EVENT SERIES

State Bridges Program

Building Bridges for Progressive Power

The State Bridges program activates Sister District volunteers across the country to fundraise for organizations leading year-round power-building work. Collectively, we can lift each other up and work toward building Democratic momentum in future state elections.

We know that progressive victories are possible when we support local power-building organizations and the activists that lead them.  This type of work is so important, because it helps foster civic engagement that translates into voter participation. Year-round organizing helps people connect the dots between the issues they care about and the importance of building political power. 

That way, when a candidate or campaign comes by asking someone to vote, the voter already feels connected to civic life; they do not have to be persuaded to participate just weeks out from an election, because they already understand their role in building political power and how to wield it in ways that benefit their lives.

The State Bridges program creates a way for the Sister District community to fundraise for select partner organizations doing this work in our 2022 target states.

The strategy is clear

With greater resources, our partner organizations on the ground can do more, which will lay the groundwork for our candidates to win on Election Day and to build progressive power in the long term. By building progressive power in state legislatures, we can take decisive actions to combat voter suppression, protect reproductive rights, enact justice reforms, and abolish the death penalty.

This year, Sister District held 6 virtual fundraisers to support 12 State Bridges partners. Each event was hosted by Sister District volunteer teams and featured special guests from our partner organizations. The interaction during State Bridges events gives us an opportunity to learn more about what’s happening on the ground in these critical states. Check out the recordings of our 2022 State Bridges events below!

2022 Event Series

Arizona – Living United for Change in Arizona and Rural Arizona Action. 

Watch the recording!

Michigan – Mothering Justice and We the People. 

Watch the recording!

Pennsylvania – Pennsylvania Stands Up and Pennsylvania United. 

Watch the recording!

Wisconsin – Citizen Action and WISDOM.

Watch the recording!

North Carolina – A. Philip Randolph Education Fund (APREF) and Carolina Federation. 

Watch the recording!

Nevada – Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada (PLAN) and One APIA Nevada.

Watch the recording!

How do we choose the organizations we support?

We evaluate organizations for inclusion in our State Bridges program in consultation with leaders and activists on the ground. To be featured in this program, organizations must be organizing year round in a Sister District target state. We prioritize organizations that organize and advocate at the state legislative level, and that are led by Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC), women and/or young people.

While the State Bridges program partners with a select few organizations every year, our Affiliates program is always looking for progressive organizations interested in supporting Sister District’s Democratic candidates. 

Have questions about State Bridges, Sister District Affiliates, or other programs? Please, feel free to contact us using this form.

2022 State Bridges Partners

LUCHA logo of a Luchador's or Mexican wrestler's mask in blue and while

Living United for Change in Arizona (LUCHA) is a membership-led, grassroots organization that builds power with Arizona’s working families to advance social, racial and economic justice for all. Through grassroots campaigns, leadership development, advocacy and civic engagement, they work to create an Arizona in which every person enjoys equal rights, opportunities and protections. LUCHA engages in voter registration and education, and advocates for progressive policy at all levels of government. They also provide empowerment services to immigrant communities, including citizenship classes, English classes, and the tools needed to navigate the immigration system.

Rural Arizona Action (RAZA) seeks to create more equitable and just systems through advocacy, accountability and leadership training in rural Arizona communities. RAZA was founded as a response to the lack of resources and year-round civic engagement opportunities available in rural Arizona. RAZA and Rural Arizona Engage, their affiliated 501(c)3 organization, educate, advocate and coordinate in rural communities to build communities of educated, empowered and engaged voters. RAZA develops long-term organizing capacity and creates professional development opportunities for rural organizers.

We The People Michigan logo of a fist inside a four-sided diamond outline

We the People Action Fund works to build long-term deep organizing infrastructure focused on local and regional issues that impact communities across Michigan. They work to keep elected officials and corporate and elite actors accountable for the roles they play in shaping policy landscapes. They work to foster stable, long-lasting alliances across urban, suburban, and rural communities that are explicitly multi-racial with a racial justice lens. They facilitate space for relationships, dialogue, and shared strategies across diverse communities

We the People Action Fund’s organizing principle is that we all deserve a decent life, and that in order to ensure that all Michigan families and communities can thrive, we must embrace our shared belonging and demand prosperity for everyone, not just the wealthy few.

