Brunswick County Named Center for Election Excellence


Brunswick County Named Inaugural U.S. Alliance for Election Excellence Finalist for 2023 Program

Nonpartisan program brings together election officials, designers, technologists, and other experts to support and celebrate excellence in U.S. election administration

Bolivia, NC – Brunswick County is a finalist in the nonpartisan U.S. Alliance for Election Excellence inaugural cohort of Centers for Election Excellence, a recognition that Brunswick County is committed to leadership in election administration and looking to develop even more resilient, trustworthy, and voter-centric election administration practices.

As a Center for Election Excellence, Brunswick County will have an opportunity to join together with a bipartisan group of election officials to support each other, and keep their skills fresh. The diverse inaugural 2023 cohort of Centers for Election Excellence include:

  • Contra Costa County, CA
  • Shasta County, CA
  • Greenwich, CT
  • Kane County, IL
  • Macoupin County, IL
  • Ottawa County, MI
  • Clark County, NV
  • Brunswick County, NC
  • Forsyth County, NC
  • Madison, WI

According to a recent study from MIT, public spending on election services ranks near the bottom, about the same as what local governments spend on parking facilities. This means professional development opportunities for election department staff can be extremely limited. The Alliance will provide Brunswick County staff opportunities to collaborate with and share best practices with their colleagues from around the country, creating a national community of learning and support.

“I am thrilled that after a nationwide call for applications from jurisdictions across the country, we have chosen Brunswick County as a Center for Election Excellence,” said Tiana Epps-Johnson, executive director of the Center for Tech and Civic Life. “Brunswick County is a leader in safe, secure and inclusive elections that put voters first. I’m thrilled to work with Brunswick County staff to take their election administration work to the next level.”

“I am excited for the opportunity to work with election administrators and experts from across the country,” said Sara LaVere, Director of the Brunswick County Board of Elections.  “When I learned of this new initiative, I knew I wanted to be part of it.  Having access to this network and being able to share ideas with other election professionals will bring best practices in election administration directly to Brunswick County.”

The U.S. Alliance for Election Excellence launched in 2022 and is a five-year, $80 million nonpartisan program that brings together election officials, designers, technologists, and other experts to envision, support, and celebrate excellence in U.S. election administration. Launch partners include:

  • Center for Tech and Civic Life: The Center for Tech and Civic Life connects Americans with the information they need to become and remain civically engaged, and ensure that elections are more inclusive and secure.
  • Center for Civic Design: The Center for Civic Design works with elections offices and advocates across the country, using research, design, accessibility, and plain language to remove barriers in the voter journey and invite participation in democracy.
  • The Elections Group: The Elections Group partners with state and local election officials looking to implement new programs or improve processes for voters and stakeholders. Their team of election experts works quickly to provide guidance, resources, and direct management support for jurisdictions.
  • S. Digital Response: U.S. Digital Response is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that helps governments and organizations respond quickly and efficiently to support the critical needs of the public. Through USDR’s Elections Program, election officials receive simple, effective digital tools and rapid response assistance to meet voters at the speed of need.
  • Institute for Responsive Government & Center for Secure and Modern Elections: The Center for Secure and Modern Elections aligns bipartisan, pro-voter campaigns in states across the country that modernizes the voting system, making elections more efficient and secure.
  • Hasso Plattner Institute of Design (the at Stanford University: The Hasso Plattner Institute of Design at Stanford was founded in 2005 to prepare a generation of innovators to tackle complex challenges. Referred to as the, the institute brings students and faculty from radically different backgrounds together to develop innovative, human-centered solutions to real world challenges.
  • Prototyping Systems Lab: The Prototyping Systems Lab utilizes elements of design thinking, participatory design, and critical making to create change within complex systems.