Saturday, November 1, 2014

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50+ Inspiring Tech Savvy Leaders Over 50

by fouts

You know what? I’m tired of hearing people say “I’m over 50, too old to understand this stuff” or similar balderdash. I’m over 50 and I get it, so can you! Over the last 20 odd years I’ve worked with and learned from some pretty amazing people who are just as old or older and way savvier than I am. It’s about the love of learning–among other things–that keeps us young.

I wanted to share with you some super-smart people who are over 50 and do get tech. They are marketers, authors, trainers, CEOs, and some are just plain geeks. Every single one of them can teach you amazing things if you’re willing to listen. Follow them on Twitter, read their blogs. Learn from them and never, NEVER say you’re too old to learn.

Oh, and let me know who I’m missing, I know there are a lot of great people to add to this list. Add away in the comments and click the links below to tweet these people thanks for being an inspiration.

Beth Kanter
Let’s talk about networked approaches & social media for training and capacity building for the nonprofit sector that leverage learning and impact.
@kanter
bethkanter.org

KD Paine
I’ve been called The Queen Of Measurement, but I prefer Seshat, the Goddess
@queenofmetrics
painepublishing.com

 

Aliza Sherman
Human. Wife. Mother. Web Pioneer. Author. Founder Cybergrrl/Webgrrls. I tweet: Work Life Tech Zen.Learning to #Unplug. Life is Short. Do What You LOVE.
@alizasherman
muckrack.com/alizasherman

Phil Fernandez
CEO, president & co-founder of Marketo, the leading provider of cloud-based marketing software, successful serial entrepreneur & author of Revenue Disruption.
@philf1217
marketo.com

Mark Schaefer
Chieftain of the blog {grow} and social media bouncer. Consultant, educator, podcaster, author of Return On Influence, Born to Blog, and The Tao of Twitter.
@markwschaefer
businessesgrow.com 

Meg Whitman
Margaret C. Whitman is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Hewlett- Packard.
@MegWhitman
crunchbase.com/person/meg-whitman

 

Mark Horvath
Just a hardly normal guy trying to navigate through an abnormal world by helping others. Media Consultant
@hardlynormal
invisiblepeople.tv

 

Shel Holtz
Communications. Technology. Jam music. Family. Life is good.
@shelholtz
holtz.com/blog

 

Danny Sullivan
Founding Editor, @MarketingLand &@SEngineLand, covering Google, Facebook, Twitter, SEO, SEM & all things digital marketing, search marketing and search.
@dannysullivan
marketingland.com

Kare Anderson
Emmy-winner, Forbes+HuffPo columnist,speaker/TEDx speaker
@KareAnderson
sayitbetter.com

 

Guy Kawasaki
Advises Motorola. Author of APE: Author, Publisher, Entrepreneur. Former chief evangelist of Apple.
@GuyKawasaki
alltop.com/all

 

Liz Strauss
Founder of SOBCon, social business strategist. It’s only fun when it’s brilliant strategy, high return, AND connects customers in a meaningful way.
@lizstrauss
successful-blog.com

Jeff Bullas
Social Media Marketing Blogger,Strategist & Speaker,Forbes Top 50 Social Media Power Influencer 2013,Huffington Post Top 100 Business Twitter Accounts
@jeffbullas
jeffbullas.com

Marsha Collier
Author 48 books: Social Media Commerce, eBay, Online Customer Service. Forbes Top 10 Influencer, GigaOM Pro Analyst, Founder #CustServ chat#techradio host
@MarshaCollier
coolebaytools.com

Steve Rubel
Chief Content Strategist for Edelman (@EdelmanPR), AdAge columnist, LinkedIn Influencer and avid sports fan.
@steverubel
steverubel.me

John Hagel
Work and play on the edge – views breathtaking, experiences deep and satisfying, learning limitless
@jhagel
edgeperspectives.typepad.com

 

Havi Goffan
Tweeting about Latinos, Hispanic Marketing, new stuff, life and everything + always with a big Latina heart!
@TargetLatino
targetlatino.com

 

Ed Bennett
Hospital / Healthcare web marketing, governance and technology graybeard.
@EdBennett
ebennett.org

Shelly Kramer
Marketing/brand strategist, idea generator, digital content magician, scribbler, information junkie. Luv MilkDuds+Beer. Member of Oversharers Anonymous.
@ShellyKramer
v3im.com

Wendy Goldman Scherer
Lover of data. Finding insights in social media. I *might* also be a compulsive baker. All my worlds collide at http://wendyscherer.com
@wendyscherer
wendyscherer.com

Kimberly Kradel
artist. painter. photographer. writer. Lover of landscape, books, sci-fi, tech, & food. This is the me you’d meet traveling, or in a bar. Also @artistatlarge
@kradel
kimba.com

