Project Advocate: Making a Difference One Voter at a Time
The National Urban League Wire
Published: Fri. Oct 26, 2012 at 6:40 pm | Updated: Fri. Oct 26, 2012 at 6:57 pm | Comments: 0
Thanks to a grant from the Ford Foundation, the Policy Institute’s civic engagement initiative, Project Advocate, has been hard at work educating and motivating voters on their rights and registering eligible citizens in five key states—Ohio, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Georgia and Virginia—in the run up to the presidential election.    By Election Day, Project Advocate will have reached more than 160,000 eligible voters through door-to-door canvassing, online outreach, targeted telephone calls and follow-up robo-calls.  The foot soldiers in this effort, the field organizers engaged in the states, bring a wealth of experience, energy and commitment to their effort; and it’s paying off.  Let’s meet the organizers:
OHIO – Mark Hatton is a recent graduate of the University of Florida, majoring in Communications and History.   Mark’s campaign experience includes working in the financial arm of congressional campaign in South Florida where he was responsible for scheduling and tracking candidate fundraising calls as well as financial pledges and contributions.  
Mark has worked in communications and advocacy as an intern at a DC-based firm whose clients include the ACLU, the Center for Education Funding, and Google.
NORTH CAROLIA AND GEORGIA --  Rashad Gibson is a native of Newton N.C. and a graduate of  University of North Carolina A&T with a degree in Marketing.    Gibson is a former Urban Leaguer, having joined the national office after his college graduation as a staffer in the Education and Youth department.   He brings a wealth of experience in field organizing and voter registration drives to the effort.
PENNSYLVANIA – Damara Catlett is a veteran of numerous grassroots advocacy campaigns, including voter contact campaigns for dozens of groups, such as Casa de Maryland, Planned Parenthood of Montana, and the League of Conservation Voters in Wisconsin.   She was also a senior field operative for Obama for America in 2008.   Catlett is a 2012 New Leaders Council Institute fellow.    She is a native of Philadelphia, PA and holds a Bachelors of Arts in Africana Studies and History from Franklin & Marshall College.
VIRGINA – Jacqueline Ayers, is a current Urban Leaguer, serving as legislative director of Education and Health Policy for the Policy Institute.  Ayers brings a wealth of advocacy and direct civic engagement to this role, having directed the advocacy efforts for Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA), on a variety of legislative issues, including budget and appropriations, Medicaid expansions, and maternal health matters.    A native of Louisville, Kentucky, also worked at the ACLU of Indiana where she advanced the organization’s state legislative agenda and developed public education campaigns on racial profiling and the importance of civic participation. She went on to work for h Congressman Bobby Scott (D-VA), where she advised him on an array of legislative issues, including women’s issues, health care, higher education and civil rights.
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