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About Us

The Liberal Orange County is maintained by a group of OC liberals. We don’t take bullshit from conservatives, or candy from strangers. The information you will find in this blog is focused on the liberal political world of Orange County, and we will spotlight some of the people that are fighting the good fight.

TheLiberalOC is an all volunteer effort on the part of our blog team members. As with most things in life, running this blog isn’t free. While we do have occasional advertisers that only covers part of the costs to operate the blog.

You can support our efforts to Challenge the Right-Wing Noise Machine in Orange County with a financial contribution.

The Liberal Orange County (TheLiberalOC) is owned and operated by Thinking Liberally Media, Inc. The opinions expressed by individual bloggers on this site are theirs alone and individually. They do not necessarily represent the opinions or positions of Thinking Liberally Media, Inc., other individuals, or organizations they are affiliated with.

Dan Chmielewski serves as Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of TheLiberalOC. He’s lived in OC since 1997 by way of Boston and Central New York. He has worked in news, marketing, and public relations his entire career. Admittedly to the left of Ted Kennedy, Dan studies conservative media to note and refute their talking points. He views legitimate criticism of liberals and liberal politicians as fair, as long as the same mirror is held up to conservatives and Republicans as well. He scoffs at the notion that the mainstream media has a liberal bias.

Dan is an elected member of the Democratic Party Central Committee.  He is not in a leadership position with the Party and his posts do not reflect the views of the DPOC (thought at times they will).  The Party does not control the editorial content of this blog nor does the Party censor any posts.

If you are interested in posting here on a regular basis, email Dan at

Michael Lawson (Our Founder) — who hates writing in the third person — has a background in news writing and currently works in marketing for a labor union. His previous journalistic conquests have included political news writing, humor columns, and feature stories. Mike left Orange County in December 2007 and currently lives in San Francisco, CA. He can be found online at:  Mike continues to contribute to the blog as our resident Cartoonist.

Chris Prevatt is the former publisher of His political activities have included statewide advocacy for HIV/AIDS and Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender issues; service as a delegate to the California Democratic Party and the Democratic Party of Orange County Central Committee; delegate to the 2004 and 2008 Democratic National Committee Conventions; volunteer on more than a dozen political campaigns; and leader in two democratic political clubs. In 2000 and 2002 Chris ran unsuccessfully for City Council in Garden Grove, California.

Chris assumed founder Mike Lawson’s duties as publisher in December 2007. In December 2014 Chris stepped down as publisher of TheLiberalOC, relinquishing his editorial responsibilities with the publication in order to focus on his position as a Trustee with the Orange County Employees Retirement System.

Joel Smith is relatively new to the world of politics. He grew up in the city of Irvine and went to a conservative college where he was one of a very few number of Democrats. Since graduating he has interned for a Congresswoman, the Democratic Party of Orange County, and worked as a field organizer in Orange County during the 2012 election. He hopes to touch on the growing youth interest and involvement in politics in Orange County.

Lou Delgado (Senior Photographer) is a political and entertainment event photographer in Orange County as well as a Democratic Party political activist.  His major clients include the Democratic Foundation of Orange County, the Orange County LULAC Foundation, CleanTech OC, National Women’s Political Caucus, L.A. Fashion Week’s Fashion Minga, Newport Beach Film Festival, and a slew of Democratic Party political candidates and elected officials including Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez and Senator Lou Correa.

John Christian Hansen (Photographer/Videographer), working on assignment, covers political and social events, protests and conventions for TheLiberalOC both statewide and nationally.  A former LGBT and public health lobbyist, as well as a former grant writer and government contracting administrator, Mr. Hansen often provides his expertise in grant making and contracting as a consultant to the nonprofit sector.  His interest in politics (and social justice) was fostered by his mother who always took him with her to the polls, where she instilled in him a sense of civic responsibility each and every election day.

Disclaimer: The comments made on this blog, by featured contributors and/or individual commenter’s, are the sole responsibility of those individual authors. They do not represent the opinions of any other individual(s), any advertiser, or the publisher Thinking Liberally Media, Inc.