The barriers to entry into the political scene can seem pretty darn imposing to the average citizen, but in a state that has never elected its fair share of women, those barriers can look even more foreboding. Emerge Maine lowers those barriers and levels the playing field by de-mystifying the process of getting engaged, and connecting women to the knowledge and resources needed to win. The track record of the program speaks for itself.
The fundraising training was critical to my campaign for Portland City Charter Commission - it enabled me to reach out to people in my district and ask for their support. When I later ran for Portland's Board of Public Education, the network I developed with Emerge Maine connected me with other women across the state who were an invaluable source of support.
Laurie Davis, Class of 2009
I applied to the Emerge Maine program as a campaign operative---someone who prefers to be the campaign manager, rather than the candidate. Truthfully, I wasn't sure I would learn much at Emerge, since I wasn't planning on running for office. Emerge blew me away. The trainings were phenomenal, and I dare even the most seasoned campaign professional not to learn something new, develop new skills or hone current abilities. I also learned that there's more than one way to serve your community as an elected official. I'm proud to be an elected Trustee of my town's public library. I credit with Emerge for further opening my eyes to the myriad opportunities for women to serve as elected officials.
Amy Cookson, Class of 2011