Former presidential advisor, North Dakota native and UND alum to visit alma mater Oct. 11


Kate Menzies

Document Type

News Article

Publication Date


Campus Unit

College of Arts & Sciences


The University of North Dakota Communication Program will host former presidential advisor and UND alumnus Mark Pfeifle's visit to campus on Thursday Oct. 11.

Pfeifle will be a guest in UND classes during the day and will be keynote speaker at a 7 p.m. event in the Grand Forks Herald Community Room, where he will provide commentary and observations about the 2012 national election.

Pfeifle served as an advisor to President George W. Bush and was the Deputy National Security Advisor for Strategic Communications and Global Outreach at the White House. He was recognized as a leading spokesman, communication strategist and crisis manager. He dealt with the communication efforts during and after Iraq War.

From 2001 to 2004, as press secretary and later as communications director for Interior Secretary Gale Norton, Pfeifle created messages to pass energy and conservation legislation and the President's Healthy Forest Initiative. While at the Interior Department, he experienced the violence of September 11th first-hand as one of the first communication advisors sent to Ground Zero in New York City.

In 2004, he also served as director of communication for the Republican National Convention.

Pfeifle directed the Social Security Information Center at the U.S. Department of Treasury in 2005.Later that year, he was assigned to the White House to focus on communication strategy for the Global War on Terrorism. He also was assigned to a brief stint as a senior communications advisor for former Defense Secretary Robert Gates.

Early in his career, Pfeifle was a marketing and advertising director of the Grand Forks Air Force Base newspaper and was a stringer and freelancer for The Associated Press and USA Today. During the Grand Forks flood of 1997 he was a volunteer radio broadcaster and reporter for the Grand Forks Herald. Pfeifle, a native of Wishek, N.D., holds a bachelor's degree in communications from UND and currently lives in Washington, D.C.

Those attending the 7 p.m. open event at the Grand Forks Herald can enter the Community Room at the southwest corner of the Herald building located at 375 2nd Ave. North.