Are you ready to run?

Jennifer Green, Co-Founder

28 Novermber 2017

Women running for elected office is a buzzing topic these days, and progressives are feeling pretty optimistic after victorious firsts for a number of female candidates on November 7th.

The future is female

Photograph by ®Anter Blackbird

It seems there’s never been a better time to run as you are. Here at Changing the Face of Politics, we truly believe that progressive women will change the world.

Danica Roem, who was elected to the Virginia House of Delegates, is the first openly transgender candidate to win at the state legislature level. Sheila Oliver will be the country’s first black Democratic woman lieutenant governor when she takes office in New Jersey, and Seattle residents elected their first lesbian mayor, Jenny Durkan. On November 18th, New Orleans held a historic runoff between two black women. La Toya Cantrell will serve as the city’s first woman mayor.

It seems there’s never been a better time to run as you are. Here at Changing the Face of Politics, we truly believe that progressive women will change the world. To succeed, we’re going to need to run on the issues that matter, not anti-Trump rhetoric. Let’s elevate the issues important to women, because ending sexism benefits all of us. Let’s have each other’s backs. Chelsea Handler is a great proponent of this message. We must respect, believe, support and promote other women.

And we’re so glad that women aren’t afraid to ask for directions. A national network of support and training will come in handy in our fight for equal representation. Here are eight resources to guide you towards the campaign trail.

  1. If you’re full of questions about whether you are qualified to run or stand a chance of winning, check out the FAQ’s at Vote Run Lead, a non-partisan “campaign and leadership program.” Take a class: “What Office Should I Run For?” then schedule a free coaching session to map out your plan. They offer in-person trainings and events, a resource library and online trainings.
  2. Emerge America focuses on Democratic women and offers “the only in-depth, six month, 70 hour training program that inspires candidates to run and gives them the tools to win.” Women meet one weekend per month over six months and Emerge has programs in AL, AZ, CA, CO, CT, KY, LA, ME, MD, MA, MI, NV, NJ, NM, NY, OR, PA, SC, TN, VT, VA, WA and WI. They’re working on programs for AR, IA, GA, MS, RI, and TX. (check abbrev’s, add links)
  3. You’ve probably heard of Emily’s List. Their Run to Win program recruits and trains pro-choice Democratic women across the country.
  4. Higher Heights focuses on elevating “Black women’s voices to shape and advance progressive policies and politics.” They partner with Emily’s List, Emerge America, VoteRunLead and United States of Women to offer in person trainings in addition to their own programs.
  5. Victory Fund’s Victory Institute offers trainings for LGBTQ Leaders. Their candidates include Virginia House of Delegates’ Danica Roem, Arizona Senator Kysten Sinema, and Wisconsin Senator Tammy Baldwin.
  6. Under 35 and want to advocate for progressive values? Run for Something says they’ll take a chance on unlikely candidates and “do whatever it takes to get more under-35 year-olds on the ballot” for state legislature seats, mayorships and city council seats.
  7. Get Her Elected is an initiative for “progressive women candidates running for office at all levels of U.S. government” from Teen Vogue writer Lily Herman. You can sign up to volunteer or receive services.
  8. Not 18 yet, but know you want to change the face of politics? Rise to Run is here to mobilize young progressive women and prepare them to run for office sooner than their contemporary counterparts.

Many organizations have sprung up since the 2017 election and we know we’ve missed a few. Send us a message if you’d like yours added to our list! Whatever you do, GET INVOLVED. Don’t want to run? Volunteer for or donate to a progressive woman’s campaign. Democracy doesn’t run itself. Our participation is required. We have so much to gain by standing up and too much to lose if we continue to sit on the sidelines.


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