Behind the Candidates

Project Description

Behind the Candidates is a website created for the 2008 presidential election. It was conceived to answer a simple question: who will be the key advisors influencing the next president?


After the Bush years, we thought it was critical that voters not only consider the candidates for president and vice president, but the individuals they bring with them to the office who become instrumental in advocating and executing policy measures. We couldn’t find any substantive tools or platforms doing an adequate job at this, so we built one ourselves.


We researched over 60 top advisors from the McCain and Obama campaigns and assembled an interactive dossier for each person. The advisors were organized by category–each advisor is arranged side-by-side with their counterpart.


As expected, many of President Obama’s top advisers throughout his administration–David Axelrod, Robert Gibbs, David Plouffe, Valerie Jarrett, Pete Rouse, Susan Rice, Denis McDonough, Penny Pritzker, and Austan Goolsbee, to name a few–were originally part of his 2008 campaign, and were profiled on the site. 


Interactive Design Annual 15, Communication Arts, 2009
88th Annual ADC Awards, merit, Art Director’s Club, 2009
Annual Design Review, honorable mention, I.D. Magazine, 2009


Interactive Forms Give Power to Election Perspectives, Poynter Institute for Journalism, 2008
Selected press: Swissmiss, Selected WebDesign, QBN, Awearness, Good Magazine, Archinect, CPLUV, Print Magazine, Takepart


Art direction

Ian Boyle, co-creator

Public Service Bureau, studio