Eli J. & Phyllis N. Segal Citizen Leadership Program

Segal Fellow/Founder 2020 Election Spotlight

"Taking Election Action" Participants Pictured Above (Left to Right, Top to Bottom) Program Coordinator Kyle Richard, Director Susie Flug-Silva, 2008 Segal Fellow Jason Gray, 2020 Segal Fellow Paul Nolan, 2019 Segal Fellow Leah Shafer, (not pictured) 2020 Segal Fellow Irma Zamarripa

Throughout 2020, we held a series of communities of practice for Segal Fellows focused on political engagement and election/census work and volunteering. In October 2020, we held our Community of Practice on “Taking Election Action” and how to be engaged through and beyond Election Day. The conversation was facilitated by 2009 Brandeis Segal Fellow Jason Gray. Jason helped build the field program in Wisconsin for President Obama's re-election in 2012. In 2016,  he oversaw the Hillary Clinton Campaign’s program to train field staff that grew from a few hundred to 2000+ organizers. Jason worked from home as a volunteer and donor. He and the other participants shared a number of ways to take action through election day and the importance of continuing to push for democracy and voting rights after the November 3rd 2021 Election. Below are some of the ways in which the Segal Fellow community helped their fellow citizens realize their voice through voting. If you are interested in receiving the password to the watch the video from this conversation, please reach out to Kyle at krichard@brandeis.edu.


2014 Segal Fellow David Duhalde (pictured on left) at a get out the vote event in PA

Fellow Election Spotlight

2014 Heller/MPP Segal Fellow David Duhalde: I am a Senior Candidate Services Liaison for NYC Campaign Finance Board. In a volunteer role, I serve as the DSA Fund Vice-Chair doing public education around democratic socialism. I am also on the DSA's International Committee steering committee. My goals and aspirations are to help people get jobs. I have a jobs list that I send on a weekly basis and am happy to add fellows looking for work. To help assist in the election for the BIPOC community, I have led get out the vote drives in communities most marginalized by voter suppression.

Pictured: Segal Program Founder Cori Flam special guest speaker at Founder election based event

Founder Election Spotlight

On October 15th, 2020, Segal Founders and others, including Phyllis Segal, Arnie Kanter, Marcia Greenberger and Ernest Haddad, co-hosted a conversation on how lawyers -- practicing, retired, recovering -- could support electing Joe Biden and Kamala Harris in the final weeks of the campaign. They discussed how lawyers could use their skills to protect voters in this election. More specifically, they explained how you can become a remote voter protection volunteer. 

With special guest and Segal Founder Cori Flam (Pictured Left), Statewide Co-Lead Counsel for Voter Protection for the Florida Democratic Party, the panel consisted of practicing, recovered and retired lawyers who live in places where there is no concern to their vote being counted talking about how to help those who don't have secure voting access.


October 2020 Fellow Spotlight Irma Zamarripa

Because of the Segal Program, I was able to explore my identity as a leader who is passionate about social justice. 

Growing up in Texas, I always understood the importance of using my voice and intersecting identities as catalysts for positive social change. Upon entering college, I learned what it meant to think critically about issues I am passionate about, like education and community political engagement. As a Segal Fellow, I was excited to be matched with NALEO Educational Fund for my Segal Summer Internship. At first, I wanted to gain a better understanding of the role nonprofit organizations have in raising awareness about important issues like the 2020 Census and voting. After finishing this internship, I achieved this goal and was able to envision myself as a future leader in the realm of law and politics. 


During my time at NALEO Educational Fund, we developed important projects across the state of Texas to help raise awareness about the #2020Census and voting in the upcoming elections. First was the Texas Road Trip project, which was a virtual event where we were able to connect with important organizations and influential leaders across the state of Texas in order to highlight the importance and implications of participating in the 2020 Census. This opportunity was very meaningful to me because I saw the positive impacts these efforts can have on others, especially underrepresented communities like Latinx communities. It allowed me to understand why they are some of the most undercounted populations across the United States; there are many misunderstandings, fears, and lack of resources associated with the Census, especially within immigrant families. NALEO Educational Fund helps combat these challenges by creating interactive educational opportunities like this road trip. Latinx communities across Texas were able to engage with trusted community speakers and learn about the benefits of getting counted and making their voices heard.

I was also able to connect with other citizen leaders, as well as other Segal Fellows, on an Advocacy 101 Panel. I developed this panel with our colleagues at Texas Counts to empower emerging leaders to participate in civic engagement opportunities. It highlighted community leaders from across the nation who are currently doing social justice work in fields ranging from politics to civic engagement efforts. This opportunity was very important to professional development; I gained valuable insight and skills on how to maintain young generation’s motivation under some of the most stressful conditions like the COVID-19 pandemic that we continue to face as a nation. 

Being part of the Segal Network has provided me with so many opportunities to connect with other Segal Fellows, some of who even supported me in brainstorming for my Advocacy 101 panel, and Fellow John Valinch even served as part of the panel. It has given me a community of amazing leaders to rely on when I need support and motivation. Over the course of the spring Segal Citizen Leadership Curriculum, and now to the end of my internship, I feel I have grown in my ability to leverage my own strengths and experiences towards creating positive change in the world. In a time in which, now more than ever, more people need to be involved in their communities, it is good to know that I can be a useful ally in their efforts.