Early in his career, John Nienstedt worked in local political campaigns, was an aide to a San Diego County Supervisor and managed a 300-person political phone center in Texas. He and a partner founded Competitive Edge Research & Communication, Inc. in 1987. John acquired sole ownership of the firm in 1991, computerized the operation in 1992, expanded it in 1995 and again in 1998. CERC opened its El Paso survey research center in 2017.
John earned his master’s degree in political science from SDSU with an emphasis in social science research. His thesis was titled “A Practical Strategy for Predicting Voter Turnout in Pre-Election Polling.” John is CERC’s principal analyst and moderates its focus groups.
John is a featured speaker at campaign seminars and is frequently called on by the media and other organizations to shed light on political and polling issues. He has written articles for the U-T San Diego and Campaigns & Elections magazine. John is a member of the Insights Association and the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR), presenting papers at three AAPOR conferences. John received the SBA’s Entrepreneurial Success Award for 2000. He is Mexican on his mother’s side, a native San Diegan and an avid baseball player and fan.
John’s specialties include questionnaire design and script writing, project development, data analysis, focus group moderation and analysis, sampling and dial-testing using Perception Analyzer.