In Focus This Week
Disaster narrowly averted
U.S. to remain in Universal Postal Union
By Tammy Patrick, senior advisor Elections
The Democracy Fund
During the Vietnam War, I started collecting stamps off the envelopes my uncles would send home while serving overseas. I loved carefully cutting the colorful stamps off of the envelope – edged in red and blue to denote Air Mail – and having their letters read to me off of the thin, onion-skin of the stationary. I understood early on that connections to home, no matter why you were away, are important.
In the years since, I have devoted my professional career to breaking down the impediments voters may potentially face based on ability, language skills – and in the case of Uniformed and Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA) voters – time and distance from the polls.
I first heard of the potential United States withdrawal from the Universal Postal Union while attending the National Postal Forum this spring. My immediate reaction was to think of the possible additional hurdles that military and overseas voters would subsequently have to overcome to effectively participate in the franchise. I knew that if the United States withdrew there would be additional challenges faced by millions of voters overseas—adding to the long list of existing barriers.
When talking to state and local officials about the possible withdrawal over the summer at conferences across the country, the concern was palpable. What to tell voters? How much would it now cost to send and receive ballots if the only options were private carriers and companies? The answer was an increase from an average of around $7.00 per ballot to a range of $30-70.00 per ballot.
Would election officials legally be able to consider the time/date stamp on a return ballot packet as a “postmark”? Would electronic return channel utilization increase? What would that mean in terms of cyber security and increased vulnerabilities?
Fortunately, Deputy Post Master General Ronald Stroman and Election Mail Management Specialist Dan Bentley understand that tens of millions of American voters receive their ballot not by a poll worker, but from their postal carrier; and that delivering democracy is one of the USPS’s most critical functions. Thankfully the United States Postal Service (USPS) championed the need to consider election mail in the UPU withdrawal conversation at the very highest level of the agency.
Yesterday, September 25, at the Extraordinary Congress meeting of the UPU in Geneva, an agreement was reached to remedy the disparity in rates to the satisfaction of the United States so that we will remain in the Union. There will be no interruption in mail delivery globally. Ballots mailed out last week to voters will have the ability to be returned by post.
Disaster narrowly averted.
However, as details of the agreement unfold it will be important to understand the impact on prices for ballots. CNBC reports “the bulk of the changes would apply to letters and packages, under 4.4 lbs., sent internationally. While a relatively small subset of global commerce, it captures military mail, absentee ballots, retail catalogs, trade journals and light e-commerce purchases.” While we don’t anticipate that the increase will rival that of the prices private carriers, there may be changes to watch out for. Election officials should follow the Federal Voting Assistance Program’s guidelines on use of the proper postal indicia.
This is an important wake-up call—election officials can make absolutely no assumptions when it comes to the infrastructure we rely on to serve the public. We’ve learned the same lesson in regard to cybersecurity (and those jurisdictions who have experienced natural disasters)—but election offices in the best of times are under-resourced compared to other government agencies and departments, and are often expected to perform at a much higher level. Nothing less than perfect is the goal—to the voters, and to the election officials who serve them.
As Alton Dillard of Denver Elections so eloquently said to me, “easier to be prepared than to get ready.” Moving forward, we must incorporate contingency plans for future scenarios, and leverage this moment to champion the resources needed to ensure we leave no voter behind.
I breathe a sigh of relief that we did not withdraw from the UPU. My normal, eternal-optimism was tested, but I am thrilled that ballots will be able to be mailed out to and returned from voters around the globe—along with those very important letters home like those I received decades ago.
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2019 Clearie Awards
EAC Opens Submission Period in Fourth Annual Clearies
Celebrating Best Practices in Election Administration
The U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) is seeking submissions for its fourth annual national Clearinghouse Awards. Dubbed the “Clearies” for short, the awards provide election offices an opportunity to share their innovative efforts and celebrate successes. The Clearies play an important role in furthering the EAC’s responsibilities under the Help America Vote Act of 2002 (HAVA). Under that Act, the EAC serves as a clearinghouse for election administration information.
The Commission will present awards in the categories of outstanding innovations in elections, improving voting accessibility for voters with disabilities, and recruiting, training and retaining election workers. It will also award a special award in 2019 recognizing the most original and creative “I Voted” sticker submitted for consideration. Entries from all sizes of jurisdictions, both large and small, are encouraged to submit their work. All entries must be received by Monday, November 25, 2019. The 2018 winners of the Clearie awards can be found here.
