Informing Voters on Public Policy and Candidates PDF Print E-mail


The Role of Nonprofits and Faith Based Organizations

Tuesday, August 16         6 p.m. Pizza Buffet and Social  (Free)        6:30 P.M.  Program

Brooklyn Park City Council Chambers, 5200 85th Avenue N

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Our August speakers will discuss the ways in which providing information on public policies and policy advocacy can fulfill the values and mission of nonprofit and faith based organizations.  The forum will also cover the rights of these organizations in regard to informing the public on policy issues and advocating for policy change and the limits placed on 501c3 nonprofits in regard to supporting a political party or candidate.

Carin Mrotz - Deputy Director
Jewish Community Action

carin mrotzCarin Mrotz will explain the important role of faith based institutions in keeping people informed of the impact of public policy and ways they can promote just policy and reduce racial disparities. Jewish Community Action organizers have been trained by the Organizing Apprenticeship Program on racial equity and work closely with partners including Protect Minnesota, the Northside Reinvestment Coalition, and the Minneapolis Urban League.

Carin has years of experience in training, communications, program development and evaluation.  She holds a bachelor's degree in Religion and a master's degree in Public and Nonprofit Administration.


Jeff Narabrook - Voter Outreach Director
Office of the Minnesota Secretary of State

jeff narabrookJeff Narabrook will speak on the ways faith based and 501c3 nonprofit organizations are free to engage in issue and candidate education and on the limits they have in relation to promoting public policy and candidates for political office.

He worked previously as a Public Policy Assistant at the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits where he managed public policy web communications and provided administrative support to the policy team. Jeff also had a lead role in staffing the Minnesota Participation Project, an MCN project that builds capacity among nonprofit organizations to engage their members in civic participation.  He received his BA from St. Olaf College.



Katie Rodriguez - Metropolitan Council Member, District 1

katie rodriguezKatie Rodriguez's claim to fame is serving as the outstanding host of an issues and public policy forum in Maple Grove.  Katie will explain how easy it is to start a monthly forum and the big benefits of understanding public policy for citizens' participation in democracy and civic engagement.

She lives in Maple Grove and represents District 1 which includes Plymouth and Maple Grove and communities west to the Hennepin County Line.   Her background includes
fourteen years of experience in public finance, including ten years in municipal finance positions.  Recently she was the Business Manager for the League of Women Voters Minnesota. 


Samantha Vang - Civic Engagement Fellow at CAPI

samantha vangSamantha (Sam) Vang will tell us about CAPI's first ever Democracy School started just last month to help refugee and immigrant youth (18-25) reflect more deeply about the democracy we live in and become more civically engaged. The program aims to give young adults a better understanding of the history of the U.S., the MN electoral system, current politics, social and economic issues, and grassroots organizing techniques.

Sam is a graduate of Gustavus Adolphus College with a double major in Communications and Political Science and a minor in Japanese.  She has worked in community organizing and campaigns.


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MN's Leading Election System

With Secretary of State Steve Simon


steve simon


Listen to Secretary of State Steve Simon's excellent presentation on MN's outstanding election system emulated by many other states at the Think Again Brooklyns forum January 19, 2016.  Secretary Simon includes ways in which it can be improved, and he explains why it is important to vote.  He concludes with a quote from a tee shirt:  "Failure to vote is not an act of rebellion.  It is an act of surrender."

Get details on how to vote at

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How Oregon Became the Easiest Place to Vote in the US

By Lornet Turnbull
YES! Magazine
October 8, 2016


In January, Oregon became the first state in the country to begin automatically registering eligible citizens to vote when they obtain or renew their driver's licenses or state IDs, completely shifting the burden of voter registration from the individual to the government. 

Read the Article

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