Chicago, IL (September 12, 2017) –Since the last election there’s been a surge of resistance organizations on the left. From calling state reps and protesting about bills to funding various candidates, organizations and their activists are fighting hard. But beyond the calls and protests the Democratic party is fraught with an unclear message. Between the aging leaders and out-of- date systems, rebuilding is a must and NewFounders are here. On Wednesday, October 18 th , the inaugural NewFounders conference will take place at the UIC Forum (725 W Roosevelt Road) in Chicago.
Featuring leaders from organizations such as Indivisible, MoveOn, Women’s March, Swingleft, Sister Districts, DemLabs, Flippable, It Starts Today, Voterunlead, Runforsomething, SheShouldRun, Wall-of- Us, RockTheVote, Truman Project, 5calls and many more, NewFounders conference will feel like a spa for anyone that’s felt hopeless and wondering how Democrats will dig themselves out of the 2016 wreckage. Not only will a new generation of leaders showcase new tools and systems for a better political infrastructure, but the conference will unveil a way for activists to directly engage in teams based on their skill set.
NewFounders will launch “Changemaker,” at the conference. Built by several organizations, it allows activists to donate to critical projects in addition to forming teams around them. Once formed, team members receive and give direct feedback with progress reports to a project manager. Within the tool, projects are posted by the leaders of the biggest activist organizations, and allow engagement on every front: data, marketing, sales, PR, tech, legal, and more.
“We got the idea for Changemaker from our EveryElection app” states Genevieve Thiers, CEO of NewFounders. “Our first project as NewFounders was to make an app that notifies voters of nearby elections. We watched 97 donors, 14 organizations and a team of 6 pile onto this problem and fix it! We then realized we could do it again if we built a tool for people to engage.”
“Changemaker” will be presented at the conference, alongside visionary ideas on how tech and design can transform five major areas of politics: seat strategy, voting/elections, data, activism and campaigns. Over 300 leaders have been consulted to date on visionary work being presented, making this one of the largest and most exciting hive brains ever seen on the left.
The conference aims to bring in four types of groups: Consultants who want to be on the cutting edge of new tools and systems; Potential candidates who want to build change as part of their platform; Political and tech organizations that want to enter the ecosystem and network; Innovative activists who want to leap directly into tool building alongside some of the greatest leaders around.
“The focus of this conference is not to talk AT people, show how smart we are and suggest that ‘we’ know how to fix it all” states Heidi Sieck, a long-time civic entrepreneur and leader of #VOTEPROCHOICE. “The focus is collaboration and to explore blueprints that can fix several major infrastructure problems, crowdsourced from people in the field. We want to brainstorm the best solutions, period.”
Tickets for the conference are available at www.newfoundersconference.com for $199 (until September 22nd ), $249 (general admission) and $949 (VIP) with over 70% of proceeds going to the building of critical infrastructure. Students and emerging leaders can apply for scholarships to attend. The conference will have a TED-like feel, and feature several famous entertainers and various visionaries throughout the tech and political fields. www.newfounders.us
NewFounders is a Chicago-based organization comprised of tech and design experts out of Google, Microsoft, Apple, the Obama 2012 campaign and various startups, with a common goal to inject the best tech and design thinking into politics to reconnect it to people. Led by co- founder Genevieve Thiers, NewFounders’ first tool, the EveryElection app, was launched in July 2017 with over 14 major partners. It features the biggest database of elections in the US and pushes alerts to everyday voters for over 300,000 elections, including name of election, location, incumbent, challengers, deadlines, etc.