“The EAC Clearie Awards celebrate the innovative and creative approaches that election officials use each day in their work to serve voters,” said EAC Chairwoman Christy McCormick. “These awards are a testament to their work and dedication and highlight best practices that other election administrators can emulate.”
This year’s entries will be judged using the following criteria:
- Outreach efforts
- Creating positive Results
Election officials utilize innovative and resourceful initiatives on Election Day. We want to hear about these outstanding best practices in EAC’s 2019 competition. By incorporating Election Day into the submission deadline, we are able to capture activities implemented throughout the 2018 and 2019 elections.
All submissions should be sent to the EAC via an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Nominators should use the following subject lines based on entry category: Election Worker Competition, Accessibility Competition, Outstanding Innovations Competition, or Sticker Competition.
All entries must include a summary of the election program nominated. Entrants may attach relevant documents, images and links that can be used to assess the entry. Submissions should also include contact information for the person submitting the program for consideration. Each entry must be submitted in a separate email.
For more information about this year’s competition, please contact Patrick Leahy at email@example.com.
Election Security Updates
Late last week, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell expressed support for providing states with an additional $250 million for election security.
“I’m proud the financial services and the general government bill included a bipartisan amendment providing another $250 million from the administration to help states improve their defenses and shore up their voting systems,” McConnell said according to The Washington Post. “I’m proud to have helped develop this amendment and co-sponsor it in committee.”
Although at press time he hadn’t had a chance to meet new National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien, CISA Director Christopher Krebs told Meritalk that he believes O’Brien will take security seriously and will allow CISA a great opportunity to continue improving cybersecurity efforts.
2019 Election Updates
Connecticut: The Connecticut State Elections Enforcement Commission vote 4-0 this week to open an investigation and issue subpoenas regarding allegations of absentee ballot irregularities in the recent Democratic primary in Bridgeport won by incumbent Mayor Joe Ganim. Hearst Connecticut Media first reported widespread problems that occurred in the primary, including absentee ballot votes that had been submitted by at least two people who were not Democrats and at least 10 others who voted even though their names did not appear on the state’s list of registered voters. Hearst also reported that at least two convicted felons, who were not eligible to vote, had cast absentee ballots. According to The Hartford Courant, the commission said it would move quickly because the general election is scheduled for Nov. 5, but officials conceded that investigations are time-consuming as investigators track down witnesses and obtain statements about what happened on primary day. In addition to the state-run investigation, three voters have filed suit in Bridgeport Superior Court seeking a new election. “If election officials and people running campaigns are also under the hot seat, and they are aware that people are watching this time and to make sure it happens in a fair way, that we will get fair results and there won’t be issues of interference or absentee ballot abuse anymore,” Prerna Rao, who represents the voters told WSHU.
Election News This Week
Automatic for the people! An update this week on two states’ efforts to bring automatic voter registration to their residents. On Tuesday, as part of National Voter Registration Day, Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson announced that the state had quietly launched its automatic voter registration system earlier this. Preliminary data from the Secretary of State suggests automatic voter registration already is increasing voter registration in Michigan. Through the first two weeks of implementation, Michigan processed 46,527 registration transactions, an average of 4,653 per business day. By comparison, in the first two full weeks of September 2017, Michigan processed 40,022 transactions, or about 4,002 per business day. In West Virginia, Donald Kersey, general counsel to Secretary of State Mac Warner, told legislators it will take the office another 14 to 18 months to implement automatic voter registration at the Division of Motor Vehicles, a law enacted in 2016. According to the Charleston Gazette, while Kersey cited technology as the holdup in implementing motor voter, a report from the Secretary of State’s Office provided to legislators also raises philosophical objections to AVR. The report states: “It is important that the Legislature is aware that the vast majority of county clerks are foundationally opposed to AVR. WVSOS supports the clerks’ position that this law has the unintended implication of being practically unnecessary in light of regular registration efforts currently taking place without AVR.”
The Wisconsin Elections Commission voted to approve a new $1.1 million grant program for election security. According to the Minneapolis Star-Journal, all Wisconsin municipalities and counties could apply for up to $1,200 each to make security upgrades. The money could be used for such things as purchasing new computers, upgrading operating systems and paying for technical support.
Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson recently announced that Ashiya Brown, an audit and database management expert in the Department of Health and Human Services, will serve as the state’s first-ever full-time elections security specialist. “The security of our elections in Michigan has always been of paramount importance to all of my predecessors, and you’ve not seen evidence of the types of potential threats that have impacted systems in other states,” Benson told The Detroit Free Press. “But that said, the threats to our elections did not end in 2016, and they will continue to evolve, and we must be prepared.” The position will be “dedicated to coordinating Michigan’s overall election security plan, and working with state and federal partners to assess, train and communicate with our local election officials on election security best practices.”
Not all sticker news is good news unfortunately! The Lycoming County, Pennsylvania Voter Services office has had to issue a warning to write-in campaigns who are considering handing out stickers to voters so voters can affix those stickers to the county’s new paper ballots. “Please do not affix stickers, labels, stamps, or other additional material to a ballot to cast a write-in vote,” according to a Voter Services statement. “While not prohibited by law, the use of stickers is strongly discouraged because it can prevent individual ballots from being scanned or even damage the precinct scanning equipment.” The Pennsylvania Election Code, passed in 1937, allows for stickers to be placed on ballots, so it cannot be forbidden, however the office has taken a position against stickers because it may cause the machine to jam or the stickers may be removed during the scanning process.
Personnel News: Shona L. Mack Pollock has been sworn in as Passaic County, New Jersey Elections Superintendent in Paterson. Charles Crump has resigned as the Natchez, Mississippi city clerk. Kristi Royston has been hired as the Gwinnett County, Georgia elections supervisor. She’d been running the office on an interim basis since July. Deborah Poulalion, a data analyst and community activist, announced her campaign for Seminole County, Florida Supervisor of Elections this week. Jennifer Robinson has retired as the Town of Queen Creek, Arizona clerk after 24 years on the job. Dale L. Sibley has been chosen as the new Caddo Parish, Louisiana registrar of voters. Sumner County, Tennessee Administrator of Elections Lori Atchley has resigned.
In Memoriam: Patricia Spencer, city clerk of Elmhurst, Illinois died Friday of metastatic breast cancer. She was 69. Spencer was mid-way through her fourth term as city clerk. In addition to serving as the town’s chief elections official, Spencer also was a board member with the Kiwanis Club, Elmhurst Art Museum Board, Elmhurst Hospital Guild, and Elmhurst Garden Club, she was an advocate for cancer awareness through the Relay for Life and the Edward-Elmhurst cancer outreach programs. “It was a privilege to have worked alongside Patty,” Elmhurst Mayor Steve Morley said in an email to The Chicago Tribune. “She touched the lives of many, making friends wherever she went. She will forever hold a place in Elmhurst’s history.”
Report and Research Summaries
Utah’s Office of the Legislative Auditor General released an audit report on same day voter registration in the state this month. The report, A Performance Audit of Same Day Voter Registration Controls, finds that there is “very little risk for fraudulent voting” due to the requirement that same day registrants cast provisional ballots and additional controls. The audit examined same day registrations in seven sample counties in 2018, identifying a small number of attempted double votes from the same individual (97 ballots of the total 781,204 cast, or 0.012 percent) and highlighting that all these attempted double votes were identified and appropriately rejected.
The Institute for Democracy and Higher Education at Tufts University released data and reports on college student voting in the 2018 midterms last week. Summarizing data from the 2018 National Study of Learning, Voting, and Engagement (NSLVE), the national-level report, Democracy Counts 2018: Increased Student and Institutional Engagement, examines the voting behavior of 10 million students at 1,031 colleges and universities across the country. Key findings include:
- The national student voting rate in 2018 was 40.3 percent.
- College students turned out to vote at double the rate from the last midterms. Across all NSLVE campuses, the average institutional rate in 2018 was 39.1 percent (up nearly 20 percentage points from 19.7 percent in 2014).
- Women in college continued to vote at the highest rates in 2018, with Black women maintaining their position as the most active voters on campus, and Hispanic women making the most significant gains.
- Every racial/ethnic group of students had a higher voting rate in 2018 than in 2014.
- The largest voting rate increase across racial/ethnic groups was among Hispanic students, up 22.5 percentage points (from 14 percent in 2014 to 36.5 percent in 2018).
