2021 Virginia Tour: conservative candidates, local leaders prepare for success
Dena Espensheid
April 29, 2021
2021 Virginia Tour: conservative candidates, local leaders prepare for success
This past weekend, the Leadership Institute trained 60 conservatives – including 29 candidates – at the 2021 Virginia Tour Campaign and Candidate Workshops in Manassas and Hampton Roads. LI will offer the program a third time in Richmond on June 12th.“To say I was highly impressed with the speakers, content, organization, enthusiasm and value to the participants in your candidate development workshop is a wild understatement,” stated Mike Augustine of Virginia Beach, VA. “The Leadership Institute is clearly one of the most valuable resources available to conservative candidates who want to win elections.” As a Virginia Tour sponsor, the Virginia Conservative Women's Coalition sent speakers to both Manassas and Hampton Roads to present on recruiting candidates and helping women run for office.The Robertson School of Government at Regent University also sponsored the Virginia Tour and provided classroom space in the Jefferson Amphitheater on the Regent University Campus. Former Congresswoman and current dean of the Robertson School of Government, Michele Bachmann, visited the Hampton Roads Workshop. Dean Bachmann spoke about how she got started and encouraged the attendees to persevere.To take part in the last stop on the 2021 Virginia Tour, register for the Candidate and Campaign Workshop June 12 in Richmond, VA.
LI Grad Interview: Rugby Coach, Politico, Syracuse Native
Kirsten Holmberg
April 28, 2021
LI Grad Interview: Rugby Coach, Politico, Syracuse Native
Meet Leadership Institute grad Maureen McInerney, and learn how she got interested in politics, her advice for candidates, and even more.Q: Can you tell me a little about yourself? My name is Maureen McInerney, and I am currently the Director of Development at Women's Public Leadership Network (WPLN). WPLN's mission is to educate, organize, and inspire center- and right-leaning women to enter public office across the United States.Before joining WPLN, I worked for the ReflectUS coalition and Republican political campaigns in Massachusetts at the local, Congressional, and state level. Prior to politics, I worked in public affairs for MassINC, a Boston-based think tank focused on state and local policy impacting Gateway Cities, k-12 education, and the criminal justice system.I am a Syracuse, NY native (Go Orange!), and an alumna of Northeastern University in Boston, and currently live in Alexandria, VA. I have three sisters, two of whom are in high school, and I have played and coached rugby for almost eight years. Q: What got you interested in politics? I didn't know anything about politics until late in my senior year of high school in Syracuse, NY. Through an Intro to Public Affairs class, I met elected officials at the local, county, and state levels and began to form my own opinions on policy.Though I originally went to college to study graphic design, I began to transition into studying communications more broadly and eventually graduated with a degree in Political Science and Communications (with a minor in art).My internships in college for Governor Charlie Baker gave me the opportunity to see the inside of government and to appreciate qualified, conservative leaders who work to be good stewards of our tax dollars.I began working in policy and advocacy, specifically focused on economic opportunity for Massachusetts' 26 Gateway Cities. When the opportunity came up to work on a Congressional race for the first time to represent Massachusetts' 9th CD (Cape Cod, the South Coast, and South Shore), I took it! Q: What issues are important to you, and why? My top issue is always protecting our small businesses, which support our local economies and enrich our communities. As I've often heard, "Amazon isn't sponsoring your little league team."Especially since the COVID-19 pandemic, we have seen the importance (and in some places lack) of business-friendly leadership and the need to have policies set at the local level that can be responsive to each community. Another niche issue I have grown to care deeply about is water quality - specifically stormwater and wastewater management. I briefly worked at a wastewater treatment plant in Syracuse, and it was a great experience. We worked to clean up our waterways and lakes by mitigating stormwater runoff through "green infrastructure".As folks see the effects of climate change, they jump to call for a "Green New Deal," when many communities are falling behind on the most basic infrastructure improvements which can transform our cities into more beautiful, sustainable places and mitigate flooding and pollution. Q: You currently are the Director of Development for the Women's Public Leadership Network. How did you get involved in the network, and what does your position involve?Women's Public Leadership Network (WPLN) is a great organization working to train women to run for office and create a network of support across the country. We specifically outreach to center- and right-leaning women who are underrepresented in office and within other women's political organizations.It's our hope to not only help women on the right who are already in politics engage with and support one another, but to bring women on the right into the fold by partnering with professional associations and community groups. We want women to recognize how qualified they are to serve their communities in public office. I began engaging with WPLN while working as a campaign manager on a Boston City Council race for a Republican woman candidate. We saw firsthand how women voters expressed their own fiscally conservative views but didn't know there were other women out there like them. I see working at WPLN as a way to change that.As Director of Development, I work to engage donors, sponsors, foundations, and potential partners to support our work and reach new audiences. We are a nonprofit, and I am extremely proud of the work we have accomplished in just over a year. Q: As a former campaign manager, what do you think is the most important factor in your campaign that helps your candidate win? Or, if your candidate didn't win, what are the lessons you have learned when working on a campaign?The message and the motivations of the candidate are so important. If you are trying to convince your candidate to be passionate about the issues, it's an uphill battle.I have been fortunate that the women candidates I have worked with are driven and know why they want to serve in public office, and they could answer that question from any angle. As a former communications director, that's a huge relief! In the Boston race, we had an incredible coalition of moms come out and support us as volunteers, donors, and voters. Even though we were not successful in our runoff election, getting there proved that voters care more about your passion and ties to the community than your party affiliation.In any campaign, there are countless lessons to be learned. I am always amazed by how many members of the community feel unheard by their elected officials - and I think the best way to ask them to support you is to show up for them, listen and understand their issues, and take action.Q: What advice would you give to someone who is considering entering the political arena? Since your organization focuses on recruiting women to run, any advice for women specifically?I think the most important advice I can offer is to stay organized. Get all of your contacts into an Excel sheet before you run. Your Christmas Card list is the first place you should turn to for donors and volunteers, but then spend some time each week dumping the business cards you collect into that sheet as well. Especially when juggling family and professional commitments, keeping a calendar is so critical. That calendar should include the time you need to cheer on your kids at their soccer games and go to their recitals, too. Don't let your campaign-self become too different from the woman who decided to run.Q: How has the Leadership Institute helped you during your time in public service? I can't say enough good things about the Leadership Institute. I think every operative should regularly take their training, especially since the digital communications landscape is always changing.I have also had campaign interns of mine sign up for LI trainings to get their vocabulary and understanding up to speed so they can support me and give me new ideas! LI has also been a great partner to WPLN, and I look forward to continuing to collaborate and support women candidates, appointees, and operatives at all levels.Q: Many people seem disillusioned with the country's current political climate. What would you say to them to encourage them to get involved? Start working to improve your community outside of politics - it will really start to break down your cynicism. Start small! I recently began coaching a youth rugby team to give back a bit to my community, and I have not had one discussion about politics.The coaches, administrators, and parents are all working together to create a safe and healthy environment for their children to develop athletic and personal skills. Those relationships - which are built on things other than partisanship - are stronger in the face of disagreements than the volatile relationships you form on Twitter.If a problem arises in your community, step up and be willing to work with anyone else to address it - the overuse of litmus tests and cancel culture are going to isolate us more and more. This interview is from the Leadership Institute's Political and Fundraising Monthly Newsletter. When you sign up for this newsletter, you get articles on the latest in politics, interviews like this one, and you'll be the first to know about LI's political and fundraising training opportunities.
