Common Cause Hire Bolsters Voting & Democracy Program for 2024 Election

Jay Young brings extensive experience to the fight to protect the vote

WASHINGTON, D.C. –  With the 2024 primaries underway and the general election fast approaching, Common Cause is pleased to announce Jay Young as its Senior Director of Voting & Democracy. In the newly-created position, he will oversee the organization’s legislative, operational, and legal strategies to advance reforms that allow all Americans to participate in elections and to oppose efforts to restrict voting rights.

Young will supervise and coordinate Common Cause’s national and state work in election administration, election audits and security, political violence, election disinformation, youth voting, national popular vote, vote restoration and voting in jails. He will also help coordinate Common Cause’s nationwide Election Protection efforts.

Young comes to the national office from Common Cause Illinois where he has served as executive director since 2017. There he advanced many transformative campaigns that have made Illinois a national leader in voting rights. Under Young’s leadership, Common Cause partnered with Illinois state and local elections authorities to ensure safe and accessible voting through multiple election cycles.

“Jay is a proven leader and a gifted strategist who knows voting and democracy issues from the ground up and understands the critical importance of ensuring that every American has an equal voice and vote in elections that are fair and free from intimidation and outside influence,” said Virginia Kase Solomón, president of Common Cause. “We are thrilled to welcome Jay to this new position as we seek to more closely coordinate our various voting and democracy programs with each other and with our 30 state offices around the country.”

“As a longtime state executive director I have benefitted from the expertise of our national voting and democracy staff and I fully understand the competing demands faced by our state offices,” Jay Young said. “Together our national and state staffs must chart a path forward to ensure that every voter’s voice is heard. In the current political climate we all understand that our work is not confined to election years – protecting the freedom to vote will be hard-fought every single day.”

Young will gradually transition from his role at Common Cause Illinois while the search is underway for a new executive director.

Before joining Common Cause, Jay served as an administrator for a statewide early childhood program and worked at the state level with public and private stakeholders to develop supports for Illinois children and families with the greatest needs.

Young is a graduate of Duke University and went on to receive a Master of Public Policy from the University of Chicago and a law degree from the University of Virginia.