This is what Shawn Morton would look like if he had been made of LEGO -- the personal website of Shawn Morton
Monday, July 21, 2008
We found another house in Columbus
After the first house in Columbus didn't work out, Amy, the kids and I went househunting again on Sunday. After seeing about 10 houses in the morning and early afternoon, we found the one below.

New house - front

It is a really great house. It's brand new, has over 4,000 square feet of finished space (with a big unfinished section of the basement), is at the end of a cul-de-sac and has over a half acre lot.

Because it is new construction, we can close on it quickly. We will close and take possession of the house on Monday, July 28th.

We are relieved to have found another house so quickly, especially since my new job at Nationwide started this week and I am staying in a hotel.

You can see more photos on Flickr. Expect a bunch more as we get moved in.
Thursday, July 17, 2008
The "Shawn Morton Sendoff" recap
Tonight, Todd Earwood, Tom Osborne and Beth Blakely organized a going-away get-together for Amy and me at the Fox and Hound Pub.

I was really blown away by the turn out. In addition to Amy and myself, we had Todd, Tom, Beth, Jay Garmon, Pat Glancy, Dan Knoy, Mark Kaelin, Nikki Key, Jason Hiner, Chris Hamm, Brian Herbert, Paula Osborne, Eric Roland, Kevin Brown, Greg Gorman, Matt Winn, Ben Thomas, Dan Shaw, Joe Wheeler, Amy Wheeler, Jeremy Lwanga, Terra Santos, James Santos, Hannah Santos, Rob May and Ted Smith. I'm hoping I didn't leave anyone out.

The cake

We got a cake from Todd and Ted also gave me a "Kentucky for Obama" hat to wear in Ohio.


We also got two "Top 10 reasons Shawn is moving to Columbus" lists:

10. Received Professor Emeritus status from Ohio State to start teaching a course in Rock Band
9. Shawn is going to open a chapter of ATO at Ohio State a la "Old School"
8. Shawn found out you can get the Victoria's Secret catalog much quicker in Columbus
7. Got stranded in Columbus when his promoter pulled the funds on his Guitar Hero World Tour
6. Well, it's approximately 15 miles closer to IKEA and, with gas at $4 a gallon, he will save about $4 dollars on every trip. SHAWN'S GOING GREEN!
5. It became increasingly embarrassing when people kept overhearing Shawn, Tom and Eric talk about "condoms" during meetings at Panera and Starbucks
4. He finally convinced someone that this "social media" blah-tee-blah is going somewhere... WHATEVER!
3. His attempts to lobby the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame for a category for Guitar Hero had failed. Moving to the state capital to start lobbying the politicians is the next step
1. Shawn realized that he has more hair than Brutus Buckeye

Here's the other list:
10. It's the birthplace of his personal hero, Randy "Macho Man" Savage
9. He's going to be a contestant on Survivor: Franklin County
8. Wants to snag coveted position as curator of Lil Bow Wow's childhood home and museum
7. Just likes to say the word "buckeye"
6. One word: Somaliwood
4. Bat-shit crazy TR forum members found out where he lived
3. Wants to impress OSU coeds with his Guitar Hero expertise
2. Little chance of being homesick for KY since, counting his wife and kids, he's taking 28% of the state's population with him
1. You go where the Witness Relocation Program takes you

Amy and I had a really great time. We appreciate everyone taking the time to be there.
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
SMC Louisville July '08 event recap
Last night, the Social Media Club of Louisville held their July event at the Louisville Visual Art Association. Jake McKee, LEGO's former community manager, was the featured speaker. He gave a great presentation on how LEGO adopted the ideals of the "Cluetrain Manifesto" to become a leader in consumer engagement.

Jake McKee presents

Jake McKee at Social Media Club of Louisville
This photo by Aaron Marshall. See more of Aaron's photos.

I had previously seen Jake participate in a community panel at SXSW Interactive back in March.

SXSWi 2008: Building Communities That Work
Jason Falls, in the right foreground, listens to Jake McKee during the "Building Online Communities That Work" panel at SXSWi 2008

There was a good crowd at the event with around 30 people in attendance. Some of the attendees included Jason Falls, Tom Osborne, Michelle Jones, Aaron Marshall, Ashley Cecil, Nick Huhn, Jay Garmon, Chris Parrish, Todd Earwood, Nikki Key, Veronica Combs, Brendan Jackson, Steve Magruder, George Parker, Chris Hamm, Dawn Yankeelov, Kat French, Todd Smith, Melanie Rosenthal and Joe and Amy Wheeler.

The event was sponsored by Doe-Anderson who brought Jake in town to speak and The Basement who provided the hors d'ouvres.

This will, unfortunately, be the last SMC Louisville event I'll be attending for a while; however, it was definitely the best yet.

BTW, Aaron Marshall took a lot of great photos of the event.
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
Social Media Club July event tonight
Jason Falls and his employer Doe-Anderson have brought community guru Jake McKee to Louisville. He is going to be the speaker at tonight's Social Media Club event at the Louisville Visual Art Association.

