Lenfest Institute names democracy forum presenters

News organizations and election integrity groups will share ideas for how to strengthen public understanding and confidence in election results

April 24, 2024

Presidential primary voting in Madison, Wis. on April 2, 2024. (AP Photo/John Hart, Wisconsin State Journal)

The Lenfest Institute for Journalism today announces the organizations that will present at the Lenfest/AP Forum on Journalism & Democracy. Presenters will share initiatives for how to make news and information more secure and accessible in the months leading up to the 2024 elections. Organizers have framed the discussion as a Democracy Demo Day, at which practical, actionable initiatives will be presented to spark conversation and collaboration. 

Democracy Demo Day will take place on Wednesday, May 1 at Microsoft’s offices in New York City. The gathering — which will include nonpartisan news and information providers, technology companies, and philanthropic funders — will explore actionable initiatives for how to best support local election processes, to grow confidence in election results, spur voter participation, limit the effects of mis-and-disinformation, and move away from “horse race” coverage. 

The Lenfest Institute and The Associated Press received more than 90 proposals for projects already underway or new concepts or initiatives that can support the public’s information needs during the 2024 election season. The 12 selected projects are: 

  • Bipartisan Policy Center – Training that equips election officials with crisis communications skills to help augment confidence in election results. 
  • Capital B – A seven-city tour that explains the stakes of the upcoming election for Black communities. 
  • The Center for Community Media at CUNY’s Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism – Creating a cohort of community media organizations working to engage voters of color in Georgia, Michigan, and Texas. 
  • The Institute for Nonprofit News’ Rural News Network – Integrating election information into a text messaging service for rural audiences distributed through 78 INN member newsrooms across the country. 
  • Louisville Public Media – Producing mailed voter guides to engage Kentucky audiences without broadband access. 
  • The Marshall Project – A resource guide, built in partnership with Signal Cleveland, to educate voters about judges and judicial candidates on the ballot in Cleveland and Cuyahoga County. 
  • Military Veterans in Journalism – Combatting extremism and disinformation in military and veteran communities through online engagement and reporting. 
  • NewsGuard – Creating tools designed to detect and reduce misinformation risk in AI-based products. 
  • Pulso – Partnering with local influencers in Texas, Florida, and Arizona to deliver trustworthy information to Latinos in their own voice and style. 
  • Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press – Training journalists on their legal rights while covering protests, and police departments on updated Department of Justice best practices on press rights at protests. 
  • Sunlight Search and MuckRock – Improving training and tools that will enable local news organizations to thoroughly research political candidates. 
  • Voting Rights Lab – Educating media in state laws and procedures concerning election processes, such as ballot verification and certification. 

Attendees of the invitation-only event will include funders, news organizations, journalism support organizations and technology companies. Presenters will have the chance to share insights into their projects, answer questions, and engage in group discussions. Each presenting organization will receive a $5,000 honorarium from The Lenfest Institute. 

The aim of the event is to spur serious thinking about steps to make U.S. election processes more effective and responsive and help presenters and attendees identify opportunities for support, collaboration and, potentially, funding. 

Please reach out to [email protected] with any questions about the event.  

Local News Solutions

The Lenfest Institute provides free tools and resources for local journalism leaders to develop sustainable strategies to serve their communities.

Find Your News Solution
news solution pattern