Mayor hires new chief of staff and deputy

Photo by The Georgetown Dish
Mayor Vincent Gray with Christopher Murphy and Andi Pringle
Mayor Vincent Gray with Christopher Murphy and Andi Pringle

Having survived an August marked by an earthquake and a hurricane, Mayor Vincent Gray is filling in some key administration posts in time for the fall.

Veteran city hall reporter Bruce Johnson of WUSA 9 News says the appointments are an effort "to try and restore credibility to [Gray's] administration."

The mayor has named Christopher Murphy, most recently deputy chief of staff at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, to be chief of staff.

Murphy succeeds Paul Quander, deputy mayor for public safety, who has been Gray's interim chief of staff for the past five months. Quander was appointed to the post after Gray fired Gerri Mason Hall, who was badly damaged by her role in the hiring scandals that dogged the administration almost from its outset.

Murphy is seen as newcomer to District politics.

"As an outsider Murphy enters the job with no local baggage," said political consultant and Dish columnist Chuck Thies. "That status is likely to be welcomed by Gray's critics."

In addition to a new chief of staff, Gray has hired Andrea "Andi" Pringle to be deputy chief of staff. Pringle is a political and communications consultant with local and national experience.

City Paper's Loose Lips writes: "During the last mayoral race, she helped design an award-winning mailer critical of then-Mayor Adrian Fenty paid for by developer Don Peebles to help the Gray campaign in Ward 8.

Pringle, a Howard grad, served as Gov. Howard Dean's deputy campaign manager during the screamin' doctor's 2004 presidential bid. She's also worked for former presidential hopefuls Gov. Bill Richardson, the Rev. Jesse Jackson, and Sen. Carol Moseley Braun.

Pringle's résumé also includes several local campaigns, including at-large Councilmember Vincent Orange's last two races. Pringle's done consulting or direct mailing work for Ward 5 Councilmember Harry Thomas Jr. and attorney-to-the-stars A. Scott Bolden (who unsuccessfully challenged Councilmember Phil Mendelson in 2006)."

0 Comments For This Article

Peter Rosenstein

I think these two additions to the Mayor's staff are good and will help him to get out all the good things the Administration is doing.

Clearly the press likes to focus on the bad and the mistakes. I understand that as a writer or reporter it is more interesting and as we can see from so many sources the negative sells. That's why campaigns use it as well.

The more difficult part for the media is to strike a balance. They are not supposed to be flacks for any administration or politician but they do need to balance what they think the people they are both writing and reporting for, the public, need to know.

I think that the balance has been a little off kilter. The Washington Post for awhile considered every attack on Gray front page and every positive story something for page 4 in Metro. Maybe they both belong on page 1. In any event I welcome these two new appointments and from what I am hearing so do many inside the administration.