Metro Nashville Public School System officials have hired two men to lead their communications department, and both of those men have strong ties to the Democratic Party and other progressive causes.
This, according to a press release that Interim Director of Schools Adrienne Battle put out this week.
Sean Braisted will serve as the executive officer of Communications and Community Engagement and act as the primary point of contact for members of the media. Michael Cass, meanwhile, will join the department as director of Strategic Communications, the press release said.
Braisted served as communications director for former Nashville Democratic mayor Megan Barry where he managed mayoral communications staff, guided departmental public information officers, and served as a spokesperson for the mayor and Metro Government. Most recently he has served as a public information officer for the Metro Codes Department and media advisor to the Planning Department.
According to Braisted’s LinkedIn page, from 2012 to 2014 he was press secretary for the Tennessee House Democratic Caucus.
Cass, according to the press release, served as speechwriter and communications advisor for former mayors Karl Dean, Barry, and David Briley. Prior to that, Cass was the local government reporter for The Tennessean.
According to Cass’ LinkedIn page, he most recently was a senior advisor to U.S. Rep. Jim Cooper, a Democrat who represents Tennessee’s Fifth Congressional District.
Cass’ LinkedIn page also said that he was Karl Dean’s senior communications advisor when Dean ran for governor last year. Cass’ duties for Dean included writing Dean’s press releases and speeches.
According to the MNPS press release, Braisted started his position on November 12 and Cass will join MNPS on Monday.
Battle said in the press release that she is “thankful that Sean and Michael will be joining our MNPS family to use their combined experience to share the stores and successes of the teachers, students, and staff across the district.”
“Consistent, accurate, and timely communications are critical to strengthening the confidence of Nashville families and stakeholders in our public schools, and the addition of these two professionals to our team will help us to do just that,” Battle said.
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Chris Butler is an investigative journalist at The Tennessee Star. Follow Chris on Facebook. Email tips to [email protected]
Photo “Michael Cass (Left)” by Michael Cass. Photo “Sean Braisted (Right)” by Sean Braisted. Background Photo “MNPS Board of Education Meeting Room” by MNPS.