In the final episode of the Run for Something podcast, Amanda and co-founder Ross Morales Rocketto dig in on how to run for office. They answer questions like how to know which office to run for, what dooms a campaign, and why it matters for people like you to get involved. To learn more about Run for Something (the organization), check out runforsomething.net or learn more about the book at runforsomething.net/book. We're here to help.
Produced by Dear Media.
First, a programming note: Next week will be the last episode of this podcast! Then, a conversation with Elsa Mejia, an Indigenous Mexican woman, bilingual journalist and communications specialist for a local union who turned her community roots into community leadership. We talk about running for office as an introvert, how she overcame partisanship to connect with her community, and what surprised her most throughout this process.
Produced by Dear Media.
In November, Amber Sellers became the first Black woman elected to the Lawrence City Commission in Kansas. At first, Amber didn't think she'd be the one to run -- in fact, she was trying to recruit someone else to fill the spot. But after months of conversation, she realized she should do it, even if she was afraid, and even if it meant putting herself out there. We talk about how she ran and won, what it means to her community to have her serve, and her priorities for next year. Learn more...
In around 1300 counties across the country, we still elect coroners. Run for Something has worked with a handful of them over the years -- Sophia Garcia-Jackson of Chester County, PA, is our first winner! We talk about how she got into the line of work, what a coroner actually does, the story she tells at cocktail parties, and why it matters to have competent people handling non-natural death investigations. Happy Thanksgiving!
Produced by Dear Media.
I talk with two members of the Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners in Georgia -- Ben Ku and Chairwoman Nicole Love Hendrickson. Ben won his seat in 2018 and became the first LGBTQ member of the board; Nicole won in 2020 and completed the full flip to give Democrats control of the board. We dig in on how county government works, what the experience has been like now that Democrats control the county, and why flipping a state blue doesn't mean it stays blue forever.
Produced by Dear Media.
First, a quick run-through of how previous guests did on Election Day, and some thoughts on VA & NJ. Then: We talk with Boone County Clerk Brianna Lennon on what it was like running an election during a pandemic, what county clerks actually do, and what you should do now if you might want to run for that position one day. You can find Brianna on social media at @briannalennon, or listen to her podcast, "High Turnout, Wide Margins" wherever you get your shows.
Produced by Dear Media.
First, a quick rundown of some of the previous guests who are on the ballot today -- some of the 271 Run for Something folks up for a vote! Then, a conversation with Texas Rep. Jasmine Crockett, who went from lawyer to the state representative, fighting hard for voting rights, equality, and safety. As a new member of the legislature, she was constantly told to sit down and stay behind the scenes, but that's not Jasmine's style. Listen in then help her out at https://www.jasminefor100.com/.
When Kelly Ross Krout was a teenager, she fell into a crowd of Evangelical conservatives and identified as a Republican -- over the last decade, she's been slowly but surely changing her mind as she realized some of the policies she believed in were not inclusive of people she loved. In 2020, Kelly ran for state house in deep red Arkansas as a Democrat, surprising many in her community -- but as a foster mom for a decade and now leading a family of seven kids, she knew there was more the...
Denzel McCambell grew up in Detroit as the son of social worker mom and an autoworker dad -- it was a union family. He always understood why civic engagement mattered and how precious the right to vote is; during and after college he got involved in LGBTQ+ organizing, worked for a state representative and other community organizations, then took on a role with Rep. Rashida Tlaib's office. Now he's running for Detroit City Clerk at a time when local election administrators are under attack...
Shan Rose never imagined she'd be running for office. She's experienced teenage homelessness, lost her husband to gun violence, lost a son to medical problems -- and instead of letting all that heartbreak stop her, she turned it into a desire to fight for her community. She's been a nonprofit exec and community activist for years; now she's running for Orlando City Council to bring community and government today, and create a city where kids can just be kids. Learn more at vote4shan.com
First, a sneak preview of an exciting initiative launching today! Then: Justin Tseng grew up in Medford -- a small town outside Boston. Now as a senior at Harvard (and at only 21 years old!) he's running for city council to help lead the city he loves into the next phase of its growth. We talk about his experience campaigning and balancing a full load of classes, the way voters respond to him, and what his vision is for Medford. Listen in and help his campaign: justin4medford.com
Sheila Nezhad has a long history of activism and serving her community of Minneapolis. After the murder of George Floyd in 2020, the city (and the world) erupted in an unprecedented uprising for Black lives -- Sheila was in the center of it, working with the city government to reimagine public safety, helping create the charter amendment that's now on the ballot and would disband Minneapolis police and instead create a Department of Public Safety. The incumbent mayor failed to deliver on the...
