Emerge Alums Celebrate Primary Victories in Key States Across the Country

  • Jun 8, 2022
  • Emerge Staff

June 8, 2022

CONTACT: Kaleb Harmon

Emerge Alums Celebrate Primary Victories in Key States Across the Country

Washington, DC—Emerge, the nation’s premier organization that recruits and trains Democratic women to run for office, announced major victories following Tuesday’s primaries in California, Iowa, New Jersey, and New Mexico. The organization had 89 alums on the ballot, and out of the 49 races that have been called, 43 alums won their primaries–an 88% win rate. The winning Emerge alums from these states will go on to the general election in November, representing the unique backgrounds, experiences, and identities from their communities. 

Tuesday’s victories underscored the success of women in the New American Majority–Black, Brown and Indigenous women and women of color, as well as LGBTQ+, young, and unmarried women–in 2022. 88% of New American Majority alums won their primaries including trailblazing alums like Reena Szczepanski who will be the first woman and the first AANHPI–Asian American, Native Hawaiian, Pacific Islander–person to serve New Mexico’s 47th House District if elected. While women in the New American Majority are historically underrepresented in office, these women seek to repower traditional political structures and build equitable representation for communities across the country.

“Last night, the trend of Democratic women winning primaries continued as we look to expand our representation in office,” said A’shanti F. Gholar, president of Emerge. “Across the country, women are approaching their primaries with a compelling message, knowledge of what communities need from their elected officials and their true, authentic voice–and it’s resonating with voters. While women have and continue to face many hardships in 2022, we are fighting back against oppressive policies. That’s why it’s so important we see more women serving in all levels of office. Congratulations to all the incredible women who ran yesterday, and I look forward to seeing the success women candidates will find in their elections this year.”

Alums who won in Tuesday’s primaries include:

  • Urbandale, IA City Councilor Bridget Montgomery – Iowa’s 46th Senate District
  • Melissa Armijo – First-time candidate for New Mexico’s 12th House District
  • Moorestown, NJ Mayor Nicole Gillespie
  • Congresswoman Melanie Stansbury, NM-01
  • New Mexico Supreme Court Justice Julie Vargas

These victories add to the overall success Emerge is experiencing in 2022. The organization already saw 40 alums win their elections this spring and over 120 win their primaries–a 73% win rate nationally. Including last night’s primaries, Emerge already has more than 300 alums on the ballot in November running for federal, statewide, state, and local offices, and in some of the most competitive districts in the country. Emerge alums will be critical in flipping seats from red to blue, maintaining and expanding majorities in municipal and legislative bodies, and blazing new trails as the “firsts” to hold their offices.

Emerge has trained more than 5,000 alums since 2002 and currently has more than 1,000 alums in elected office across the country. The organization is committed to reaching 100,000 women of the New American Majority over the next 15 years, fostering a lift as you climb culture for women in politics, and repowering political structures. There are currently 27 state affiliates, and the organization has impacted a total of 45 states, Washington, D.C. and territories.