O'Malley Dillon, 34, was Barack Obama's field marshal in the must-win battleground states in 2008 and is a member of the small Wednesday-night dinner group that White House aide David Axelrod convenes weekly to craft political strategy.
Who is your political hero/inspiration?
My father. The person who taught me about the values of our Party, the importance of fighting for what you believe in, that there was no limit to what you can achieve if you work hard, and who showed me by example the importance of getting involved in your community if you want to make a difference.
If you weren't working in politics what would you be doing?
A coach. Athletics was such an important part of my life, which helped shape the person I am today. There is so much to learn from being part of a team, working together for a united goal. From watching my sister and her wife coach over the years, I know that it is tough work but so incredibly important and rewarding.
What's the most overlooked issue facing America these days?
Poverty. With recent figures showing nearly 1 in 7 people live in poverty, this is an issue that continues to grow in urgency. Watching our opponents tout gridlock when 43 million people live below the poverty line in this country it just makes me want to fight harder to support President Obama and those who are doing all they can to move our economy and our country forward.
Where do you see yourself professionally in five years?
I hope that in five years I will still be fighting for the causes, candidates, and elected officials that make a difference in people's lives.