Protecting Access to California’s 2020 Election and Beyond

Wednesday, June 10, 2020
10:00am - 11:00am PDT
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This event has passed. You may view the recordng here and view an informational elections funding guide for funders who are interested in investing in and supporting civic participation across California here.

As our nation grapples with a global health emergency, our democracy and elections remain uncertain. Concerns regarding voter turnout, physical distancing, and the resurgence of the virus are moving state leaders to an all-mail voting system. However, all-mail voting threatens participation amongst historically marginalized communities such as people of color, low-income voters, and voters with housing insecurity.

Although states and counties are making decisions now, what can philanthropy do to ensure equity is at the center of our civic participation in 2020 and beyond? How will these shifts limit voting options and transform our long-term voter participation? Join us to learn about the proposed changes and how California and community organizations are beginning to prepare.


The Honorable Alex Padilla, Secretary of State, State of California

Alex Padilla is the California Secretary of State. He is focused on modernizing the office, increasing voter registration and participation, and strengthening voting rights.  He sponsored legislation in 2015 to establish vote centers, expand early voting, and implement same-day conditional voter registration through the Voter’s Choice Act. In 2018, he launched the California Motor Voter program, which automatically registers eligible Californians to vote when they obtain or renew their state ID or driver’s license. The program registered one million new voters in its first year alone.


Cathy Cha, President, Evelyn & Walter Haas, Jr. Fund

Under Cathy's leadership, the Evelyn and Walter Haas, Jr. Fund is exploring innovative approaches to advancing equality and justice so every person has opportunities to thrive and to live life with dignity and hope. Her collaboration-focused approach with funders, movements, nonprofits, and the government has helped spark wide-ranging social impact, including California’s rise to the top among states in advancing pro-immigrant policies. Cathy was named one of the Most Influential Women in Bay Area Business by the San Francisco Business Times in 2019.


Connie Malloy, Executive Director, Panta Rhea Foundation

The Panta Rhea Foundation (PRF), a private foundation devoted to building a just and sustainable world, advises and partners with individual donors and other charitable entities on grantmaking strategies. Connie previously served as Portfolio Director at The James Irvine Foundation's Los Angeles office. During her seven-year tenure she deployed over $200 million in grants to support economic and workforce development, voter and civic engagement, Pay for Success, and the foundation’s annual Leadership Awards. Connie serves as a Commissioner on the California Citizens Redistricting Commission, on the national Advisory Board of the Funders Committee for Civic Participation, and on the local board of Southern California Grantmakers.


James E. Woodson, Esq., Policy and Strategic Projects Manager, California Calls Education Fund

James manages California Calls Education Fund’s work around the 2020 census, redistricting, and the Voters Choice Act. He is a member of the Secretary of State’s VCA Task Force as well as the Voters Choice Los Angeles Steering Committee. He is also on the leadership team of the Black Census and Redistricting Hub. James began at California Calls in 2016 on the African American Civic Engagement Project, coordinating civic engagement programs and providing support and assistance to the founding cohort. James is also a licensed attorney in the states of New Jersey and New York and a proud alum of Rutgers Law School. 

Presented in partnership with:

Who May Attend
Current SDG, NCG, and SCG members and eligible non-members

Accommodations for People with Disabilities
If you have a disability and require accommodation in order to fully participate in this activity, please contact [email protected] or (213) 680-8866. You will be contacted by someone from our staff to discuss your specific needs.

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