Blog : News and Updates

Mad Dog Mail Helps Brian Sims Make History

“Josephs, who was elected when Ronald Reagan was President, was simply overwhelmed by Sims’ direct mail and field effort.”
– Newsworks, April 24, 2012

Mad Dog Mail is proud to have helped elect Pennsylvania’s first openly gay Representative on Tuesday – Brian Sims.

Brian ran a textbook campaign with a robust mail plan that propelled him to victory over an incumbent who had held the seat since 1984.

Newsworks reported, “Josephs, who was elected when Ronald Reagan was President, was simply overwhelmed by Sims’ direct mail and field effort. A veteran committeeman from the 8th ward told me he’d never seen anything like it: 10 direct mail pieces and two election day door hangers, with plenty of sneakers on the street.”

Working with Tiffany Muller at the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund, Daniel Gotoff at Lake Research Partners, and Eric Smith at True Stories Research, we crafted a communications plan centered around Brian’s personal story and his desire to be a new kind of Democrat – bold, principled, and ready to fight.

Brian’s win comes after Mad Dog helped elect LGBT candidates, Mike Laster to the Houston City Council and Zach Adamson to the Indianapolis City Council. Earlier in 2011, we also worked with an independent expenditure effort in North Carolina to help elect LaWana Mayfield to the Charlotte City Council.

We are proud to be a part of Brian Sims’ victory, and we look forward to working with LGBT candidates to break down barriers across the country.

Mad Dog Mail Wins at the Pollies

It’s one thing to win a Pollie for an individual piece, but winning Pollies for entire campaign says something about the quality of work that a firm produces from the start of the campaign to Election Day. 

Mad Dog Mail was honored to win the two highest awards for Democratic direct mail series – winning Best Overall Direct Mail Campaign and Best Overall Use of Negative Contrast. (View a slideshow of winners here)

Our mailplan for Chad Lauga who ran in Louisiana’s 2011 state legislative races won the Best Overall Direct Mail Campaign (Democrat).

And our work knocking off Republican incumbent Rickey Nowlin, a rare Democratic pickup in 2011, won Best Overall Use of Negative Contrast (Democrat).

Mad Dog also picked up seven more awards including our work for:

• Building a Better Georgia in Best Use of Negative Contrast in Public Affairs
• Victory Fund in Best Independent Expenditure Campaign in Local/Municipal (Democrat)
• Louisiana Rep. Kenny Cox in Best Use of Humor (Democrat)
• Louisiana Rep. Stephen Ortego in Best Use of Negative Contrast in State/Statewide (Democrat)
• Victory Fund in Negative/Contrast in Local/Municipal (Democrat)
• Missouri House candidate Paul Woody in Special Election Direct Mail (Democrat)
• St. Louis Assessor Jake Zimmerman in Special Election Direct Mail (Democrat)
(View a slideshow of winners here)

Our success at the polls in 2011 in Louisiana – beating two incumbent Republicans, winning four open seats, and re-electing every incumbent State House Member – has now been further recognized with these prestigious awards which are judged by our peers in the business.
We are proud of the work we did for our clients in 2011, and we are looking forward to another great year in 2012.

We work hard. We do what it takes to win.
If you would like to talk to us about being a part of your team, please call Jon Anderson or Owen Shackelford at (904) 310-6409.  No one will fight harder for you.

Mad Dog Mail Wins at Reed Awards

Mad Dog Mail picked up two wins at the Reed Awards hosted by Campaigns & Elections magazine Friday night in Washington, DC. In the category for “Direct Mail Independent Expenditure and Issue Advocacy” Mad Dog Mail won for its work in the San Francisco mayor’s race on behalf of our client, The Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund.

Mad Dog also won in the category for “Direct Mail Best Villain” on behalf of Building a Better Georgia who is continuing its fight to stop a coal-fired power plant in Georgia. “The Reed Awards recognize the very best in political campaigning and communication in the United States and the rest of the world,” said Campaigns & Elections Publisher Shane Greer. No direct mail firm in the nation had as many finalists or won more Reed Awards at this year’s ceremony.

We want to thank The Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund and Building a Better Georgia for their faith in us.

Republicans Drew the Maps. We Won Anyway.

How Did Louisiana Democrats Beat the Trend?

