Nicole McCleskey is a Partner with Public Opinion Strategies, a leading national political, public policy, and public affairs research firm. Public Opinion Strategies is widely recognized as the nation’s leading Republican polling firm, listing 15 U.S. Senators, 6 Governors, and over 75 Members of Congress as clients.
Nicole is recognized as one of the premiere focus group moderators in the country today. In 2012, Nicole conducted over 100 focus groups for Republican candidates and organizations, including Romney for President, the National Republican Congressional Committee, and the Republican Governor’s Association. After more than a decade conducting focus groups and polling for campaigns and corporations, Nicole has developed a unique skill set to better understand the minds of voters and consumers.
In 2010, Nicole was the pollster and senior advisor to the Susana Martinez for Governor campaign in New Mexico. In this capacity, Nicole provided strategic direction for the campaign and policy guidance. She then served as Deputy Chair for the Transition for Governor-elect Martinez. Nicole also played a role in the Republican take-over of the U.S. House of Representatives by assisting the NRCC IE efforts in targeted districts, as well as continuing her role as lead pollster for the Republican State Leadership Committee in their bid to successfully take-over several legislative chambers around the nation.
In previous election cycles, Nicole has polled in a number of competitive races at all levels from statewide campaigns to local elections.
Nicole’s political experience is complemented by a strong public affairs research resume that includes crisis management, strategic planning, corporate image development, and media testing for such organizations as America’s Natural Gas Alliance, the American Beverage Association, the National Association of Realtors, Walmart, and numerous other companies and associations. Through this body of work, Nicole has built strong public policy background with focus areas that include health care, energy policy, and a range of other complex topics. Her work on corporate projects ranges from “dial” group ad testing and one-on-one elite audience interviews to national studies.
Nicole is a RIVA-trained moderator, with advanced moderator training courses and hundreds of focus groups under her belt. She received a B.A. in Government from Claremont McKenna College, and M.A. degrees from the University of Southern California and George Washington University.
Nicole is originally from Oakland, California, and now resides in Albuquerque, New Mexico with her family.