Thank You Election Heroes

November 2, 2020
Thank You Election Heroes

Members of the Harvard and Cambridge community have been working tirelessly over the past days, months, and year to ensure that Harvard students, faculty, and staff have all the information and resources they need to participate in the 2020 election. Election Hero Day, today, November 2nd, is a chance for us to say, thank you. We appreciate the late-nights, early-mornings and endless hours you spent helping us and our democracy. 

There are hundred of people to thank, but here we've highlighted just a few of the many election heroes we want to show our appreciation: 

Lesley Waxman  

Assistant Director, Cambridge Elections

Lesley works closely with the team to ensure that students can successfully register and vote on campus. Whenever there is a question or registration error, Lesley is always on top of it. We are so lucky to have such a dedicated local election officer.

Betsy Shortell

Director, Harvard University Mail and Distribution Services

Betsy helped us provide all undergraduates living on campus with voter registration forms, absentee ballot request forms, and stamps in their mailboxes. She ensures all election mail is delivered promptly and played a key role in eliminating barriers to student participation in elections.

Mike Burke (HGSE '07) 

Registrar, Faculty of Arts and Sciences

Mike championed the integration of TurboVote's voter registration tool into online check-in process at every degree granting school, creating a model for universities across the country. 

Kevin Boehm (HGSE '07) 

Associate Director of Student Affairs, Harvard Graduate School of Education

Since 2018, Kevin has spearheaded efforts to institutionalize voter readiness efforts at HGSE. From partnering with students to scale TurboVote signups across degree programs to engaging faculty in promoting voter particpation in their courses, Kevin's has played a pivotal role in positioning HGSE as a leader in advancing a movement of full participation in elections.

Jon Kusner (HMS '21), Lucas Buyon (HSPH '23), Elizabeth Durham (HSDM '22) 

Longwood Harvard Votes Challenge Team

Elizabeth, Jon and Lucas have come together to reinvigorate Longwood's commitment to civic engagement and promote inter-school collaborations at HSPH, HMS and HSDM. Together, they have positioned voting as a medical and public health issue on their campuses and led individualized student outreach efforts engaging to scale voter registration, education and turnout.  

Rakesh Khurana & Katie O'Dair 

Dean of Harvard College; Dean of Students, Harvard College

Dean Khurana & O'Dair facilitated the integration of voter readiness into first-year orientation and house orientations, school-wide communications, and community buy-in of voting.

Jay Sastry (College '22) 

Director of Data & Operations, Harvard College Harvard Votes Challenge Team

Jay has been on the team since 2018 - overseeing form processing, keeping track of which students need support, and making sure our team is on track to meet our goals. He has built one of the strongest college student voter support systems in the country.

Martha Minnow (HGSE '76) & Alexis Redding (HGSE '10, '18) 

300th Anniversary University Professor, Harvard Graduate School of Education, Former Dean, Harvard Law School
Lecturer on Education, Harvard Graduate School of Education

Professors Minow & Redding have prioritzed bringing voting to the classroom - leaving time for voter readness and integrating voting into the curriculum. And, they have encouraged hundreds of faculty join them!