When all the dust settled, only one Democratic caucus in the South didn’t lose a single seat on election night in 2011. Despite the best efforts of David Vitter and Bobby Jindal, Republicans didn’t gain a single seat in the Louisiana House – and they drew the maps.

Louisiana Democrats won the fights that mattered most. Despite a popular Republican governor and President Obama’s approval rating being in the mid-30s, we helped bring back every incumbent Democrat in the House. What’s more, we picked up four open seats and defeated an incumbent Republican.

When the Republicans drew the maps in Louisiana, they thought they had us beat. They were wrong.

How did we do it? Can we do the same thing for you? Give us a call to find out.

Learn more at

Call Jon Anderson or Owen Shackelford at 904-310-6409.

Mad Dog Mail Means Victory for Victory Fund Candidates

On the heels of having successfully helped 16 Louisiana House Democrats win re-election on Oct. 22, Mad Dog Mail picked up additional wins in Houston and Indianapolis on Tuesday.

We are proud to have worked with our friends at the Victory Fund and other partners to help elect Mike Laster to the Houston City Council and Zach Adamson to the Indianapolis City Council.

Mad Dog also worked with Common Sense Matters, a North Carolina-based progressive organization, earlier in the year to help propel LaWana Mayfield through a difficult primary by defeating incumbent Warren Turner. Mayfield went on to win the general election Tuesday night.

Imagine our delight Wednesday night when Rachel Maddow featured each of these races on her MSNBC show. We here at Mad Dog Mail are honored to have played a role in electing these three highly qualified, dynamic leaders.

click here to view video


Zach Adamson

Zach Adamson’s election makes him the first openly gay member of the Indianapolis City Council. Zach was elected to an at-large position on a platform of improving Indianapolis’ public transit system and working to create public-private partnerships to renew suffering neighborhoods. Adamson also told voters about his commitment to public education and his plan to bring jobs to Indianapolis.

Mike Laster

Mike Laster garnered more than 67% of the vote, avoiding a runoff election by defeating two opponents in the race for Houston City Council District J. Laster is a real-estate attorney who ran on a platform of protecting and improving neighborhoods in Southwest Houston. His election makes him the first openly gay man to serve on the Houston City Council.

LaWana Mayfield

LaWana Mayfield made her way through a difficult primary earlier this year by defeating incumbent Warren Turner, who had a history of sexual harassment. Mad Dog was pleased to have worked with Common Sense Matters to bring Turner’s bad behavior to the attention of Charlotte voters, and we are glad that the voters in Charlotte have elected their first openly gay person to the City Council.

Here at Mad Dog Mail, we believe that LGBT equality is the civil rights issue of our time, and we are proud to have the opportunity to continue to play a role in electing LGBT leaders throughout the nation.

Mad Dog Mail Helps Re-Elect Sixteen Louisiana House Incumbents.


Mad Dog Mail is extremely proud to have helped 16 Louisiana Democratic State Representatives facing opposition this year win outright on Saturday, Oct. 22. We did not lose a single Democratic incumbent on election night, nor was a single Democratic incumbent forced into a runoff.

Our incumbents won in a tough political and economic climate. Our winning margin for districts under 50% DPI was 56.9%. The average vote percentage for all incumbents was 68%.

Three incumbents, in conservative districts, stand out because of the avalanche of opposition spending from the Louisiana Republican Party and Republican PACs.

 In a district where polling showed the generic ballot at 45% R to just 25% D, Rep. James Armes won a tough three-way race without a run-off, recieving over 55% of the vote. Rep. Bernard LeBas won a three-way race outright in the primary with 52% of the vote even a district where polling showed the generic ballot 42% R to 33% D. Rep. Jack Montoucet won handily with 63% of the vote despite being targeted heavily by Republicans and running in a district with the generic ballot of 44% R to 28% D.

Additionally, Mad Dog Mail is proud to have helped reelect:

Andy Anders with 69% of the vote
Robert Johnson with 63% of the vote
Regina Barrow with 64% of the vote
Dorothy Sue Hill with 78% of the vote
A. B. Franklin with 78% of the vote
Ledricka Thierry with 79% of the vote
Jerry “Truck” Gisclair with 59% of the vote
Karen St. Germain with 86% of the vote
Dalton Honore with 62% of the vote
Pat Smith with 61% of the vote
John Bel Edwards with 83% of the vote
Robert E. Billiot with 57% of the vote
Neil Abramson with 74% of the vote

Mad Dog Mail is also very excited to have helped seven open-seat or challenger candidates into runoffs, which will be decided on Saturday, Nov. 19th.

