Irma Palmer

Irma Palmer has more than a decade of experience working at the intersection of policy, politics and communications. Most recently, she was U.S. Senator Kamala Harris’s Speechwriter.


Work Experience

In her previous work in the public sector, she was the Director of Constituent Services and Traveling Press Secretary for former Governor of Virginia Terry McAuliffe. Prior to the governor’s office, Ms. Palmer worked as U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s press assistant and U.S. Senator Mary Landrieu’s deputy press secretary and press secretary on the U.S. Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship. While in the private sector, she was a director at a public relations firm in DC.


Key Accomplishments / Boards

Ms. Palmer is a member of the Batten School’s Advisory Board, the Virginia Women’s Chorus Alumnae Board of Trustees, and the Charleston, SC Club of Washington, DC. Her passion for public service began back in high school, however, with an internship for Congressman John Spratt (D-SC). She returned to Capitol Hill annually throughout college and interned for numerous members of Congress, including Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Congressman John Larson (D-CT), Congressman Jim Clyburn (D-SC), and Senator Jim Webb (D-VA).


Industries / Areas of Expertise

Capitol Hill, Media Relations, Speech Writing, Press Events, and Messaging Strategy.



She is a double alumna of the University of Virginia with a Bachelor of Arts in English and a Master of Public Policy. She is also a graduate of the Sorensen Institute's Political Leaders Program.


Personal / Contributions at Batten and/or UVA

Ms. Palmer volunteered in President Barack Obama’s Office of Presidential Correspondence and was a graduate fellow at the Democratic Party of Virginia.