Democratic candidate for Tennessee House District 26, Lawrence G. Miller, is waging a "virtual campaign" He said he believes voters benefit by it.
Dr. Miller said, “When I started my campaign for Tennessee House District 26, I quickly decided that I had to use social networking. I had been using a variety of social media applications, such as Facebook and Flickr, for several years. But I knew that Howard Dean and the Obama campaign had tremendous success using social networking applications to organize, to connect and promote. I knew this was a strategy that could work for me."
Dr. Miller, whose background includes an M.Ed in Educational Technology from the University of Arkansas, points also to the successful use of technology by politicians such as Newark Mayor Cory Booker, who said recently, “Social media creates that intimate window and gives voters a chance to really see your humanity and the substance of your spirit.
It creates a different kind of loyalty than with traditional engagement.”
“My Flickr photographs number almost 20,000 and have been viewed over 700,000 times,” Dr. Miller said. “My main Twitter account has over 700 followers and I recently started another Twitter account for my campaign. As for Facebook, I have been seriously using it for five years and now have more than 1,100 friends on my personal page. I have a Miller Campaign for TN House 26 Page as well. I use LinkedIn with 550 connections on that application.”
This intimate connection to social networking sets the candidate apart from traditional politicians and offers 21st-century opportunities to stay in touch with constituents if Dr. Miller is elected to the House, he said.
“I promise to be always accessible in traditional ways, such town hall meetings, scheduled visits, and by telephone, but I am a candidate and ultimately a legislator who can and will use multiple channels for connecting to the constituency of the 26th District,” he stated.
Dr. Miller holds a Ph.D. in Educational Administration & Leadership from the University of Texas at Austin, and who recently retired from his position as chief academic officer and Interim chief student officer at Snead College in Boaz, Ala. He was the learning strategist and lead organizational development specialist for Erlanger Health System for two years, the director of Continuing Medical Education at the UT College of Medicine for six years, and held multiple positions at Chattanooga State Technical College, including vice president for Institutional Advancement from 1994-1998.