- By: Ruth Evans, Evans HR – Founding member and Board member of the San Joaquin Political Academy
I suspect that there are many experienced leaders in our community who really are interested in running for political office, especially on a local basis, but whose concerns about “sticking their toe” into the “public pool” prevent them from jumping in. That’s understandable since we’ve all seen and heard the personal attacks and the negative ads and stories that occur every election cycle. Who would want to put themselves and their families through that? But, our community needs you…we need your vision, your commitment and your passion to make our City and State a better place for all of our citizens.
Help is here!! We have developed a “safe” environment for you to learn how to run for office. The San Joaquin Political Academy (Academy) was designed specifically for experienced and visionary leaders who want to provide leadership in the elected arena, whether it is running for school board, City Council, Board of Supervisors, or a state or federal position.
More than 9 years ago, the Academy was formed to give these leaders an opportunity to learn first-hand about running for office—what it takes, what it means, and how to run an ethical, successful campaign without compromising their values. We are looking for leaders who understand that a healthy business climate is fundamental to a strong economy. And, a strong economy is necessary for a vibrant community.
The Academy is non-partisan. It is not neutral, though, on many issues. It offers fast paced classes with high profile leaders, thought-provoking and challenging topics, the opportunity to debate classmates, mock media interviews, go before the editorial board, review your performance on camera and learn what it takes to develop your message and campaign. We bring the best minds and speakers to you in 15 classes, 4-hours each, two evenings a week. Classes include:
- City ,County and Regional Issues
- Issues impacting the business environment
- Making the decision to run
- Campaign management, fundraising and public relations
- Developing your brand and your platform
- Winning with a positive campaign
- Responding to the media and using them to your advantage
- And more
Our graduates are holding office, preparing to run for office in the future, and holding important leadership positions in our community.
The Academy is a partnership between the Fresno Chamber of Commerce and the Fresno County Farm Bureau. We enjoy the support and sponsorship of KMJ Radio, K-Jewel Radio, KYNO Radio, Pacific Gas & Electric, The Business Journal, the Fresno Bee and The Fulton Group.
We are taking applications now for the 2013 class which will begin in February. Go to our website to learn more and to get the application for the upcoming class: sjpoliticalacademy.com or call 559-313-3304.