Although women are less likely than men to fill political offices in the United States, it isn’t because they are less likely to be elected, but less likely to run.
“What we know nationwide is women do well when they run, but we have fewer people who actually step up and are interested in public office,” said Rebecca Charlton, the co-president of the Logan branch of the American Association for University Women. “So if there’s nobody running, then women don’t have an opportunity to have their voices heard in politics.”
To help overcome this issue, Charlton’s organization, along with a few others, are co-sponsoring a training event in Logan on Saturday called Real Women Run.
Former Utah state representative Ronda Rudd Menlove will be one of Saturday’s speakers. She said it is hard for women in Utah to see themselves running for office because the state’s lack female political figures.
“I don’t think they see enough role models of women who are balancing home and family and careers and who are able to serve in public office in a way that is consistent with their value system,” Menlove said.
Charlton said one way to help women run is to inspire them at a younger age to do it.
“I think it’s really important that we get busy on college campuses making sure that women have it in the back of their minds that public office is something that’s appropriate for them,” Charlton said. “That they have a voice that is so important that it needs not to get quieted over time. And that they should be thinking about, okay, where in my life plan will running for office fit.”
Saturday’s event will feature a variety of speakers and focus on helping attendees understand the political process and making a plan to run for office.