SMWiFairfax lineup for September 14 features speakers sure to engage, inform, enlighten and embrace the future

Alan Fogg or Seth Livingstone, or, 703-790-0600 (o)

Keynoter Brian Fanzo says everyone plays a role in telling a brand’s story; Hadas Gold of CNN just added to ‘Politics in 140 Characters or Less’ media panel

Thursday, August 17, 2017

The Fairfax County Economic Development Authority (FCEDA) has lined up an impressive cast of communications and marketing pros for the September 14 SMWiFairfax forum to explore ways that social media is changing business, government and politics. The event will take place at Capital One headquarters in Tysons Corner, Va.

Take Brian Fanzo, for example. He has been called the “go-to millennial in the social media space,” and will be the morning keynote speaker and a member of “The Power of Podcasting” panel.

Founder and CEO of iSocialFanz LLC and co-host of SMACtalk and FOMOFanz podcasts, Fanzo describes himself as one who “talks fast and tweets faster – a proud, pager-wearing millennial” who helps build digital strategies for brands to reach millennial and Generation Z audiences by leveraging new media platforms and connecting people.

He points out that millennials account for more than 50 percent of today’s workforce, but that understanding the millennial mindset is not restricted to employees of a certain age. In fact, he emphasizes that, in business, “not every employee needs to be a social employee, but every employee plays an important role in a brand’s storytelling efforts.”

When it comes to business, Fanzo often discusses changes in the media that have shifted the mindsets of what he calls both “digital dinosaurs” and “digital natives,” whether they are employees or customers.

In addition to Fanzo, “The Power of Podcasting” panel also will feature Sarah Fraser (host of the Hey Frase Podcast) and Natasha Che, founder of Soundwise and host of Founders Nextdoor podcast.

Recently added to the “Politics in 140 Characters or Less” panel discussion is Hadas Gold, who just left Politico to cover European politics, media and business for CNN. This high-profile media panel will be moderated by Judy Kurtz (columnist, The Hill newspaper) and will include Olivia Nuzzi (Washington correspondent, New York Magazine) and Ben Jacobs (political reporter, The Guardian US).

Two other panel discussions on tap: “The New Rules of Citizen Engagement,” featuring government communicators, and “The Next BIG Thing” covering trends in corporate communications.

SMWiFairfax will take place under the guidance of Social Media Week and is tailored to the community where it takes place. Fairfax County’s young, well-educated talent pool, strong business base and unique convergence of public and private entities make it a prime hub for the digital media industry.

“Social media options are evolving every day, and ways to use these tools in business and personal life are becoming increasingly valuable,” said Gerald L. Gordon, Ph.D., president and CEO of the FCEDA. “The FCEDA is presenting Social Media Week to further conversations about these evolving tools and trends and we are delighted to present this event to showcase Fairfax County as a great location for digital media companies, technology firms of all kinds and their employees.”

SMWiFairfax is sponsored by Capital One, DC Inno, InsideNoVa, Potomac Tech Wire, QBurst, WeWork and SwingSpace. To learn more about SMWiFairfax and to purchase tickets, visit

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About Social Media Week

Social Media Week is an industry platform, worldwide conference and industry news site. The mission is to give professionals at the intersection of media, marketing and technology the insights, ideas and opportunities they need to advance themselves and their organizations in a globally connected world.

About the Fairfax County Economic Development Authority

The award-winning Fairfax County Economic Development Authority promotes Fairfax County as a business and technology center. The FCEDA offers site location and business development assistance, and connections with county and state government agencies, to help companies locate and expand in Fairfax County. In addition to its headquarters in Tysons Corner, Fairfax County’s largest business district, the FCEDA maintains marketing offices in six important global business centers: Bangalore, Berlin, London, Los Angeles, Seoul and Tel Aviv. Follow the FCEDA on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn.

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