Ron Duchin

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This article is part of the Tobacco portal on Sourcewatch funded from 2006 - 2009 by the American Legacy Foundation.

Ron Duchin was president of Mongoven, Biscoe & Duchin (MDB), a Washington, D.C., public affairs firm that specialized in issues management and the motivation behind activist movements. In 2003, Duchin merged MBD into the Washington, D.C., intelligence firm Stratfor. Duchin was formerly part of the public relations firm Pagan International.[1] He died at age 73 in 2011.[2]


Duchin has experience in the agricultural, chemical, petroleum, plastic, packaging and automotive industries on issues driven by activists and public interest groups including trade, biotechnology, human rights, health and the environment.[3]

Duchin graduated from the US Army War College, and served as special assistant to the Secretary of Defence and director of public affairs for the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) before joining Pagan International and then MDB.[1] He is listed in the Association of Former Intelligence Officers Membership Directory 1991.[4]

In 1991 he gave a speech to the US National Cattlemen's Association describing MBD works to divide and conquer activist movements. Duchin explained that activists fall into four categories: radicals, opportunists, idealists and realists, and that a three-step strategy was needed to bring them down. First, you isolate the radicals: those who want to change the system and promote social justice. Second, you carefully 'cultivate' the idealists: those who are altruistic, don't stand to gain from their activism, and are not as extreme in their methods and objectives as the radicals. You do this by gently persuading them that their advocacy has negative consequences for some groups, thus transforming them into realists. Finally, you co-opt the realists (the pragmatic incrementalists willing to work within the system) into compromise. "The realists should always receive the highest priority in any strategy dealing with a public policy issue . . . If your industry can successfully bring about these relationships, the credibility of the radicals will be lost and opportunists can be counted on to share in the final policy solution." Opportunists, those who are motivated by power, success, or a sense of their own celebrity, will be satisfied merely by a sense of partial victory.[1]

In 2004, Duchin became executive director of the Concerned Veterans Communication Coalition, a project of the 60 Plus Association.

Contact Information

Concerned Veterans Communication Coalition

Authored Works

Resources & Articles

Related PRWatch Archives

External Resources

activism from the inside], Tobacco Control, 2002;11 Issue 2.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Stacy M. Carter, Mongoven, Biscoe & Duchin: destroying tobacco control activism from the inside, Tobacco Control, 2002;11 Issue 2.
  2. Ronald A. Duchin, Army colonel, obituary,Washington Post, January 24, 2011.
  3. "Sept. 28 NAMA Conference Poses Question: Does How You Say It Matter More Than What You Say?", Agriscape Press Release, September 6, 2000. (This media release is advertising a conference presentation by Duchin).
  4. NameBase, Duchin, Ronald, online name database, accessed July 2013.

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