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Utah Women Run joining Hinckley Institute of Politics

A nonpartisan initiative to help more women run for office is now housed at the University of Utah’s Hinckley Institute of Politics.

Utah Women Run, formally known as Real Women Run, began in 2011 as a collaboration with the YWCA-Utah. The goal of the initiative is to empower women to participate fully in public life and civic leadership through elected political office at all levels, participation in campaigns and engagement in the political system.

“Utah Women Run has a new home at the Hinckley Institute, but its mission of providing training and opportunities for women to fully engage in the political process remains the same,” said Morgan Lyon Cotti, the Utah Women Run chair and the associate director of the Hinckley Institute. “This perfectly aligns with the nonpartisan work the Hinckley does to encourage greater civic engagement from all our students and the broader community.”

At an open house to celebrate Utah Women Run’s new location, former Utah House representatives Becky Edwards (R- Bountiful) and Rebecca Chavez-Houck (D- Salt Lake City) spoke about their personal political journeys and encouraged attendees to think about how they can campaign, influence, and lead.

“I encourage you not to get too stuck in thinking this is the only way that I want to go because you might not see another opportunity that is right over here that’s ripe for the taking,” said Chavez-Houck.

Chavez-Houck also noted that the organization’s new logo is a circle, which to her represents that political involvement is a cycle and will look different for people at various stages of life.

“It shows opportunities of hopping in, hopping back out and hopping in again,” Chavez-Houck said.

Utah Women Run provides training, networking events and mentorship to help women achieve their political goals. In January, the initiative will host its Winter Training. More details can be found here.

“Whether you see yourself right now as being bossy, a troublemaker, a leader, an instigator, full of righteous rage, powerful, whatever word you’re using to describe yourself, there is a space for you,” Edwards said. “In this state, there’s a space for you. We need you.”