Title: Vice President, Government Relations
Hometown: Oceanside, New York
What brought you to the DC Metro area? I moved down to the region in August of 2004 to attend school at American University and haven’t looked back since.
When did you start at the Chamber? I started in July of 2013.
What is the first thing you do when you get to the office? Catch up on the news from around the Commonwealth and the country. I make sure to read VPAP’s News Clips, the Washington Business Journal, Capital Business, Politico, the Washington Post, and the Richmond Times dispatch over my favorite cup of coffee (Dunkin Donuts, if you must know).
What is your favorite part of your job? I love bringing our members’ issues in front of policymakers and legislators in the Government Center in Fairfax, to the Governor and General Assembly in Richmond, and to our federal representatives on Capitol Hill. The Fairfax Chamber was started 90 years ago with the goal of ensuring business had a voice at the table on the issues that matter. Fast forward to today and the Fairfax Chamber and our members have the premiere voice on the issues that matter to our businesses.
Tell us one of your goals for this year. (Ex: attend more council meetings) To expand the Chamber’s reach and network to officials outside of just the region and find champions outside of the immediately area.
Who is someone that you would love to meet (living or dead)? I am a political and history wonk. After reading, Robert Caro’s Master Of The Senate, I developed a great admiration for President Lyndon B. Johnson and his tenacity and knowledge of the legislative process. I would love to sit down with him and learn from the “Master” of the Senate.
What are some of your hobbies outside of the office? Stop in my office and you will see know what my hobbies are. I am a lover of all things American University. I am unapologetic enthusiastic alumnus. I sit on the AU Alumni Board, Corporate Social Responsibility Council, University Council, and have court side seat’s to the men’s basketball season. I also am a big politico wonk. I have photos of leaders (from both parties) adorning my office space. I often like to discuss politics, even if it isn’t appropriate dinner party conversation. Third, I am a big sports fan. If I am not in the office, more often than not, I am at a game or watching a game. Football (NY Giants). Hockey (Washington Capitals). Baseball (depressingly so, the NY Mets). Soccer (DC United). You name it. I like to watch it or play it.
In your opinion, why is the Fairfax Chamber a great membership organization? Our Chamber, your Chamber, has been around for over 90 years, so we must be doing something right. The Chamber prides itself on being a member service organization. We program, communicate, educate, and advocate on the issues, topics, and interests of our membership. Our staff take pride to ensure our members are getting the greatest return on their investment.
How can we reach you? (Phone, email, social media, etc.) “How can’t you reach me?” is the better question. I am always available. If you want to keep up with me, I suggest you follow me on Twitter, @Joe_Vidulich.