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From Student Council to Wellstone

Emily ran for student council president, the Wellstone Way.

She was in 6th grade, frizzy hair, not exactly part of the popular group, but determined to make a difference. So Emily got to work, circulating a newsletter, waking up early to greet all her classmates during the morning bell, talking about her ideas to improve the school. She didn't win, but it was the experience that launched her career.

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A Teacher, In One Sense of the Word

Our new Program Director, Jennifer Sconyers, planned to become a teacher. “I was going to school, and working in the Springfield, IL Schools, planning to launch my career as a teacher. And then one day I realized that I loved the kids, but not the administrators,” explains Jennifer, “So I thought, ‘now what?’”

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Joining the League of Superheroes

For our new Senior Project Manager, Causten Rodriguez-Wollerman, life as an organizer got started early.

Working at a LGBTQ youth drop-in center, and with an antiviolence crisis line, just after high school in Colorado, a statewide organizing group approached Causten to help with a 2004 LGBT voter registration drive. “I was good at it, and it paid $10 an hour. So after the campaign, when they asked me to stay and work on racial justice issues, I suddenly could do something about all these issues that I was passionate about.”

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Inspired by Family, and Wellstone

Five years ago, at a Camp Wellstone in Raleigh NC, Kara Hollingsworth walked up to our Director of Strategic Initiatives, Erik Peterson. Erik trained all weekend wearing a pin that had a peace sign and a yellow ribbon, the logo for Military Families Speak Out (MFSO).
 
“I was like, ‘Oh my gosh’” Kara explains, “It’s not a button you saw very often. Getting involved with MFSO was one of the ways I started my work in politics and policy. And it turned out that Erik had a personal connection with MFSO’s founders, Nancy and Charlie.” 
 
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A Family’s Legacy

Linda Winsor and Andrew Prokop have seen a side of Paul and Sheila that few have gotten to see – their sweaty side. “We met the Wellstones when they joined the same gym we did,” says Andrew. “And I can tell you that Paul worked as hard on the weight room floor as he did on the Senate floor!”
 
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A Life Inside the Wellstone Triangle

At Wellstone Action we spend a lot of time talking about the Wellstone Triangle – and for good reason. The only way real, sustained, progressive change happens is when we connect grassroots organizing, electoral politics, and public policy into a movement for good.

But here’s what you need to know: the Wellstone Triangle isn’t some hypothetical theory cooked up in an ivory tower; instead it’s the proven route for progressives who want to win lasting change.

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Practicing What We Preach

Edith Sargon and Naomi Long are great trainers and even greater people, it’s true; and they are also the most real and recent example of how Wellstone Action practices what we preach.

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