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A Survivor’s Guide to Washington: How to Succeed Without Losing Your Soul

Torie came to Voxie Media with a completed manuscript. She wanted to publish a beautiful book, one she could proudly hand to her 92-year-old father while he was still around to appreciate it. We worked as a team with well-known cartoonist Nick Galifianakis and book designer Melanie Shellito to create the stunning hardcover you see below. Torie commissioned Nick to create all the original illustrations. Comedian Lewis Black wrote the (very funny) introduction.

About the book

Perhaps best known as Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs under Donald Rumsfeld, Torie Clarke’s most impressive achievement might be the least public—and most elusive. She has operated at the highest levels of the shark tank known as the nation’s capital without paying the one price that success in Washington often exacts: her soul.

Known for her down-to-earth demeanor, Clarke has built and maintains close friendships on both sides of gaping partisan divides. She’s struck a balance between work and family in a town that can demand a choice between the two.

Torie_Clarke_standup_photoNow, in A Survivor’s Guide To Washington, Clarke explains how she’s done it and how others can succeed in the realms of politics and public relations while maintaining their integrity—and sanity—too. Built around a series of questions Clarke has received in private conversations as well as through hundreds of public appearances, the book offers practical advice on topics ranging from handling a boss’s over- the-line advances to when it is—and isn’t—ok to bolt one from Washington job for another. Sprinkled throughout are anecdotes from Clarke’s three decades in the back rooms, boardrooms and green rooms of the nation’s capital as well as advice she solicited from admired and respected Washington figures.

A Survivor’s Guide breaks the tired mold of the clichéd Washington memoir by turning Clarke’s diverse experiences into practical, personal and professional advice for the hundreds of thousands of professionals, from the aspiring to the accomplished, who struggle to survive in the nation’s capital.

About Torie

Torie Clarke is Senior Vice President for Global Corporate Affairs for SAP, a leading multinational software company. Clarke has served in three Administrations, most recently as Assistant Secretary of Defense under Donald Rumsfeld. She is recognized in the private and public sectors as an expert on communications in the age of transparency.

Prior to SAP, Clarke was a Senior Adviser to Comcast NBC Universal, ran the Washington office of Hill & Knowlton, served as Vice President of the National Cable Television Association and was Press Secretary to Senator John McCain. She is the author of Lipstick on a Pig: Winning in the No-Spin Era by Someone Who Knows the Game. Clarke serves on the Senior Advisory Committee of Harvard’s Institute of Politics and is on the Board of Trustees of the Potomac School. She and her husband, Brian Graham, live in Chevy Chase, Maryland with their three children.

Video interviews with the author

More video interviews with the author here.

Cover design

Full cover spread Torie ClarkeTorie’s book was designed by Melanie Shellito of Artezen.

Author website

You can contact the author through her website:

Follow Torie on Twitter @survivordcbook

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