Patty Briguglio has been getting a lot of face time with President Obama lately.
In June, the president and CEO of MMI Public Relations was invited to a town hall on health care. And on Wednesday morning, she found herself in Raleigh on stage sitting behind the President as he delivered his speech on health care.
Briguglio didn't know when she decided to attend that she would be on stage. She also didn't know that she'd be allowed to ask a question during the Q&A following President Obama's speech.
But she came prepared just in case with several questions she composed in advance.
The one she chose to ask: Whether he could name a federal program created and currently run by the government that could be used as a model for a new health care program.
Obama spent a good bit of time answering her question and even followed up with her after the town hall meeting was over.
"Afterwards when he was done and he was shaking hands, he came back over and talked to me," she said. "I expressed my conern about taxes increasing, and he assured me that the tax credits that my company would receive would offset any additional tax increases that I experienced. And I said to him, 'I'm holding you to that.' And I was shaking my finger at him and he as shaking his finger at me."
Even though Briguglio isn't ready to endorse the president's health care plan yet, she said she was impressed with his presentation.
"When he listens, it was like he really wants to talk to you," she said.
Briguglio did learn from her past Presidential experience. Last time, she wore red, but this time, she wore white. It was a practical descision.
"I figured nobody else would be in white," she said. "And when we went the last time, we had to stand outside and I didn't want to be standing outside and hot."
Briguglio was one of several local business owners you may have spotted on stage during the President's speech.
Among the familiar faces: Jennifer Dunleavy of The Accuro Group, Joy Ruhmann of Ruhmann Associates, Natalie Perkins of Clean Design and local attorney Ralph DiLeone.
Briguglio said she would love to have another chance to ask more questions of the president. Among others on her list: Whether taxpayers would wind up paying for malpractice lawsuits and whether the President would promise to veto any bill that came before him that exempted members of Congress.
We're sure that at the rate she's going, Briguglio will have another White House invitation by Labor Day. But if an invitation comes after Labor Day, she should pick a color other than white.