. Missy Balmir, Latino Base Vote Director Wendy Martinez, Political Strategist Steve Ayscue, Finance Director Samantha Maltzman, Finance Consultant Gillian Helwig, Media and Strategy Consultants Steve DeMicco and Brad Lawrence of 4cM&M, Pollsters Joel Benenson and Danny Franklin of Benenson Strategy Group, and Digital Strategist Roy Temple of GPS Impact. 

Menendez for Senate Senior Campaign Team: 

Mike Soliman, Campaign Chairman 

Mike Soliman has served as Senator Menendez’s State Director and New Jersey Chief of Staff since 2007 and managed Senator Menendez’s successful re-election campaign in 2012. He is currently a partner at Mercury. 

Frank Schultz, Campaign Manager 

Frank Schultz has worked for Senator Menendez for 12 years. He recently served as State Director, working in conjunction with the Senator’s DC staff outlining legislative priorities and interfacing with New Jersey’s government officials and business leaders.  

Raphael Chavez-Fernandez, Deputy Campaign Manager 

Raphael Chavez-Fernandez has been recognized by both Observer-NJ and InsiderNJ among the top political operatives in New Jersey under 30. He previously served as an Advisor for Senator Menendez.  

Juan Melli, Digital Director 

Juan Melli has over a decade of experience in communications and political campaigns. 

Missy Balmir, Black Base Vote Director

Missy Balmir brings 20 years of experience in engaging the African-American community in the electoral process. Missy previously served as Senator Menendez’s African-American Base Vote Program Director in 2012 and served in the same role for U.S. Senator Cory Booker.

Wendy Martinez, Latino Base Vote Director 

Wendy Martinez brings a strong understanding of New Jersey’s Latino political environment as well as experience in the political and media industries. She previously served in roles in Bergen County, Union City, and Newark. 

Steve Ayscue, Political Strategist 

Steve Ayscue is a top political strategist with thirty years advising the New Jersey Senate and Assembly Democratic Caucuses and numerous winning campaigns for federal, state, county, and municipal offices.  

Samantha Maltzman, Finance Director 

Samantha Maltzman has worked for Senator Bob Menendez since he was Chairman of the DSCC during the 2009-2010 campaign cycle. Samantha has over 12 years of fundraising experience and has worked on several state and national campaigns including Hillary Clinton for President, Cory Booker for Senate and Phil Murphy for Governor. 

Gillian Helwig, Finance Consultant 

Gillian Helwig has worked for over a decade as a fundraiser in Washington D.C. and across the country for several political candidates, campaigns, and organizations. 

Steve DeMicco and Brad Lawrence, Media and Strategy Consultants 

Steve DeMicco and Brad Lawrence of 4cM&M have worked on dozens of winning Democratic campaigns in New Jersey at the state and federal level including Governor Murphy, Senator Menendez, and Senator Booker. 

Joel Benenson & Danny Franklin, Pollsters 

Benenson Strategy Group is the nation’s leading strategic research consultancy whose past clients have included President Obama, Senator Menendez, Senator Booker, and Governor Murphy. 

Roy Temple, Digital Strategist 

Roy Temple is a partner at GPS Impact. A veteran political, public affairs and digital strategist, he has served on multiple successful campaigns for governor and U.S. Senate. Most recently worked on the successful campaign for Governor Phil Murphy. 

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