Synergetic Endeavors served as the Campaign Director, Grassroots Manager, and primary fundraising consultant for the Coalition of Impartial Justice, a bipartisan, grassroots coalition of over 35-member organizations dedicated to placing a constitutional amendment on the ballot to reform how Minnesotans elect their judges.
When our firm was first retained the coalition had minimal resources and was struggling to fund outreach activities in support of their mission. Synergetic Endeavors executed an aggressive fundraising campaign, which included crafting a compelling narrative to persuade Minnesota corporations, individuals, and foundations (including national funders) to support the effort. This resulted in over $1.2 million being raised to support the coalition’s advocacy campaign.
Coalition Building & Grassroots/Grasstops Mobilization
Over the course of our work for the coalition, Synergetic Endeavors recruited dozens of advocacy organizations, trade associations, non-profits, and other entities to support the campaign. We developed individual engagement plans for each of our key partner organizations, understanding that, for example, the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce and the League of Women Voters have unique strengths, distinct memberships, and different issue priorities. By sitting down with each of our coalition members and developing unique engagement strategies for the organization and their members, we were able to get several of our coalition members to make the issue their #1 priority, as well as commit significant resources towards engaging their membership on the issue.
This member engagement was not only crucial to our efforts, but was valuable to our coalition members as well, providing them with an additional meaningful way to engage their membership base. In addition, we organized in-district Meetings and Regional Forums on the issue where we were able to tap into the local chapters of multiple coalition partners, allowing for the cross-pollination of contacts from the local Chambers of Commerce, Labor Unions, and League of Women Voters chapters, among others. These locally based “mini-coalitions” were instrumental to the success of our strategy in key media markets across the state.
As Campaign Director, Synergetic Endeavors managed the organization’s legislative strategy, including retaining and directing several lobbying firms retained by the coalition to advance its preferred legislation. In this capacity Synergetic Endeavors coordinated committee strategy, legislative language and constitutional ballot question development, in-district legislative meetings, committee testimony, Days at the Capitol, and floor vote strategies among the various lobbying firms, legislative champions, and volunteer advocates.
On behalf of the coalition, Synergetic Endeavors generated a substantial amount of press coverage for what would otherwise have been an under-the-radar issue (judicial election reform). From our efforts, not only were press conferences, forums, and other public events put on by the coalition well-covered by television, radio, and print outlets, but countless letters-to-the editor and op-eds authored by supporters were published, in addition to proactive editorial-board positions taken by many of the state’s major media outlets:
• Keep Political Parties out of Judicial Elections – Minneapolis Star Tribune
• Impartial Justice Act would maintain confidence in Minnesota judges – St. Cloud Times
• Money, politics could discredit state’s judicial system – Rochester Post-Bulletin
• Change judicial elections – Mankato Free Press