More than 30 In-Person Workshops in Texas Campaign Workshop Tour
Carol Wehe Cocks
April 19, 2021
More than 30 In-Person Workshops in Texas Campaign Workshop Tour
The future of Texas may be decided by the next few elections. Have you thought about running for office or helping a campaign, but don't know where to start?“You owe it to your philosophy to study how to win,” says Leadership Institute founder and president Morton Blackwell.The 2021 Texas Campaign Workshop Tour helps current and prospective candidates, as well their teams and volunteers identify the steps required to run a successful campaign.“It was an incredible value,” Texas activist Christine McNamara said during the 2019 Leadership Institute Texas Tour. “I have learned so much more than I knew before.”Ideal attendees for the Campaign Workshop are individuals looking to become more politically active. Candidates, spouses, campaign staff, activists, and volunteers should attend.Attendees will learn how to:Structure a campaign and organize staffRaise fundsDevelop a winning messageFind the campaign workshop near you and register at LeadershipInstitute.org/Texas.
Six Reasons to Recruit Young People Now
Lee Jackson
December 21, 2020
Six Reasons to Recruit Young People Now
One of the biggest misconceptions about campaigns is how much work and preparation it takes to be successful.My all-time favorite alliteration is prior planning prevents poor performance. As my Algebra 1 teacher used to say, “People don't plan to fail, they fail to plan, Mr. Jackson.” This was true for those of us who struggled with Mr. Quimby's class, and it is even more true for political candidates.As the country recaps and tries to understand the breakdown of the 2020 election, now is the time for you to start thinking about your 2022 campaign. As you build your campaign plan and chart your road map to success, do not overlook what young people can do for your campaign. They can propel you to victory.Below, you'll find six reasons why you should make young people a pillar of your campaign.1. Provide VolunteersIf you spent any time looking into running for office, you might have been overwhelmed at all the things a campaign has to do to be successful. From scheduling to knocking doors, organizing events, building and placing yard signs, and more. It does not matter if you are running for dog catcher or President of the United States, there are only 24 hours in the day. You will need a dedicated team of volunteers to make sure you win.After spending more than one million dollars, the last candidate I worked for won by fewer than 500 votes. Our campaign had more than 70 active young volunteers. My candidate would not have won without their help.2. Provide VotesThere is a common misconception that young people do not vote. If 2020 taught us anything, it's that young people are voting more than ever before.According to the Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement (CIRCLE), 55% of eligible voters between the ages of 18-29 voted in 2020. Young voters are also growing as a voting bloc and make up a larger share of the electorate in years past. In the November 3rd election, young voters counted for 21% of the entire vote in Georgia.It's hard to win an election if you ignore one out of every five voters.3. Create a Youthful ImageHaving young people around you will also create a youthful image and, let us be honest -- youth sells.If you were to turn on the TV right now, you would find commercials full of young people. Even commercials targeted to senior citizens have actors that are a little too young for the roles they are playing.Candidates who surround themselves with young people look like they have a large range of support, more energy, and are more likely to win.4. Create a Win PsychologyThere is a lot of insider baseball in campaigns. One of the most complex elements in our game of 3D chess is to show that you are beating the other side on the campaign trail. You can do this with endorsements and fundraising numbers, but the easiest way to get it done is to surround the candidate with enthusiastic young people. More young people walking with the candidate in parades, more young people in photos of social media.Young people help you show that you have a diverse group of supporters who will carry you to victory.People like to be on the winning side. Sports teams have the greatest number of fans when they are having a strong season. Those fans come out and support the team, attend the game, and buy merchandise.Having young people on your team presents you as a winner. If people expect you to win your campaign, more people will donate, and more volunteers will show up to knock doors next Saturday.5. Train LeadersIt is frustrating to see, but the truth is fewer people are involved with their community than generations ago. Instead of spending the evening at a Knight's of Columbus or Rotary meeting, most people just decide to head home.Regardless of your political ideology, everyone can agree that more people should be involved in giving back to their communities and taking a leadership role.A great way to give a local young person leadership training and get them more involved in your community is to enlist them in your campaign now. A young person on a campaign will learn important skills like public speaking and how to lead and organize a team.Early involvement in your team will provide crucial leadership opportunities for the next generation. These opportunities will lead to more community leaders, to better neighborhoods, and maybe even to a candidate of the future.6. Make Good CitizensThe bedrock of our republic is individual participation. From a very young age, people are taught to make their voices heard and be involved. A great example of this is when children disagree on a game's rules on the playground. Instead of running to a teacher, most groups of students will say, “majority rules” and ask their peers to vote on the final rule verdict of a rule or what just happened. There is no instant replay in four square, but the third graders watching will vote and make their voices heard.Some young people who volunteer on your campaign will end up voting for the very first time. If they enjoy their time on the campaign, they will continue to vote every election down the road. And more active local participation in the political process is good for society.Those may be the top six reasons, but there are countless reasons why you should make young people a pillar of your campaign.When planning, you spend a lot of time on data, fundraising, and endorsements. All these things are important, but do not overlook your local college campus or high school. If you find the right students, they will be worth their weight in gold and do much more for your campaign than 90% of the formal endorsements your campaign announces.If you find young people in your area who are willing to help you, send them to one of the Leadership Institute's Youth Leadership Schools, and our staff will teach them how to organize and get as many votes for you as possible. If you have any questions, feel free to email me at LJackson@LeadershipInstitue.org.
