The recent elections in Virginia have highlighted the lack of strategic groundwork for conservatives in the state of Virginia.
On November 15, members of The Virginia Council dove into the election results and various campaign strategies alongside our founding chairman John Reid, the president of WRS Consulting Aaron Evans, and business leader and former VA House of Delegates candidate Riley Shaia.
We discussed a few campaign tools and technologies that have been embraced by the left but curiously rejected by the average traditional conservative. Why is that, and how can the right make the most of the available tools when connecting with neighbors? Aaron brought up the issue of storytelling—rather than stooping to emotional manipulation, candidates ought to strive to become expert storytellers who communicate the heart of what’s at stake for our communities. Finally, Riley explored the importance of holding a sincere belief while also engaging effectively on hot-topic issues with people you don’t agree with.
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Mr. Aaron Evans
Aaron Evans is president of Winning Republican Strategies (WRS), a national consulting and voter engagement firm based in Central Virginia. Aaron has successfully advised over 100 races since 2005 and has developed a record of winning tough races from state to federal levels in swing districts across the country. He received his M.Div. in leadership from Liberty University, has a master’s certificate in documentary filmmaking from George Washington University, and is a graduate of the Political Leaders Program at the University of Virginia’s Sorensen Institute for Political Leadership. Aaron currently resides in Ruckersville, VA with his wife and three sons.
Mrs. Riley Shaia
Shaia is a former candidate for VA House of Delegates who campaigned with an emphasis on children’s education, crime, and opioids. Shaia is the founder of Riley Shaia Fitness, an online resource for nutrition, fitness, and healthy living. She also serves as a certified group exercise instructor at the Tuckahoe Family YMCA. Shaia graduated from the University of Virginia and Medical College of Virginia with a B.A. and M.A. in physical therapy. She currently lives in Henrico with her husband, Dr. Wayne Shaia, and their three children.