Emerge Alums Celebrate Primary Victories in Key States Across the Country

  • Jun 15, 2022
  • Emerge Staff

June 15, 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 Maine, Nevada, and South Carolina. The organization had 77 alums on the ballot, and out of the 73 races that have been called, 62 alums won their primaries–an 85% 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. 77% of New American Majority alums won their primaries with over half being first-time candidates. Many NAM alums are also trailblazers who seek to be the “first” to hold their seat. These alums include Erica Mosca, who will become the first Filipina to serve in the Nevada State Legislature and Mercedes Krause who will become Nevada’s first Indigenous congressperson, 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’s primaries saw a wave of women candidates win their elections, as we continue to repower our country’s political structures,” said A’shanti F. Gholar, president of Emerge. “This was especially clear in legislative races with a majority of our alums on the ballot yesterday running for a State House or Senate seat. Women know that women-led decision-making bodies will protect our rights when federal offices and institutions fail to act, which is why so many are stepping forward to be leaders. As they look to November, these incredible alums will advocate for underserved issues, embody new representation on the campaign trail, and speak with their true, authentic voices. It’s because of that we know that they will find success both in their races and in office, and we look forward to both.”

Some alums who won in Tuesday’s primaries:

  • Cheryl Golek won her primary for Maine State House, District 99. If elected, she will be the first LGBTQ+ person to serve the district.
  • Kendra Dove will be the first Black treasurer in Richland County, SC.
  • Tamara Curry won her primary for Charleston County Probate Judge. If elected, she will be the first Black woman probate judge in Charleston County.
  • Dr. Annie Andrews won her primary for South Carolina’s 1st Congressional District. This seat flipped both times in the last two election cycles.
  • Former Nevada State Assemblymember Ellen Spiegel won her primary for Nevada State Controller, looking to continue women’s leadership in this office.
  • Kennebec County, ME prosecutor Jacqueline Sartoris won her primary for Cumberland County District Attorney and ousted an incumbent with a 27-point victory.

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 170 win their primaries. Including last night’s primaries, Emerge already has more than 400 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.