So You Won, Now What? Next Steps for Winning Candidates
Ron Nehring
November 23, 2020
So You Won, Now What? Next Steps for Winning Candidates
In a competitive race, elections become all-consuming. For those who win, the next phase is where a new kind of work begins.The Leadership Institute trains conservatives to win not merely to hold offices, but to then put conservative ideas into action to benefit the American people. If you won, your objective should be to do something, not just to be someone.What should you as a successful candidate do following a victory?1. Analyze the results. Complete precinct-by-precinct election data is typically available in the weeks following Election Day. Carefully review this data objectively: where was the campaign most successful? Least successful? What are the surprises, and how can they be explained? Compare where you and your opposition directed activity and determine what worked, what didn't, where support should be maintained, and what are the opportunities for growth?2. Go deeper. Top level reviews of data can be interesting, yet there are many more lessons to be learned when you go deeper. Compare for instance election performance to census data, looking for correlations.3. Produce an after-action report. While failure can be the best teacher, you can learn a lot from victory too. Compile a report on the campaign quicky, before the details of the effort are lost in time. What were the surprises? Challenges? What worked particularly well? What should be included in a memo to the next campaign? The report should include a compilation of everything your campaign produced, such as mail, phone scripts, lists, website, digital materials, research, and data. If you used campaign consultants, do not allow all this data to rest with the consultant. Everything the campaign bought and paid for should be transferred to the candidate.4. Thank the voters. This could be done by leaving your campaign signs up for an extra week while affixing a “thank you” sign to each. Reach out beyond the campaign staff, volunteers, and friends and extend appreciation to voters. No one is entitled to an elected office – expressing thanks conveys humility while reminding everyone you know the voters are ultimately in charge.5. Thank your team.Thank your supporters in the most personal way feasible. Include your volunteers, donors, members of your kitchen cabinet, those who endorsed you, and anyone who contributed in some way to your success. Generic emails and letters are a good start, but they become more memorable when you personalize them.6. Set priorities. Candidates who are about to become officeholders should set priorities in alignment with what the voters consider important. What needs to get done, and how can you as the officeholder work with others – inside and outside of government – to reach those goals?7. Keep focused and avoid pitfalls.History is full of examples of candidates who, once elected, commit various acts of bad judgment. Winning means working under the scrutiny which comes with the offices. Make sure you strictly abide by the highest ethical standards in your professional and personal life, avoiding any conduct that goes beyond “normal and customary,” in the most aspirational sense of that term. 8. Keep visible and frequently engage with voters.Strong officeholders frequently engage with voters to keep people informed of issues, efforts, progress, and setbacks. If you allow a vacuum to form, you're inviting your detractors to step in and define you to the voters in anticipation of the next election.9. Set reasonable expectations. In the American system of government, checks and balances require the consent of more than one person in government to create action. Unrealistic promises of what you will accomplish in office sets the stage for future disappointment. You should be clear about your priorities and where you want to go, while also being clear about who else needs to be persuaded in order to reach your objectives, and keep voters and stakeholders informed along the way.10. Borrow on the objectivity of others.Candidates and elected officials always lose a degree of objectivity about themselves by virtue of holding the position. Smart officeholders maintain a kitchen cabinet of trusted friends and advisors who are on the team but are not involved in the day to day activities of the office. The purpose is to not only provide good advice, but for the officeholder to borrow upon the objectivity of these kitchen cabinet members. This objectivity can be useful to you when you make judgments concerning what situations merit a response, and when a response would be an overreaction. Finally, officeholders must recognize the next election cycle has already begun. Make early determinations about your intentions for the next election, and what must be accomplished in the months ahead for those intentions to be fulfilled. Make friends and allies along the way. Don't make enemies except on purpose. And always remember the purpose in holding the office is not merely to be someone with a title, but to advance sound policy ideas to improve the lives of others and secure their liberties.
So You Lost, Now What? A Letter to the Candidate Who Lost
Steven Sutton
November 19, 2020
So You Lost, Now What? A Letter to the Candidate Who Lost
Stay involved. I was going to start by saying, "Run again in 2022," but that might not be the best advice for everyone who lost in this past election. What does apply universally is for losing candidates to stay involved.There are many ways to separate candidates for office. One that is especially important to voters is whether a candidate is running to do something or if they are running to be somebody.Candidates who are running to be somebody look at campaigns like a sprint with Election Day as the finish line. It is the end of the race, one way or another. If those types of candidates lose, it is more than likely you will never hear of them again. Don't be that person.But for candidates who are running to do something, campaigns are more like a marathon and Election Day is simply a milestone along the way. It tells you how far you have gone and how far you still need to go. If those types of candidates lose, they evaluate where they are along the journey and what they need to do next. Likely, they were already very involved in their community, and they will continue to be, but with an even greater impact. Stay involved. You now have a tremendous organization you built over many months of hard work. Keep them engaged as well. Here are some ideas.1. Get more involved with your local party. Were they helpful to your campaign? No doubt, there were areas that could have been better. Get your campaign volunteers more involved with the local party as well and make improvements so the next candidate (maybe it will be you again) will have more resources the next time.2. Get more involved in the issues that matter most to you. Hold office-holders (especially the person who defeated you) accountable. Organize groups of your volunteers to follow the issues most important to them. Show up at public meetings. Organize petition drives. Create phone trees to call officeholders to bring pressure to bear at key times. Write letters to the editor and post comments online. Become an even greater force within your community.3. Get your best volunteers (and yourself too) additional training. Who were your rock star volunteers? After your campaign is over, have conversations with each of your best volunteers and help them to get more training and experience for the next round of elections. (The Leadership Institute can help with the training bit. Find resources here.)Leftists understand that governing is simply campaigning by different means. They never stop their efforts to destroy America as we know it. They aren't going to go away. Are you?So stay busy. Your next milestone is only 719 days away.
6 Photography Tips for Social Media
Emma Siu
November 12, 2020
6 Photography Tips for Social Media
7 minute readLearn how influencers make their photos pop and how you can take your photos to the next level.1. Think about the message you want your picture to send.It's easy to snap a quick picture, but you should focus on the message you want to convey. What message do you want your viewers to receive? Pin down the message you want to send, then choose and place your subject matter. Think about how you can stage a picture to present your message. Every little detail contributes to help you present your message through the feeling a picture prompts in your audience.2. Choose your camera and settings.Take more pictures. You can take high-end photos with most cell phones. Play with the settings on your phone's camera. Include where you want the focus to be, whether you want to see a grid, and the size of the picture you plan to take. Professionals should invest in a DSLR camera to improve image quality. The more details you can control with your camera, the higher quality your outcome will be. You want your original picture to be as perfect as possible, so you have minimal edits to make.3. Play with the lighting before you take a picture.You can change lighting in the editing phase, but ultimately there is no substitute for good lighting in the original picture. Make sure your subject is not backlit and that light comes in from multiple angles (not just an overhead or direct light), to make the subject look natural. Play with the lighting before you take a picture to make sure you get your desired effect. Natural light will look the best, so use it if possible. There is a reason you see influencers talk about “golden hour” as it is a golden opportunity to take some amazing pictures.4. Take multiple shots.The perfect picture is not likely the first shot you take. Take several shots from multiple angles with different kinds of light. What looks good in the moment may not look as great in the editing process. Take many pictures and you'll have more options.5. Edit your photos.No picture should go directly from your camera roll onto your social media. Each image you post should be carefully edited to send the ideal message. Editing your photos in Adobe Photoshop will give your photos that refined look that influencers seem to effortlessly achieve. Photoshop will be a great asset and is an important skill for you to build in photography. Learn how to use Photoshop before the end of this year at an upcoming digital training with the Leadership Institute.6. Post timely photos and tag them.Make sure you tag photos correctly so your image can easily draw your audience. Your tag system depends on which platform you post on.Look at your competitors and friends and see what tags they post that you can take advantage of. Check out hashtags your community follows and include the relevant tags in your post. For places like Facebook where hashtags are not as helpful, make sure you post at a time of day when your page or group draws the most traffic.
