The mission of the Young Elected Officials (YEO) Network is to unite and support progressive elected leaders who share a passion for building communities that reflect values of freedom, fairness, and opportunity. The YEO Network supports elected leaders ages 35 and under as they define issues, develop solutions, and respond to the needs of their communities. By exchanging ideas, developing leadership skills, and connecting with policy development organizations, YEO Network members are empowered to transform their political vision into progressive action. The YEO Network is a project of the People for the American Way Foundation.
In a 2012 YEO member survey, 80 percent of women members stated that they wanted to run for higher office. The Barbara Lee Family Foundation supports the Women’s Pre-Conference at the YEO Network National Convening, specifically designed to nurture this desire and to offer support and skills training to women already in office. The Women’s Pre-Conference seeks to meet the unique needs of female elected officials through trainings including: strategic career planning, image consulting, learning to be effective in the minority, and sharing best practices for family and work balance. By providing high-caliber training to this group of young elected women leaders, YEO supplies them with the inspiration, information, and tools necessary to move into national politics and become the next generation of progressive women leaders.