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Ready to Run 2018 — Conference for Women

March 9, 2018 @ 11:00 am - March 10, 2018 @ 5:30 pm


A “How-To” Training for Public Life

Ready to Run® is a bipartisan program for women who want to run for office, work on campaigns, get appointed to office, or learn more about the political system. You will learn:

  • Practical “how-tos” for candidates
  • Real world advice and best practices from the experts
  • Strategies for positioning yourself for public leadership
  • The ins and outs of New Jersey politics
  • Campaigning in a digital age

Two Tracks to Meet Your Needs

  • Track 1: I’m Ready to Run, Now What? for women planning to run for office immediately.
  • Track 2: I’m Not Ready to Run Yet, But…for women who want to learn more about different ways to get involved in politics or position themselves for public leadership.

Register here: https://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/eventReg?oeidk=a07eelibi6k8d84be1d&oseq=&c=&ch=

The Ready to Run® Diversity Initiative programs aim to increase the participation of women of color in New Jersey Politics. Diversity Initiative programs are held on Friday, March 9th, immediately prior to the opening Ready to Run® session.

Rising Stars: Educating Asian American Women for Politics
Run Sister Run: Women of the African Diaspora Changing the Political Landscape
Elección Latina

Friday, March 9, 2018

Diversity Initiative
11:00 am Registration opens
Noon – 1:30 pm    Welcome and Opening Keynote Lunch
1:30 – 1:45 pm Break
1:45 – 4:00 pm Diversity Initiative Programs
Elección LatinaRun Sister RunRising Stars 

1:45 – 2:15 pm  Participant Introductions

2:15 – 4:00 pm  Roundtables

4:00 – 4:15 pm  Break

Ready to Run®
4:15 – 6:00 pm



Welcome and Plenary Session: 

Digital Strategies for Candidates, Campaigns, and Advocates

Digital outreach is a key aspect of today’s political and advocacy campaigns. Online tools including blogs, social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and other online organizing and communications resources are important for getting campaign messages out to a broad audience of potential voters or stakeholders. This session will provide an overview of best practices and offer practical tips on how to get started or enhance your online presence.


Tara Dowdell, Tara Dowdell Group

6:00 pm Networking Reception 


Saturday, March 10, 2018

7:30 am Registration opens
8:15 – 9:15 am Plenary: What Women Candidates Need to Know


Celinda Lake, President, Lake Research Partners

9:15 – 9:45 am Keynote: Why Not You? Why Not Now?
9:45 – 10:00 am Break 
Track 1: I’m Ready to Run, Now What?

Track 2: I’m Not Ready to Run Yet, But…

10:00 am – Noon


Track 1: Launching Your Campaign
This session provides an overview of the key elements of a campaign, including assessing and establishing oneself as a candidate, developing a campaign plan, structuring a campaign organization, and voter contact.


Michael DuHaime, Partner, Mercury

10:00 am – Noon Track 2:  Finding Your Political Voice and Influence

This session, designed for those who are not ready to run but want to have some impact on important issues, offers an overview of the “nuts and bolts” of government and political parties in the state. Topics covered will include positioning oneself for appointment to a public board or commission and getting active in a political party.

Noon – 2:15 pm
Plenary Session: Conquering the Camera – An Interactive Media Training

This interactive media training workshop will include tips for successful interviews on tough topics, how to look poised and professional on camera, staying on message, and public speaking techniques. Selected participants will take part in mock interviews and on-camera practice sessions.


Christine Jahnke, Founder, Positive Communications

2:15 – 2:30 pm Break 
2:30 – 3:45 pm Track 1: Navigating New Jersey’s Political Parties As a Potential Candidate
The session will highlight the power dynamics of party organizations, building relationships with party operatives and gaining the party’s support, and will address how to respond when the party organization is not supportive.
2:30 – 3:45 pm Track 2: Legislative Advocacy

This session is designed for those who are not ready to run but want to have an impact on important issues. Legislative advocacy is working with individual lawmakers and lawmaking bodies to gain support for your cause or initiative. Learn how to organize a legislative advocacy campaign, including gathering allies, creating a campaign structure, building a communication network, and cultivating media relationships.

3:45 – 4:00 pm Break
4:00 – 5:30 pm Plenary: Fundraising for Success
Fundraising is one of the most crucial aspects of a campaign. This interactive workshop covers key components of campaign fundraising, including special emphasis on understanding why people give and the in-person “ask.” The session will also address developing a strategy for your campaign, building a donor list, recruiting and motivating a finance committee, and special events.


Nancy Bocskor, President, The Nancy Bocskor Company


March 9, 2018 @ 11:00 am
March 10, 2018 @ 5:30 pm
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Center for American Women and Politics at Rutgers
Eagleton Institute of Politics


Rutgers University – Douglass Center Student Center
100 George Street
New Brunswick, NJ 08901 United States
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