Steve Charles—When I visited Jeremy Bird ’00 in Washington DC in the fall of 2005, he called his work as field director there for Wake-Up Wal-Mart “the best job I’ve had yet.
“It combines my values and beliefs in social justice with something that could make a real impact in the world,” Jeremy said.
And he made a real impact there, helping to assure Wal-Mart’s compliance to Maryland’s Fair Share Health Care act, among other accomplishments.
But he’s having an even stronger impact now.
As field director for Senator Barack Obama’s Presidential Campaign in South Carolina, he turned traditional political organizing practices upside-down and helped deliver a pivotal landslide victory for the Illinois senator.
Now he’s hoping for more of the same in Maryland, where he’s running Obama’s get-out-the-vote operation for Tuesday’s crucial Democratic primary there.
His organizing skills have not only Obama’s attention, but the media’s. The Christian Science Monitor featured Jeremy in a December article, and the American Prospect Web site detail the work of Bird and his colleagues in February’s “The Year of the Organizer.”
The work of Jeremy and his colleagues is being seen as a model for grassroots organizing, and you can see a video of Jeremy talking about the philosophy behind the Obama camp’s “house meetings” here.
You can also read more about the former Wabash religion major in our Spring 2006 article in Wabash Magazine.
We hope to hear from Jeremy as the campaign progresses. For now, as you watch tomorrow’s results from the “Potamac Primary,” know there’s at least one Wabash man in the thick of the fight.
In the photo: Bird during his Wake-Up Wal-Mart days.