GRANT PARTNER SPOTLIGHT: John Glenn School of Public Affairs – NEW Leadership Ohio

Attending the NEW Leadership Ohio weeklong seminar in June of this past year was a true gift. Early in my spring semester I was forwarded an e-mail from one of my political science professors with a link to the NEW Leadership website and a short line encouraging me to look into it. I had never heard of the organization, but by the time I got to the second paragraph on their website I knew NEW Leadership was something powerful, and right up my alley.

I was elected to an at-large seat on city council in my hometown of Alliance, Ohio on November 8, 2011 and I lived through many of the trials and triumphs facing young women who decide to run for public office. When I received an e-mail saying I had been accepted into the NEW Leadership Ohio Class of 2012, I thought I would be spending a week with 30 hard-core, driven women who had plans to do exactly as I had done the year prior. That was not the case; instead NEW Leadership was a catalyst of brilliant young women who had considered public office, but needed some convincing. In the five days we were together, I built lasting friendships, met like-minded young women and better understood the shocking truth that women are drastically underrepresented in elected office in our great country. We heard from countless speakers including campaign consultants, lobbyists, women in office and advocates for women’s issues. To be honest, there were times I was overwhelmed by the wealth of information and the demand to do something about so few women being in office. That feeling did not last long though! It was transformed into debates, deep conversations and planning by myself and the other women attending the seminar. By the end of our week together the overwhelming majority of the group was buzzing about what office they had set their sights upon.

The week I spent at the John Glenn School of Public Affairs for the NEW Leadership Ohio seminar was truly empowering. I left Columbus on a Friday afternoon with 29 other women ready to change the world, and six months later I am still confident we will.

Written by: Julie Jakmides

Councilwoman, City of Alliance

Vice President, Alliance Area Republican Club

Vice President, Mount Union Pre-Law Society

University of Mount Union – Class of 2014