It’s 2020! If getting involved in politics through campaign work is your new years' resolution, I’ve got the guide for you!
Just like with any job, the first step to getting involved in a campaign is finding The One. Don’t pick a candidate just because they’re ahead in the polls. With so many ups and downs in the polls, it’s no surprise so many people refer to the polls as a poller-coaster! Pick a candidate you believe in and would be proud to stand behind. Campaign work is more than just winning (although winning is very important). It’s about building a movement that lasts years beyond the campaign itself.
When you find a candidate you are passionate about supporting, it’s so much easier to put in the work to help them win. Campaign websites are extremely useful for learning more about campaigns and usually have a page dedicated to ways you can get involved. If possible, reach out to the candidate themselves or a staff member for an informational interview or to shadow them through their day.
Once you’ve decided which campaign you’re supporting, it’s time to get down to business. Working on a campaign is tough and it’s not the most rewarding thing in the world. But, whenever a voter thanks me for stopping by their door, or a volunteer gets their first yes on the phone, or our intern decorates the heck out of our painfully blank wall, there’s this rush of excitement. That’s why I love campaign work. I love the rush that comes with knowing I am building a community and building a movement.
I might have never applied for my current position with the Elizabeth Warren campaign if an adult I looked up to hadn’t submitted my application. There is just so much insecurity and imposter syndrome that comes with applying for campaign positions. I grew up assuming the only people who worked on campaigns were born into privileged and powerful families, just like their candidates. It was another woman of color believing in me that I could believe in myself. So, throw your application in because chances are, you’re more than qualified if you spent all that time researching your candidate, taking time for an informational interview, and perfecting your tailored resume and cover letter.
A campaign near you needs your time and energy. Whether it’s making phone calls, knocking doors, or texting volunteers, there’s something a campaign needs your help with today. It’s 2020. It’s time to make some history and what better way to do that than by electing into office a candidate you truly believe in?
More about my campaign work
I didn’t wake up one day and decide, “I’m going to work on a presidential campaign.” But, here I am. My name is Cacima Lee and I serve as the Seattle Regional Organizing Director for Elizabeth Warren’s campaign for president.
Politics started as a side hobby for me. I wanted to be on my neighborhood’s community council because I wanted to see a stop to gentrification. The first time I walked in that door, I was overwhelmed with fear. No one looked like me and no one was even close to my age. It was a year later that I mustered enough courage to go back. Three months later, I ran for the Beacon Hill Council Board of Directors and was elected as its youngest member.
Then, 2016 happened. And I turned my organizing skills into political organizing. I worked for former Mayor McGinn’s second bid for mayor because I wanted something to do over the summer. I worked on I-1631 for clean air and clean energy. Right after my college graduation, I worked as a campaign manager for Rebeca Muniz’s School Board race. And after a short 2 weeks of unemployment, I now serve as the regional organizing director for Elizabeth Warren.
To learn more about getting involved in campaigns, reach out to Cacima at (206) 288-3283.
Fun fact! Leading up to the 2018 midterms, IGNITE women like YOU volunteered over 10,000 hours on campaigns. Let's DOUBLE that in 2020. If you are currently with a campaign, we want to hear about it!
If you want to learn more about campaign work, attend an upcoming Boss Ladies training. We're coming to a city near you in 2020: