Elementary School Teacher
Founder of PoliticsNOW
By day, I’m an elementary school teacher that specializes in French Immersion and Inquiry-based education. By night, I’m a volunteer extraordinaire — I sit on various local and national boards, volunteer my services to various organizations, and am the founder of PoliticsNOW, a grassroots org dedicated to supporting women in politics in Northern Ontario.
What inspired you to enter and pursue this field?
Above all, I value my community — it’s what drives me in everything that I do. I want to give back to the places and people that made me better, and I do that best through educating and education.
How did you come to be in this position?
I became fascinated by becoming a teacher when I was in university after a professor gave us a choice between writing a fifteen page paper or teaching a Grade 10 history class. While planning it, I quickly realized that education was one of the best ways that I could indulge in my multiple passions while also engaging with and connecting with people. I had always asked myself, “How can I take all of the things that I’m passionate about and best serve others?” And for me, teaching fit that bill. I used the same principal when I founded PoliticsNOW. I had begun volunteering on political campaigns and had all of these fantastic new skills that I had acquired that felt like they were going to waste in non-election years. PoliticsNOW was born out of the want to use those skills to help as many people as possible get elected to city councils — and that’s exactly what happened. That first election, we trained over 100 female candidates and volunteers, supported 26 campaigns and saw almost a dozen women elected. We’ve since expanded to also train women to equip them with the tools they need to join boards of directors, as well as built a network of community-minded women across the country. We've been steadily building on that momentum, and as a result, we’ve got some big things in store for the 2022 Ontario municipal election.
What advice would you give young women looking to enter your current line of work?
When I was first hatching the idea for PoliticsNOW, a mentor told me, “If you build it, they will come.” And ultimately, that has proven true for me. Just because something doesn’t exist yet doesn’t mean that it’s not needed, and knowing that has provided me the opportunity to lead the charge towards change.
Contact Amanda via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Learn more about PoliticsNOW