TheBridge profile: Meghan Gaffney Buck
Name: Meghan Gaffney Buck
Current city: Washington, DC
Current job: CEO, VEDA Data Solutions
Past job: Recovering Political Fundraiser
Q. Favorite spot for a coffee meeting : Rare Sweets in City Center (try the Hummingbird cake while you are there!)
Q. Describe one way how a skill you learned in a previous job helped you in your new job. Political fundraising is all about setting a goal and achieving it, regardless of obstacles that might come up along the way. The ability to be flexible, roll with change and still get results is the perfect training to be a start-up founder. And I'm still asking people for money, but it's much more satisfying raising a round for my own company.
Q. Job advice in three words? Hire great people
Q. How are you (or your company, org, nonprofit) currently bridging the gap between politics and tech? There is nothing more politically charged than healthcare. How we go about providing quality care to every American is an incredibly difficult policy challenge that doesn't seem to be getting solved any time soon. VEDA comes at the problem from a unique perspective. We deliver machine learning and AI tools that allow healthcare to become more efficient through automation-- by eliminating administrative waste and reducing error. The tech community can bring market-based solutions to solve what we call the "stupid" problems that cost the healthcare industry billions of dollars.
Q. What can DC teach Silicon Valley? Look outside the beltway. In politics, you loose elections when you don't get outside of the DC bubble. There is amazing innovation talent between the coasts, I know that well because my co-founder is in Madison, WI!
Q. Best advice you’ve received? You are going to pivot, whether you like it or not. Flexibility has saved me from a lot of problems that could have become disasters.
Q. Which Member of Congress is most tech savvy? There are lots of members that are tech savvy, but if you want to be entertained follow former House Member John Dingell on Twitter (@JohnDingell). You won't regret it.