This month has been filled with exciting news from ReflectUS that I am eager to share with you.
I am proud to announce that ReflectUS has published its first Annual Report. Despite a global pandemic and uncertainty in many facets of life, during the course of 2020, our team was still able to host national convenings, publish ground-breaking issue briefs and other resources, and launch impactful programming across the country - all in the name of supporting and encouraging women from all backgrounds to step into political leadership. You can read all about our work this past year in the 2020 Annual Report.
In honor of International Democracy Day, we hosted an inspiring national event entitled: "Women & Democracy." The event was co-hosted by the League of Women Voters of The United States and scores of women from across the country participated. It is now on our Youtube channel so please visit if you didn’t have the chance to participate in person. Also, don't forget to register for our upcoming event "Use the 19th" on October 27, 2021 at 7 PM ET. At this event, we'll discuss the importance of women voting in every election and the important role we play in our democracy.
We had the great privilege of sponsoring an uplifting event with the Women Mayors Network from Equity Agenda. I was delighted to introduce some very phenomenal women mayors serving some of the largest cities in our country as we gathered women mayors and mayoral candidates across the United States. In this convening, we shared trials from the campaign trail, such as different expectations of women versus male candidates, and provided a space for support and solidarity. I was truly honored to be among these changemakers and can’t wait to see the amazing ways they will continue to transform our towns, cities, and nation.
I am also excited to share our latest issue brief: Dismantling the Power of Incumbency that details ways in which incumbency protects men’s political dominance and impedes our collective goal towards a more representative democracy. We also provide possible solutions to eliminate the barriers incumbency presents for women candidates. Be sure to read the issue brief and share widely!
Finally, we are in the midst of Hispanic Heritage month and I'd like to highlight the important work of our Coalition member - LatinasRepresent. As you may know, Latina representation is amongst the lowest in elected and appointed offices across the country at all levels of government. ReflectUS Coalition member LatinasRepresent is working steadfastly to support Latinas as they pursue political leadership, and has worked closely with us to host a number of events to provide resources to Latinas in politics and government. Please take a moment to read about their work and connect with them below.
Women’s political representation in this country has long lagged behind that of men. Even with women’s representation in Congress at an all-time high, the U.S. House of Representatives has only 101 women of 435 members; the Senate, 26 women of 100 members. This is far from equal, given that women make up 50% of the nation’s population and more than half of regular voters. While progress is being made, with more and more women running for and winning higher office, LatinasRepresent is keenly aware that more must break through.
Latinas, 26 million strong and growing in the U.S., have increasing influence in our culture, communities, and at the ballot box. Despite this, however, they are dramatically underrepresented in politics. Of the 127 women serving in the 116th Congress, only 13 are Latina. In addition, across local, state and federal elected offices Latinos, as a group, only have a representation rate of 1.2 percent, meaning that Latina representation is less than 1 percent across all levels. While often encouraged as voters, Latinas are rarely encouraged as candidates.
Throughout our nation’s history, we’ve struggled to build a reflective democracy, where everyone has a voice and a seat at the table. That struggle continues today. We earnestly believe our elected officials ought to reflect the rich and growing diversity in our communities.
LatinasRepresent is ready for change. They unite stakeholders and communities around the country; raise up models of success to serve as road maps for replication at state and national levels; embolden current and future Latina candidates; and drive a national conversation about the need for increased Latina representation.
To get involved, be sure to connect with them and view their resources online!
With an annual donation of $250 or more you will join a network of donors who are supporting ReflectUS as we work to increase the number of women across the country in political leadership.
As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, ReflectUS relies on your support to help us as we work toward a more representative democracy across the racial, ideological, ethnic, and geographic spectrum in the United States.
As a member of the ReflectUS Giving Circle, you will receive: access to private special events with engaging speakers, ReflectUS swag, networking opportunities, and a newsletter from the CEO with exclusive highlights and stories of inspiration from across the ReflectUS Coalition.
ReflectUS is looking for interns! Currently, opportunities exist in marketing, communications, programs, and development. For more information and to apply visit reflect.us/internships/.
ReflectUS State Network:
Use the 19th
On October 27, 2021 at 7 PM ET, the ReflectUS State Network will be hosting "Use the 19th." In this convening, we will discuss why women should vote in every election and how women influence election results. Be sure to register before it's too late!
Have you had a chance to read the Op-Ed co-authored by ReflectUS Programs Director, Amanda Pohl, and State Network partners Allison Gibbs (WEPOWER) and Amanda Morrison (Missouri M.A.D.E.)? Go read it today!