A Personal Letter to the Staffer whose Campaign Lost
Lee Jackson
November 10, 2020
A Personal Letter to the Staffer whose Campaign Lost
So… you lost. I get it. I would call what you're going through a gut check, but that term doesn't seem to be strong enough. For one reason or another, your campaign came up short. I have been where you are right now. I've been there multiple times. You put your life on hold for months, you're mad at the world, you're mad at yourself, and you probably question if it was even worth it.Trust me, it was. Campaigns are cruel and unforgiving. It's a sick joke that your campaign could have done everything perfect and still lost. Throw in human slip-ups and unforced errors and it's almost like it's game over from the start. It's like it's your turn on Family Feud, your family already has two Xs, and Steve Harvey has asked you to stand on your head, drink a glass of milk, and name the third reason why the chicken crossed the road.To make matters worse, it probably feels like you got the answer right. You and your team outworked the other side and factors beyond your control prevented you from the victory you have been chasing. Or worse, someone on your team wasn't doing their job and, if they had, the outcome may had been different. Either way, the race is over.It's okay to be upset. You're going through a mixture of feeling professional whiplash, questioning what the purpose of your life is without a candidate to please, and it hurts in a way that can only be compared to the first time you had your heart broken.Just remember you are not the first person to lose. And losing does not mean your career or your time in the public policy process is over. I lost two major campaigns in a row before I won my last race in 2019. Don't forget, Abraham Lincoln lost his U.S. Senate race five years before he was elected President of the United States. Take the time you need from this race to decompress. Go home and watch the Sound of Music with your mother. Trust me, it will make her happy. Sleep in until 2:00pm after watching The Office for 12 hours straight.Remember you learned a lot this last year. I promise you could run laps around the person you were a year ago. Even though your campaign came up short, that doesn't mean you didn't grow as a person. You harnessed new skills that can slingshot your career forward. Send me an email when you're ready to sharpen your skills in order to re-enter the arena stronger than ever before. One of my favorite Morton Blackwell quotes is “You owe it to your philosophy to learn how to win.” Yes, that means you. You can also see the list of upcoming LI trainings here.And when the fire in your stomach is back, go looking for the next campaign. Don't wait for 2022. For example, Virginia is going to have some competitive elections up and down the ballot in 2021. Winning a tough Virginia election is a great way to redeem yourself. Just remember, Rocky always had his best fights after he got his butt kicked in front of the entire world.
7 Social Media Marketing Tips and Tricks
Emma Siu
October 9, 2020
7 Social Media Marketing Tips and Tricks
5 minute readNavigating social media can be overwhelming. Here are a few tips and tricks to make your experience a little easier.1. Don't overwhelm yourselfChoose one to four social media apps to begin with. Don't juggle too many medias. That can lower the quality of your content.2. Assess your goalsThink about your goals. Followers are easy to track, but gaining followers probably isn't your end goal. What do you want your followers to do? Do you have a website you want to direct people to? Do you have content you want your followers to see? Do you want a certain amount of donations? Identify your goals, and then create steps to reach them.3. Make sure your posts are “on message”Everything you post on your social media should be related to your goals. Stay on message. If you post unrelated topics and content, people may stop following you.4. Identify your audienceFind which demographics you want to target based on your goals. The tightest and most effective social media strategies are informed by social media demographics. These data-driven insights will guide your strategy, and help you select which social media channels to use. The insights will also help you facilitate the most relevant, targeted approach possible, which in turn will increase your chance of conversions.5. Engage with your audienceInteract with your audience. Reply to comments, react to your followers' posts, respond to DMs, and follow popular hashtags. Start conversations within the hashtags you frequently post to and it will help you build a likeminded community and bring followers to your page. Regular audience engagement will make your account feel genuine and help you gain a loyal following.6. Listen to your dataSocial media sites let you easily track your data. From there you can see your follower demographics, peak engagement times, and interactions with posts. See when your peak engagement times are. These times are your most important times to post. Your data can also show which posts perform better than others. Take note of this and see if you can replicate the result with similar types of posts in the future.7. Be patientNo one gains a following overnight. It takes time to grow a strong organic following. The only way to attract users quickly is to spend significant money on advertising, and even then, the results will not be immediate. With constant nurturing your account will steadily grow and help you achieve your goals.The Leadership Institute's digital training team trains activists on digital and political technology across the country. They host many online trainings, several of which are at no cost to you. Grow your digital skills here.