Allen Mireles
Integrated marketing & social media strategist who never ever gets enough time in the garden. Proud Rotarian. Endlessly curious. Joyful.
@allenmireles
allenmireles.com

Shel Israel
Founder #CEO @Broadsuite |@Huffpost & @Forbes Contributor | Co-Founder@12most | MBA | Biz Prof |Author @millennialCEO | Husband to 1 Father of 2.#Socialbiz
@ShelIsrael
blogs.forbes.com/shelisrael

Steve Farnsworth
A Forbes Top 50 Social Media Influencer, blogger, B2B content marketing and inbound marketing, and social media strategist working with tech companies and B2B.
@Steveology
stevefarnsworth.wordpress.com

Jon Ferrara
Pioneer & creator of #CRM solutions, CEO – Nimble, Founder of GoldMine. Interests; #SocialSelling,  Social Business, Customer Lifecycle, Acquisition & Retention.
@Jon_Ferrara
nimble.com

Brian Kardon
CMO @Lattice_Engines. Sharing ideas about big data, demand gen, marketing, SaaS and the tenor saxophone. People say I ask a lot of questions.
@bkardon
lattice-engines.com

Ted Rubin
‘Life is not about waiting for the storm to pass… it’s about learning to dance in the rain.’ :-)
@tedrubin
tedrubin.com/blog

 

Leo Laporte
Podcaster, broadcaster and tech pundit. The Tech Guy on the Premiere Radio Networks. Chief TWiT at live.twit.tv
@leolaporte
live.twit.tv

Jeff Jarvis
@BuzzMachine blogger and j-school prof; author of Public Parts, What Would Google Do?
@jeffjarvis
buzzmachine.com

 

Francine Hardaway
Content marketer, writer, editor, globe-trotter. co-founder stealthmode partners. marketing partner for entrepreneurs.
@hardaway
blog.stealthmode.com

Lon Safko
For tips, tricks and methods so you and your #business can have an effective
& thriving #socialmedia strategy & execution.
@lonsafko
lonsafko.com

Joel Comm
Serial Entrepreneur, Author, Speaker, Consultant, 84 Klout score, Size 10 shoe
@joelcomm
joelcomm.com

Sarah Browne
Early stage advisor/strategist. Addicted to all things new. Except very old whiskey.
@guruofnew
trendist.us

Robin Fray Carey
CEO Social Media Today LLC. Also follow our team and me on@socialmedia2day. Opinions are all over the map. #socialshakeup
@robincarey
socialmediatoday.com

Seth Godin
Founder of http://Squidoo.com , author, blogger. This is a retweet of my blog.
@ThisIsSethsBlog
sethgodin.typepad.com

John Jantsch
Small business marketing consultant, speaker and author of Duct Tape Marketing, Duct Tape Selling, The Referral Engine and The Commitment Engine.
@ducttape
ducttapemarketing.com/blog

Mark Ragan
CEO of Ragan Communications. Publisher of @PRDaily, @RaganComms, @RaganHealth, HR Communication.
@MarkRaganCEO
ragan.com

Don Tapscott
Author (most recent book Macrowikinomics), consulting company CEO, Hammond B3 player.U of Toronto, Rotman School Professor, Fellow Martin Prosperity Institute.
@dtapscott
dontapscott.com

Vivek Wadwha
Appointments at Duke, Stanford, Emory, and Singularity University. Former entrepreneur. Write for Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, LinkedIn Influencers,
@wadhwa
whadwha.com

CJ Brasiel
Silicon Valley Real Estate Concierge, Broker Associate, Rider of Bicycles. Real Estate Questions? Talk to me. 408-406-6035 DRE #001509579 Opinions my own.
@CJBrasiel
talktocj.com

Randy Bowden
a marketing and branding guy | native floridian – georgia transplant ☞ southern enthusiast | bourbon or single malt |
@Bowden2bowden
bowden2bowden.co

Lucie Newcomb
Trainer/Student/Strategist/Globetrotter/Marketer/Leader.Global Business From the Inside Out ™ #GlobalBusinessWatch #Sheadership mentoring
@newcommglobal
newcommglobal.com

Andreas Ramos
Author of 9 Books on #SEO &#DigitalMarketing (incl. an Amazon Best Seller). Professor at Silicon Valley Business School SVBS. Manager of Global SEO at #Cisco.
 @andreas_ramos
andreas.com

Cathryn Hrudicka
Creative Sage™ lives a passionate personal mission to cause the spontaneous combustion of #creativity,#innovation, and #compassionate#intelligence everywhere.
@CreativeSage
CreativeSage.com

Several of the people on this original list–although awesome and fabulous–are not over 50. But I still love and admire ‘em and as Frank Strong said “continuous learning just might be the fountain of youth.” so I’m adding a list of some of my fav  over 40/under 50 folks below. So there. Lemonade.

