Illinois Women’s Institute for Leadership
by IWIL Executive Director Christina Nowinski, @iwilinfo
For more than 15 years, the Illinois Women’s Institute for Leadership (IWIL) has been working to propel and empower women to hold elected and appointed positions in the state of Illinois. Each year, IWIL selects approximately 12 women to participate in an intensive 8-month program consisting of training in campaign fundraising, public speaking, communications, voter contact and political media. As we see nationwide surges in contested elections and watch as politics takes center stage in the conversation about our nation’s future, this critical, in-depth training program has become more important than ever.
It is of the utmost importance for us to spread the word about our organization to all parts of Illinois to ensure a diverse 2018 class. We strive to elevate women in public service from across our great state to promote best practices within our communities and to connect women from all locations with a vast network of industry experts. By creating this pipeline of effective leaders and community members, IWIL works year-round to promote equal representation in the decision-making bodies of our community, whether they be local school boards, State Legislatures, or the U.S. House of Representatives.
Helping ambitious, qualified women gain entry into the smoke filled back rooms previously occupied by the boys’ club has been IWIL’s objective from the beginning, and our action networks and partner organizations are an incredible resource for our delegates and alumnae. Having more women in elected office also translates to wider action networks for all of us to get involved.
After all, Debbie Walsh at the Center for American Women and Politics and Rutgers University said recently, “if you’re not at the table, you’re probably on the menu.” IWIL and our partners strive to bring talented, experienced women to the table because where one women succeeds, we all succeed.
For their commitment to our cause and our classes past and present, we offer a warm and appreciative thank you to the IDCCA for your continued support of IWIL’s mission and alumnae.
If you are interested in applying for IWIL’s class of 2018, please find our application form and more information at IWILinfo.com/application. We hope that you will take the plunge and run for office, and we want to help you succeed! Applications are now open through October 13th.