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A social media mogul in our own backyard connects with NBA MVP Steph Curry

A remarkable 15-year-old Metamora student has been featured in Forbes magazine, interviewed star athletes and musicians like Steph Curry and Drake. Sunday we caught up with Vidal Paulino to find out what’s next for Central Illinois’ own viral media mogul.

The face behind the media company ‘Community Guru’ and Instagram accounts totaling nearly one hundred thousand followers calls Germantown Hills home. Paulino was born with a complex congenital heart defect where his heart is on the right side of his chest. Several months ago through the Make-A-Wish foundation he was able to meet his hero, Stephen Curry. The MVP Golden State Warriors guard surprised the high school freshman by saying he knew who he was. Vidal had started an Instagram account to follow Curry and post highlights, pictures, memes, and anything that Steph may be doing for fans. Steph had seen the account that now has nearly 30,000 followers.

That’s not the only relationship Paulino has generated by sending “DM’s” or direct messages to athletes, musicians, artists, YouTubers, and more on social media. He also has a Drake-centric account that boasts nearly 50,000 followers on Instagram. But his work isn’t alway met with open arms. “There’s always people that won’t like what I do and that’s fine with me. It just motivates me to keep getting better,” said Paulino.

Vidal gets his content from trusted sources close to the athletes and artists. His work has been featured in Forbes Magazine and he has big plans for expanding his creativity into fashion and music. He’s already released a few songs and has a mix tape coming late Summer 2019.

As far as a career, Paulino says he is learning all sorts of skills from editing to social media marketing. “I’m doing all this because I love to do it and it’s something I want to carry into the future.”

Paulino’s family is from Angola, Africa. His parents never knew how big his following was until they saw the article in Forbes. They still don’t totally understand it, but they support him all the way.

Kyle Beachy

Kyle Beachy is a Multimedia Journalist for 25 News and Heart of Illinois. Born and raised in Kokomo, Indiana, he attended Indiana Wesleyan University where he studied Education and played baseball. He comes to us from Columbus, Ohio where he received a Master’s Degree from The Ohio State University.

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