Model & Strategy
Vote.org uses technology to simplify political engagement, increase voter turnout, and strengthen American democracy.
Vote.org works to ensure that the electorate matches the population in terms of age, race, and income diversity. Their work is accomplished using a two-pronged approach:
1. Building and maintaining the Vote.org website and the Vote.org toolset. The free Vote.org toolset currently includes a voter registration tool, an absentee ballot tool, and a stand-alone election reminders tool.
2. Vote.org proactively reaches out to low-propensity voters and encourages them to vote using a variety of tactics, including one-to-one SMS outreach, digital ads, digital radio (Pandora and Spotify), billboards, and direct mail. Vote.org reaches out to low-propensity voters for a simple reason: increasing voter turnout starts with reaching voters who are unlikely to vote without additional encouragement.
Debra Cleaver founded Long Distance Voter in 2008 and she changed the name in 2016 to Vote.org.
Andrea Hailey, a recognized leader in philanthropy and politics, is the Acting CEO of Vote.org. She has spent decades as one of the top experts on millennial attitudes about activism and civic engagement. She founded the Civic Engagement Fund, an inclusive, values-driven organization accelerating innovative grassroots groups and building diverse coalitions that empower voter engagement in the United States. Throughout her career, Hailey has fervently served the next generation of leaders and people of color, helped launch Townhall Project, an organization that supported Majorie Stoneman Douglas students to conduct 100+ town halls during their tour advocating against gun violence. She also raised over a million dollars in under 60 days for the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial in 2007. In 2008 and 2010, she was honored with Pollie awards for her impact through media strategy and fundraising. A biracial millennial from Indianapolis, she began her career in the office of Rep. Patrick Kennedy. Andrea currently sits on the board of NARAL Pro-Choice America and serves on the leadership council of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture ambassadors program.
In 2016, Vote.org pioneered peer-to-peer SMS as a voter registration and Get-Out-The-Vote (GOTV) tactic. They also ran the country’s largest Election Day GOTV drive, providing polling place information to just under 1M potential voters.
In 2017, Vote.org ran multi-channel, nonpartisan, GOTV campaigns targeting low and mid-propensity young voters and voters of color in VA and AL. Vote.org purchased over 300 billboards in VA and AL (102M impressions); ran audio ads on satellite radio for six weeks (1.3M plays); proactively provided polling place information to over 1M voters via peer-to-peer text messages, and delivered over 200,000 pieces of direct mail to potential voters.
In 2018, 16M people visited the Vote.org website, and 8.2M used the Vote.org toolset. Vote.org also ran a proactive GOTV program targeting 40M voters in 29 states via billboards, direct mail, SMS messages, and fieldwork. Finally, Vote.org worked with Taylor Swift, Beyonce, and Barack Obama to activate young voters and voters of color.