Dana Cope is currently the Executive Director of the State Employees Association of North Carolina (SEANC). In this role, Dana Cope acts as the chief media spokesperson for over 55,000 state employees and retirees who are members of SEANC.
Since joining SEANC in 2000, Dana Cope has made it a priority to improve the organization’s lobbying power. One major tool for this goal was the Employees Political Action Committee (EMPAC), a SuperPAC that Dana Cope grew from NC’s 276th largest political action committee in 2002 all the way to the state’s 11th largest committee in 2008. In 2008 SEANC took another big step in strengthening the voice of the organization and its members by affiliating with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU). Dana Cope has also worked with legislators to secure a number of victories for state employees and retirees, successfully suing the governor in 2001 to recover escrowed retirement funds before facilitating the full $130 million repayment. He has also secured premium-free health care for state employees and negotiated the largest back-to-back pay increase in nearly two decades (a 5.5% raise in 2006 and a 4% raise in 2007). Dana Cope describes some of these accomplishments in the videos he has uploaded to Vimeo.
Dana Cope began his political career while still studying Political Science at Southern Methodist University (SMU). He created his own company, “Cope and Associates Political Consultants” in Washington, DC and successfully oversaw presidential, gubernatorial, and senate campaigns across the country over a four year timeframe. The political consulting firm assisted with fundraising efforts, press relations, phone banks, and other responsibilities as needed.
After graduating from SMU, Dana Cope joined the North Carolina Department of Labor as the organization’s Director of Governmental Affairs. In this role he managed senior staff, developed policy, and maintained a bi-partisan working relationship with state senators while coordinating all communication between the Department of Labor and the North Carolina General Assembly.