To organize in Utah’s rural areas, you have to be there. We’re proud to hire and work with a local organizing team in Utah and on the Navajo Nation who are implementing campaigns for Utah’s future. We’re creating a strategy for long-term political and issue-focused investment in underrepresented areas. Look below to find your local organizer!
TJ Ellerbeck came to the Rural Utah Project after working in political campaigns over the last decade, including serving as Political Director for the Utah Democratic Party 2015-2017. TJ got his start organizing in rural Utah through the election of Representative Brad King in Carbon County, and has made lifting up the voices of rural voters a priority in his work ever since.
Drew came onboard the Rural Utah Project after working on campaigns across the country. A native Iowan, Drew got his start in rural organizing working on political campaigns across Utah. Drew is passionate about economic justice and rural representation.
With a long history of advocacy on the Navajo Nation, Tara is committed to issues of health care, education, and economic development. With a background in construction and community resilience, Tara brought her enthusiasm and talents to the Utah Navajo Trust Fund before joining the Rural Utah Project.
Alejandra (Ali) got her start working with film festivals across the country, and has since spent her career building community & organization partnerships in order to shore up resources, tell great stories, and organize for progress. When she's not at work, you can find Ali wrangling horses and fishing for trout.
Isaac has a degree in communication from Southern Utah University where he studied public relations and broadcasting. Isaac was born and raised on the Navajo Nation. He is passionate about Native American voter rights and economic development for his community.
Dalene’s job description includes keeping RUP’s staff in check. Prior to joining RUP, Dalene was a substitute and after school teacher in Bluff, and is passionate about the intersection of Navajo Culture and education. When not finding new ways to identify voters, you can find Dalene enjoying sunshine and family.
Marcy found RUP in 2019 while working with the Navajo Nation Addressing Authority, where she was assigning addresses in the Mexican Water community. She is now full-time on RUP's addressing team! Marcy loves being with her kids and being outdoors.
Sam found Rural Utah Project through ad on Boulder town's odds-and-ends listserv, Pegboard. His work as an organizer unites his love for the wild landscapes of Southern Utah and his belief in rural autonomy, food sovereignty, and community resilience. Sam is also a farmer, fiber artist, and outdoorsmyn.
Nicole has spent her career working in agricultural communities across the country and is passionate about the intersection of farming, climate, and culture. After following RUP’s work for a while and wanting to move her skillsets into the non-profit world, when RUP was looking for an Operations Manager it was the perfect fit! When she’s not wrangling RUP's daily operations, you can find Nicole on her mountain bike or exploring Utah’s never-ending scenery.
The Rural Utah Project seeks to empower underrepresented voters in rural Utah by providing them with tools, training, and knowledge by means of voter registration, education, and issue advocacy on important topics that affect all Utahns.