Plan Now for Life After November 3rd: An Open Letter to a Young Campaign Staffer
Lee Jackson
October 8, 2020
Plan Now for Life After November 3rd: An Open Letter to a Young Campaign Staffer
Dear Over-Caffeinated, Underpaid Worker Bee:Congratulations! You made it to October.By now, every day is a new adventure. You're working seven days a week, you're hooked on the campaign high, and you're back and forth between having the time of your life and wanting election day to just get here already.But we need to take a moment and talk about life after November 3rd. Right now, it's probably hard to envision.I had been working for my candidate for roughly a year by the time Election Day rolled around on my last campaign. That means for a year, my boss was the most important person in my life. For a year, he and I had traveled the district together, hoped and dreamed about the future, and he became a second father to me. The most important thing to me was getting him re-elected. I felt that I owed him victory and, for so many personal reasons, failure was not an option.Because of the loyalty I had to my candidate, I felt guilty thinking about life after Election Day. Every second I spent doing so was a second not being spent to give my boss the victory I had promised him. However, I was wrong to think this way -- and he likely would have been disappointed if he had realized what was going on in my head.One of the many things the Leadership Institute is known for is Morton Blackwell's Laws of the Public Policy Process. If you have never read them before, I would encourage you to read them HERE.I always had a copy of the laws framed in my office for campaign volunteers to read.One law that stuck with me was number 18: You can't save the world if you can't pay rent. When I first heard this law, I took it to mean candidates who want win must raise money. Heaven knows I said it to my candidate countless times, stressing how important call time was. However, it rings true for you as an individual as well.The hard truth is, some of your campaigns will win, others will not. For better or worse, elections have clear winners and losers. The good news is, if you win (and work hard), your campaign is likely to offer you a job.Now is the time to start planning your life on November 4th without your current candidate in the picture.If you want to stay in the political arena, start networking now. It's a cruel joke that just as our campaigns need us most, we have to start seriously considering our future. I would recommend having four or five solid leads and a failsafe. For a while, my failsafe was going back to McDonald's.Each year, there are operatives who decide campaign life isn't for them. That's okay. Many of them go back to school or join a sales team and excel in those roles.If you want to stay in the public process, I encourage you to check out the Leadership Institute's Conservative Jobs HERE.Conservative Jobs is your free job bank, connecting recruiters and job seekers of all experiences across America. If you have questions about Conservative Jobs or would like someone at the Leadership Institute (LI) to review your resume, you can email my coworker, Kelsey at kmix@leadershipinstitute.org. LI is proud to be a resource placing conservatives in government, politics, and the media.I also encourage you to look at states that have elections in 2021.During off numbered years, I packed up my car and moved to Virginia to work on a campaign. For better or worse, Virginia doesn't have campaign contribution limits, so local House of Delegate races could be more than a million dollars. Working on campaigns every year allowed me to learn more skills and move up the totem pole twice as fast as many of my peers.No matter what you do next, you owe it to yourself to start planning.I always consider the time between one campaign and the next as my “funemployment.” Don't forget to take the time to unwind and relax too.My final words of advice for the next three weeks: stay away from pizza, try to sleep at least six hours a night, start thinking about life after Election Day, and keep day dreaming of that well-deserved tropical vacation to get you through one more walkbook.Keep on knocking,Lee
5 Things You Should do Before Election Day
Lee Jackson
September 25, 2020
5 Things You Should do Before Election Day
Every year, young people around the country ask me what they can do to make a difference as the country inches closer to election day.As someone who has been responsible for volunteer recruitment and Election Day Operations, I am always going to point you to your closest campaign and tell you the best thing to do is to volunteer. Here is a list of five things you should do prior to election day (in addition to voter contact):1. Check Your Voter Registration Status After spending roughly one million dollars, I won my last election by less than 500 votes. Believe me when I tell you that every vote counts. This November, positions from School Board to President of the United States will be on the ballot. Do not miss out on exercising your right to vote because you forgot to register to vote or you are registered to vote at the wrong address. I have seen students turned away from the polling booth because they thought they were registered to vote at school, but they registered to vote at home. You can check your voter registration HERE. 2. Vote EarlyI'm not aware of a single state in America that does not give the option to vote early in one form or another. Although the terms and guidelines vary from one state to the next, you should have the option to vote early regardless of where you are currently located.You never know what's going to happen on election day. Vote now and get it out of the way. Additionally, there are likely a few races or referendum questions you did not expect to see on the ballot. Getting your ballot early will give you a few days to research this new-to-you-content and allow you to vote responsibly. You can find more information about how to vote early HERE. Side note: Don't let the lingo about voting early intimidate you or stop you from doing so. In Maine, we don't have early voting, but we do have in-person absentee voting. Which is a fancy way of saying you vote absentee, in-person, prior to Election Day -- aka early voting. Also, a lot of jurisdictions are allowing voters to drop of their completed ballot at some sort of drop-off box or track where their ballots are in the mail. Make sure you leave plenty of time for the postal service to return your ballot after you vote. Like I said, this is going to be the year of close elections. Every note needs to count. Double check to see if you need a stamp.3. Keep an Eye on Campus Administration Classes, meetings, and liberal bias: three things a conservative student is pretty much guaranteed to experience during any given semester. When it comes to liberal bias on college campuses, the best disinfectant is always sunlight. If you see something that doesn't pass the straight-face test, you can send an anonymous tip to Campus Reform HERE.4. Take an LI training As we get closer to Election Day, the Leadership Institute (LI) is laser focused on training as many conservative activists as possible, so you can play your part in the upcoming election. LI hosts safe, in-person and online trainings. Many of these trainings are available to you at no cost thanks to the generous donors of the Leadership Institute. You can find LI's upcoming list of trainings HERE. Additionally, the campus leadership team has created three-hour trainings for club leaders and members. These Youth Leadership Workshops (YLWs) are flexible and range from Media and PR to how to recruit on campus. If you would like to organize one of these trainings for your group, you can email me at LJackson@LeadershipInstitute.org.5. Volunteer (Get Paid) to be a Poll Worker on Election DayHave you ever thoughts about what it takes to run an election? Not a campaign, but the administration part of an election? One of the crucial pieces of running an election is poll workers, who help check-in voters, answer clerical questions, and do tasks throughout the day. Due to coronavirus, election administrators are struggling to find people to work the polls. Not only do poll workers protect the integrity of elections, they can also get paid more than $100 for a days-worth of work. You can find out more information in this video by Campus Reform's Editor in Chief, Cabot Phillips. Decide now. What will you do to make a difference for your conservative principles as the country inches closer to election day?
Lead Your Future: College Students Shape a Brighter Tomorrow
Tiffany Roberts
September 12, 2020
Lead Your Future: College Students Shape a Brighter Tomorrow
