Stephannie Lane Baker has been named executive director of Emerge Arkansas, an organization that recruits and trains Democratic women to run for office, the group announced Wednesday (Dec. 8).
Baker will oversee the operations of Emerge Arkansas. She brings over two decades of experience in organizing and political advocacy work including with Planned Parenthood and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America.
“We are extremely fortunate to have Stephannie Lane Baker joining our team as the next executive director of Emerge Arkansas,” said A’shanti F. Gholar, President of Emerge. “Already, Stephannie has proven her dedication to help lead the charge and see Democratic women run for office up and down the ballot – and win. Her efforts will help Emerge reach thousands more women of the New American Majority–women of color, BIPOC, young, LGBTQ+ and unmarried women–repower political structures, and foster a lift as you climb culture as we reach for our 2035 goals. We are proud to add her to our amazing team and know she will be a great fit for Emerge Arkansas.”
Baker’s political training includes working with Vote Run Lead, Demand a Seat, the Arena Academy, Emily’s List, and the inaugural Emerge Arkansas bootcamp training. She spent the last several years working in campaigns and volunteering for school board, city council, and state representative races. Most recently, she has directed campaign communications at both the federal and state level.
“I’m honored to join the Emerge Arkansas team and serve as the next executive director to lead our state,” said Baker. “We’ve worked hard to support the unprecedented efforts of women across the country and are excited to continue that momentum in Arkansas. Despite making up half the population, women only represent 23% of the Arkansas legislature, the 10th lowest in the nation. We’re feeling that in our public offices and institutions who desperately need the voices of women from communities across Arkansas to help guide them. This is especially evident in this moment as we enter this special session. Fortunately, across the state, we’re seeing Democratic women stand up and make their voices heard, and Emerge is playing our role in preparing them to lead the way. We’re excited to train the next generation of Democratic women to run for office and continue to demonstrate the necessity of more women serving in public office.”
Baker, a resident of Northwest Arkansas, holds a BS in biology and chemistry from Anderson University in South Carolina and a masters in public health from Florida International University.