Associate professor, PhD at the Department of Diplomatic Service and Communication of the Faculty of International Relation of YSU

Advance teams are responsible for preparing for and planning trips and public events for the president, the president’s spouse, and high government officials. The advance team literally goes in advance to ensure that trips and events are aesthetic, public relations, and media successes. The advance team will set the tone for the event leading up to the appearance of the principal, and this is the team’s opportunity to humanize the principal.

The conduct of advance teams can have a serious impact on the principal’s image, as well as on that of other officials and Americans in general. Advance team must recognize that their behaviour can have either a positive or a disastrous affect on the public’s view of their principal. It is not an exaggeration to say that an advance person may change an individual’s, group’s or country’s attitude towards the president, the president’s spouse, or any government official representing the United States. Further, how Americans treat foreigners on domestic soil may affect how Americans are treated abroad.


Advance is a tough job; it requires smart, well-educated people with solid common sense.
Many advance people are volunteers. Volunteers need adequate training, preferably gained by working with a very thorough and conscientious lead advance. When the lead advance has been in the job for some time and has considerable experience, he or she can provide invaluable training and advice to the volunteer. Good people often volunteer for jobs with advance hoping for a position on the permanent team. A volunteer often wonders: "Why am I doing this seemingly unappreciated work for nothing?” If he or she can learn the skills of a successful advance person and has the patience to persevere, the reward is often reaped not only in obtaining the desired permanent job or title but in having learned the skill requisite to being a representative of the United States.

Team members

To be a good advance person for the principal, every person on the advance team should observe certain national and international courtesies. Advance team members will be scrutinized and judged not only by those with whom they work but also by the American and foreign publics. As representatives of the principal, advance team members should always remember that their conduct reflects on the principal and on this country.

At the presidential level, the advance team will work under the direction of the advance team leader. The lead (team captain), site lead, leads for the crowd, press lead, motorcade lead, and remain-over-night lead will have daily countdown meetings to ensure that information flows to everyone involved. These meetings, especially when in foreign countries, will also involve not only advance persons, but the principal’s staff, military personnel, communications staff, press for the principal, protocol officers, agents of the Secret Service and Diplomatic Security, and representatives of the National Security Council, the State Department, and the American Embassy.
1300 reads | 14.02.2014

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