If you haven’t registered yet for tomorrow night’s monthly AZIMA Social Event you better get to it! The event is shaping up very nicely! Right on the heels of the August 24 Primary Jeremy Vaught (Republican) and Kevin Spidel (Democrat) will talk about how Social Media is being used in political campaigns. The event is going to be set up as if it is a political debate and promises to be both informative and entertaining! In preperation for the event, I thought I’d needle our two presenters with some quick questions so that we can all get to know them just a bit better.

Quick Interview with Jeremy Vaught:

Elise Redlin-Cook: How did you first learn of AZIMA?

Jeremy Vaught: I’m pretty sure it was Twitter. I had seen it here and there, but I really took a look last year when Pam Slim was the speaker. She is one of my favorite people.

Elise: What inspired you to become involved in politics?

Jeremy: To make a difference. I’ve always been very interested in watching politicians and following along with what is happening. But at some point, I decided that simply voting wasn’t enough.

Elise: How long have you been an AZIMA member and/or attending our events?

Jeremy: Don’t tell anyone, but I’ve never actually attended an event. There have been a few time I’ve thought about it, but I’m on the West side so it is always a trek.

Elise: LOL, I understand! So which, if any social networks do you care to connect with others on?

Jeremy: I am most active on the biggies Facebook (facebook.com/jeremyvaught), Twitter (facebook.com/jeremyvaught), and LinkedIn (www.linkedin.com/in/jeremyvaught) I’m also connecting on my blogs, jeremyvaught.com and my new one intentional.ly. But I pretty much connect everywhere.

Elise: MAC or PC? Care to elaborate?

Jeremy: This past February I just bought my first MacBook Pro. Before that I was on Linux since the early 2000’s. Linux is fantastic, but Mac people are so fanatical, I had to see what all the hype is about. And honestly, I love it. It has a lot of the advantages of Linux, with none of the many detriments of Windows.

Elise: Nice, and are you driven by any passions outside of social media marketing?

Jeremy: Absolutely! My family, building my business, politics of course, and continual self-improvement.

Elise: Are you working on any interesting projects that you’d like to tell us about?

Jeremy: Outside of Web Strategy for John McCain, Kevin and I started a new podcast at PoliTechs.TV that I’m looking forward to seeing where it goes. And in addition to my consulting business, Vaught Consulting, I’m starting red7squared which is going to be a Software-as-a-Service suite of tools that I’ve written for use on the McCain campaign, and more going forward.

Quick Interview with Kevin Spidel:

Elise Redlin-Cook: How did you first learn of AZIMA?

Kevin Spidel: From a friend who is also very involved in the interactive community @BrianShaler.

Elise: So, What inspired you to become involved in politics?

Kevin: When I was young (1994) I was impacted by the fact that the news media cared more about affairs of a President and an intern then that of a Genocide happening in Africa (Rwanda.) I was appalled and sought out communities doing something about the genocide. I found Amnesty International. During my activism, I found out that change cannot happen here at home without local elected leaders that are doing something. I began getting involved in local campaigns at the age of 18.

Elise: How long have you been an AZIMA member and/or attending our events?

Kevin:For a few months now, and am proud to be part of GannettLocal who is a sponsor of AZIMA.

Elise: Which, if any social networks do you care to connect with others on?

Kevin: I tend to focus more on LinkedIn and Twitter

Elise: Me too. So how about it, MAC or PC? Care to elaborate?

Kevin: PC by design. Secret MAC lover, but never made the conversion plunge.

Elise: Haha, you’ll never go back 😉 Are you driven by any passions outside of social media marketing?

Kevin: Building community is one of my core passions. Online or offline. Social and professionally.

Elise: Are you working on any interesting projects that you’d like to tell us about?

Kevin: Currently I am working on www.voicesofarizona.com which is a free speech community forum for voices within Arizona to discuss issues of the day and to celebrate respectful discourse and the diversity of opinion. Jeremy Vaught and I have started a podcast called PoliTechs.TV which focuses on new media within the political space. I am also working as the Community Architect for a startup division of Gannett focused on localized multimedia marketing for small and medium sized businesses called GannettLocal.

My thanks goes out to both Jeremy and Kevin for taking the time for us to get to know them and I am excited to see them at tomorrow’s AZIMA event “Social Media and Politics” , at the Scottsdale Hilton 6:00 p.m!  I hope to see you there!

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