Mother Justice logo with "mothering" in purple with the outline of a pregnant woman in place of the "o"

Mothering Justice is dedicated to returning decision making power to the ones affected by these decisions the most. By empowering mothers to influence policy on behalf of themselves and their families, Mothering Justice hopes to change the future of families in Michigan for the better. Their goal is to empower a well-organized group of mothers that can engage fellow mothers and law makers around a variety of issues that affect working families.

When women with children are not able to advocate for solutions to the problems they care about, a vital voice is missing from the discussion. Through advocacy, leadership development, voter empowerment, and promoting family-friendly advocacy, Mothering Justice will raise the voices of mothers and help them become policy makers and shapers.

Pennsylvania Stands Up logo in orange with two hands of different shades shaking hands

Pennsylvania Stands Up was founded in 2018 with the goal of building a multiracial movement of working people committed to creating a Pennsylvania that works for everyone. They have allowed for several grassroots organizations and campaigns across the state to combine forces, deepen their involvement, and scale up their work to build people power across Pennsylvania. 

Over the past four years, PA Stands Up has made tremendous gains across the state, developing nascent resistance groups into lasting grassroots infrastructure in areas where there had been little to no progressive investment. By investing deeply in membership development and new organizing tactics, PA Stands Up has created one of the strongest independent organizations in the country.

Pennsylvania United, formerly known as Pittsburgh United, is a grassroots organization with member-led chapters that build power for working-class families in Western PA. They believe the only way to combat division is to rebuild progressive organizing infrastructure in the communities that have experienced historic disinvestment from both economic opportunities and organizing resources. They work every day to develop long-term organizing relationships that reconnect working-class people to power, and to build a multi-racial working-class movement for statewide change. They organize with people by connecting issues with politics and building a multi-racial, working class movement for long-term change.

The North Carolina A. Philip Randolph Education Fund is an organization of Black trade unionists and community activists fighting for racial equality and economic justice for all Americans. They work to improve the quality of life for economically disadvantaged families by providing the necessary resources that improve their standard of living and foster self improvement, self empowerment, and self sufficiency. The Institute is named for A. Philip Randolph and Bayard Rustin, who were preeminent African American labor leaders and fathers of the modern American civil rights movement. They believed the fight for workers’ rights and civil rights were inseparable.

Carolina Federation is a statewide organization that brings local people together across race and the rural-urban divide to build political and electoral power in their own communities. Through both electoral work and base-building, they engage in organizing that strengthens diverse communities, develops leaders, and achieves electoral victories. They are building an independent political movement that forges a new political and economic agenda for North Carolina, rooted in a culture of dignity and belonging. Through their organizing, they are working to build permanent, progressive majorities at the local and state level. Carolina Federation’s approach to building power is defined by their relentless commitment to bringing new people into political action, their deep investment in local leadership, and their intentional integration of cultural work with community and electoral organizing.

Citizen Action of Wisconsin logo with three human stick-figures in blue with arms raised in victory

Citizen Action of Wisconsin is dedicated to economic, racial, and environmental justice, and to achieving a Wisconsin and an America where every human being has an equal opportunity to live a meaningful and fulfilling life. Citizen Action believes that organizing is a critical pathway to unlocking the true potential of democracy to fundamentally transform our society in the human interest and overcome structural racism, sexism, xenophobia, corporate domination, and other forms of oppression. Citizen Action’s theory of building power in Wisconsin is to work on big issues that can be the basis for creating a community of interest across the state. The pathway to progressive power in Wisconsin is multiracial organizing that bridges the urban/rural/suburban divide.

WISDOM is a state-wide grassroots interfaith organization that includes participation from 160 congregations of 19 different religious traditions. Since its founding in 1988, WISDOM has grown to include 13 affiliate organizations across the state of Wisconsin. They work on campaigns fighting for immigrant rights and to correct the narrative around formerly incarcerated individuals, and much more. WISDOM leads the ROC Wisconsin campaign, an effort to end mass incarceration in Wisconsin. Members and local affiliates have also been active in promoting immigrant rights, economic justice, public transit, and health care access. 

Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada (PLAN) Action seeks to transform progressive ideas into policy through rapid response communications, legislative action, grassroots organizing, policy advocacy, and partnerships with other progressive leaders and organizations. PLAN is a member-led organization that is primarily focused on policy change at the state and local level that improves conditions for working class Nevadans. The PLAN Action Fund was established for the purpose of educational and charitable activities to promote the general welfare of low and moderate income families in Nevada. Their work is centered on the belief that collective action toward common purpose will help create a more just society.

