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Center for Popular Democracy

The Center for Popular Democracy works to create equity, opportunity and a dynamic democracy in partnership with high-impact base-building affiliate organizations.

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Voter Mobilization
Voter Protection
New York
Area Served
Community, Duty, Equality, Liberty
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Andrew Friedman
Co-Executive Director
Prior to CPD, Andrew Friedman co-founded Make the Road New York and oversaw its growth from a volunteer run effort to an $8 million, democratically-run, immigrant-led community organization in New York State. Andrew has worked with the Latino Workers’ Center, the Neighborhood Defender Service of Harlem, the Center for Urban Community Services and other groups, and is an adjunct professor at NYU, where he holds his law degree. His B.A. is from Columbia.
Ana María Archila
Co-Executive Director
Ana María Archila emigrated to the U.S. from Colombia at the age of 17 and has become a leading voice for racial justice, economic justice and immigrant rights in New York and nationally, first as co-Executive Director of Make the Road New York, and now as co-Executive Director of CPD.
Roger Scott
Roger executes projects with branding and storytelling at the forefront. For the past 15 years, he’s created content that’s helped Nike and Boeing bring to life visions and digital strategies for their brands; he’s imagined customer journeys for Jawbone, LVMH, and Intel; and he’s designed product experiences for Sony and Nest.

The impact of your support

In the leadup to the 2020 election, the Center for Popular Democracy’s network of high-impact affiliate organizations will conduct unprecedented voter mobilization and turnout efforts, with a focus on communities of color. CPD affiliates are established in their local communities, and are experts at innovative practices that maximize the numbers of people they can reach, involve, and influence year-round. 

With your support, we can:

  • Register 500,000 new voters through our on-the-ground affiliate organizations;
  • Advocate for ballot measures on issues that will define the terms of discourse in 2020, including voting rights and economic, racial and climate justice; and
  • Carry out an unprecedented, multi-layered GOTV effort, culminating in a projected 7 million doors knocked, millions of emails, texts, digital contacts, phone calls, and more.

Why this work is important

It is clear that our democracy is broken, and it did not get that way by accident. The culmination of the decades-long strategic assault on majoritarian democracy, participation and collective action has neutered the power of people and in particular, communities of color. As a result, our government is less representative and less responsive to voters, and government decision-making is effectively insulated from the will of the people. Correspondingly, people are losing faith in the idea of democracy as a way they can collectively exercise power and make decisions. This has depressed political participation and engagement and made it harder to fight back against the dismantling of government and democratic institutions. Powerful grassroots organizing is a vital way to defend democratic values at this crucial moment and offer individuals an opportunity to work toward a positive future for our country.

Our track record

The Center for Popular Democracy’s network includes 53 community organizations in 34 states, Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico, representing a membership of over 600,000 people. In 2018, our partners contributed to large-scale voter registration drives and record turnout in the midterm elections. As a network, we registered over 400,000 voters, conducted sustained follow-up organizing and engagement with more than 500,000 previously registered voters, and ran get out the vote programs targeting more than 2 million voters. CPD believes that our 2018 and 2019 efforts serve as important testing grounds for 2020. Given the predicted close nature of many races in 2020, we expect that our partners and programs could very well impact elections across the country by implementing our model of integrated civic engagement.

Impact Updates
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