Dontaye Carter is running for mayor of Sandy Springs, GA, a city just outside Atlanta -- his opponent is the former chair of the Georgia Republican Party. Sandy Springs has changed a lot over the last decade, but its leadership hasn't -- it's time for a new voice. Learn more about Dontaye's campaign at dontayeformayor.com
Produced by Dear Media.
Elizabeth Wanczak first started caring about local government by watching the city planning meetings on public access television. (She admits, it was sometimes about as boring as watching paint dry.) But the more she watched, the more she understood what was happening and what could be fixed. When a dear friend who'd been pushing her to run for office suddenly passed away, she decided it was time to get in the game. She ran and lost by just 182 votes -- now she's running again for Alderman of...
For our 50th week of podcasting (and 51st episode, whoops!), Amanda and Run for Something co-founder Ross Morales Rocketto check in to talk about their thoughts on the Biden administration and what RFS has been up to this year, then answer a few questions from listeners, including which episodes have been their favorites, what they're most excited about this November, and some hot tips for listeners who might be considering a run for office.
To be on an episode of Run for Something, leave...
Dr. Aditi Srivastav Bussels never thought she'd run for office -- she got multiple degrees in public health to try and take care of people. But when the pandemic started, she realized exactly how critical her perspective would be in city government. Now she's running for Columbia City Council in South Carolina. We talk about her experience becoming a candidate, what it's like running as a South Asian woman in a southern city, the role of city government in public health, and whether or not...
School boards and Florida have both been in the news lately - so we talked with Broward County School Board member Sarah Leonardi about what's going on in her community. Sarah was a public school teacher who got her start in politics by volunteering on another local campaign. She ran and won in 2020 and at 31, became the youngest member of the school board in the midst of the pandemic. Over her first year on the board, she's dealt with critical race theory, mask mandates, equity policies,...
Jordan Acker was a University of Michigan alum and lawyer working hard and raising a family when he went through a health scare that landed him in the UM hospital system. That experience made him realize just how important the university was to the state -- which led him to ultimately running for the Board of Regents to help govern it. When he won in 2018, he became the first Regent to graduate from the university in this century. Since taking office, he's helped raise the minimum wage,...
Ruthzee Louijeune is the daughter of Haitian immigrants -- a history that's intimately shaped her approach to serving and fighting for her community. Her experience as a housing lawyer (who also served as counsel to Elizabeth Warren's presidential campaign) has prepared her to join the Boston City Council and bring affordable housing to a city that desperately needs it. We talk about her journey into politics, how campaigning fills her heart, and what her vision is for Boston. To support her...
Bridgette Craighead was born and raised in Rocky Mount, Virginia -- as a mom and small business owner, she'd never really gotten political before until the murder of George Floyd, when she organized Rocky Mount's first ever Black Lives Matter protest, where even some police officers came out to show their support. Imagine her surprise when six months later, two of those officers stormed the capitol in D.C. -- Bridgette was instrumental in them getting fired off the force.
Now as a...
It's the biggest story in politics right now: In order to deny Texas Republicans the quorum needed to pass egregious voter suppression laws, Democrats in the Texas state house literally left the state, and can't come back for at least three weeks.
First, we reconnect with early podcast guest TX Rep. Erin Zwiener to get into the details on how they came up with their secret plans to leave, the security concerns, and the sacrifices they made (including Erin needing to bring her three year old...
Dr. Tyler Titus grew up in poverty in rural Pennsylvania, never feeling like they quite fit in -- they were bullied and struggled with suicide ideation and depression. It wasn't until they got to college and met other queer people that Tyler finally found themselves. In between working in county family services, getting a masters in counseling, and then eventually a pH.D in social work, and starting a family, Tyler ran for and won a seat on the school board, becoming the first trans person...
At least a half dozen people called in to 833-244-5382 and requested her, so here she is: Rhode Island Sen. Cynthia Mendes talks about how she grew up never seeing people like her in office, and didn't think politics was a meaningful way to make change -- until a few years ago, when a friend asked her to run for office herself. Along with a network of other progressive folks in the Rhode Island Political Coop, Cynthia ran and won against a more conservative incumbent. Since then, she's found...
Some election updates! (Spoiler: A bunch of the folks you've met on the show in past episodes have WON -- get excited.) Then, a conversation with Andrew Grant Houston, aka Ace, candidate for mayor of Seattle. Like many millennials, Ace moved to a city for work a few years ago -- he quickly got engaged in housing activism, an issue near and dear to his heart as an architect. His campaign was one of the first in the race to hit the campaign finance limits and is pushing the debate on issues...