BISC @ 20

For the past two decades, BISC has worked to increase civic participation and create an economic reality that allows all families to thrive. Take a look at our journey defining and advancing the progressive agenda since our inception in 1998.

BISC @ 20

1998
1998

The Ballot Initiative Strategy Center is founded as a project of People for the American Way with the goal of creating a national, progressive ballot measure strategy.

1998

BISC launches The BISC Foundation as a 501 (c)(3) organization with the goal of tracking the money behind ballot initiatives.

1999
1999

BISC plays a key role in defeating an anti-choice initiative in Maine, showing its potential to impact ballot measure campaigns.

2002
2002

Kristina Wilfore joins BISC as its first, full-time Executive Director.

2004
2004

The fight to defeat measures against marriage equality reinforces the need for a national ballot measure strategy and provides the playbook for the 2006 minimum wage fight.

2005
2005

In more than two dozen states, BISC and its partners work to prevent TABOR (Taxpayer Bill of Rights) initiatives from reaching the 2006 ballot by challenging instances of signature fraud. Ultimately, TABOR only ends up on the ballot in three states.

2006
2006

BISC plays offense and defense by working with campaigns to raise the minimum wage in six states and defeating the three TABOR measures on the ballot.

2007
2007

After the successful 2006 cycle, BISC holds its first-ever Road Ahead Conference in Phoenix, Arizona to debrief and look forward to the future.

2007

BISC publishes The Big, Bad Ballot Initiative book, the first-ever manual for running progressive ballot measure campaigns.

2008
2008

BISC leads the progressive strategy to fight businessman Ward Connerly’s anti-affirmative action ballot measures in five states. BISC and its partners were able to keep the measures off the ballot in three states and run a campaign that led to its defeat in another.

2008

The BISC Labor Table established.

2009
2009

BISC is named “Most Valuable Think Tank” by The Nation.

2010
2010

Justine Sarver joins BISC as the Executive Director.

2011
2011

BISC begins meeting with progressive community leaders to discuss and plan a strategic shift towards a proactive, progressive ballot measure strategy. Later, the group would be named Victory 2020.

2012
2012

Ballot measures become an increasingly potent tool to pass progressive policies. There were major marijuana decriminalization and marriage equality victories this year, and the DREAM Act legislation was affirmed by voters in Maryland.

2013
2013

BISC and Wellstone Action team up to launch the progressive community’s first and only training program that focuses exclusively on ballot measures.

2014
2014

BISC led partners to big wins on minimum wage, women’s health and voting rights. So-called, “progressive” ballot measures do well in red states, reinforcing the idea that ballot measures can be a powerful check on conservative state governments.

2016
2016

BISC officially launches the Roadmap to 2020 strategy in eleven states. This proactive ballot measure strategy seeks to pass economy and democracy-focused initiatives.

2016

Ballot measure victories become one of the few bright spots in a difficult election year. BISC’s partners pass minimum wage increases in four states, enact earned sick leave policies in two, and pass revenue measures in two more.

2017
2017

Conservative groups mount a coordinated attack on direct democracy in more than a dozen states. BISC strikes back by working with partners in states from Maine to Arizona to help them preserve ballot measure process in their states.

2017

BISC launches an innovative research platform that tracks changing voter opinion in real time, giving campaigns in eleven states new insight into shifting voter opinions.

2018
2018

BISC’s 20th anniversary year promises to be one of its biggest to date. A few things on tap: new research into how measures on the same ballot impact each other, and a ballot measure landscape chock full of economy and democracy-related measures.

BISC X HISTORY

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JUNE 5, 2018

DOCK 5, UNION MARKET

WASHINGTON, DC

7 – 10 pm

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