Raymond Braun is a media personality, journalist, social influencer (150+K followers), and entrepreneur recently named the Financial Times #1 young global LGBT leader, a Forbes 30 Under 30 “All Star,” one of MTV’s “Social Stars to Watch,” and one of the 100 most influential LGBT people in the world by OUT magazine. Raymond’s passion is to bring coverage of politics, entertainment, current events, culture, and social media to a global audience leveraging traditional and new media. Based on his experience and thought leadership, Raymond was one of 30 media personalities to be invited by President Barack Obama to the White House’s inaugural “Digital Innovators Summit” in January 2017 to discuss how to leverage social media to encourage young people to engage in advocacy and politics.
Raymond has traveled the world to report on political and social movements. He flew to Ireland to cover their marriage equality referendum and was on the ground at the United States Supreme Court for the month of June 2015, reporting on all the developments for the historic marriage equality case. His live reaction video to the Supreme Court’s ruling went viral and racked up more than 100 million media impressions. Raymond hosted GLAAD’s groundbreaking Southern Stories tour through the conservative “Bible Belt,” an eye-opening social media series that tackled homophobia, transphobia, and racism in some of the most hostile environments for the LGBT community. Raymond also partnered with Instagram to curate and launch the first ever LGBT video series on the platform, #VisibleMe, which was featured on the “Explore” homepage of Instagram and trended at #1 on BuzzFeed upon launch.
Raymond developed an online social media series with Hillary Clinton’s campaign during the 2016 Presidential Primary called “On the Trail” to discuss the important issues at stake for young voters, provide a behind-the-scenes look at life on the campaign trail, and encourage people to get involved with politics. As the series host, Raymond developed and starred in online videos, interviews, Snapchat takeovers, Twitter Q&As, and other content that was featured across Hillary Clinton’s social channels, racking up more than a million views. The series featured Raymond in conversation with Campaign Manager Robby Mook, president of Planned Parenthood Cecile Richards, a variety of celebrity surrogates, and Hillary Clinton herself. Raymond also emceed Hillary Clinton’s “Creators Ask HRC” social media Town Hall in Los Angeles, facilitating conversations between Secretary Clinton and social media celebrities.
As Logo’s inaugural Political Correspondent, Raymond helped establish the world’s largest LGBT television network as a key player in conversations about LGBT equality in politics through innovative social media reporting. His coverage included anti-LGBT legislation, the one-year anniversary of the Supreme Court marriage equality decision, swing state politics, the Vice Presidential debate, and both the Democratic National Convention and Republican National Convention. Raymond also traveled to Orlando the day after the tragedy at Pulse nightclub to provide heartfelt, on-the-ground reporting centered on LGBT stories.
In addition to politics, Raymond’s love of pop culture and entertainment is evident in his correspondent work for several red carpet events and premieres, including the Danish Girl, the GLAAD Media Awards, VH1 and Logo’s Trailblazer Honors, Toronto International Film Festival, and the 2015 Emmy Awards. Raymond has interviewed everyone from Hillary Clinton, Eddie Redmayne, Alicia Vikander, Jeffrey Tambor, and Judith Light to Demi Lovato, Nancy Pelosi, Ruby Rose, America Ferrera, and Kylie Minogue.
In Fall 2015, Raymond founded RWB Media, a consulting company focused on social outreach, which counts several Fortune 500 companies and nonprofit leaders as clients. He formerly led YouTube’s social media campaigns and programs and originated YouTube’s award-winning LGBT strategy, which served as inspiration for Google’s broader diversity marketing efforts. During Raymond’s tenure, YouTube became the most followed brand on social media. Known for reinventing YouTube’s social strategy with bold, creative, and experimental new ideas, Raymond spearheaded more than four #1 organic trending topics globally.
Raymond has spoken at conferences, events, colleges, high schools, and corporations around the world, including the Forbes 30 Under 30 Summit, Stanford Business School (where he co-taught a class), Forbes CMO Summit, New York Advertising Awards, and Marketing Rockstars Festival. He has been featured in Entrepreneur, Forbes, Washington Post, Politico, Seventeen, CNN, Variety, NPR, AdWeek, Teen Vogue, Nylon, Buzzfeed, and The Hollywood Reporter, among many others. Seventeen named him their Contributing Editor for LGBT youth, a position specifically created for Raymond that represents the first of its kind in the magazine industry. Raymond was also featured prominently in Season 2 of the GLAAD award-winning docuseries I Am Jazz on TLC, as a friend and mentor to the show’s title star, Jazz Jennings. He will re-join the show in forthcoming Season 3.
Raymond graduated early cum laude from Stanford University with a M.A. in Media Studies (Journalism focus) and a B.A. in Science, Technology, and Society. He was the recipient of the J. E. Wallace Sterling Award, awarded to the top .01% of each year’s graduating senior class.