You have campaign skills!

By Norm Littlejohn — How does Progressive Dane get good people into public office? Teamwork. Being part of a group working together for a clear goal is inspiring, win or lose. Of course, it’s more fun when you win.

You probably have skills that can help us get our candidates elected. In the upcoming spring elections, Progressive Dane is likely to endorse two candidates for Madison school board and at least six for Dane County Board. If you have the inclination, and some time available from now to April 5, please consider taking on one of these core campaign functions.

Campaign manager — keeps the big picture in mind, plans overall strategy, monitors fundraising, thinks ahead about publicity, and keeps the candidate on track. This is a job for someone with previous campaign experience.

Treasurer — there are rules about keeping records and reporting campaign fundraising and spending; a treasurer doesn’t have to be an accountant, but should be organized and good with detail.

Volunteer coordinator — in grassroots campaigns, volunteers are key: distributing literature, making phone calls, keeping track of yard signs, helping with events.

Events coordinator — a flair for organizing is crucial, and a knack with food is a big plus.

Literature — needs to be written, designed and produced. Campaign writing is a little like writing for advertising, except at PD, we mean what we say! Designing and producing lit calls for experience in graphic arts, and some knowledge of printing.

Website and social media — creating and updating an attractive website, and showing up strong on social media, are increasingly important.

Data — records of recent voting patterns by ward can guide decision-making about where to concentrate a campaign’s resources, so every campaign needs a data cruncher. “Cutting turf,” figuring out those several-block areas where volunteers will drop lit, may be partly based on this data.

Questionnaires — candidates get questionnaires from media, the League of Women Voters, and organizations that endorse. Volunteers can help get those answers in on time.

Many of these functions overlap or cross-pollinate; it isn’t unusual for one person to do more than one thing for a campaign. Of course, if you can’t commit the time for one of these jobs, we hope you’ll still come out to drop lit, and contribute to candidates!

If you’d like to help, contact PD Elections Committee Co-Chairs Brenda Konkel ( and/or Mike Martez Johnson (