The Ad Council and Democracy Works released a report on voter mobilization messaging this week. The report, Driving Voting Turnout in 2020: Research on Effective Messaging Strategies for Each Generation, examines attitudes toward and perceptions of voting among generational age groups and seeks to determine which message frames could be most effective at driving participation in 2020. The study explores five message frames: issues (“I vote because there are important issues that deserve my attention and action”); empowerment (“I matter as a member of society and, therefore, so does my vote”); identity (“I am a voter”); companionship (“I vote because I feel inspired by the people around me who take pride in voting”); and plan/ease (“voting is important, but the logistics of voting can be a hurdle to me”). Key findings include:
- Messages that speak to issues have the broadest appeal across all generations, followed by messages of empowerment and identity.
- Gen Z (those born after 1996) is excited about voting and highly engaged in voting-related activities like following debates and sharing information about candidates. This generation responds best to issue messaging, with empowerment a close second.
- Despite reports or perceptions that Americans are cynical about the state of politics or democracy today, most greatly value their right to vote and view voting as a civic duty.
(Research and Report Summaries are written by David Kuennen.)
Massachusetts: House Bill 40-70, which left the Joint Committee on Election Laws with a favorable review last week would change the way elections officials are appointed in the commonwealth. Under the current law, the heads of the state’s two major political parties, Republican and Democrat, choose the candidate for that director position. But the bill lawmakers want to pass would give that power to the Secretary of State, the Attorney General, and the Governor to decide.
Oregon: According to The Oregonian, Secretary of State Bev Clarno’s office is considering asking the Legislature to make the secretary’s office nonpartisan.
Indiana: A June 2020 trial date has been set in a federal lawsuit alleging that Allen County Sheriff David Gladieux prevented hundreds of jail inmates from voting in the 2016 election. According to The Journal Gazette, The class-action lawsuit filed in 2017 in U.S. District Court in Fort Wayne claims Gladieux “systematically disenfranchised hundreds of eligible voters held in the Allen County Jail during the 2016 general election by refusing to provide them absentee ballots or alternative access to the polls.”
Michigan: Southfield, Michigan City Clerk Sherikia Hawkins has been charged with six election fraud felonies in connection with the 2018 election. According to The Detroit Free Press, allegedly altered 193 absentee voter records, but the changes did not have an impact on the election results in the city, Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson said. According to a Michigan State Police affidavit describing the crime, Oakland County elections officials discovered the issue during a post-election audit of Southfield’s election results. Hawkins was charged with falsifying returns or records; forgery of a public record; misconduct in office, and three counts of using a computer to commit a felony. The charges carry a maximum penalty of up to 14 years in prison and $30,000 in fines.
Nebraska: In a seven-page opinion, Attorney General Doug Preston wrote that the appointment of election commissioner’s in three of the state’s largest counties was “constitutionally suspect”. Election commissioners in three counties – Douglas, Lancaster, and Sarpy – are appointed by the governor, while county commissioners do the appointing in Buffalo, Cass, Hall, and Platte counties. All told, the seven counties make up a majority of the state’s voting population. The attorney general supported Civic Nebraska’s assertion that county election officials and chief deputy election commissioners are county officers, and therefore must be elected and not appointed.
New Hampshire: Superior Court Judge David Anderson has set a bench trial date in the suit that challenges the 2017 law, SB3. The trail would begin on Dec. 2 and run for about two weeks.
Rhode Island: Sometimes it takes a while for legal news to trickle out. Case in point, in late 2018 a group of current and former Rhode Island students sued the governor and Department of Education arguing that the state violates the students’ constitutional right to an adequate civics education. “The state defendants have failed to provide the named plaintiffs and tens of thousands of other students in the state of Rhode Island an education that is adequate to prepare them to function properly as civics participants capable of voting, serving on a jury, understanding economic, social and political systems sufficiently to make informed choices, and to participate effectively in civics activities,” the complaint reads. The state attempted to have the suit dismissed arguing that it was a local matter, but in July the judge denied the state’s request allowing the case to proceed.
Utah: San Juan County will pay $2.6 million in legal fees to make a settlement in the massive voting rights lawsuit between the county and the Navajo Nation. The settlement was approved at a special meeting of the San Juan County Commission on September 24. The $2.6 million is for the Navajo Nation attorney fees.
Windows 7: Microsoft announced this week that as part of their Defending Democracy Program they will provide free security updates for federally certified voting systems running Windows 7 through the 2020 election.