Do you want to make a difference, but you don't think your vote is enough? According to the NY Times, less than 50% of Americans think their vote will make a difference. Not only are they wrong, but there's far more than just voting that you can do to make a change.The mark you can make is far bigger than you likely realize. Youth and grassroots campaigns are absolutely vital in politics. According to Forbes, college age voters dramatically swayed the 2018 elections with double the turnout of 2014. If you're in college, it's prime time to get involved.Around 20 million students attend college in the US every semester. That's 15% of the voting age population at your fingertips. Less than one fifth of college students vote in congressional elections. If you want your candidate elected, you can easily have a hand in making that happen. In Episode 7 of the Lead Your Future Podcast, you will learn about all the information you'll share and gain, the impact you can have, and how you can start getting involved right now!1. Help Educate Your PeersThe vast majority of people on college campuses don't know who their representative is, let alone what they're doing. When students learn how policy affects them, they head to the polls in much higher numbers. When you help other students learn, you can easily become an expert on the relevant policy issues. Most college students tend to have very internally conflicting beliefs. Youth campaigns give you an opportunity to help countless students educate themselves.2. You Can Impact Elections and PolicyBelieve it or not, you can be an integral part in turning the tides of elections. The hours you volunteer may be easy for you now, due to class schedules; but they are invaluable to any campaign. You may be saving a campaign thousands of dollars just by volunteering some of your time. Moreover, your impact is long-term. Statistically speaking, when you start voting a certain way at 18, you're likely to vote the same way for the rest of your life. When you campaign as a college student now, you help nurture fellow students into lifelong supporters of causes you believe in.3. Learn How to Get InvolvedThe first step is to attend “the bootcamp of politics,” the Youth Leadership School. This will teach you everything you need to know about the ground game of youth campaigns. The next step is to seek out organizations like the Conservative Leadership PAC and help lead the future of grassroots movements.Joining a youth campaign is not only a rewarding way to beef up your resume, but it's an invaluable opportunity to help shape a brighter tomorrow. Listen to Episode 7 of the Lead Your Future Podcast to hear more from a youth campaign leader and veteran. Click here to listen and follow the Lead Your Future Podcast on your favorite platform: YouTube, Acast, Apple Podcast, Spotify, Google Play, Soundcloud, iHeart Radio, Stitcher, Facebook, Twitter
Four Tips to Land a Paid Campaign Position
Matthew Patterson
September 14, 2018
Four Tips to Land a Paid Campaign Position
Full disclosure… political campaigns aren't glamorous; they require long hours, low or no pay, a thick skin, and a lot of stress.But if you can handle all that, working on a political campaign can be one of the most exciting and rewarding careers in the conservative movement. You'll travel, talk to new people about your cause or candidate, be part of a dynamic and close team, and if you win, you'll effect change!Many conservatives hope to work on campaigns, but most of us can't afford to go without salary. With only a handful of paid jobs to go around, I'll give you four tips to land a paid position on a campaign.1. Strike while the iron is hotTo get involved in a campaign, try to find one early in the election cycle. By looking for a campaign early on, you can narrow down your pick of what kind of race you want to work, and in what capacity.Check Election Commission filings to find which candidates are raising funds for the race. The more money a campaign has, the more it can pay. While it may be more exciting to work for an underdog, unless they are self-funding or raising comparable amounts to their opponents, it may be difficult to get that paycheck. via GIPHYThe main advantage to finding a campaign early is that they likely don't have all their positions filled, which means they are hiring!2. Humble YourselfUnless you have previous election experience, or extremely relevant experience, the campaign may not bring you on immediately for a paid position.However, by offering to come on as a volunteer or intern you can show the staff and the candidate that you believe in their campaign and are willing to get your hands dirty. This will go a long way when time comes to fill permeant positions, so hold tight and pull your weight.via GIPHY3. Make your intentions knownCampaigns are generally tight with their budgets, spending every dollar where it will have the most impact. If the campaign team does not know you are seeking a paid position, it may never come.Be honest with the campaign manager, let them know you are seeking a paid role on the team. If you cannot afford to pay your bills, you won't be able to do much help for the campaign.By letting the campaign manager know your intentions, it will allow them to give you more specific tasks to gauge your aptitude for your desired role. This will help show the campaign staff that your pay would be money well spent.via GIPHY4. Always Be ClosingThere is no sleep during election season. Whether it's yard signs, flyers, events, or meetings, there is always an opportunity to get more votes.Always be closing on your goal, be the “3:00 AM type”.Be the person who will put out yard signs all night, walk in four different parades the next day, and still make it to that public speaking engagement that evening. Motivation and passion are what you must demonstrate to the campaign team.Make yourself vital, and that paid position won't be far behind!via GIPHY
Leadership Institute Program Catalog
Leadership Institute
January 16, 2018
Leadership Institute Program Catalog
The Leadership Institute increases the number and effectiveness of conservative activists and leaders in the public policy process. To accomplish this, LI identifies, recruits, trains, and places conservatives in government, politics, and the media.LI's Program Catalog, available for you to view here, gives you a 41 page overview of Leadership Institute programs, including:- Campus leadership,- Campus journalism,- Career services,- 47 types of training schools,- International training, and- Online training and resources.
ADF’s Alan Sears and LI’s Morton Blackwell Friends in Liberty
Carol Wehe
August 9, 2017
ADF’s Alan Sears and LI’s Morton Blackwell Friends in Liberty
It is often said, our role models challenge us to become our best self. In the case of Alan Sears, one of his role models taught him valuable lessons to be successful in conservative politics. Alan Sears, former President of Alliance Defending Freedom (1993-2017), first crossed paths with LI President Morton Blackwell in 1967 in Kentucky. They've been through the gamut of conservative politics through the years – on campaigns, in the Reagan administration, and as presidents of two non-profits. “When I worked in the Reagan administration, when I worked in the private law firm, everything I have done had the hand of Morton in it,” Alan said. Back then, Alan was a college student and left school for a few semesters to work on a campaign in Kentucky. At the same time, Morton was the Executive Director of the College Republican National Committee (CRNC) and ran the youth campaign for Louie B. Nunn for Governor of Kentucky. “My relationship and knowledge of Morton Blackwell dates back to, unbelievably, 1967 in Kentucky,” Alan recalls 50 years later. “My family is from Kentucky, I went to the University of Kentucky, and I actually dropped out of school twice, two semesters, to work for Louie.” “Every time I was with Louie,” Alan continued, “he would sit there and every time, it didn't matter who it was or what they were doing on the campaign, he would tell us about a man named Morton Blackwell. He would tell us, ‘everybody needs to be like Morton.' Morton got him elected to office against all odds.” At that time, liberals and unions ran the state. “Morton had really pulled off a miracle to help Louie get elected as Governor in this really hardcore Democrat state, with a very strong union presence. So I kept in contact with the guy,” Alan said. Morton went on to develop the Youth Leadership School (YLS) out of his success running youth campaigns and training student leaders during his time with the CRNC. The YLS became known as the “bootcamp of politics” because of how much valuable experience-driven training Morton packed into this two-day training. He made the YLS the flagship school of his Leadership Institute. After they saw the value of Morton's youth campaign strategy, Kentucky Governor Louie B. Nunn and many other leaders began to send young people to Morton's Youth Leadership School. “I've referred countless people to the Youth Leadership School,” Alan said. “Morton is a builder. He is a guy who understands the importance of personnel.” In 1972, Morton came up with the maxim, “personnel is policy.” That's something Alan heard from Morton and took to heart, especially running his own organizations. “Personnel is policy. It is the life blood of every organization that I have ever run,” Alan said. “Whether it was government, private