John Buckley is a Managing Director of the Harbour Group, developing strategic communications programs for companies in the technology, financial services, media and entertainment industries. He has extensive experience running communications operations for publicly-held companies, as well as having held senior positions in three U.S. presidential campaigns. He is also the author of three novels and co-author of a bestselling business book.
Prior to joining The Harbour Group, John was Executive Vice President for Communications at America Online, Inc. From 2002 to 2007, he was a key member of the senior management team that transformed AOL from a dying vestige of the dial-up era to a free, advertising-supported service with over 100 million monthly unique visitors. While at AOL, John oversaw the launch of more than two dozen technology products, and ran the company’s media relations operation. Prior to joining AOL, he was a Corporate Vice President at its parent company, which then was known as AOL-Time Warner.
From 1991 to 2001, John was Senior Vice President-Corporate Communications at Fannie Mae. In the 1990s, Fannie Mae was as notable for the strength of its public affairs apparatus as it was for the seriousness of its underwriting standards. John was in charge of the company’s media relations, executive communications, and advertising. Over nearly a decade, the consumer advertising campaign he helped develop for the Fannie Mae Foundation resulted in more than 12 million families receiving the information necessary to qualify for a Fannie Mae mortgage.
John has held senior positions in three presidential campaigns. He was Deputy Press Secretary in the 1984 reelection campaign of President Ronald Reagan, Press Secretary to Congressman Jack Kemp in both his congressional office and his 1988 campaign for president, and in 1996, while on leave from Fannie Mae, John was Communications Director for Senator Robert Dole’s campaign for president. He also served as Communications Director for the National Republican Congressional Committee.
His strategic communications agency experience includes two years (1989-1991) as a senior vice president at Robinson, Lake, Lerer & Montgomery.
His novels, Family Politics and Statute of Limitations, were published by Simon & Schuster. In 2010, The Business of Happiness by Ted Leonsis with John Buckley reached as high as #4 on non-fiction best seller lists. The Geography Lesson, a comic novel about a botched National Geographic expedition, was published in May 2013. He has written for dozens of publications, ranging from Rolling Stone and The Village Voice to National Review, The New Republic, Travel + Leisure, The New York Times, and The Wall Street Journal. He is a 1979 graduate of Hampshire College.