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Mover & Shaker: Amanda Munoz Smith (Townhall Media External Relations Director)

by Christopher N. Malagisi

Amanda Munoz

Congratulations Amanda on being our Conservative Book Club “Member of the Week!” Tell us a little bit about yourself and the work you do as the External Relations Director at Townhall MediaWhat got you interested in politics, and the work you currently do? 

I have to credit my love of politics to my alma mater, the University of California, Santa Barbara. While there, I had the chance to work closely with – but more importantly, learn from – some amazing professors and classmates. College was a place where I was an outlier politically, but the challenge allowed me to develop, test, change and expand my own political views.

After graduating, I had an amazing opportunity to intern and subsequently work on Capitol Hill, where I developed a great respect for Congress as an institution. I then went into the private sector and joined the amazingly talented team at Townhall Media, where I currently head our partnerships, coalitions and outreach, among a few other things.

Working in DC for several years now has given me a front-row seat to watching history unfold; but also first-hand experience in learning and understanding where we as conservatives and Republicans can and should improve. 2016 has been taxing on the entire country, and rather depressing for those on the Right. I figure there are two ways to look at this: gloom and doom at the setback we’re sure to face even after November 8th or as a chance to start fresh.

Thanks in large part to the work ethic my parents instilled in me, I welcome the challenge and look forward to continuing to work alongside amazing conservative organizations, inspiring thought leaders and motivated millennials committed to retaking core conservative principles and giving them a fresh and truly inclusive context.

As Michael Jackson sang, “If you wanna make the world a better place, take a look at yourself, and then make a change.” Our party and movement have plenty of work to do. Opportunity abounds to make a difference.

 

What big plans are in store for Townhall Media in the near future? Townhall Media

As you know, Townhall Media is in full election mode, and the team has been working hard to provide comprehensive coverage throughout the process. We’ve added some new features to our election results center on Townhall.com, which should make tracking the races in specific districts and states much easier while reading the latest updates. I’m excited for our readers to experience the recently redesigned sites with improved functionality and user experience during this important night.

No matter the outcome of the presidential race, election week will be the culmination to what’s amounted to over a year-long sprint to November 8th. The work we’ve accomplished together as a team is something I’m so proud to be a part of, especially in light of the nature of this cycle.

 

What books, authors, or conservative-themed books, influenced your political philosophy and outlook on life? 

To Kill A Mockingbird has been my favorite book since 8th grade, and I try to read it once a year. It’s where I first thought about how our differences define our shared experience and how standing up for the right thing, which can be highly subjective, is often times hard and unpopular. A huge fan of political theory, I love me some Machiavelli and John Stuart Mill. I also find inspiration in the writings of Pope John Paul II and game-changer Pope Francis.

 

Tell us a little more about yourself! 

  • Favorite Movie: Breakfast at Tiffany’s; Saving Private Ryan; American Sniper; The Proposal (Because how could you not love a little Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds?)
  • Favorite TV Show: The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon; inspired by rerun episodes of Secret Millionaire; Turn: Washington’s Spies – the story of George Washington’s spies; Downtown Abbey – duh.
  • Favorite Band:  Maroon 5 – Cali, baby.
  • Favorite Food/Drink: Like all good political junkies, I like to maintain a healthy diet of coffee and wine – red, white, bubbly – all kinds of wine.
  • Where do you get your news from primarily? The Wall Street Journal has been a long-time favorite publication; but, as part of my job, I get news from all sorts of outlets and platforms. Of course, my daily go-to’s and top recommendations are the Townhall Media family of digital properties: Townhall.com, HotAir.com, RedState.com, Twitchy.com and BearingArms.com. The unique, expert – and dare I say, sometimes entertaining – insights you’ll get from our amazing editorial teams can’t be beat.
  • If you could meet any person, dead or alive, who would it be? Pope Francis, Mother Teresa, Kate Middleton, and Beyoncé – all self-explanatory and interestingly reflective of my interests. I’m also a huge karaoke buff, so singing a duet with Justin Timberlake would be monumental; and, I’m sure most of the country agrees here, but hanging with the cast of Stranger Things would be awesome. Cameo, please.
  • If you could travel anywhere, where would you go? Life never seems to slow down or get less hectic. If I could go on any trip, I’d want to go on a full family and close friend vacation – 50 to 60 people just having a great time. Place doesn’t matter, although, I’m partial to a beach. The people would make the trip.
  • What do you do for fun? As my most recent hobby, I’ve undertaken amateur floral design. It started as a competition to create a better garden flower box than my easily more creative sister. I won, though; so now I figure I must pursue it in order to ensure total sibling dominance. My favorite part is that flowers don’t talk politics, so the pretty little things are my mini-escape from both work and urban dwelling.

 

Why did you join the Conservative Book Club? How is the user experience beneficial to you? 

CBC is my go-to for ideas on the next good read. Books are one of my favorite escapes from the day, and it’s important for me to rotate between fun, cultural, political and historical reads. CBC has it all. I also love getting to learn more about specific titles and authors with Chris Malagisi’s author interviews.

CBC’s expansion into movies and pop culture is something so desperately needed from a right-of-center perspective. Actively engaging our culture is the way to change minds and hearts. CBC is leading the charge, and it’s awesome.

 

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