ES&S Certification — ES&S voting systems using Windows 10 operating systems have been certified by the U.S. Election Assistance Commission. EVS 184.108.40.206, will now be sent to respective states for state testing and approval. This Windows 10 upgrade is just the latest step being taken by ES&S to enhance election systems prior to the 2020 elections.
Kansas: Several Kansas counties reported that in early August their websites were hacked including two counties — Brown and Chautauqua — that were hosting primary elections that day. “This incident did not, in any way, interfere with the terms of conducting the election,” Sandy Carter, Brown County’s information technology director said in response to a reporter’s questions. “The election staff was able to continue with the process of the election without interruption.” Several other county elections sites were hacked as well, but those counties were not hosting primaries. All the counties used the same vendor for their sites, Thomas Reuters.
Oregon: Jackson County is joining a growing number of localities testing out the use of mobile voting for military and overseas voters. Around 400 registered voters will have the chance to vote on their smartphone in the upcoming November election.
Pennsylvania: The commonwealth recently launched a portal to allow residents to apply for an absentee ballot online and this week Gov. Tom Wolf announced that more than 4,300 voters had applied for their absentee ballot in the first week of the system. “The success of letting people apply online for an absentee ballot proves that Pennsylvanians want voting to be more accessible,” Wolf said in a press release. “This was an important next step to modernize our elections and I hope it encourages more voters to participate in our democracy.”
Opinions This Week
Alabama: Voter fraud
Arizona: Election security
Florida: Get out the vote
Indiana: National Voter Registration Day
Kansas: League of Women Voters
Maine: Ranked choice voting
Massachusetts: Voting age
Oregon: Secretary of state
South Carolina: Election dates
Washington: King County
West Virginia; Voting rights
Request for Information
IT-ISAC Elections Industry Special Interest Group Request for Formation
On August 15, 2019, the IT-ISAC Elections Industry Special Interest Group released a paper that detailed the commitment of voting systems manufacturers to the development and implementation of corporate Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure (CVD) Programs.
The white paper also noted the value of Crowd-Sourced CVD programs and discussed potential challenges in applying such programs to the elections industry and noted that the SIG would create a Request for Information to solicit feedback on how crowd-sourced CVD programs could be implemented in the elections industry.
The IT-ISAC Elections Industry Special Interest Group seeks public input, comments and suggestions on the following challenges:
- How to manage a crowd-sourced CVD program on systems that are designed to be closed, isolated, and disconnected from the Internet including stand-alone embedded systems?
- How to ensure that those engaging in a crowd-sourced CVD program are not nefarious actors seeking sensitive information that can then be used in attacks against the elections’ infrastructure?
- How best to ensure the confidentiality of the researcher findings so that vulnerability announcements are disclosed simultaneously with a fix or mitigation for the vulnerability
Comments and input should please be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org by October 21, 2019
NCSL Redistricting Seminar — It’s almost time to redraw districts—and it’s definitely time to plan for it. When it comes to redistricting, the learning curve is steep. Let the National Conference of State Legislatures help you and your team prepare for this complex, once-a-decade task. Where: Columbus, Ohio. When: October 24-27.
IGO 2020 Mid-Winter Conference — The International Association of Government Officials will hold its 2020 Mid-Winter Conference in Isle of Palms, South Carolina in January of 2020. Check back here for more details as they become available. Where: Isle of Palms, South Carolina. When: Jan. 20-24.
NASED Winter 2020 — Twice a year, the National Association of State Election Directors members gather to discuss the latest developments in election administration. Members of the public are welcome to attend at the non-member registration rate. Check back here for more information about the Winter 2020 Conference. Where: Washington, DC. When: January 30-February 2.
NASS Winter 2020 — The National Association of Secretaries of State will hold their Winter 2020 conference at the Fairmont Hotel in Washington, D.C.’s West End. Check back here for more information about the Winter 2020 conference when it becomes available. Where: Washington, D.C. When: January 30-February 2.
Job Postings This Week
electionlineWeekly publishes election administration job postings each week as a free service to our readers. To have your job listed in the newsletter, please send a copy of the job description, including a web link to email@example.com. Job postings must be received by 5pm on Wednesday in order to appear in the Thursday newsletter. Listings will run for three weeks or till the deadline listed in the posting.
