Fannie Lou Hamer Fellowship

The Fannie Lou Hamer Fellowship is a new fellowship awarded by Public Citizen’s Democracy is for People campaign to an undergraduate or graduate student or recent graduate who has overcome adversity in his or her life, seeks to build a better society, and is passionate about challenging the threat posed by the pervasive influence of money in our elections.

Fannie Lou Hamer was a heroic activist and leader from the civil rights movement during the 1950’s and 60’s.  Mrs. Hamer’s personal story, powerful voice and tireless work empowered thousands to claim their fundamental right to directly participate in our democracy, despite incredible odds and decades of discrimination and unequal representation in society and under the law.

Public Citizen’s Democracy Is For People Campaign seeks to end the deepening inequality in our democratic process caused by the pervasive influence in money in electoral process.  Specifically, the campaign is building public support for a constitutional amendment to overturn the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission Supreme Court ruling that corporations can spend unlimited amounts of money to support or defeat candidates for public office.

Mrs. Hamer’s story inspires us and many others who believe fair elections and full voting rights are essential to a healthy democracy.  Her legacy reminds us that to build long-term meaningful change we must seek and support leadership from the people and communities who are most harmed by the corrosive effects of corporate money in our elections and the inequalities that such undue influence contributes to or creates.

Therefore, we offer this fellowship to honor Mrs. Hamer’s legacy.  We also offer it as a way to ensure that our campaign reflects a broad range of faces and voices as we work towards a shared vision for a just and sustainable world for all.

The fellowship consists of a $3,000.00 stipend awarded to a qualified applicant to allow her or him to volunteer with our campaign in our Washington D.C. office for a period of 10 weeks. To apply, please send answers to the following questions, along with your resume, to Aquene Freechild at Your answers should not be longer than two pages typed.  You may answer either in an essay form or respond to each question individually.  Applications are due by May 4, 2012.

To Apply please send us your resume and the answers to the following questions. You may answer in the form of an essay if you prefer

1.      Why are you passionate about working on issues of justice and equity?  Feel free to elaborate on any life experiences you may have had that make you passionate to create a more just society.


2.      What makes you want to work on the Democracy Is For People campaign to pass a constitutional amendment to overturn the Citizens United Supreme Court ruling?


3.      What experiences do you have in doing this type of work and how will these experiences support your work at Public Citizen?


4.      What makes you particularly qualified for the Democracy Is For People Fannie Lou Hamer Fellowship?

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