Completion of a project of this scope--with contributors throughout the United States and Europe--necessarily relies on the ideas, energy, and support of many people and institutions. First, we acknowledge the support of the Political Communication Center (PCC) at the University of Oklahoma and the Carrie Chapman Catt Center for Women and Politics at Iowa State University for providing financial assistance and organizational guidance for this project. And, we thank the PEW Trust and the Committee for the Study of the American Electorate for their financial assistance.
In particular, we thank Robin Hinders of the Catt Center, who provided editorial assistance in preparing the manuscript for publication, and Marie Mathos, administrative coordinator of the PCC, for helping with correspondence and budget matters. We also appreciate the assistance of PCC research associate, John Tedesco, who served all team members throughout the project with data coordination, organization, duplication, and analysis, and helped with the review of the copyedited manuscript in the book's final stages.
Several other PCC faculty, staff, and graduate students are due thanks for their help with this project. Karen DeRosa, Yang Lin, and Julia Spiker assisted with all phases of the data gathering. Assistant Professor Mitchell McKinney helped organize and coordinate the debate studies and focus groups. Leroy Bridges, chair of the PCC Advisory Council, helped raise funds for the DebateWatch '96 focus groups. We also thank Lewis Mazanti and John Hilbert, PCC video specialists; and student workers of both Centers, in particular Evetta Helmsley, Aaron Gibson, and Jim Pesek of the PCC, and Amy Beert, Jennifer Dreibelbis, Sharon Haselhoff, and LaTosha Lewis of the Catt Center.
We especially thank our contributing authors--the members of the national research team assembled to study the 1996 campaign--who not only wrote chapters but also assisted with data collection for other team members. In addition, Assistant Professor Christina Beck of Ohio University helped organize focus groups on her campus. It has been a pleasure to work with the staff of Lawrence Erlbaum Associates Inc. Publishers--especially Linda Bathgate, communications editor, and Sara T. Scudder, book production editor, who provided support, feedback, and editorial contributions.
Finally, we are grateful for the encouragement of our families-- Cliff Jones, for his usual general support and also for helping keep our computers running; and Keith, Christopher, and Elizabeth Bystrom for their patience and understanding.