David Nielsen spearheads the public afffairs division of MJE Marketing. He is recognized for his expertise in land use planning, message development, government affairs and high level consultation on political consensus building. He currently provides strategic counsel on understanding and working with local government to clients including Verizon Wireless, the San Diego Tourism Marketing District, Wilcon and the Jamul Indian Village. He is the former president of MNA Consulting. This well-respected public affairs agency merged with MJE Marketing in 2008. As a co-founder of MNA, Nielsen specialized in strategic planning, project coordination, entitlement processing and political and community outreach. He has represented more than 50 private sector, non-profit and public sector clients, including the San Diego Padres, the Otay Mesa Planning Coalition, UC San Diego Health Sciences, the Salk Institute for Biological Studies and various real estate development companies.
Nielsen served as executive vice president of the San Diego National Sports Training Foundation, where he oversaw the development of the $80 million ARCO Training Center in the City of Chula Vista, including fundraising as well as project planning and development. The center is the largest Olympic training facility in the United States.
Nielsen has more than 30 years of experience in local government in San Diego. At the City of San Diego, he served as principal assistant and chief of staff to the mayor and assistant to the city manager. While in the Mayor’s office, he was part of a planning team responsible for the development of the San Diego Convention Center. Nielsen also spent 11 years at the County of San Diego serving in many roles: director of special projects, deputy planning director, environmental analysis coordinator and assistant to the health care agency administrator.
He began his career working for the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico Planning Board. He is a graduate of Wheaton College in Illinois. He earned a Master of Public Administration Degree from the University of Washington Graduate School of the Daniel J. Evans School of Public Policy and Governance (formerly the School of Public Affairs) in Seattle. He currently sits on the Board of Management for the Border View YMCA.