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Battleground Texas Seeks Latino Leaders in Promising New Fellowship Program


by: Omar Araiza

Wed Aug 28, 2013 at 01:00 PM CDT


Since Battleground Texas launched six months ago, the response has been tremendous and volunteers from all across the state have been working hard to turn Texas blue. Battleground Texas has already deputized more than 3,000 voter registration volunteers, hosted a 14-city listening tour that was met with standing-room-only crowds in nearly every part of the state, and built a digital Facebook following that outpaced the Republican Party of Texas in just 78 days.  

The organization's next vision -- ensure that the next generation of Latino leaders have the skills and knowledge they need to succeed and play prominent leadership roles in the future of the Democratic Party.

With prominent Latino figures such as the Castro brothers hinting to one day seek the presidency, Battleground Texas is launching the Executive Latino Leadership Program to further develop the community's organizing talent in our state.

Read more about the program and how you can apply after the jump.

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The Latino community is a vital part of Texas, both culturally and politically. Despite being more than 1/3 of the population, Latinos are overwhelmingly underrepresented at the top of our government and our political campaigns. Battleground Texas wants help grow the next generation of Latino leaders who are ready to take on prominent roles in Democratic electoral campaigns in Texas.

Their Executive Latino Leadership program is designed to help experienced professionals hone the technical skills they'll need to run successful campaigns and initiatives -- such as communications, messaging, and organizing. It is designed for anyone of Hispanic or Latino heritage with at least three years of professional experience who are looking to take the next step in their career in politics. Applicants do not have to speak Spanish, but those that do are strongly encouraged to apply.

The program is a comprehensive training program, but also aims to work with the schedules of working professionals. The program will include:

- Five Weekend Workshops;
- Regular One-on-one and small group coaching;
- Project-based Learning;
- Mentorship;
and
- Political Networking.

Weekend training and small group coaching will include training in communications and messaging; digital organizing; field organizing; management; training; political networking; data; and fundraising.

While all participants will receive training on all topics, project based learning and mentorship will allow participants to focus on a department in which they are most interested in developing skills.

The program will also provide guidance of national experts, guest trainers and statewide leaders; allowing participants to grow the networks they need to be powerful advocates for change and to play an important role in future elections. Participants can expect to meet and learn from some of the best in Texas and national electoral politics.

We are already seeing strong participation from the Latino community through Battleground Texas. Battleground Texas had many Latino fellows working throughout the state over the summer, and their voter registration and other events engaging the Latino community continue to grow on a daily basis with great results.

Those interested can submit an application here.

For far too long, the majority of local elections in Texas have been a foregone conclusion, with the belief that the Republican stronghold of the state cannot be beaten. This has ultimately resulted in national politicians to not even bothering challenging this belief and avoiding investing in our state. That has translated into Texas voices and votes that are not being reached out to and counted.

Battleground Texas plans to use elements of the organizing model that have proven successful in other states -- like Colorado, Florida, and Virginia. Over the next several years, Battleground Texas seeks to turn our state into a battleground state by treating it like one -- registering more voters and continuing to engage Texans who are already registered in the democratic process.

Their efforts to engage the Latino community cannot come at a better time. Republicans such as Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio are currently some of the Hispanic figures most nationally known across the state and country, and they do not, in any way shape or form, represent the needs of the Latino community.

The sleeping giant that is the Texas Latino vote needs to be awaken and, with its rise, forever change the fate of every future election.

Latinos are ready. Texas is ready.



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