June 03, 2015
Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper and his speechwriter Max Potter are modeling a ghostwriting relationship based on mutual respect.
Speechwriting jobs hinge on chemistry between writer and speaker. And, mutual respect. One of the best-looking speechwriter/speaker relationships going these days is the ghostwriting bromance between speechwriter Max Potter and Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper.
The former journalist Potter got to know Hickenlooper while writing a deep magazine profile three years ago. When he went to work for Hickenlooper, the governor’s chief of staff Roxane White “reminded me that this job wasn’t all that different from reporting, in that the best thing I could do for the speechwriting and communications staff was to be there and observe,” Potter told the Denver Post last week.
That paid off when Potter accompanied Hickenlooper to a meeting with the parents of Colorado’s latest school violence victim, Claire Davis. The speech Potter wrote for Hickenlooper to deliver at Davis’ memorial service moved Denver, and won Hickenlooper and Potter a Cicero Speechwriting Award.
And it might also have helped win Potter a book gig. Potter recently resigned the governor’s office to write Hickenlooper’s memoir, due out next spring.
"I've met so many interesting people and I've gotten to experience so many different parts of life,” Hickenlooper told the Post. “Until pretty recently I thought I would write it because of course I think I can write, but people have pointed out to me that I really can't. Plus you have to be by yourself and if you're an extrovert that's hard."
Good for Hickenlooper for knowing what he’s got in Potter. Good for Potter too,. This could actually be a good politician’s memoir. Godspeed, fellas; we’ll be watching. —DM