practice, charitable, or ministry. I have adopted that slogan.” In between political campaigns, his work for U.S. Senators from Kentucky, and helping on President Reagan's 1976 and 1978 campaigns, Alan completed his degree and became a lawyer. Morton's tenure as Special Assistant to the President on President Reagan's White House Staff (1981-1984), Alan began working at the Department of Justice. He worked under both AG William Smith and Ed Meese. He served in both Reagan and Bush administrations before turning his attention to Alliance Defending Freedom. For 23 years, Alan ran Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), a faith-based organization dedicated to defending religious liberty. Leadership Institute and ADF often partner on college campuses to find, support, and defend conservative college students struggling under the liberal bias rampant there. “ADF has won over 400 contested legal matters with private campuses or universities,” Alan says. “In addition to that, Morton has helped many students know that they have rights under the Constitution and that universities cannot just walk over them.” Alan says of all the lessons he's learned from Morton, “Being steadfast is a big one. Morton has withstood the storm in Washington, D.C. Once people get into the Beltway they get enamored with relationships in the Beltway and they become people pleasers. They lose their energy. Not Morton Blackwell. Morton is steadfast.” “Morton is a great friend to me and to the entire liberty movement.”>
Youth coordinator mobilizes support, propels Air Force Brigadier General to Congressional victory
Sara Wajda
July 28, 2017
Youth coordinator mobilizes support, propels Air Force Brigadier General to Congressional victory
“Pack your bags, Sara. We're getting on a plane in 24 hours to make you the new Youth Director for the campaign.”It took a second for those words from my colleague at the Don Bacon for Congress campaign to sink in. Even now, I still can't believe it sometimes.Let me tell you about the journey you put me on — that helped a committed conservative and retired Air Force Brigadier General win election in a battleground district.God had a different plan When someone asked me why I would ever want to get involved in politics, my first answer was shocking. I didn't want to go into politics. I actually wanted to become a labor and delivery nurse, but obviously God had a different plan for me.As my freshman year at Creighton University in Nebraska came to a close, the former youth director on now-Congressman Don Bacon's campaign invited me to join the team. Intrigued, I told myself I would get my feet wet in campaigning, but nothing more.In a few weeks I was knee-deep in campaigning!LI's Youth Leadership School opens new doors Shortly after joining the Bacon campaign, the Leadership Institute's “boot camp of politics” — their Youth Leadership School — came to town in Omaha. At the school, I gained an abundance of knowledge I could use both on college campuses and on the campaign trail.After the two-day, intensive training session, the campaign asked me to fly to Arlington, Virginia to receive further training and become the new youth director on Don Bacon's campaign.In Nebraska's 2nd Congressional District, the race was neck-and-neck with a Democrat incumbent congressman, Brad Ashford.Armed with Leadership Institute training, another youth coordinator and I quickly canvassed every major college campus in Nebraska's second district and organized students to volunteer and vote for Don Bacon.More than 150 students regularly volunteered on Don Bacon's campaign! Hundreds more pledged to vote for him.The Youth for Bacon groups we organized worked 11,300 man-hours for the campaign and knocked on more than 125,000 doors. The Congressman himself credits the Leadership Institute's practical, tried-and-true training with his victory.From youth coordinator to Institute intern — and beyond Following the Bacon victory, I received an invitation to intern at the Leadership Institute. After my amazing previous experience with LI, I knew this was an opportunity I could not turn down. As an LI intern, I grew leaps and bounds in both my career and personal life. I had the opportunity to rub elbows with the most influential leaders in the conservative movement.I worked as a true member of the Institute team, not just someone who makes copies and gets coffee. Through numerous networking and career opportunities, I landed my job at the National Right to Work Committee, where I lobbied for federal Right to Work legislation.Life-changing opportunities abound at the Leadership Institute The Leadership Institute changed my life. Without the LI training my colleagues and I brought to the campaign, Congressman Don Bacon would not have defeated a Democrat with a 60 percent favorability rating. Without LI, I would not be on a path to advance conservative principles nationwide. Without LI, I truly believe the left would have taken the majority in the House and the Senate.I know that I have found success by dint of my commitment and hard work, but I also know that were it not for the Leadership Institute, none of the opportunities I've had would've been possible.I'm so grateful to Morton Blackwell, to the Leadership Institute — and especially to donors like you whose support helps make this country great. Sara is now back in Nebraska. At just 20 years old, she continues her political career as the state-wide Field Director for Governor Pete Ricketts' reelection campaign. Please join the Leadership Institute in congratulating her on her excellent work advancing the conservative movement at such a young age.>
Using Snapchat As An Activist
Stephen Rowe
July 21, 2017
Using Snapchat As An Activist
More than 160 million people check Snapchat every day -- and seven out of 10 of them are under the age of 35.The popular mobile app first became known for users posting videos and pictures that “self-destruct” (disappear) after they're played. But there's more to Snapchat than that. Members of Congress, media companies from the Wall Street Journal to the Food Network, and media personalities like Bret Baier are all on it too. Here's how you can make the most of Snapchat as an activist.#1 UsegeofiltersThe next time you're thinking of flyers for your event, think of Snapchat geofilters too.Geofilters are custom designs (think stickers) that overlay on Snapchat photos. They're limited to a specific location, known as a “geo-fence.” Example geo-fences may be inside a sports stadium, at a wedding venue, or a political rally or other event. You can create your own on-demand geofilters for any event to help spread your message. When people post a photo or video to Snapchat inside your pre-set geo-fence, they'll see your filter as an option. When they select it, they're sharing their photo or video plus your filter with their friends.Starting at just $5, geofilters are often cheaper than the printing costs of flyers -- and have the potential to reach far more people. That $5 goes far: 20,000 square feet or half the size of an NFL football field.You can use free design programs like Canva to create your custom design.Geofilters must be 1080x1920 pixels and saved as a PNG, a common type of graphics file. It is best to place your filter in the top or bottom quarter of the screen so the filter does not block the original photo. Choose when and where you want your custom design to be active. Then submit your design to Snapchat at least 24 hours in advance. (You can submit your design here.)The next day, you can see data about how your filter performed. #2 Create your storySnapchat lets you create custom stories within a specific location (yes, the geo-fence again). That means that anyone using Snapchat inside the geo-fence can contribute to a group story.You can select friends within your desired location to contribute to your story, or you can set it up so that friends of friends can also join in and see the fun. This all happens free of charge. This means more publicity for your events, conferences, and more. Your next event can be full of attendees sharing their experiences with their friends and on the geofenced story. You can create up to three custom Stories of your own. You can post an unlimited number of times in stories created by others. To make your own custom Story, swipe right on the home screen then click the plus symbol in the top right of your screen. Then select Geofence and pick your desired location.#3 BONUS: Take LI's Online Training: Emerging Social Media PlatformsStructured as fun, easy-to-understand introductions, the three days of LI's Emerging Social Media Platforms Workshop will get you up and running on new, popular social media platforms -- including Snapchat.Each day, you will complete "deep dive" into Instagram (Monday), Snapchat (Tuesday), and Facebook Live (Wednesday). You can check out the full agenda – and sign up – here.You will learn:• how to set up your account and choose from the different types of posts for Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook Live; • the meaning common terms and acronyms, so you can maximize your presence; and• lessons learned from how campaigns, media companies, and conservative organizations are using each platform.Register for Emerging Social Media Platforms workshop. >
