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Emerge KY starts this weekend

Emerge Kentucky, a non-profit organization established in 2009 to recruit and train Democratic women to run for public office, today announced the names of the 24 women who will be members of the inaugural class that begins with its kick-off weekend on February 26, 2010. The new class represents Kentucky’s cultural and geographic diversity with women coming from areas all around Kentucky including Louisville, Lexington and Northern Kentucky, as well as Maysville, Meade County and Glasgow. 

Eleven women participating in the class are candidates for the 2010 elections.  They include State Representative candidate Kimberly Greenwell, Spencer County Judge-Executive candidate Carmin Gaines, Mason County Commission candidate Tracey Heflin, Jefferson County Attorney candidate Glenda Bradshaw, Lexington-Fayette Urban Council candidate Kathy Plomin, Richmond City Commissioner and candidate for State Representative Rita Smart, Jefferson County School Board candidate Attica Scott, Meade County Judge-Executive candidate Rebecca Flaherty, State Representative candidate Nellie Draus Stallings, Louisville Mayoral candidate Shannon White, and State Senate candidate Julie Smith-Morrow.
“We are thrilled with the caliber of women in our first Emerge Kentucky class,” said Board Chair, Jennifer Moore.  “We have women ready to run for office now and several who will be ready by the next election cycle.  The Emerge program will begin to fill the empty pipeline of women for public office at all levels,” said Moore. 

The seven-month program includes a curriculum that will provide training in public speaking, fundraising, campaign strategy, field operations, labor and endorsements, networking, media skills and messaging and ethics in politics.  Participants meet monthly for seven months.  Classes will be held at various locations around Kentucky including Louisville, Central, Northern and Western Kentucky.

Kentucky ranks 45th among the states for women in elected office and among the 120 county judge executives, only six are women.  The General Assembly consists of 15% women where the national average is 23%.  There are no women in congress representing Kentucky. “For the first time, Democratic women in Kentucky will have the opportunity to receive a first-class intensive training program that will give them the confidence and skills they need to step up and run for public office,” said Emerge Kentucky Board Chair, Jennifer A Moore.

The Emerge Kentucky 2010 class members are:

Glenda Bradshaw, Louisville
Wanita Elison, Lexington
Angela Ferguson, Covington
Rebecca Flaherty, Battletown
Courtney French, Warsaw
Carmin Gaines, Bloomfield
Kimberly Greenwell, Louisville
Tracey Heflin, Maysville
Karen Jones, Frankfort
Candace Klein, Newport
Natalie MacDonald, Edgewood
Sandra McAllister, Bowling Green
Carolyn Miller-Cooper, Louisville
Kathy Plomin, Lexington
Creasa Reed, Lexington
Attica Scott, Louisville
Brenda Simpson Newport
Rita Smart, Richmond
Julie Smith-Morrow, Newport
Nellie Draus Stallings, Louisville
Kathryn Thomas, Glasgow
Cory Williams, Fort Mitchell
Shannon White, Louisville
Dwinelva Zackery, Union

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