Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's campaign has started the process of building a foundation in Kentucky in hopes of competing here in next year's presidential primary and beyond.
Clinton, who announced her long-awaited presidential campaign earlier this month, has hired Derrick Collett, a former field organizer for the Kentucky Democratic Party, to be her Kentucky grassroots organizer, a Clinton campaign official told the Herald-Leader.
The campaign told The Huffington Post on Wednesday that it was planning to hire staffers in all 50 states as part of its "Ramp Up Grassroots Organizing Program."
The former first lady and U.S. Senator has tapped Collett to train volunteers and build a grassroots network over the course of the next year.
A Clinton campaign official said the approach reflects Clinton's desire to build a strong grassroots campaign that is focused on other people and the campaign's stated pledge that it is not taking the primaries for granted.
A launch video, featuring Marlon Marshall, Clinton's director of state campaigns, was sent to campaign supporters around the country this week.
"Organizing is the heart and soul of this campaign," Marshall said in the video. "As we speak, things are ramping up in all 50 states and territories. Face-to-face conversations with your friends and neighbors are how we will win. So we're doubling down on old-school organizing."
Kentucky junior U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Bowling Green, is also mounting a charge for the White House, but state Democrats think Clinton can be competitive here since her husband, former President Bill Clinton, carried the state both times he ran.
Collett served as Southeast Kentucky field organizer for the Democratic-coordinated campaign for Alison Lundergan Grimes last year.
A Leslie County native, Collett lives in Danville.