Ann Handley
Head of Content here at ‘Profs. I’m waging a war on mediocrity in content.
@MarketingProfs
annhandley.com

Geoff Livingston
Founder of @Tenacity5Media. Author. Photographer Goober.
@geoffliving
geofflivingston.com

 

Kristi Colvin
User experience consultant & full-time mischief maker. Social provocateur, digital gladiatrix and work in progress. Principal @freshid #MLS #SKC
@KrisColvin
freshid.com

Mack Collier
Helping companies Think Like a Rock Star & with a Southern accent. Founder of #Blogchat
@MackCollier
mackcollier.com

@Rackspace’s Startup Liaison Officer, who grew up in Silicon Valley, brings you technology news, videos, and opinions.
@Scobleizer
scobleizer.com

 

Social Media and Internet Marketing consultant for small to medium businesses. Specialties include #SocialMedia, #Blogging, #SEO and #minestrone soup.
@mike_allton
thesocialmediahat.com

 

Author, Speaker and kind of a big deal on a fairly irrelevant soc media site which inflates my self-importance. Lesser-half of @UnAlison.

@unmarketing
unmarketing.com

CEO Arment Dietrich. Author @spinsucks, blog and book. Co-author Marketing in the Round. Speaker. Avid cyclist. A foodie. Loves shoes & wine.

@ginidietrich
spinsucks.com

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  • http://www.communityorganizer20.com/ Debra Askanase

    Janet, I love that you put this list together. In the tech world, it’s not just that so many people over 50 DO “get it,” but also that there is a perception that they cannot possibly read/understand/innovate/be savvy about tech. Thanks for standing out and sharing the great folks with us all!

  • Ted Rubin

    Who says I’m over 50, LOL ;-)

  • http://www.redphlag.com Gerard Corbett

    Is there a way over 50 list Janet?

  • RandyBowden

    Thanks for including me on such a fine list and reminding me that I am “over 50″ Janet, way way over.

  • http://www.linkedin.com/in/annelizhannan Anneliz Hannan

    @gerardcorbett:disqus @RandyBowden:disqus @ted_rubin:disqus Gotta love Open Data ;) Fantastic list @jfouts:disqus, wonderful to see so many impressive peers in my demographic (not my tech savvy) but nice to see that age is not a hindrance to the pursuit of excellence.

  • http://chrisbrogan.com/ Chris Brogan

    I’m 44. Don’t rush me. :)

  • http://spinsucks.com Gini Dietrich

    LOL!! Because they’re awesome. Hilarious! This is totally a fun list and I’m going to share it when business leaders, who are older than 50, say, “I can’t do this because I’m a digital immigrant.” Yeah, well…here you go.

  • http://judyleedunn.com/ Judy Lee Dunn

    I love this. I agree with Gini. So inspiring, these role models are. At the risk of sounding biased, I would add just one more name: @bobWP, WordPress and blogging trainer extraordinaire.

  • Megan Keane

    Janet, this is so great. I get really tired of the “40 under 40″ or the like. With age comes wisdom – and age doesn’t mean you stop innovating and learning. Loved seeing a few SF WoW names here too!

  • Wendy Goldman Scherer

    So many friends and people I admire on this list. (Though I may be older than some?) Thank you for including me!

  • http://womeninbusinessradio.com Michele Price

    Quite a few not really in the 50 decade yet ;) says the 55 year old. And I agree it’s nice to see respect come our way.

  • Allen Mireles

    What a great list to be included in. Thank you for that, Janet and for reminding all of us what we can all, always be learning new stuff! xo #beingover50rocks!

  • http://whatsnextblog.com whatsnext

    What a great list! #beingover50rocks

  • http://janetfouts.com Janet Fouts

    You’re off the list Chris but not off the island!

  • http://janetfouts.com Janet Fouts

    Thanks Anneliz these are all amazing folks no matter what their age!

  • http://janetfouts.com Janet Fouts

    Cheers Debra!

  • http://janetfouts.com Janet Fouts

    I think I cleaned up the ones who weren’t Michele, gosh some of these folks are just so dang MATURE!

  • http://www.savvycapitalist.blogspot.com TedCoine

    Janet, I L-O-V-E this post! Who says you have to be “Under 30″ to be on a list celebrating age, be in of tech leaders, entrepreneurs, or… you name it? I’m just 3 years away from consideration for this list. I’ll starve to earn a spot in the meanwhile!

