Money and Democracy

Published — January 18, 2013 Updated — May 19, 2014 at 12:19 pm ET

Expenditure Profile: Waterfront Strategies


Rank: 3

Clients’ expenditures: $81 million*

Website: None


Raeylnn Olson (president)



Waterfront Strategies is a media buying firm that serves primarily Democratic-aligned super PACs and nonprofits. The firm was the preferred vendor for Majority PAC and House Majority PAC — the super PACs aimed at securing Democratic seats in the U.S. Senate and U.S. House of Representatives.

Waterfront billed more than $81 million for political ad buys for Citizens United-related groups in the 2012 election, yet very little information about the firm is publicly available.

The same cannot be said for GMMB, a well-known political consulting firm which shares a Georgetown address with Waterfront and was the chosen advertising agency for President Barack Obama’s 2008 and 2012 campaigns.

Waterfront is an “internal branch” of GMMB, according to a Huffington Post report from June. The group was incorporated in Delaware and lists its president as Raelynn Olson, a managing partner at GMMB.

Through Dec. 5, Waterfront purchased nearly $35 million in advertising time on behalf of Majority PAC, and $27 million for House Majority PAC. Another top client of the 2012 election cycle was the League of Conservation Voters, Inc., a nonprofit that supports mostly pro-environment Democrats.

Last Updated: Jan. 18, 2013

* Total consists of independent expenditures made to the firm in the 2012 election cycle as reported to the Federal Election Commission.

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