Former Idaho Statesman reporter Michelle Cole joins Northwest PR & lobbying firm

Michelle Cole, a former Statehouse reporter for the Twin Falls Times-News and Idaho Statesman, is leaving The Oregonian for Gallatin Public Affairs.

Cole will be the firm's first director of content and research, according to a news release. Gallatin has offices in Boise, Portland, Seattle and Spokane. Cole will remain in Portland.

Cole also was an editor at the Statesman, which she left in 1999 for the Oregonian in Portland. Cole was the paper's bureau chief at the Statehouse in Salem.

The new release from follows:

AWARD WINNING NORTHWEST JOURNALIST JOINS GALLATIN

Michelle Cole, a veteran reporter with The Oregonian and Idaho Statesman, will lead the firm's new content and research division

Portland -- Michelle Cole, state capitol bureau chief for The Oregonian, is joining Gallatin Public Affairs to become the firm's first Director of Content and Research. She will start December 1st.

Cole, who has worked as a capitol reporter in Salem and Boise, will provide high quality writing and in-depth content for government relations, crisis communications, digital communications and ballot measure and issue advocacy campaigns. She will be based in Portland and will serve Gallatin clients throughout the Pacific Northwest.

"There are few people with as much in-depth knowledge of Northwest public policy issues as Michelle Cole. And even fewer with a proven ability to succinctly organize and communicate those issues to policy-makers and the public. We're thrilled to add her talents to our team and to the advantage of our clients across the Northwest," said Dan Lavey, Gallatin President.

Cole has been a reporter with The Oregonian since 1999, covering the state legislature and state government along with environmental, energy and natural resource issues. Previously, she worked at the Idaho Statesman where she served as a business and political reporter, metro editor and editorial page editor.

As both a reporter and editor, Cole has covered governors, statewide elected officials and legislators. She has an intimate knowledge of public policy issues ranging from workers compensation and taxes to agency budgets, environmental policy and health care.

"I am looking forward to the opportunity to translate the communications skills I've honed as a journalist and my knowledge of Northwest politics and issues into high quality work for Gallatin's clients," said Cole. "The values of the firm – bipartisanship, integrity and advocacy for the economic and social advancement of our region – matter to me."

Cole began her journalism career in Twin Falls, Idaho in 1987. She has received a number of awards for her reporting and writing including the Bruce Baer Award – Oregon journalism's top prize for investigative reporting – and several first-place awards from the Society of Professional Journalists.

She earned her master's degree in Journalism from U.C. Berkeley and a bachelor's degree in British/American Literature from Scripps College.

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