Trevor Lyman is a 37-year-old musician and Internet entrepreneur who didn't finish college.
He was running a website called musicsubmit.com that enables artists to bypass major record labels and market their songs. He was a political novice who never bothered to vote in the past.
However, when the new Democratic majority in Congress didn't pull the troops out of Iraq, Lyman was drawn to Paul because of his promise to end the war immediately.
Despite the fact that he has never met Ron Paul, he was profiled by Dan Morain at the Los Angeles Times as "the man behind Paul's fundraising curtain" who helped the Republican candidate raise millions in online donations.Much has been written about Ron Paul's surprising fundraising success... and given the early results from his Tea Party event on Sunday, plenty more attention will be directed toward the maverick's campaign.
I believe viral online fundraising can really work for all nonprofits... but it's not simply the technology that makes it work, it's a willingness to allow a decentralize structure... and a willing of fundraising staff to understand what motivates people like Lyman.