Q. Will this campaign have more in common with a political campaign, or with an ad campaign for a product like soap?
A. I like to think that it's a bit more important than a campaign for soap. It's not unfair to analogize it to a political campaign. We need to raise awareness and inform likely customers of our product, what it means and what it can do, how it affects their loved ones, their family members, their pocketbooks. We have to aggressively raise awareness and you have to get those folks to take action. All that awareness is pointless unless we're actually able to get people to enroll (in a health plan).
Q. What's your background?
A. I worked on the 2008 and 2012 Obama for America campaigns. Between the period from 2009 and 2011, I worked as an organizer for Organizing for America, advocating for the president's legislative agenda. The major legislative accomplishment of his first term was the passage of the Affordable Care Act. But I also organized around other issues of importance to the president, like the repeal of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" and support for Supreme Court Justice (Sonia) Sotomayor.
Q. How are other states branding their health insurance marketplaces?
A. California is known as "Covered California." It's the "Connector" in Massachusetts. We want something people will recognize that's a little less wordy than "Illinois Health Insurance Marketplace." (It will be up to the marketing firm that wins the Illinois bid to design a logo and come up with a name.)
Q. Who else will be involved in reaching people without insurance?
A. Nonprofits, community-based organizations, government agencies, volunteer groups, labor unions. We want to inform and empower everybody to play a part in this.
Q. What's the budget for this campaign?