News & Politics

Tony P Welcomes the World to the NATO Summit—Wait, What?

Here's how the local social media influencer landed an unusual collaboration.

On a hot Friday in June, Anthony Polcari found himself at the Washington Monument, sweating under a dark jacket and recalling details about the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.

Polcari, also known as Tony P, is a 25-year-old consultant who’s made a name for himself by filming his wholesome daily routines, discussing positive masculinity, and highlighting life in DC on his Instagram. He’s garnered more than 200,000 followers doing it.

On July 9, his latest video collaboration went live. It’s—sure, what else?—an introductory video to the 2024 NATO Summit, held this week in DC. At sites around town, including the Washington Monument, the Mellon Auditorium, and the White House, an energetic Tony P explains the history of NATO’s founding treaty and the purpose of the summit over what sort of sounds like ’70s funk music. “Welcome to Washington, DC,” he concludes, beaming.

Tony P says his agent—yes, Tony P has an agent—approached him about a week before filming with an offer from the State Department’s mission to NATO. (“When my agent first said NATO, I thought it was Sharknado,” he says.) People there wanted him to star in the welcome video, his agent said. Tony P is trying to get into TV hosting—his phone wallpaper is a photo of his idol Regis Philbin—so he jumped at the chance.

A few people from NATO’s German-based social media team wrote a script and set up shots around town at the relevant monuments. In the comments of the video on X, cynical Washingtonians mouthed off about Tony P, as usual. “Time to pull out of NATO,” wrote one poster. (NATO has not yet replied to Washingtonian‘s request for comment about Tony P.)

Tony P is also enthusiastic about NATO’s mission to promote world peace and security, so he felt it was a gig with a cause. “NATO is such an important part of our world,” he says. “I was 100 percent in to help promote that.”

Helen Huiskes
Editorial Fellow