    I’ve got some good friends on here, as well as several most-admired leaders I’ve yet to meet. In no case have I thought, “You know, ___ is pretty tech savvy for her age.” Huh? Age this!

    Here’s one I hope to see on next year’s list: Mark Babbitt, aka @YouTernMark, my co-author on “A World Gone Social” and my partner at Switch and Shift. He’s pretty darn with it for a grandpa ;)

  • http://charleneli.com Charlene Li

    Janet: Thanks for addressing the implicit age-ism that is rampant in tech these days. The people on this list are folks that I learn and get inspiration from every time I meet them or read their work. I’m honored to be included in this list…except that I’m not 50 yet!

  • Maria Garcia

    I think it’s funny how some people think that reaching 50 or 50+ is a negative thing, I think this is where the action begins, this is when you have most of your experience and common sense to do something very extraordinary. I love people of all ages but there is something about 50+ it’s called wisdom and wisdom is very sexy and appealing. Contrary to some studies that suggest that there is a time where the brain is more apt to learn I think there always a time to learn regardless of your age.
    Glad to see familiar faces such as Ted Rubin, Mark Schafer, Joel Comm and Vivek Wadwha
    Thank you Janet for bringing this subject to surface.

  • Maria Garcia

    If you are who can tell???

  • http://www.TheSocialMediaHat.com/ Mike Allton

    Thanks for thinking of me Janet, but I JUST turned 40! ;)

  • http://www.edisonresearch.com Tom Webster

    Ummm….I’m not 50. And neither are some others on this list.

  • http://www.ferreemoney.com/ Neil Ferree

    How to Manage Your Social Media Presence http://goo.gl/55zPkY so you don’t get pagged for being 50 when you’re only 40

  • Havi Goffan

    This is terrific, Janet!! First and foremost I am so honored to have been included in this list with so many people I know and I admire, such as: Seth Godin, Joel Comm, Lon Safko, Jeff Bullas, Guy Kawasaki. Ted Coine, you are also one of my top people (not just for your knowledge, I like your open and mutual approach towards social media) and glad to read you’ll be soon in this group! Second, we, the 50 plusers need recognition and acknowledgement too! There is something to be said for the likes of us that begun in marketing and technology when they were two very different concepts (and used 8″ floppy disks while gathering data for market research on a pad to enter into a Lotus 1-2-3 spreadsheet) Last but not least, Janet, I have admired you from the first day we met! You rock!! #being50plusrocks

  • lonsafko

    Wow! What a great list! You’re right! There ARE some pretty smart people on this list! (How’d I get in there?) :o) Thank you!

  • lonsafko

    You so should share that stage!

  • lonsafko

    You are right! The 20 somethings know how to use tech, but it’s the 50+s that know how to use it effectively in business. Never let a 25 yo do your marketing for you!

  • Havi Goffan

    ;)

  • http://janetfouts.com Janet Fouts

    Thanks Havi, admiration right back atcha,

  • http://www.craigmcbreen.com/ Craig McBreen

    Hi Janet,

    Thank you for this list. I know more than a few here, but see plenty of new faces, which is great, because a big part of my new site and podcast … artofbreakingout.com (coming soon) centers on late bloomers :)

    I’ll be breaking out in my own special way by speaking to many people like this. Cool thing about the blogosphere is the fact that I’m communicating with people from about 25-60+. All good.

    Anyway love this and thank you. This post WILL be bookmarked!

    Oh, and who knew Geoff Livingston and Ann Handley were over 50 … ;)

  • http://readtoleadpodcast.com/ Jeff Brown

    Wait! Ann Handley is over 50? Who knew?

  • http://www.swordandthescript.com/ Frank Strong

    That’s what I’m thinking too. Quite a few names on the list I would have never guessed were 50. Looks like continuous learning just might be the fountain of youth.

  • http://www.swordandthescript.com/ Frank Strong

    So, Janet. How could you be absolutely certain everyone on the list was over 50? You couldn’t possibly have asked everyone — you just can’t do that! :-)

  • http://www.changeagents.ie/ Paul O’Mahony

    As someone who’s over 60 and who’s been attracted by this chat – I must say it’s made me laugh.

  • http://www.KerryGorgone.com/ Kerry O’Shea Gorgone

    Nope.

  • http://readtoleadpodcast.com/ Jeff Brown

    My point exactly @kerryosheagorgone:disqus. What’s up with this article?

  • Joey McGirr™

    Scott Stratten’s not even 40!

  • http://janetfouts.com Janet Fouts

    See your quote above Frank!

  • http://www.swordandthescript.com/ Frank Strong

    Well, heck. It’s hard to write a list post anywhere without someone getting bent about it. My take: the spirit of the point you are making is valid.

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