Jason and I had dinner with Jake last night. It will be great to have someone with Jake's insights and experience speaking here in Louisville.

I will post plenty of photos and, hopefully, a QIK video of Jake's remarks.
Going-away party is Thursday night
My friends Todd, Tom and Beth have organized a going-away get-together this Thursday at 6PM at the Fox and Hound Pub & Grille. Here is the official description from the Facebook page:

"We're all happy (ok supportive) of Shawn's great new gig with Natiowide in Columbus, OH. Sadly, he'll be leaving town next week, so let's gather back at Fox & Hound Pub for a fun night to give him, Amy and all the kids our best wishes in person.

Note: If more than 71 people show up, Shawn promises to shave his head... oh wait!

You can RSVP here.
Monday, July 14, 2008
I am Tracy Flick
I recently threw my hat in the ring for the 42nd board position for the Social Media Club. According to a new post from Chris Heuer, 38 other people had the same idea as me.


In order to determine the final board member, they have opened it up to a popular vote.

So, dear reader, I am here to do some good ol' fashioned vote grubbing. If you want a Social Media Club board member who can crush the other 41 in Guitar Hero and/or Rock Band and can quote Alec Baldwin's "Glengarry Glen Ross" scene verbatim, then I'm your guy. Oh, I also know a little bit about online communities and social media if that helps.

You can cast your vote here (no registration required).
Sunday, July 13, 2008
Last week in Louisville
I will be heading to Columbus to start my new job with Nationwide a week from today. It's been so crazy these past couple of weeks, with finding a new house and preparing our current house, that I didn't realize how quickly I will be leaving Louisville.

My last week in town won't be any less hectic.

We have two realtors coming over to check out the house and help us set a sale price. They'll each present a marketing plan next week and we'll pick whichever one we like best to be our realtor.

We are also having a basement specialist check out the new house in Columbus to see what is going on there. If it turns out to be bad, we're going to be back searching for a house (and the rest of this list may be shuffled around considerably).

That evening, I am supposed to grab dinner with Jake McKee and some members of the Social Media Club. Jake is in town to do some work with Doe-Anderson and speak at the SMC event on Tuesday.

We have the monthly Social Media Club meeting with Jake McKee.

We have our builder coming to make some repairs to our current house in the morning, then Atlas Van Lines will be coming over to evaluate how much stuff we have for the move. Then, there is a CNET Alumni lunch at Ernesto's.

I think there might be some sort of going-away get-together Thursday evening. Don't really have many details on that yet.

Mahlon is having an early birthday party since he won't be in town for his actual birthday in August. He's going to Renaissance Fun Park for laser tag, go carts and mini-golf. Afterwards, we'll have a bunch of 11 year olds sleeping over.

Miles is having his early birthday party since he won't be in town for his actual birthday in August either. Miles has chosen to do a Build-A-Bear party at the Summit followed by pizza and cake at the house.

Then, on Sunday, I travel to Columbus. Of course, I still have to secure a place to stay. I guess that should be on the top of my list for Monday.
Thursday, July 10, 2008
I am joining the team at Nationwide
I have been a little mysterious about what exactly I will be doing (and for whom I will be doing it) in Columbus. Today, the internal e-mail announcement went out, so I will share a little more now that I'm "official."

I am joining Nationwide to help build out and execute their social media strategy. Here is an excerpt from the e-mail announcement:

"I'm pleased to announce Shawn Morton will be joining the Corporate Internet Marketing team on Monday, July 21, 2008 as a Sr. Consultant, Social Media... Shawn will be responsible for driving Nationwide's social media strategy to build Brand and engage customers and future customers on and off of"

As I've mentioned previously, I am really excited to be joining such a great team at a company that understands the importance of social media. I can't wait to get started.
Tuesday, July 1, 2008
Look out, Columbus. Here we come.
As most of you know, I left CNET Networks in April after almost 9 years. Although the initial plan was to raise money for our startup, a job opportunity presented itself recently that is just too good for me to pass up.


I am about to accept an offer from a Fortune 150 company based in Columbus, OH. I will be responsible for leading the company's social media initiatives.

Having met with the team last month, it was really refreshing to see such a large company embracing social media and recognizing that it will be key to their future marketing efforts. Plus, they've got a *really* talented web team with whom I'll be working. I am really excited to take on this challenge.

Of course, this will require us to relocate to Columbus, OH by the end of July. That will definitely be the toughest part of accepting the position. We have family and a terrific groups of friends here that we'll definitely miss. The good thing is that Columbus is only 200 miles from Louisville, so we'll be able to return often.

BTW, I will share the name of the company and my title once I have officially accepted the offer and things are made public.

For now, call any friends or family members in the Columbus area and warn them that the Mortons are coming to town :)

About Shawn Morton

Married father of 6; VP of Social Media at JPMorgan Chase; gluten-free; gadget enthusiast; hair metal aficionado; #Movember man View more on LinkedIn.