The Political RnD Podcast & Blog was founded in 2019 by Robbie Kreger-Smith & Deirdre Mitchell-MacLean. In November 2020, Deirdre started Women of ABpoli and welcomed Kathleen Smith (no relation) to the mix.

About Deirdre

Every article is based on facts and sometimes hours upon hours of research. I also like sarcasm, satire, and sometimes swear. It gets me through the day.

The Story

I began reporting on events I attended in person and chronicled the Jason Kenney Show from January of 2017 to the 2019 election. I told the story that a lot of people didn’t want to hear. I aim to please.

I’m also a super geek who gets exceptionally excited when I stumble upon a website that has every Speech from the Throne since 1965.

Women of ABpoli has been an amazing learning opportunity and I’m so thankful Kathleen wanted to be part of it. I love hearing from women in different corners of the province and it is astounding that, no matter where we are in Alberta, we are thinking and experiencing very similar things.

There are a lot of people who contribute their time, advice, and information to Political RnD. My thanks to every one of them.

About Robbie

I’ve always been politically interested, but in 2015 I decided it was time to put my money and my time where my mouth was and roll up my sleeves.

I started volunteering with the Alberta Party and successively became a Constituency President, Provincial Board Member, Regional Organizer, Social Media Manager, Communications Chair, and eventually Vice President of Communications. After resigning from the Provincial Board in Fall of 2018, Leader Stephen Mandel and the Party hired me as a Media Relations Director, a position that I held until I resigned prior to the 2019 Provincial Election.

My experience in partisan politics was both enriching and enraging. It is hard to be a part of a large organization that you may not always agree with or support and be an effective team player. Largely, my experience taught me that at some point in politics you will be expected to compromise your values, and after a couple of experiences that left me with a sense of apprehension I decided it would be best that I focus on my love of politics in a manner that would allow me to be authentic to my values.

I love satire, having deep conversations with people smarter than I am, I’m a constant learner, and aspire to push politicians to do what is in the best public interest, driven by compassion, data, facts, and morality.

I do however wear my heart on my sleeve and can be pretty sassy, and this often comes out in my social media commentary.