Edmund S. Muskie Oral History Collection


Don Nicoll

Document Type

Oral History

Publication Date


Interview Number

MOH 246


Al From was born in South Bend, Indiana. He grew up as an only child in a Jewish family, attended Northwestern where he earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in journalism, then went to Washington, D.C. where he worked for Sargent Shriver and the War on Poverty program. He traveled around the south at the height of the civil rights movement. He went to work for Senator Joe Tydings in the Senate District Committee in 1968. He transferred to Muskie’s Intergovernmental Relations Committee and stayed on his staff until 1978. He then became Jimmy Carter’s deputy advisor on inflation, then as staff director for Gillis Long, who became the Chair of the Democratic Caucus in 1980. From created the Democratic Leadership Council (DLC) in 1985 and the Progressive Policy Institute in 1989. In 1991, he recruited Bill Clinton to be chairman of the DLC.

Scope and Content Note

Interview includes discussions of: family and educational background; journalism; traveling in the Deep South; working for Senator Tydings; working for Muskie; Intergovernmental Relations Subcommittee (IGR); the Budget Act; legislative work; 1972 presidential campaign; Democratic Leadership Council; Deputy Advisor to Carter on inflation; Staff Director for Gillis; early experiences with Clinton; and the House Democratic Caucus.

Use Restrictions

Copyright Bates College. This transcript is provided for individual Research Purposes Only; for all other uses, including publication, reproduction and quotation beyond fair use, permission must be obtained in writing from: The Edmund S. Muskie Archives and Special Collections Library, Bates College, 70 Campus Avenue, Lewiston, Maine 04240-6018.