Running Start’s Path to Politics series is geared for young professional women who are interested in learning more about running for elected office.  Our lunches take place throughout the year at various locations in Washington, DC.  At each luncheon we showcase speakers who are experts in their fields and help participants better understand what it takes to run for elected office.

Attendance to Path to Politics is free of charge.  Lunches and meeting space are provided by Running Start’s generous sponsors and supporters.

History of Path to Politics

Running Start’s Path to Politics series grew out of the work Running Start’s sister organization, Women Under Forty Political Action Committee (WUFPAC), had been doing since 2004 to educate young people about the challenges young women face running for public office.  This series started under WUFPAC’s leadership in 2004 and have been a popular program of Running Start since 2008.

2012 Path to Politics Series

“Skills & Strategies for Political Success”

In 2012 the Path to Politics theme will be “Skills & Strategies for Political Success.” Each lunch session will cover core competencies needed for a successful careers in politics.

2012 Schedule

November –  Post-Election Panel

Panelists: Shira Toeplitz,  redistricting and political campaign reporter at Roll Call; Kiki McLean, Senior Partner, Global Head of Public Affairs, and Managing Director at Porter Novelli Public Services; and Kristen Soltis Anderson,Vice President of The Winston Group.

Date & Location: November 16th, 12-1:30 PM

DLA Piper

500 8th St NW

Washington, DC 20001

Thank you to our 2012 Path to Politics trustees circle member DLA Piper.




October –  Media Training

Speaker: Christine K. Jahnke, founder and president of Positive Communications, a Washington D.C. based training firm, and author of The Well-Spoken Woman: Your Guide to Looking and Sounding Your Best.

Date & Location: October 17th


701 Pennsylvania Ave, NW Suite 530

Washignton, D.C. 20004

September – Communications Training

Speaker: Tracy Schario, APR, Professor of Media Relations, The Graduate School of Political Management at The George Washington University

Date & Location: Tuesday September 18th, 12 – 1:30 PM

The George Washington University

Marvin Center 310

800 21st St NW

Washington, DC 20003

Thank you to GW’s Graduate School of Political Management for sponsoring this event!

April –  Networking Your Way to Success

Guest of Honor: Senator Tom Daschle

Date & Location: April 27, 12 – 1:30 PM

DLA Piper

500 8th St NW

Washington, DC 20001

March –  How to Craft a Powerful and Persuasive Message

Speaker: Julie Andreeff Jensen, Director, the Brunswick Group

Date & Location: Thursday March 22nd, 12 – 1:30 PM

Gibraltar Associates

555 13th Street NW, Suite 400 East

February – Nuts and Bolts of Fundraising

Speaker: Louisa Imperiale, National Finance Director, American Conservative Union

Date & Location: Wednesday February 22nd, 12 – 1:30 PM

701 8th St NW, Suite 350

Washington, DC 20001




* Stay tuned for the complete 2012 Path to Politics schedule! *


2010-2011 Path to Politics Trustees Circle Members

Thank you to DLA Piper, 2012 Path to Politics Trustee Circle Member!

We need your help to ensure the Running Start’s Path to Politics series continues to grow!

Become a Member of  Path to Politics Trustees Circle. The Trustees Circle includes companies, firms and individuals that have helped make our Path to Politics program a huge success. We are looking for yearly sponsors at the $5,000 level. This donation includes recognition in all communication about Path to Politics in 2010.   The Trustees Circle is great opportunity for you, your organization or your company to highlight speakers from your firm and be recognized as a major supporter of Running Start’s work at our annual gala, the Women to Watch Awards. As a member of the Trustee Circle, you also will receive a direct link from the Path to Politics web page to the web page of your choice within your company, firm or individual website.

If you are interested in being a Trustee Circle member, host a Path to Politics or have any questions about this program,  please contact Jessica Grounds, We also welcome ideas for speakers, so please feel free to send suggestions.

To read about the 2011 Path to Politics Series, click here.

To read about the 2010 Path to Politics Series, click here.

To read about the 2009 Path to Politics Series, click here.

Pictures from our 2010 March Path to Politics Session: