The Organizing Edge: Online Predictions for the 2016 Elections

The Organizing Edge: Online Predictions for the 2016 Elections

Session Type(s): Panel

Starts: Saturday, Jul. 19 11:00 AM

Ends: Saturday, Jul. 19 12:15 PM

Room: 140 G

What propelled progressive candidates to victory in 2008 and 2012 won’t be enough to keep us there in 2016. If we stood on our laurels in 2008 marveling at the smarts that powered our victory, Republicans would have been close to matching us (or perhaps even beating us) in 2012. We’ve managed to stay ahead through continuous improvement, innovation, and forward momentum. We can mock the GOP’s Parra Bellum efforts, but they’ll be better in 2016—so we must be too. This panel brings together experts in technology, development, communications, and fundraising to ask: What’s in store? What do we need to do before 2016? How can we do it?


Matthew McGregor

Matthew is the Political Director at Blue State Digital. Before joining BSD, Matthew directed digital rapid response for President Obama’s 2012 re-election campaign. Before joining the Obama campaign, he worked for Blue State Digital as a senior strategist in Washington D.C. and London. Matthew is originally from the UK, where he worked for the Labour Party, advocacy campaigns, and labor unions over ten years before moving to the US.


Laura Olin


Laura Olin ran national social media strategy for the Obama 2012 campaign (@BarackObama, @MichelleObama, @JoeBiden, their Facebook pages, Spotify, Pinterest, Google+, Instagram, etc) and was the author of the Barack Obama Tumblr. Her team grew the campaign’s social media followings by 40 million, raised millions of dollars over social media, and created the most-retweeted and most-liked Twitter and Facebook posts to date.

my website

Dan Ryan


Daniel Ryan is a consultant and speaker; Co-captain of the Open Chattanooga Brigade; and Resident Technologist at Waypaver. Previously Daniel was the Director of Front-end Development for President Obama’s 2012 election campaign. Managing a team of two dozen, he oversaw the development of the online tools and technology that helped raised $690m online, recruited hundreds of thousands volunteers, and registered over 1 million voters. Under Daniel’s leadership the campaign employed a multi-screen strategy producing the first responsive website in presidential campaign history. Now Daniel and his team are using the lessons learned from the campaign to help nonprofits and progressive organizations like NextGen Climate Action and Enroll America.

my website

Melissa Ryan


Melissa Ryan is an accomplished digital strategist and a veteran of EMILY’s List, Obama 2012, and the New Organizing Institute. Ryan served as new media director for Senator Russ Feingold’s 2010 campaign, and his political action committee, The Progressive Patriot’s Fund. She was the online outreach director in the fight against Governor Scott Walker’s union-busting budget bill in Wisconsin.

A longtime Netroots activist, Melissa was the managing editor of Connecticut Local Politics and a former contributor at AmericaBlog Elections and MyDD. She has presented at Netroots Nation, Harvard Kennedy School of Government, Take Back the American Dream, UConn School of Law, and Wellstone Campaign Management Training among others. The Washington Post’s Fix Blog has twice named her a top political tweeter of Wisconsin politics.

Other sessions: Running Digital Campaigns: What's Changed and What's Still Working?

Evan Sutton


When the universe conspired against my plans to get an MFA in creative writing, I found myself relocating to Las Vegas, NV in 2007 to take an unpaid internship with Obama for America. I haven’t looked back since.

In 2010, the winds of fortune brought me to NOI, where my passion for writing and communication quickly led to responsibilities in digital and (eventually) traditional media.

At the start of 2014, I joined the team at the AFT to fight for educators, nurses, public employees, and the people they serve.

When not figuring out better ways to engage people through content and writing, I can be found playing with my kids, making ice cream, watching football (and futbol), and making sure my wife is happy.

my website