To kick off the new year and coming out of the big wins in the November 2018 midterm elections, aka “The Rainbow Wave,” Victory Institute hosted its first Candidate & Campaign Training of 2019. The four-day training in San Francisco, California brought together a skilled and experienced group of trainers to help 40 attendees develop the skills necessary to run for office. The cohort was dynamic, engaged, and diverse featuring openly LGBTQ future candidates from throughout the country with over half the group being people of color (55%). 22 of the participants are considering a run for office in the near future and eight are currently listed as candidates in their respective races.
Each Candidate & Campaign Training imparts unique best practices of running an effective campaign as an openly LGBTQ candidate. Sessions include: how to write a campaign plan, calculate a vote goal, build a budget, fundraise, target voters, craft effective messages, secure earned and paid media, conduct fieldwork, engage in voter contact, and get out the vote. They participated in trainer-led sessions, interactive simulations, and group work that forced them to tackle real-life campaign scenarios. This year we are also proud to partner with ActBlue for the first time for all four of our trainings this year. At each CCT in 2019, a representative will present an hour-long presentation on “Digital Fundraising 101.”
To further inspire the trainees, several California-based elected and appointed officials came out to speak with them to provide their unique perspectives on the challenges and successes of their own campaigns:
- Rafael Mandelman, San Francisco Board Supervisor
- Alex Randolph, City College of San Francisco Trustee
- Lisa Middleton, Palm Springs City Councilmember
- Gabriel Quinto, El Cerrito Councilmember
- Shay Franco-Clausen, Santa Clara Valley Open Space Authority Director
Additionally, Sacramento City Councilmember Steve Hansen, San Francisco Trustee Tom Temprano, and Commissioner James Chang attended the final day to serve as judges for the teams’ campaign presentations. Through long nights and heated debates, unique life experiences and a collective passion for public policy, we are confident these 40 LGBTQ leaders are equipped to run and make lasting change.
Our next stop, Houston, TX!