If you have a tough election facing you, like Louisiana did, call us – we’d love to help.

Mad Dog Mail Propels Macon Mayor Robert Reichert to a Second Term

Reichert pulls off narrow win over Ellis in mayoral race

– The Macon Telegraph

Reichert Wins Democratic Mayoral Runoff

– 13 WMAZ

Mad Dog Mail congratulates Macon Mayor Robert Reichert on his hard fought reelection campaign against former two-term Macon Mayor C. Jack Ellis. Mayor Reichert won by 600 votes in one of the closest elections in Macon history.

Mayor Reichert was able to win by focusing on moving Macon forward together rather than going back to the petty political squabbling and scandals of the past. Mad Dog Mail wishes Mayor Robert Reichert, and the city of Macon, the best of luck in the next four years.

“I am very grateful to Jennifer Smith and Mad Dog Mail for their excellent advice and hard work in my reelection campaign for mayor of Macon. I really enjoyed working with them.”

Macon Mayor Robert Reichert

Mad Dog Mail Collects Wins in St. Louis, Tampa and Chicago

Democrats are fighting back in 2011. That’s what real fighters do when they are knocked down.  They get back up and start throwing punches.  And we at Mad Dog Mail are proud to be right there in the ring with them.

There is a reason our firm is called Mad Dog Mail – we fight hard, and we do what it takes to win. And since the Republican wave in the fall of 2010, that’s exactly what we’ve done. We have won tough races that help lay the groundwork for future Democratic gains in swing states such as Missouri and Florida.

St. Louis – Jake Zimmerman


“Zimmerman wins first county assessor’s race in 51 years”
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

“Zimmerman wins handily in St. Louis County assessor’s race”
St. Louis Beacon



Mad Dog Mail helped elect Jake Zimmerman, a rising star in Missouri politics, to the newly created position of St. Louis County Assessor. The Zimmerman team crushed a wealthy realtor supported by Tea Party extremists, taking over 64% of the vote. As the first elected Assessor, Jake will have the opportunity to establish the office’s roles and focus on helping struggling homeowners and keeping seniors in their homes.





Tampa – Bob Buckhorn

Written off by Tampa’s political elite, Bob Buckhorn makes a remarkable comeback

St. Petersburg Times

Buckhorn routs Ferlita in Tampa mayor’s race, then talks of creating a better Tampa

St Petersburg Times

Buckhorn wins Tampa mayor election

Tampa Tribune


Mad Dog Mail was proud to have done independent expenditure work to supplement Bob’s spectacular campaign.  Buckhorn led the charge, receiving over 63% of the vote, in the Tampa municipal election that saw Democrats sweep every last Republican out of office.


Buckhorn was written off early by Tampa’s political elite as a three-time loser with little shot of winning. However, he didn’t give up (and neither did we) and what ultimately made him good enough to win, Buckhorn said, was losing. “I didn’t fear losing, because I’ve felt losing,” he says. “I know what it feels like, and I know it doesn’t kill me. So when you really have no fear of losing, it changes your perspective.”


Mad Dog Mail congratulates Mayor-elect Bob Buckhorn and his campaign on a great victory and wishes him the best of luck in creating a better Tampa.




Chicago- Susana Mendoza and Latasha Thomas

Mendoza to become the first female city clerk


Rep. Susana Mendoza Declares Victory in Clerk’s Race

Chicago Tribune


In Chicago, Mad Dog Mail worked with Susana Mendoza to win the election outright, electing the first female Chicago city clerk with over 60% of the vote. We were also able to help Latasha Thomas through a crowded eight-way primary where she garnered 48% of the vote.  While the runoff election doesn’t take place until April 5, we are confident she will prevail. As a firm, Mad Dog Mail has fought to elect more females across the nation, and we’re proud of our work in Chicago.


Mad Dog Mail congratulates Susana Mendoza on her victory, and we’re still doing everything possible to make sure Latasha Thomas wins her run-off election on April 5.