After a successful visit from Pope Francis in 2015 and then an exemplary Democratic National Convention just last month, what can’t Philly do? During the DNC, I was lucky enough to be a part of the historic event as a volunteer all week long. Having been a former Washingtonian, it was fun to see my past D.C. cohorts experience the city for the first time. Many admitted they had only seen the inside of 30th Street Station. For them, Philadelphia was just a stop on the Northeast Regional Amtrak. After just one week here, they couldn’t believe what they were missing! Here’s a look at my experience behind the scenes at the 2016 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia.
I had the incredible opportunity to volunteer with the Democratic National Convention Committee working in Studio 2016, the DNCC’s in-house, full-production media studio built by Google within the Wells Fargo Center. The Studio allowed for some convention attendees – surrogates, elected officials and candidates at the local, state, and national level, and special guests – to conduct TV satellite, radio, and online interviews live from the Wells Fargo Center.
Studio 2016 worked to book interviews lived and taped satellite interviews for surrogates and elected officials. Though many of these interviews were scheduled ahead of time, speakers just exiting the podium were also asked if they would like to conduct any satellite interviews. The Studio 2016 would then pitch and book any interviews for them in real time and set them up in the studio. The organization, flexibility and professionalism was top notch and I was so grateful to have been a part of the process.
My view from the Suite Level to watch actress Sigourney Weaver’s speech.
Due to the long hours I spent at Wells Fargo, I was able to see how the police and city transportation were able to seamlessly enact a well-executed protest plan. I took the Broad Street Line to the Wells Fargo Center to and from the Convention every day and have never felt safer. When protesters were in full action, the police shut down one entrance and shuttled Convention guests from the Oregon stop without missing a beat. This Philly.com article helps explain more.
I journeyed to the Convention floor to watch Vice President Joe Biden deliver an incredible speech on night 3.
The speeches from both VP Biden and President Obama, coupled with sleep deprivation made me… emotional to say the least.
Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf delivered a great speech from the DNC podium on the final night.
Nothing made me prouder than exiting the Wells Fargo Center each night and seeing the beautiful Philly skyline. I am so grateful to call Philadelphia my city, and I couldn’t be more invigorated for the next exciting opportunity that comes our way. Philadelphia has proven that it is ready for anything!