Trygve Olson is a political and public affairs professional who brings nearly twenty years of experience, working on five continents, to his profession. He has served in his present capacity since January 2001, and also served as IRI's Resident Program Officer in Lithuania in 1997.
Prior to rejoining IRI in 2001, Mr. Olson was a founding partner in the grassroots lobbying, political consulting and public affairs firm Public Issue Management, LLP. While a partner at Public Issue Management, Trygve managed a number of high profile grassroots lobbying campaigns for clients in the aviation, technology, and healthcare sectors. For two years he co-managed the grassroots side of a national campaign on behalf of several of America's largest technology companies and the Computer and Communications Industry Association. Also during this prior Mr. Olson served as the primary campaign consultant to a coalition that was victorious in the 2000 Lithuanian Parliamentary elections.
A native of Wisconsin, Trygve worked in the Administration of then-Governor Tommy Thompson and also ran a number of Congressional, State Senatorial and State Legislative campaigns during the early and mid 1990's. Over the course of his career in politics, Mr. Olson has worked on in excess of 100 campaigns for all levels of public office from the local to national level. Since first volunteering for IRI in 1995 -- when he went to Poland to run a get out the vote campaign for young people -- Mr. Olson has helped advise political parties and candidates in numerous countries throughout the world including nearly all of Central and Eastern Europe, Indonesia, Ukraine, Kyrgyzstan, Nigeria, Venezuela, and Serbia.
Trygve is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin. He currently makes his home in Vilnius, Lithuania with his wife, Erika Veberyte, who serves as the Chief Foreign Policy Advisor to the Speaker of the Lithuanian Parliament.