Person

Valerie Berlin

Nationality:

American

Occupation:

Democratic Political Consultant

Co-Founder & Principal, BerlinRosen

For more information, see BerlinRosen (For-Profit)

Valerie Berlin is a Democratic political strategist and operative based in New York City. She is a principal and co-founder of the for-profit consulting firm BerlinRosen, which she founded with business partner Jonathan Rosen. [1]

Her firm is notable for consulting for dozens of left-of-center advocacy groups and labor unions in New York City as well as controversies surrounding its connections to New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio. Berlin has worked for far-left liberal causes and politicians for over 25 years, including stints with ACORN (the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now) and disgraced former New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman (D), then a state senator. [2]

Personal Life

Berlin grew up in Cleveland, Ohio and attended the University of Michigan before beginning her career as a Democratic Party campaigner and progressive political organizer. [3] She settled in Brooklyn, New York where she subsequently worked for ACORN and State Senator Eric Schneiderman (D-Manhattan), who later served as New York Attorney General (and a client of BerlinRosen) until he resigned amid sexual harassment allegations.

Berlin lives in Brooklyn with her partner Amy and two children[4] and purchased her Brooklyn condo in 2010 for $1.6 million. [5]

BerlinRosen

In 2005, Berlin started the public affairs firm BerlinRosen with business partner Jonathan Rosen, who was also a staffer for a New York State Senate Democratic caucus at the time. Berlin leads the firm’s campaign and creative services practice where she oversees the firm’s creation of political advertising including television, radio, and direct mail.

The firm gained prominence when its client Bill de Blasio was elected New York City Mayor in 2014. BerlinRosen began taking on political candidates and labor union-tied groups as clients and carved out a reputation as representing clients with very progressive and democratic socialist leanings, such as de Blasio. The firm’s most powerful and well-funded non-profit client is likely the Service Employees International Union (SEIU). Other known current and former clients include the Chicago Teachers Union, Food and Water Watch, the New York State Trial Lawyers Association, the United Auto Workers, and the United Food and Commercial Workers Union. [6]

Little is known about the specific finances of BerlinRosen as it is privately held, but the firm has grown to include over 120 employees and is reported to have annual contracts with many progressive groups and unions as high totaling millions of dollars each. [7]

Controversies

Berlin’s public relations firm BerlinRosen has run many issue-based campaigns for left-wing labor unions. One such campaign is the Fight for $15, a push for a $15 minimum wage led by the SEIU. Both BerlinRosen and the SEIU have garnered criticism for their execution of the campaign among liberal and conservatives alike for the top-down organization of the campaign. [8]

The firm was also retained by the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) to stage the OUR Walmart campaign, which has been criticized as a union front organization. [9]

BerlinRosen was also involved in investigations surrounding the Campaign for One New York, a non-profit that was set up to promote de Blasio’s priorities as Mayor. Records from the firm were subpoenaed that showed coordination between the group and the de Blasio campaign.

The firm also did work for the presidential campaign of Green Party presidential candidate Jill Stein in 2016 relating to Stein’s call for a recount in states that narrowly handed their decisive electoral votes to Republican Donald Trump. [10]

References

  1. “Our Team.” | BerlinRosen. Accessed May 29, 2019. https://berlinrosen.com/our-team ^
  2. Watson, Michael. “Consulting for the Left: Focus on BerlinRosen.” Capital Research Center. January 31, 2018. Accessed May 29, 2019. https://capitalresearch.org/article/one-consulting-for-the-left/ ^
  3. “Our Team.” | BerlinRosen. Accessed November 09, 2018. https://berlinrosen.com/our-team ^
  4. “Our Team.” BerlinRosen. Accessed May 31, 2019. https://berlinrosen.com/our-team. ^
  5. “Search by Party Name.” New York City Department of Finance, Office of the City Register. Accessed Accessed May 29, 2019. https://a836-acris.nyc.gov/DS/DocumentSearch/PartyName ^
  6. Center for Organizational Research and Education. “Berlin Rosen.” Activist Facts. Accessed Accessed May 29, 2019. https://www.activistfacts.com/organizations/berlin-rosen/ ^
  7. “BerlinRosen” Influence Watch. Accessed May 29, 2019. https://www.influencewatch.org/for-profit/berlinrosen/ ^
  8. Watson, Michael. “Consulting for the Left: Focus on BerlinRosen.” Capital Research Center. January 31, 2018. Accessed May 29, 2019. https://capitalresearch.org/article/one-consulting-for-the-left/ ^
  9. “OUR Walmart”. Influence Watch. Accessed May 29, 2019. https://www.influencewatch.org/labor-union/our-walmart/ ^
  10. Sachdev, Alexis. “Jill Stein files for election recount in Pennsylvania.” Metro.us. November 28, 2016. Accessed Accessed May 29, 2019. https://www.metro.us/news/jill-stein-files-for-election-recount-in-pennsylvania/zsJpkB—QdQpHGyqZLT5E ^

Connected Organizations

  1. BerlinRosen (For-profit)
    Co-Founder and Principal
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