We run on volunteer power. Our strategists aren’t charging for their time, and we don’t pay them. But we’re building a support team to make this work scalable, sustainable, and high-quality.In addition to coordinating the ongoing support our strategists will provide to campaigns, our support team will facilitate and develop the following :
- Campaign resources trainings, templates, and tools made available through an online library and via two in-person trainings each cycle
- Coaching curriculum to support our volunteer strategists to make the most of their 1 hour/week with campaigns
- Monthly cohort calls to connect our candidates to each other
The bigger our support team, the more strategists we can work with. And the more strategists we can work with, the more campaigns we can support. You get the idea.
Our approach to targeting districts will be data-driven. We will select the districts in which we will support first-time candidates based on measures of four key variables. Two of these variables are modeled and grounded in analytics provided via Deck Apps and Senior Advisor Max Wood. We will select districts based on the following:
An analytics-based sliding scale that describes how a generic candidate on any side of the aisle would historically perform
Modeled Fundraising Score
An analytics-based judgement on how much campaign fundraising would be necessary to be competitive in a certain district
A simple analysis of how the demographics of a district has recently changed or is currently changing (not based in modeling)
Future Race Overlap
An analysis of the potential for capacity- building in a district to affect the trajectory of future elections that include or are adjacent to the district (not based in modeling)
Finally — true to our mission — we believe that the power of an exceptional leader can swing voters despite historical disadvantages in any one district. Therefore, if a candidate demonstrates exceptional leadership and has a story and background that powerfully reflect that of their district, we will consider swapping up to 20% of our cohort slots for candidates who do not live in a district we have initially targeted. In our 2017 pilot, we will support as many as 20 candidates in Virginia. In 2018, we plan to scale our model to include North Carolina state legislative races and Congressional races around the country.