2018 Speechwriters Fellows

Mary Monica Allen is on the speechwriting team for the U.S. Secretary of State. Prior to entering the State Department, she worked for U.S. Senator Richard Burr (NC) as well as at the Heritage Foundation’s Davis Institute for National Security and Foreign Policy and at the Center for Education Reform (CER). She holds a B.A. in Politics and International Affairs, with a concentration in Middle East and South Asian Studies, from Wake Forest University. She is a 2018 Publius Fellow.

Mary Katherine Ascik is speechwriter for Senator John Thune, chairman of the Senate Republican Conference. She has written for several other members of Congress and wrote presidential messages and proclamations for President George W. Bush.  Her work has been published by National Review, the Weekly Standard, CNN, USA Today, Politico, and U.S. News and World Report, among others.  Mary Katherine received her B.A. in politics from the University of Dallas and her M.A. in English from the Catholic University of America.

Joshua Bandoch is a speechwriter for the Secretary of the Air Force, Dr. Heather Wilson. Previously, he was a postdoctoral fellow at the Political Theory Project at Brown University and in the Department of Political Science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is the author of The Politics of Place: Montesquieu, Particularism, and the Pursuit of Liberty (University of Rochester Press, 2017), as well as numerous articles, chapters, and book reviews. He earned his B.A. in government and politics from the University of Maryland, College Park and his Ph.D. in political science from the University of Notre Dame.

Christopher Beach is the chief speechwriter for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Prior to his current position, Mr. Beach was an editor for Real Clear Politics. Before that, he was the executive producer of former education secretary William Bennett’s nationally syndicated talk show. He also wrote speeches for Sec. Bennett and co-authored the updated and revised Book of Man with him. Mr. Beach’s writings have been published by Real Clear Politics, The Wall Street JournalNational Review, The Weekly Standard, and other publications. He holds a B.A. in journalism from Patrick Henry College. 

Arina Grossu is a senior communications advisor to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office for Civil Rights, where she advises and supports in communications and outreach. Ms. Grossu has worked previously in policy, communications, and public relations for non-profits and the private sector.  Ms. Grossu earned a master’s degree in bioethics from the University of Mary; a master’s degree in theology from the Dominican House of Studies; and a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from the University of Notre Dame.

Kevin Grout is a speechwriter for Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY), the United States Senate Majority Leader. In that role, Kevin focuses on issues relating to the Commonwealth of Kentucky. His writings have been featured on the Senate floor, in The Wall Street Journal and in dozens of Kentucky publications. He earned a B.A. in history and political science from the University of Louisville. A native Kentuckian, Kevin is passionate about the Bluegrass, especially its political history and unique traditions. 

Sam Lyman is the chief speechwriter to Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT). Since Mr. Lyman first joined the Senator’s staff in 2013, his writing has been published by The Wall Street JournalThe New York TimesThe Washington PostUSA TodayTimeNational ReviewRealClearPolitics, and Sports Illustrated. He has likewise written over 200 speeches, including the Senator’s eulogy for the funeral of Muhammad Ali—an event that was viewed by more than 220 million people worldwide. As chief speechwriter, Sam also provides strategic communications counsel to the Senator and senior congressional staff. He graduated magna cum laude from Brigham Young University with a bachelor’s degree in political science.

Arielle Mueller is a deputy press secretary for Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL). Before joining Senator Rubio’s team, Ms. Mueller lived in Madrid, Spain, where she received her master’s degree from the Universidad de Alcalá. While pursuing her master’s degree, she taught high school history and art and traveled extensively throughout Europe. Previously, she worked on Capitol Hill with the Republican Study Committee and Majority Whip Steve Scalise. She also holds a B.A. in history from Hillsdale College.

Andrew Quinn is the chief speechwriter for U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. He leads the team that develops daily floor remarks, off-campus speeches, op-eds, and statements and helps shape communications strategy. He previously worked at the American Enterprise Institute, where he directed the office and projects of AEI president Arthur Brooks. He oversaw efforts including a top-ten national bestselling book and a regular New York Times column and managed strategy and communications for Dr. Brooks. Andrew holds a B.A. in political science from Williams College and studied jurisprudence and philosophy at Oxford.

Andy Reuss is a speechwriter at the United States Department of Justice.  Previously, he served as legislative assistant to U.S. Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah) and as research assistant to U.S. Senator Ben Sasse (R-Nebraska).  He holds a B.A. in politics and English from Hillsdale College.  As a George Washington Fellow, he conducted research for the official Winston Churchill biography project. He is a 2018 Publius Fellow.

Blake Seitz is the speechwriter for Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA). He is responsible for producing speeches, op-eds, and other written products for the Majority Leader. Previously, Blake was the speechwriter for Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) and an assistant editor for the Washington Free Beacon. Blake’s articles have appeared in The American Interest, National Review, The Weekly Standard, and The Washington Examiner, among other publications. He is a 2016 Publius Fellow.