The In Crowd

If the Walker emails – some 27,000 pages recently unsealed from the first Joe Doe investigation to nip at the governor’s heels – were a popularity contest, these staffers would be the stars.  Fran McLaughlin Then: Director of communications for County Executive Scott Walker, a position that included copying and pasting news stories into emails so Walker could read them on his Blackberry. McLaughlin was granted immunity during the first John Doe investigation. Now: Public information officer at the Milwaukee County Sherriff’s Office.  Jill Bader Then: Communications director for the Walker campaign. She came under fire from other members of…

If the Walker emails – some 27,000 pages recently unsealed from the first Joe Doe investigation to nip at the governor’s heels – were a popularity contest, these staffers would be the stars.

 Fran McLaughlin

Then: Director of communications for County Executive Scott Walker, a position that included copying and pasting news stories into emails so Walker could read them on his Blackberry. McLaughlin was granted immunity during the first John Doe investigation.

Now: Public information officer at the Milwaukee County Sherriff’s Office.

 Jill Bader

Then: Communications director for the Walker campaign. She came under fire from other members of the “inner circle” after she retweeted a video of a largely African-American crowd dancing to “C’mon N’ Ride It (The Train).”

Now: Communications director for the Republican State Leadership Committee and active supporter of the Girl Scouts of the USA.

 Keith Gilkes

Then: Walker’s hard-bitten campaign manager. Some have even called his tactics “callous.”

Now: Walker’s hard-bitten campaign manager. Nowadays, he’s more likely to be called one of “50 Politicos to Watch” by Politico (July 2013).

 Tom Nardelli

Then: Walker’s chief of staff with a penchant for forwarding racist jokes, including one that said he could handle being black, disabled, one-armed, drug-addicted, Jewish, homosexual and unemployed, but not a Democrat.

Now: Nardelli has nurtured a consulting firm since resigning from a state position in 2011.

 Cindy Archer

Then: Head of Milwaukee County’s Department of Administrative Services and a loyal Walker aide whose home was raided in 2011 as part of a John Doe investigation.

Now: After stints in the state departments of Administration and Children and Families, she settled into a post at the State Public Defender’s Office that pays a six-figure salary.

 Kelly Rindfleisch

Then: Deputy chief of staff, key link in the “inner circle.”

Now: She’s appealing her 2012 felony conviction.

This article appears in the April 2014 issue of Milwaukee Magazine.

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Abby Callard was an assistant editor at Milwaukee Magazine from 2012-2014. Her journalistic pursuits have seen her covering the Hispanic community in mid-Missouri, politics in Washington, D.C., art and culture for Smithsonian magazine, the social enterprise space in India and health care in Chicago. Abby has a degree in journalism from the University of Missouri.