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Joe Cerrell, a revered Democratic political consultant whose career spanned more than 50 years, has passed away at the age of 75. Cerrell succumbed to complications from pneumonia at a Camarillo, California hospital on Thursday, December 2nd.
Cerrell was a prominent advisor to the presidential campaigns of John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, Hubert H. Humphrey, Lloyd Bentsen, John Glenn and Al Gore.
He began his political career in college, when he started the Trojan Democratic Club on the campus of the University of Southern California. Soon after graduating, he went to work on the first campaign of the future governor, Edmund “Pat” Brown in 1958 (father of former governor and governor-elect Jerry Brown).
Cerrell was chairman emeritus and a former president of the American Association of Political Consultants (AAPC) and a former chairman of the International Association of Political Consultants (IAPC).
He was a co-founder and accomplished adjunct professor at the University of Southern California’s Jesse M. Unruh Institute of Politics. He also served as a distinguished visiting professor in political science at Pepperdine University in Malibu, California.
Cerrell’s impact on the study of politics and the practice of campaigning cannot be understated. He is survived by his wife of 47 years, Lee, their three children and seven grandchildren.