She Votes: Women's Voices at the Forefront

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She Votes: Women's Voices at the Forefront

Gender on the Ballot Poll Release: Amanda Hunter, Lindsay Vermeyen, and Mabinty Quarshie, in conversation with Betsy Fischer Martin

By Women & Politics Institute

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Date and time

Wednesday, March 29 · 3 - 4pm PDT



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About this event

  • 1 hour
  • Mobile eTicket

As part of our “Women on Wednesdays” series, please join American University's Women & Politics Institute and the Barbara Lee Family Foundation (BLFF) for a virtual discussion on women's political participation. We will present the findings from our new Gender on the Ballot poll of female voters, conducted by Benenson Strategy Group, that explores the issues shaping women voters and their political opinions.

WPI Executive Director Betsy Fischer Martin will facilitate the panel discussion with Amanda Hunter, Executive Director of the Barbara Lee Family Foundation, Lindsay Vermeyen, Senior Vice President with the Benenson Strategy Group, and Mabinty Quarshie, National Political Reporter for USA Today, who will report on the findings.


As Executive Director, Amanda Hunter leads the Barbara Lee Family Foundation’s (BLFF) nonpartisan efforts to advance women’s political equality and increase women’s representation.

Previously, she served as the Foundation’s Research and Communications Director where she was responsible for promoting BLFF’s mission to advance women’s representation in American politics by leading all research and communications efforts. Hunter has covered the Foundation’s research on the role of gender in politics on PBS NewsHour, NPR, and CNN, as well as in the New York Times, the Washington Post, Vox, the Los Angeles Times, and Politico.

Before joining the Barbara Lee Family Foundation, Hunter served as Director of Marketing and Communications at The Phillips Collection in Washington, DC, America’s first museum of modern art. She graduated Summa Cum Laude with a B.A. in English and Communications from St. Joseph’s College of Maine.


Lindsay Vermeyen is the Senior Vice President in Benenson Strategy Group’s (BSG) California Office. Drawing from her political and advocacy campaign experience, she uses qualitative and quantitative research to help craft strategic communications for political, advocacy, and corporate clients.

Vermeyen was the lead associate on the Colorado state and Millennial polling on Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign and for an independent expenditure supporting Kamala Harris for Senate. In the 2018 cycle, she helped Rep. Josh Harder flip CA-10 from Red to Blue, and helped elect the first openly gay governor of Colorado. Additionally, she has conducted research for progressive advocacy groups and nonprofits across the country such as EMILY’s List, AARP, Common Sense Media, Conservation Colorado, and Planned Parenthood.

Prior to joining BSG, Vermeyen was an associate at Dewey Square Group, where she helped coordinate statewide and national grassroots and public relations campaigns for clients, including the Pew Environment Group’s Clean Energy Campaign. She holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Southern California.


Mabinty Quarshie is a National Political Reporter and Assistant Elections Editor at USA TODAY. She previously worked at USA TODAY as a Congress Reporter, covering breaking news, and a Political Reporter, writing trending political stories. She has also served as a Politics Audience Editor and Audience Editor. Prior to that, she was a Social Media Intern with NPR and NBC News, as well as a Communications Intern with the Advancement Project.

Quarshie holds a bachelor’s degree in English Language and Literature/Letters from George Mason University and a Master’s in Journalism from Georgetown University.


Betsy Fischer Martin is an Emmy-winning journalist and former TV news executive. Currently, she is the Executive Director of the Women & Politics Institute at American University and a faculty member in the School of Public Affairs, where she teaches courses on campaigns and elections. During her earlier career in television news, she spent 23 years at NBC News serving as the longtime Executive Producer of Meet the Press with Tim Russert and as the Managing Editor of NBC News Political Programming.

A native of New Orleans, Fischer Martin did her undergraduate and graduate work at American University in Washington, DC. She is a cum laude graduate of their School of Public Affairs and earned a master’s degree in Broadcast Journalism from the AU School of Communication.

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About the organizer

The Women & Politics Institute provides practical and academic training to women that encourages them to become involved in the political process and facilitates research by faculty and students that enhances our understanding of the challenges and opportunities women face in the political arena.

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