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Volunteer Opportunities

We are delighted to hear you are interested in devoting some of your free time to advancing the cause of liberty, and grateful that you chose us as a possible vehicle!

We don’t have a lot of experience (yet) working with volunteers and we’re often short-handed on projects underway, so we may not be as responsive as we should be to your input and suggestions. But we will do our best to make you feel welcome here and give you valuable work to do, and hope you’ll be patient with us!

You may reasonably wish to be paid for your work, if not right away then sometime in the future, presumably part-time and not a whole lot. We understand this, but we can’t afford to hire new staff now. We ask that you work as a genuine volunteer – for free – for at least a couple months to show your commitment and value to the organization. After that, we can discuss compensation. One scenario is to eventually pay you $10 an hour for 10 hours a week, or something along those lines. We typically pay interns $150/week for 20 hours a week.

There are five areas of activities where you might pitch in:


1. Library 

Joe Davis, librarian@heartland.org, is currently in charge of this. He’s a part-time volunteer himself.

All the books in the library need to be checked against the digital catalogue to make sure the catalogue correctly identifies their topic. When Joe Bast sorted the books in the library, he decided to move many of them into categories different from what was originally put into the catalogue. “Fixing” this could require two or three months of part-time work.

As books are donated, their barcodes need to be scanned, or if they lack barcodes, their title, author, etc. need to be manually entered into the digital catalogue. We expect some major donations of books in the near future. This could require months of part-time work.

If or when people start calling to ask about using the library, we’ll need someone here to greet them and walk them through the library. If or when we begin lending books, we need someone to check out books and make sure they are returned.


2. Events 

Nikki Comerford, ncomerford@heartland.org, is currently in charge of this.

We host one or two events every week in our office. Heartland staff are always on hand to prepare the meeting space, greet guests, etc., but at least some of  them are getting “burned out” staying late for these events, so it would be great to have someone help set up before events and take down after events. We need someone willing to help with registration, putting out food, bartending, and doing housekeeping things like clearing tables and collecting dishes, putting them in the dishwasher, etc., after events are over. This could evolve into opening remarks, introducing speakers, and conducting the Q&A sessions.


3. Website  

Keely Drukala, kdrukala@heartland.org, is currently in charge of this.

We relaunched our website in 2016 and as a result, produced thousands of broken links, formatting problems, and documents that need to be redesigned. Many documents will need to have new reviews written or “fixed.”

We’re also hoping to integrate “marketing automation” with our new website. The market leader in this sort of thing is . Its website explains what all is involved. We hope to sign a contract with a similar firm, and suspect it requires a part-time person in the office to monitor it and generate reports.


4. Community Outreach 

Veronica Harrison, vharrison@heartland.org, is in charge of this.

We hope to promote the meeting space to other groups that share our freedom philosophy, offering it to them as a free place to meet. We need someone to reach out to allies by attending their meetings, calling them, and persuading them to come to our building to check us out. Possible groups that could meet here include the NRA or other gun rights groups, homeschooling, Tea Party, libertarian, anti-tax, student, and Objectivist groups.

Heartland belongs to the Arlington Heights Chamber of Commerce, which hosts many, many events giving us opportunities to meet local businesses and promote our services and cause to them. We lack the staff to take advantage of them all. We need a volunteer who can attend some of these events as our representative.

Similarly, there are other civic, business, educational, religious, and political organizations nearby where Heartland spokespersons would be welcome as visitors, guests, or speakers. We would love to have volunteers visiting college campuses, the offices of elected officials, some of the mega-churches, and GOP offices near our building, introducing our programs and leaving literature behind.


5.  Research and Writing 

Diane Bast, dbast@heartland.org, is in charge of this.

We are always looking for people with good research and writing skills to write letters to the editor and op-eds, blog posts, or participate in bigger research projects. One big job is defending our reputation on the Internet: Internet “trolls” watch us closely and post inaccurate and libelous claims in the comments fields of articles we get placed on line. All we need is someone to post a couple sentences saying “that’s untrue!” and linking to the “Reply to our critics” message on our website to make sure lies and misinformation do not go unanswered.

If you have expertise on a public policy issue, we can list you as a policy advisor and include you in the peer-review process. Research Director Sam Karnick, skarnick@heartland.org, is in charge of this and can send you additional information about what being a policy advisor entails.

2016 By the Numbers

See what sets Heartland apart:
82% of state elected officials read Heartland publications
82%
of state elected officials read one or more Heartland newspapers "sometimes" or "always."
45% of elected officials say Heartland led to a change in policy
45%
of state elected officials say a Heartland publication influenced their opinions or led to a change in public policy.
“The Heartland Institute [is] the world’s most prominent thinktank supporting skepticism about man-made climate change.”
The Economist
May 26, 2012
1.3 Million
the number of times Heartland's six podcasts were downloaded in 2016
216 issues
of weekly e-newsletters sent to subscribers across the country
120 events
that Heartland hosted, attended, or spoke at, reaching 13,474 guests
100,000 fans
on Facebook posting and reposting over 20 million times a week