After launching her campaign for governor last month, former state Commerce Secretary Mary Burke has quickly assembled a team of well-known campaign staff, including two former strategists for President Barack Obama.

Spokesperson Joe Zepecki said Jim Margolis, a former campaign adviser to Obama, will serve as chief media consultant; Diane Feldman, former pollster for Sen. Tammy Baldwin will serve as pollster; and Pete Giangreco, the lead consultant for Obama’s 2008 direct mail campaign, will work as a direct mail consultant.

University of Wisconsin political science professor Barry Burden said in an email to The Badger Herald the new hires show how serious Burke is about her campaign.

“Burke is using her own funds to buy talent and make sure that the campaign has excellent people on board,” he said. “It will help avoid the mistakes that first-time candidates sometimes make.”

Zepecki said staff have established a campaign platform focused on job creation, improving Wisconsin’s educational system and giving women increased access to contraception and choices regarding their health.

He added Burke is now backed by both EMILY’s List, which supports pro-choice female candidates, and Planned Parenthood of Wisconsin, which announced its endorsement Monday.

Burke’s experiences during her time in the private sector would be helpful in the governor’s office, he added.

“Her experience translates into a very clear vision for how we create jobs and opportunity for Wisconsin families, for students when they graduate from college,” Zepecki said. “And if you contrast that with [Gov.] Scott Walker’s failure on jobs, we expect that how we move the economy forward will be a big issue in this campaign.”

Republican Party of Wisconsin Executive Director Joe Fadness said in an email to The Badger Herald that Burke’s policies are not suitable for Wisconsin.

“Democratic Party bosses and consultants picked millionaire Mary Burke in a back room to run a campaign to take Wisconsin backward,” he said. “These are the same people who have told Burke to run a ‘No Promises’ campaign and not be upfront with Wisconsin voters. We’ve seen Mary Burke’s policies in action—and Wisconsin can’t afford it.”

RPW Chairman Brad Courtney said he was optimistic for Walker’s campaign in a statement earlier this week.

Courtney said their grassroots network is growing and will move Wisconsin forward by re-electing Walker.

“With one year until the mid-term elections, Republicans have wasted no time in building a foundation for success,” Courtney said.

Burke could possibly run in a primary against Sen. Kathleen Vinehout, D-Alma, who is considering joining the race, according to statements throughout the past month.

Mike Basford, Democratic Party of Dane County chair, said although Vinehout does not plan to announce whether she is running until the end of this year or the beginning of next year, all the signs show she will join the race.

“What I can certainly say is that I think both candidates would be a fantastic alternative to another four years of Scott Walker,” Basford said.

Correction: A statement made by Joe Fadness, executive director of the Republican Party of Wisconsin were article was changed from a direct quote to more accurately reflect what was said.