Starting the Conversation on Running For Local Office

National politics take up most of the political oxygen, but so many important decisions take place at the local level. Running for local office can make a huge impact in your community, and it may surprise you that you may be more qualified than you think.

Click below to learn about the surprising power of local offices, and resources for those curious about running.

So Here’s the Question

At your next gathering or in a group chat, use these questions to spark a discussion:

  • What is your biggest hesitancy or roadblock for running for public office?
  • Do you remember voting for a particular school board in an election? Did you pay attention to who was running?
  • Have you ever thought, “I can do a better job than that person?” If so, why didn’t you act on it?
  • Should school boards simply be administrative or should they be allowed to shape curriculum?
  • Who should ultimately be allowed to shape curriculum? Teachers, parents, the local, state or federal government?
  • What resources would be useful for you to keep better tabs on your local officials and school board?
  • Think of one person you know who would make a great candidate for local office. What qualities or skills do they have that you admire? Have you ever said anything to encourage them in that direction?

Something to Consider

Here’s a taste of what people are saying about running for local office and the school board battle. We’ve intentionally left out the commenters’ names so you can focus on the viewpoint itself, not the speaker’s affiliations.

There will always be people in any arena who will know less and know more than you.”

The question is, do I care enough? And am I willing to do more of both. More caring and more learning."

In any democracy, change comes from the bottom up, and the foundation is local elections.”

Democracy is not a spectator sport – we need a new generation of local political leadership to run for office who have demonstrated leadership throughout their careers.”

Conspiracy theorists and proponents of fake news are winning local elections. And their new positions give them a powerful voice in everything from local law enforcement to libraries, trash pickup to textbook purchases.”

Local action = national impact.”

For Deeper Exploration

Looking for more? These resources will help you:

Share with the Community

Find us on social media and make your voice heard in the fight for democracy. Use #DemocracyChats and #JuntoClub to share what you’re learning from your pro-democracy conversations and what questions are sparking the best discussions in your circles.