Campaign Finance Supervisor, Arizona Secretary of State — The Campaign Finance Supervisor serves to administer and supervise statutory campaign finance filing and reporting duties for the Arizona Secretary of State’s office. Key responsibilities include: (1) establishing yearly campaign finance reporting schedules for committees and Standing committees; (2) processing notifications and enforcement requirements for out of compliance committees; (3) providing evidence and documents to the Attorney General for Reasonable Cause and filing violations; (4) adjusting and publishing campaign contribution limits and officeholder expense account limits biannually per election cycle; (5) creating and providing adjusted Clean Elections Act expenditure and contribution limits. This Campaign Finance Supervisor offers campaign finance-related customer service to individuals, organizations, clubs, or other entities interested in elections and campaign finance. He or she serves as primary point of contact for required campaign finance reporting of contributions and expenditures for all political committees registered with the Secretary of State. The Campaign Finance Supervisor will utilize a web-based campaign finance filing software program for electronic filing and viewing of required reports. Additionally, this position will research, create, edit, and publish handbooks relating to campaign finance and reporting, and will conduct campaign finance training workshops statewide. Other duties may include: researching election related topics, compiling information, and analyzing policies and procedures for various Secretary of State publications; interact with management and staff on a variety of complex or sensitive issues; conduct and prepare a variety of research projects alongside management and staff; interact with citizens, candidates, or county and local officials on a variety of complex or sensitive issues; explain election related information to citizens desiring to participate in the election process; explain election related requirements to potential candidates (e.g., qualifications, filing dates, filing requirements or other regulations); assist county and municipal election officials with election related inquiries and requirements. Salary: 45,000.00-55,774.00. Deadline: Sept. 27. Application: For the compete job listing and to apply, click here.
Data & Analytics Director, Voto Latino — Voto Latino seeks a Data & Analytics Director to build a program to track, support, and optimize our rapidly growing online and offline outreach to young and diverse voters. We know that Latinx voters are poised to be the largest minority voting bloc in 2020, with more than 800,000 Latinx citizens become eligible to vote each year. Voto Latino, building on a track record of organizational successes since 2004, is ready to take on this challenge, with the guidance and support of a great Data & Analytics Director. This position will work across teams — field, political, digital, communications — and act as the central data resource and key strategist for all of Voto Latino’s campaigns and programs. This position will be responsible for building and implementing sophisticated targeting programs nationally for both our growing online and on-the-ground efforts. There will be a strong focus on key states for civic and electoral engagement, working with data vendors, visualizing data and analytics, learning from historic and contemporary data, and managing Voto Latino’s voter outreach data. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Deputy Registrar of Voters, Lake County, California — Attention Elections Rockstars and Public Servants! The Office of Registrar of Voters in Lake County, CA is recruiting for a Deputy Registrar of Voters (ROV). Consider joining the team! This is a unique opportunity for a strong candidate with some elections and/or local government experience to jump into a leadership position within a small elections department. This is a time of change for the Office of the Registrar of Voters on a number of fronts and we are seeking a Deputy Registrar of Voters that welcomes learning and teaching new practices, has strong project management skills, and is voter/customer focused. The County of Lake has 33,000 active registered voters and is home to beautiful Clear Lake, the largest freshwater lake in the State. The Office of the Registrar of Voters is located in the County Courthouse building in Lakeport, CA. Deadline: September 30. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Global Election Technology and Cybersecurity Advisor, IFES — IFES seeks a Global Election Technology and Cybersecurity Advisor to counter evolving threats to democratic processes stemming from changes in election technology and cyber vulnerabilities. This individual will work closely with frontline defenders and elections experts around the world to help democratic institutions flourish in the face of rising anti-democratic trends. IFES’ Election Technology and Cybersecurity Advisor understands the unique and varying dimensions of cybersecurity in the elections context, and has demonstrated expertise and innovation in analyzing threats and proposing and implementing solutions to mitigate or manage those threats. He or she is an expert in election technologies and cybersecurity. As such, he or she understands the institutions and processes involved in elections, has demonstrated an ability to partner closely with relevant actors globally, and is oriented toward countering current challenges as well as anticipating future threats. At the same time, he or she understands the critical importance of transparency and verifiability in the elections context and how to advance these principles without compromising security. He or she understands the cross-cutting nature of election technology and model’s collaboration with electoral advisors in other technical fields such as legal/regulatory reform, inclusive political processes, and strategic communications. He or she maintains strategic relationships with a range of actors, such as governments, donors, EMBs, judiciaries, INGOs, foundations, technology vendors and other technology actors. He or she is actively tracking next generation challenges such as machine learning, artificial intelligence, and quantum computing – and the challenges they might pose for the electoral process. The Global Election Technology and Cybersecurity Advisor will report to the Senior Director (Applied Research, Learning and Strategy) in the Center for Applied Research and Learning. