A record-sized class of rank-and-file union members representing 23 local unions from across all sectors of the labor movement took part in the New Jersey State AFL-CIO Labor Candidates School August 9-10, 2014, at the union-staffed Rutgers University Inn and Conference Center in New Brunswick.
CLICK HERE to see photos from the 18th Annual Labor Candidates School.
The two-day immersion course provided 37 students with comprehensive expert instruction in how to build and manage a top-notch election campaign. The subjects covered by the school include volunteer recruitment, fundraising, campaign planning, campaign research, public speaking, targeting, voter contact, get-out-the-vote, resource management, message development, media relations, and digital strategies.
Graduates of the school will go on to run for elected offices at all levels of government including local school boards and councils, county freeholder boards, as well as the state legislature. Furthermore, the labor candidates program is breaking new ground this year as State Senator Donald Norcross and candidate for New Jersey’s 1st Congressional District is the first labor candidate to run for federal office.
New Jersey State AFL-CIO labor candidates have achieved a total of 782 election victories since the program began in 1997. This is an achievement that stands alone, not just in the labor movement, but perhaps for any candidate training program in the country.
The remarkable success of this program owes itself to the dedication and support of labor candidates, their sponsoring unions, progressive organizational partners, and State Federation staff. By continuing to work together over the next three-and-a-half months leading up to Election Day, we will surely build on an already stellar track record of success. But most importantly, by electing more of our union brothers and sisters to office, we can continue to enact public policies which reflect our shared progressive values and benefit all of New Jersey’s diverse communities and working families.
On Election Day, November 4, 2014, a total of 37 first-time and incumbent labor candidates will be on the ballot.