In the Life of a Volunteer

Updated: Nov 13


Life. Liberty. Pursuit of Happiness. These values are the foundation of our nation and the government gives us the ability to protect those freedoms. In this way, the government is meant to represent and serve the citizens of its country. Through government, candidates running for office serve our community by enacting policies that benefit its citizens. As citizens, it is our patriotic duty to vote and support our candidates in office as grassroots volunteers.


As a student at Walsh University, I had the opportunity to volunteer for the conservative party for one of my political science classes. I decided to start with the local Stark County Republican party.


Most people when they think about volunteering for a political party envision knocking on doors and asking people to support the conservative candidate. I realized in my experience volunteering that this is just the tip of the iceberg of endless possibilities of service. Though doorknocking is important, there are also so many other aspects and areas of a campaign where volunteers are needed. I was excited to experience the political atmosphere of supporting a campaign by being in on the action wherever they needed me!


In September, I went to the Stark County Republican Headquarters and met the Executive Director, Tom Lapas. He had me put together signs for Dewine/Husted and stuff envelopes for a fundraiser event. I was excited to be a small part of an organization that fought for values that were greater than just me.


During this volunteer time, I was given the opportunity to meet incumbent Stark County Commissioner and Canton’s first female mayor, Janet Weir Creighton. She was very personal and genuine. The Headquarters has been closed for the past couple of years and she has been working hard to get it back up and running again. I was excited when someone came in inquiring about J.D. Vance and I was able to participate in the conversation since I had just written an essay on Vance and Ryan’s campaigns and strategies. This conversation ignited in me a passion to help people through politics. At that moment I realized that I would love to work in politics.


The following Friday, Ryan and I came back to the Stark County Republican Party office and we put up the signs in the display window for all the candidates. Then I folded table clothes and made a flier for the internship program that the party is trying to start. I was amazed at all the administrative tasks and details it took to run a campaign.


The following Friday Ryan and I came back again where we worked on putting together signs for Madison who is running for Congress. The community that was built by talking with other volunteers and wrestling with political ideals through conversation helped me grow as an individual. We then were inspired to write inspirational content promoting the political process for the Republican Party. Volunteering as a grassroots worker for the conservative party goes much deeper than checking off community service hours, it's about community and being a part of something greater than yourself.


Hannah Petersen

Business Pre-Law and Government and Foreign Affairs

Class of 2024

Walsh University


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