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Global New Media and Disinformation Advisor, IFES — IFES’ New Media and Disinformation Advisor is an expert in new media and the challenges stemming from disinformation in political and electoral contexts. As such, he or she has a deep understanding of how new media is being used in the context of elections around the world, with a commitment to confronting existing challenges as well as anticipating tomorrow’s threats. This individual is well-versed in the dynamics of major social media platforms, understands challenges and developments in the regulation of these platforms, and closely follows the emergence of the next generation of challenges in this space. He or she is also versed in the technological shifts underpinning this issue set, including data-mining and privacy, artificial intelligence, deep fakes and quantum computing that will enable a forward-looking perspective on emerging threats to electoral processes stemming from technological changes. He or she understands the cross-cutting nature of new media challenges and models collaboration with regional experts and electoral advisors in other technical fields such a legal/regulatory reform, cybersecurity, inclusion, and public outreach. He or she maintains strategic relationships with a range of actors working or thinking in this space, such as governments, technology and new media companies, donors, election administrators, judiciaries, INGOs, academics and foundations. The Global New Media and Disinformation Advisor will report to the Senior Director (Applied Research, Learning and Strategy) in the Center for Applied Research and Learning. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Program Director, National Voter Registration Day — We are seeking a Program Director to organize and rally key national partners around one of the most prominent and important civic holidays in the nation – National Voter Registration Day – held on the fourth Tuesday of every September. In 2020, we aim to break past years’ records and register over one million voters with the help of over 50 major national partners and 4,500 field partners. To do this we require a creative and entrepreneurial Program Director with sincere people skills and a passion for civic engagement and democracy. Salary: $68,000 and $76,000. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Project Manager, Hart InterCivic— Project Managers at Hart InterCivic are highly motivated “self-starters” who are enthusiastic about providing exceptional customer service. Working with other members of the Professional Services and Operations teams, the Project Manager directs activity, solves problems, and develops lasting and strong relationships with our customers. Hart InterCivic’s unique and industry known culture of innovation, transparency, and customer-centric focus creates an environment where team members will continually grow and be challenged to develop their careers. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Product Manager, Hart InterCivic — as Product Manager, you will join a team that is charged with product planning, design, and execution throughout the lifecycle of Hart’s products, in support of the company’s overall strategy and goals. This includes: gathering, validating, and prioritizing internal and external customer needs; documenting and communicating product and technical requirements; gathering market and competitive intelligence; supporting the certification, sales, and marketing teams. The Product Manager must possess a unique blend of business and technical savvy – with experience in elections technology or other government-oriented products preferred. To succeed in this role, the ideal candidate must spend time in the market to understand its unique attributes; demonstrate competence with specialized hardware and software; and find innovative solutions for the broader market. The Product Manager plays a key role in helping others to understand the product positioning, key benefits, and target customer, as well as providing advanced subject matter expertise in using the company’s products. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Research Analyst II, National Conference of State Legislatures— The Research Analyst II position performs increasingly more independent research tasks requiring more extensive contact with legislators, staff, and others, though rarely on a face-to-face basis. An employee at this level should demonstrate a solid understanding of NCSL’s primary constituencies, its structure, services and information resources. The work consists largely of handling information requests, assisting with surveys, developing short reports and articles, and summarizing legislation or information for longer publications. The work is performed in collaboration with other redistricting and elections team members within established program guidelines or project specifications. All major work products are reviewed by more senior professionals or program managers/directors for quality, policy considerations, form, and substance. The employee will have, or will develop, expertise on elections administration and to a lesser degree on redistricting, state-level politics and campaign finance. The work includes research, writing, maintaining internal and external documents and resources, developing connections with state legislators and legislative staff as well as meeting planning. Salary: $3,634/month. Deadline: October 4. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
Software Sales Specialist, VOTEC— VOTEC’s Sales Specialist is responsible for creating news sales with prospects and existing clients in targeted areas in the US. We are looking for an election professional comfortable using insight and consultative selling techniques to create interest that offers unique solutions on their operations, which link back to VOTEC’s solutions. Application: For the complete job listing and to apply, click here.
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