One APIA Nevada is a 501(c)4 grassroots, non-profit organization dedicated to uniting and supporting the Asian Pacific Islander Americans in Nevada. They advocate for progressive policies that benefit members of the AAPI community. One APIA’s work includes electoral organizing, voter education, and year-round base-building across Nevada. Their affiliated charity organization, the Asian Community Development Council, offers a wide array of services to help Nevada’s AAPI community thrive, including leadership development, voter registration and education, health clinics, and food clinics.

Event Recordings & Transcripts

LUCHA and RAZA

Sister District was proud to hold a fundraiser in February 2022 to support the work of LUCHA and RAZA to build progressive power in Arizona. The event was hosted by Sister District’s San Francisco, CA Peninsula and CA3 teams and featured LUCHA’s Co-Executive Director Alejandra Gomez, RAZA’s co-Executive Director Pablo Correa, and the Arizona Democratic Party’s Executive Director Charlie Fisher.

Read the Transcript

We The People and Mothering Justice

Sister District was proud to hold a fundraiser in March 2022 to support the work of We The People and Mothering Justice to build progressive power in Michigan. It was hosted by Sister District Chicago, Sister District Sacramento and Sister District Sonoma County East. Special guests were We the People’s Executive Director Art Reyes, Mothering Justice’s Executive Director Danielle Atkinson, and the Michigan Democratic Party’s Chair Lavora Barnes

Read the Transcript

Pennsylvania Stands Up and Pennsylvania United

Sister District was proud to hold a fundraiser in March 2022 to support the work of Pennsylvania Stands Up and Pennsylvania United to build progressive power in Pennsylvania. It was hosted by Sister District MA/RI, Sister District South Bay and Sister District NYC. Special guests were PA Stands Up’s Executive Director Carrie Santoro and PA United’s Managing Director Jennifer Rafanan Kennedy.

Read the Transcript

Citizen Action and WISDOM

Sister District was proud to hold a fundraiser in March 2022 to support the work of Citizen Action and WISDOM to build progressive power in Wisconsin. The event was hosted by Sister District Greater Chicago and Sister District Portland and featured Citizen Action’s Executive Director Robert Kraig, WISCOM’s Executive Director David Liners, and Lavanna Martinez, a Senior Political Manager at Run for Something.

Read the Transcript

The NC A. Philip Randolph Education Fund & Carolina Federation

Sister District was proud to hold a fundraiser in April 2022 to support the work of The NC A. Philip Randolph Education Fund & Carolina Federation to build progressive power in North Carolina. It was hosted by Sister District NYC, Sister District Massachusetts-Rhode Island and Sister District Puget Sound. Special guests were APREF’s President and CEO Melvin Montford, Carolina Federation’s co-Executive Director Sendolo Diaminah, and Devin Rankin, Emily’s List’s State and Local Regional Director for the Mid-Atlantic.

Read the Transcript

One APIA Nevada and PLAN Action

Sister District was proud to hold a fundraiser in Apil 2022 to support the work of One APIA and PLAN to build progressive power in Nevada. It was hosted by Sister District CS-3, Sister District Sacramento and Sister District San Francisco. Special guests were One APIA’s Deputy Executive Director Eric Jeng and PLAN’s Executive Director Laura Martin.

Read the Transcript

2021 Event series

Our 2021 State Bridges partners:

The New Virginia Majority (NVM), the Texas Organizing Project (TOP), Florida Rising, Living United for Change Arizona (LUCHA), Citizen Action of Wisconsin, The North Carolina A. Phillip Randolph Education Fund, the New Georgia Project Action Fund, Pennsylvania Stands up, Mothering Justice, and We the People Action Fund

Below you’ll find past recordings of 2021 events.  Also check out our Instagram for updates on these organizations!

State Bridges Organization(s)Date of EventRecordingTranscript
New Virginia Majority April 7th, 2021 VideoTranscript
Texas Organizing ProjectApril 29th, 2021VideoTranscript
Florida RisingMay 19th, 2021VideoTranscript
LUCHAJune 1st, 2021VideoTranscript
Citizen Action of WisconsinJune 14th, 2021VideoTranscript
The North Carolina A. Philip Randolph Education FundJuly 1st, 2021VideoTranscript
The New Georgia Project Action FundJuly 20th, 2021VideoTranscript
Pennsylvania Stands UpAugust 3rd, 2021VideoTranscript
Mothering Justice and We the PeopleAugust 12th, 2021VideoTranscript