Your 5-point guide to writing an op-ed
Autumn Campbell
April 20, 2017
Your 5-point guide to writing an op-ed
With the Leadership Institute's Building Your Brand Workshop around the corner, here are some pointers to give you a head start on building your brand through op-eds.You have something to say. But sometimes it can be difficult to know where to start. How do you get your voice out there?A good place to start is blogging. I know, I know, everyone has a blog. But there's a reason for that. You can practice putting your thoughts and arguments down while getting feedback from friends and peers.Through practice on your blog, you can begin to harness your thoughts and build a framework for your field of expertise.So you've been blogging – but you're ready for more. It's time to write an op-ed.An op-ed is an article or piece with an opinion and written with a strong point of view. Here's why you'll shine in an op-ed:You'll show your expertiseDevelop your argumentLearn to use facts to back up your argumentAnd establish your credibilityFollow these general guidelines for your op-ed:Limit your word count to about 700 words or lessOpen with a strong leadMake your argument quickly and conciselyRemember, you cannot submit a piece that's already been publishedBe patient and don't give upYou'll find many informative websites on how to submit your op-ed. Here are a few links with guidelines for DC area news sources to get you started:Washington ExaminerWashington TimesWashington PostPolitico The Hill Now go write! (And remember me when you're a rich and famous expert.)Still want more insight? Take LI's Building Your Brand: From Op-ed to On-camera Wednesday and Thursday evenings, April 26-27. Register here!>
CPAC – A Family of Conservatives and a Chance to Learn
Ben Woodward
February 13, 2017
CPAC – A Family of Conservatives and a Chance to Learn
The conservative movement is formidable -- why? Because we're a family.Our organizations work together, share ideas, collaborate on events, and promote each other's staff and interns. Anybody who works in the movement will be able to list their many friends in think tanks, non-profits, lobby groups, and on the Hill.And, like any family… we have our challenges. We don't always cooperate the way we should, and we don't always speak with one voice. But we have a common purpose, and it drives us in the same direction.If the conservative movement is a family, then CPAC is Christmas dinner. The time when we all come together to catch up with old friends, celebrate our victories, commiserate our losses, trade ideas, network, and discover new opportunities. In this blog, I want to talk to you about the opportunities at CPAC, because CPAC is about so much more than big speeches, and selfies with members of Congress. CPAC is a chance to learn new skills! The Leadership Institute will run a Campus Activism Bootcamp, to teach you the core skills to fight liberal bias on campuses, draw attention to your activism, create student groups, change policy, and expose biased professors.Top lawyers will teach you the laws of academic freedom so you know when your rights to freedom of expression are breached. You will also learn how to draw attention to your activism and events through digital and social media efforts that have made many conservatives famous, and also given a platform for ideas mainstream media won't discuss. In addition, the Leadership Institute will run a Career Bootcamp to give you the skills you need to secure your next job or promotion in the movement. Learn to network with top conservatives, boost your resume, and stand-out at interviews.There will also be panel discussions with major recruiters from the movement, private sector, and beyond. Those of you serious about your futures should not miss out on this chance to question them and learn what you can do to work in the movement.To help you with your current job search… the Leadership Institute will be running Career and Resume Consultations throughout CPAC. Come find us!A few things to remember:Don't neglect ‘horizontal networking.' By this, I mean networking with people who are at the same professional level as you are. They are future leaders; they are also your connection to partner organizations who can help you in your endeavors.Get your business cards ready, and make sure you follow up with every person you meet. You never know whose recommendation will secure your next opportunity.Also, CPAC's true opportunities are waiting for you outside of the main conference hall. Go to as many lunches as you can manage, and as many after conference dinners as possible.The best networking happens in relaxed environments.CPAC is also a place to learn new skills and ideas. Go to the panel discussions, and learn from the experts in the areas of policy you agree with, and those you don't. CPAC is a chance to broaden your mind!The movement is growing, and CPAC is a great opportunity to put your foot on the door. Morton Blackwell, says in his Laws of the Public Policy: “Never miss a political meeting if you think there's the slightest chance you'll wish you'd been there.”This is one event you're not going to want to miss.I look forward to meeting you at what promises to be an eventful CPAC 2017!Find out more about Leadership Institute's six CPAC events at LeadershipInstitute.org/CPAC. Register for CPAC here.>
LI Trains Conservatives for Success in 2016
Kyle Baccei
January 3, 2017
LI Trains Conservatives for Success in 2016
Last year was an exciting year for many reasons! In 2016, the Leadership Institute trained 10,274 conservatives, launched new online programs, and trained candidates and campaign staff across the country -- all thanks to the generous support of LI donors.Through 2016, Institute graduates impacted campaigns across the country. The Youth Leadership School trained 925 conservatives at 37 trainings in 2016. Of those 2016 graduates, 81 were involved in a youth campaign across 16 states.LI's staff and 178 volunteer faculty trained 10,274 students -- totaling 103,014 hours of student training. The Institute trained 8,216 students nationally and 2,058 students internationally, bringing the total trained to 181,459 since 1979.In total, LI offered 371 training events representing 44 types of Institute trainings. These ranged from on-camera TV trainings to weeklong Campaign Management Schools to grassroots activist workshops to the Youth Leadership School, the boot-camp of politics.The Institute also launched a new type of training: online programs. These workshops offer attendees the same benefits as the Leadership Institute's top-notch trainings -- from the comfort of their own homes. Online attendees can see and hear the instructor, ask questions and talk with others in the workshop; and learn from a variety of lectures, hands-on-projects, and demonstrations -- just like any in-person training.LI trained 350 students online in 13 trainings, totaling 1,050 student hours.On college campuses around the country, LI's National Field Program staff identified 88,395 new conservative students and added 678 new student groups to LI's unique network of affiliated conservative student organizations. By the end of 2016, this network of conservative student groups had grown to 1,856.CampusReform.org remains America's #1 source for campus news online. Its 1,380 stories – many written by 70 campus correspondents – about liberal bias and abuse generated 15.8 million pageviews, 2,140 republications by online news outlets, and 151 appearances on TV. In total, CampusReform.org's reporting led to 36 victories and campus policy changes for conservatives on college campuses. More than 4,146 job seekers connected with 2,005 available jobs on the Institute's ConservativeJobs.com. The Career Services Center hosted 470 attendees at job fairs and offered 394 personal resume consolations. Viewers from all 50 United States and around the world have tuned in to LI's free webinars since they began streaming from LI Studios in 2011. In 2016 alone, 1,546 viewers watched LI's 23 webinars.LI's Wednesday Wake-up Club Breakfasts hosted 1,059 attendees and 11 speakers in 2016. Speakers included Pete Hegseth, Congressman Tom Emmer, and Congressman Alex Mooney.The 45th National Fourth of July Conservative Soiree hosted 356 attendees. The 2016 featured speakers were Ed Gillespie and Rob Bell.There are countless stories about the impact of Leadership Institute graduates in 2016. It's been a good year at the Leadership Institute, and LI is excited about what 2017 has in store!Review the online 2017 training calendar for currently scheduled trainings near you.How has LI helped you? Email Carol@LeadershipInstitute.org to share your story. LI is always looking to spotlight faculty doing incredible things for the conservative movement, notable LI graduates making waves, and college students taking a stand on campus. >
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