Lenfest Institute launches 'Every Voice, Every Vote' project

More than 50 media and community organizations have formed the citywide Every Voice, Every Vote coalition to put Philadelphia voters and key issues at the center of the elections for mayor and city council 

As Philadelphia prepares to elect new political leadership in 2023, dozens of the city’s news media and community organizations have joined Every Voice, Every Vote, a new coalition committed to informing Philadelphians and ensuring their voices and interests are central to the campaign. The coalition is one of the largest collaborative journalism and community engagement efforts ever launched for election coverage in Philadelphia.  

Every Voice, Every Vote is a project of The Lenfest Institute for Journalism. The Institute is awarding $1.5 million in grants to 52 news media and community organization partners. Lead support is provided by the William Penn Foundation with additional funding from The Lenfest Institute, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Peter and Judy Leone, Harriet and Larry Weiss, and the Wyncote Foundation, among others. A full list of coalition partners is below, and to view a full list of supporters, visit here.

The participating media and community organizations will serve every neighborhood in Philadelphia with nonpartisan, collaborative, issues-oriented journalism; gatherings with candidates; voter guides; listening sessions; and more. Every Voice, Every Vote partners will publish news stories, create voter resources, and hold events throughout the city in more than 13 different languages. The initiative is designed to help make the electoral process more accessible and to make certain that all Philadelphians have the information and tools they need to participate in a system that is intended to support everyone. 

“Every Voice, Every Vote is one of Philadelphia’s most significant philanthropic investments ever in local journalism and civic engagement. Our work is focused on catalyzing the citizens of Philadelphia, from every neighborhood and community, to lift their voices and determine their own future,” said Lenfest Institute Head of Philadelphia Programs Shawn Mooring, who is leading Every Voice, Every Vote.   

Twenty-five media partners will receive funding through Every Voice, Every Vote. News outlets such as ¡Presente! Media, Al Día News, Impacto, Fun Times Magazine, Love Now Media, New Mainstream Press, Philadelphia Gay News, The Philadelphia Tribune, Resolve Philly, and more will amplify the concerns and issues of importance of traditionally underserved audiences. 

WURD Radio, WHYY, Billy Penn, The Philadelphia Citizen, and The Philadelphia Inquirer will provide issues-oriented news coverage, candidate interviews, debates, and town hall meetings. Green Philly and Grid Magazine will each devote reporting to sustainability issues. 

Major television broadcasters including 6abc and NBC10/Telemundo62 have joined Every Voice, Every Vote to provide ongoing coverage of key issues and community engagement activities to connect with Philadelphians both on-and-off air.

All reporting produced by Every Voice, Every Vote partners will be free to access and be shared on everyvoice-everyvote.org. Every Voice, Every Vote’s editorial strategy is led by Kristin Traniello, a former public media engagement strategist, who will coordinate with media partners and support collaborative reporting.  

“We are extremely excited about being a part of the Every Voice, Every Vote initiative,” said Sara M. Lomax, president and CEO of WURD Radio. “Philadelphians deserve a robust examination of all the mayoral candidates running to govern this diverse and dynamic city as it confronts tremendous challenges that are in need of creative, urgent solutions.” 

The 27 Every Voice, Every Vote community group partners represent Philadelphia’s true diversity. They will play an integral role in engaging prospective voters as they launch projects that will provide voter education, promote civic engagement, and host events that will provide numerous opportunities to amplify voices. The Urban Affairs Coalition, PA Youth Vote, The Committee of Seventy, Enon Tabernacle Baptist Church, Congreso de Latinos Unidos, and Philadelphia Parks Alliance are just a few of the community organizations that will leverage their deep community relationships to connect with Philadelphians.  

Portia Fullard is leading Every Voice, Every Vote’s community engagement work. A lifelong Philadelphian, Fullard has deep experience working with community and civic organizations across the city.  

“With its explicit commitment to amplifying and centering community voices, the potential impact of Every Voice, Every Vote is significant,” said Urban Affairs Coalition CEO Sharmain Matlock-Turner. “Too often, the voices of communities with low-to-moderate income or of BIPOC communities are drowned out in the din of partisan politicking, silenced through marginalization, or not even sought. The Urban Affairs Coalition and our partners have more than a half-century of experience serving these very communities. With Every Voice, Every Vote, we will leverage that experience to assure everyone has a say in determining the issues that will be our next mayor’s priorities.”   

Every Voice, Every Vote news coverage and community engagement work will begin in early 2023 ahead of the May 16 primary election. The Lenfest Institute and its partners have already undertaken comprehensive public opinion research efforts to help inform the coalition’s work. Over the past few months, Temple University’s Institute for Survey Research conducted focus groups with Philadelphia voters that informed the design of a public opinion poll by SSRS, a leading Philadelphia-based market research firm, which will be deployed across Philadelphia early this winter. The Pew Charitable Trusts partnered on the development of the survey. 

Learn more about Every Voice, Every Vote and sign-up for email updates about the project. Others interested in learning more about how to join Every Voice, Every Vote or support the project can email here