By Kathy Groob, ElectWomen.com
More women are holding elected office as a result of the Emerge America training program. Working now in twelve states across the country, 185 Emerge trained women ran for public office, 121 on the general election ballot in November and 106 of them won. Emerge Oregon took the first place prize for winning all of their Emerge graduates’races.
Emerge America is changing the face of American politics by identifying, training and encouraging women to run for office, get elected and to seek higher office. The program includes an intensive, cohort-based seven-month training program that is unique. Emerge is working now in the following states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oregon and Wisconsin. Emerge America’s role is to serve the states in which they work, open new state programs and build capacity to train more women in each of our current states. Emerge is working to open new states in the next two years to offer our programming to more women in more locations.
The Emerge model was originally founded in 2002 by a group of San Francisco Bay Area Democratic women who passionately believed that there needed to be a larger representation of women in public office at every level. Two years after founding Emerge California in 2002 the group helped to form Emerge Arizona.
Karen Middleton joined Emerge as its president on September 1, 2010. She brings her experience as an elected official, campaign organizer, small business owner, trainer and political leader to Emerge and is committed to the vision of bringing Emerge into all 50 states.
Karen served in the Colorado State Legislature from February 2008 through 2010, where she was in a leadership position as Majority Caucus Chair and a member of the Education and Business Affairs and Labor Committees. From November 2004 – February 2008, she served on Colorado’s elected State Board of Education representing the 7th Congressional District.