News

America Votes Announces New Executive Director Daria Dawson

December 18, 2023

CONTACT: press@americavotes.org 

 

WASHINGTON – America Votes today announced Daria Dawson as the organization’s new Executive Director. Dawson has served as America Votes’ National Political Director and Deputy Executive Director since 2020, leading the organization’s work to grow and mobilize their coalition of more than 400 partners across the country.

“As we prepare for what will be one of the highest-stakes elections in our lifetimes, I am thrilled that Daria is stepping into this leadership position for America Votes and our coalition,” said America Votes President Greg Speed. “Daria has deep experience growing our coalition and executing America Votes’ largest-ever voter turnout program in the 2022 midterm election. There is absolutely no one better to lead America Votes’ work to mobilize a diverse, powerful coalition of voters to defend democracy once again in 2024 and beyond.”

Dawson assumes the new role as America Votes marks its 20th anniversary in 2024 and the organization plans to exceed its coalition’s record-high levels of voter contact activity in the 2022 midterm, which included more than 26 million door knocks. America Votes’ Get-Out-the-Vote program contributed to unprecedented increases in turnout over several consecutive election cycles in several battleground states. In 2020, the organization spent more than $250 million on voter education and turnout programs. In 2023, America Votes has already raised more than $30 million to lay the groundwork for another massive voter mobilization effort next year. 

“In a time in which the fundamental rights of Americans are being stripped away and the democracy of this country is hanging on by a thread, I couldn’t be more thrilled to be called on to lead the America Votes coalition. I look forward to continuing to build upon the trust I’ve built with our partners over the past four years as we prepare to engage and mobilize voters in what is expected to be an unprecedented turnout election,” said Dawson. “This commitment to winning elections and building progressive power brought me to America Votes and I’m proud to take on the role of Executive Director at a time when our work is the most important it has ever been. The only way we can protect our freedoms is by building a stronger, more representative democracy where everyone is able to make their voices heard. America Votes has been doing this work for years, and I look forward to building on this legacy through the 2024 cycle and beyond.”

Prior to joining America Votes, Dawson served in many capacities on electoral campaigns and advocacy organizations, including roles as Director of Strategic Engagement for then-Senator Kamala Harris’s Presidential Campaign and the Deputy National Political Director at the Service Employees International Union (SEIU), where she also led congressional lobbying efforts around the Fight for $15 campaign. She is the first person of color to serve in the roles of National Political Director and Executive Director at America Votes.

“On behalf of the 2 million members of the Service Employees International Union, I enthusiastically congratulate Daria Dawson on being selected as Executive Director of America Votes. As a valued former senior SEIU staff member, Daria has always tirelessly championed workers, families, and their communities,” said SEIU President Mary Kay Henry. “Her deep understanding of the struggles facing working people, along with strategic vision and ability to unite people, will tremendously benefit America Votes’ critical work. Daria shares our steadfast commitment to social and economic justice. Her leadership will empower voters and safeguard democracy.”

“This announcement is a huge win for America Votes and for the American people. I’ve worked with Daria for years, and I know that no one will fight harder than her to defend against voter suppression and build a stronger, more diverse progressive coalition,” said Adrianne Shropshire, Executive Director of BlackPAC. “Voters of color, women, and young people have been critical to Democrats’ wins in recent elections. At a time when we are facing a full-on assault on our fundamental freedoms and the basic right to make our voices heard, Daria’s experience, passion, and dedication to building progressive power are exactly what we need.”

This announcement comes following Sara Schreiber’s departure from the organization to become Chief of Staff for the Biden-Harris 2024 Campaign.

“I am also proud to congratulate Sara and wish her tremendous success as Chief of Staff to the Biden-Harris campaign,” added Speed. “Sara has been instrumental in turning America Votes into the voter mobilization and turnout machine that we are today. She will be a critical asset to the Biden-Harris team, just as she has been to America Votes.”

“The work I’ve done with the amazing team at America Votes is among my proudest achievements,” said Schreiber. “During my time at the organization, America Votes has grown into a powerful force for good, working in communities across the country to protect and expand voting rights, safeguard reproductive freedom, and defend against attacks on our core democratic processes. As I leave for a new challenge, there is no one I trust more to take over this important work than Daria. I am excited to see how she builds on what we’ve achieved to have an even greater positive impact.”

This year, America Votes played a key role in flipping the Wisconsin Supreme Court, knocking 535,000 doors to elect Judge Janet Protasiewicz in April. During the general election, America Votes coalition partners knocked on more than 3.6 million doors and helped secure victories for Democrats in Virginia and Kentucky, as well as a constitutional amendment protecting abortion rights in Ohio.

Since 2016, America Votes has emerged as a critical shield against MAGA extremism. In 2020, the America Votes coalition delivered over one billion coordinated voter contact attempts across the most critical states, with a focus on historically underrepresented communities. America Votes built on this impact during the 2022 midterms, driving record midterm turnout in many swing states, including Arizona, Michigan, and Pennsylvania. The result was a history-defying election where Democrats expanded their Senate majority, swept most battleground state constitutional offices, and held Republicans to a 4-seat majority in the House. 

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About America Votes

America Votes is the coordination hub of the progressive community, coordinating more than 400 state and national partner organizations to create a fairer, more representative democracy by increasing voter participation across the country. For more information about America Votes, visit www.americavotes.org

America Votes Statement on the Results of the 2023 Elections

WASHINGTON – The America Votes Executive Team today issued the following statement on the results of the 2023 elections:

“The 2023 election results showed once again that when the stakes are clear, Americans will show up to protect our civil rights and freedoms. This election demonstrated yet again  that when we organize and do the hard work of registering, educating, and mobilizing, voters will vote to defend their future and our democracy. 

“In states across the country voters resoundingly rejected MAGA extremism and embraced reproductive freedom. They rejected candidates who ran on hate and discrimination or sought to undermine the foundations of our democracy. Looking toward 2024, the message voters are sending is clear: focus on cutting costs and improving American’s everyday lives. The MAGA agenda of abortion bans, restricting personal health care decisions, and making it harder to vote is a losing platform. 

“America Votes partners played a critical role in securing these important electoral victories, knocking doors, making phone calls, and having conversations with voters that motivated them to make their voices heard. We were proud to support our partners’ work on the ground by providing data to shape their strategies and coordinating organizations to maximize their reach and impact.  

“While we celebrate today, we are already planning for 2024. Thanks in large part to our coalition’s efforts, voters are more engaged and active than ever before, and we will build on what we achieved this year to defeat MAGA extremism again in 2024.”

Background on AV’s 2023 Program

America Votes is the central coordination hub of the progressive community both nationally and in more than 20 states across the country, working with more than 400 state and national partner organizations to advance progressive policies, win elections, and protect every American’s right to vote. 

During the 2023 cycle, AV coalition partners knocked on more than 3.6 million doors in states across the country, including knocking on more than 700,000 doors in Virginia, 518,000 doors in Pennsylvania, and 902,000 doors in Ohio.  

The America Votes Executive Team is comprised of: Greg Speed, President; Sara Schreiber, Executive Director; and Daria Dawson, Deputy Executive Director & National Political Director.

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