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NASW-PA PACE Committee
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Click HERE to see who NASW-PA PACE endorses

Political Action for Candidate Election (PACE) is the political action arm of the National Association of Social Workers. As a political action committee, PACE endorses and financially contributes to candidates from any party who support NASW's policy agenda.

PACE contributions are used to support candidates who support NASW's policy agenda through fundraisers and campaign contributions

Politics and Policy Involvement

NASW-PA advocates for the profession and for social justice in several ways.
  • Elections: Funding candidates who advocate for NASW policy issues and
  • mobilizing NASW-PA members to vote for them. Also called "electoral advocacy,” this work is done through PACE, the political action committee of NASW-PA. 
  • Field Mobilization: Grassroots activity from NASW-PA members calling, visiting, e-mailing, and mailing letters to legislators and their staff. 
  • Government Relations: Lobbying current officeholders by advocating for and against specific legislation and regulations. Also called "legislative advocacy.” 
Check out NASW-PA Legislative Advocacy
Why Should Social Workers be Politically Active?
Social workers are natural advocates and contribute an important perspective to the social policy debate. They can and should advocate in the legislative and political arenas for issues about which they are passionate. Working together as NASW-PA members strengthens the power of social work on legislative and political issues
that affect social work practice and the people we serve. 

Involvement in the political process helps social workers:
  • Shape policies that affect clients
  • Provide a valuable perspective to politics, because social workers understand how policies affect people
  • Represent the profession’s interests
  • Work together on a common agenda
  • Adhere to the NASW Code of Ethics, which states, "Social workers should engage in social and political action.... Social workers should be aware of the impact of the political arena on practice and should advocate for changes in policy and legislation to improve social conditions in order to meet basic human needs and promote social justice.” (Section 6.04)
For more information, visit NASW’s Why Social Workers Should Get Involved


PA Social Work PACE is the political action committee of NASW-PA, dedicated to advancing social workers’ public policy goals in campaigns and elections. PACE endorses and contributes to candidates seeking political office in Pennsylvania at the state and local level. PACE endorses and contributes to candidates from any party who support NASW policy issues, and mobilizes social workers to vote for PACE-endorsed candidates.


PA Social Work PACE is a registered political action committee with the Pennsylvania Department of State. The Chapter President appoints the PACE Trustees to govern the Committee. Trustees conduct committee business through a monthly conference call and emails. For more information, see the PA Social Work PACE Bylaws here.

2016 PA Social Work PACE Trustees:

Sarah Graden, LSW, Co-Chair

Letty Thall, MSS, ACSW, Co-Chair

Amy Nothelfer, LSW, Treasurer

Charles Marcinko, MSW

Nathan Morley, MSW

Timothy Seip, LSW


PACE recognizes the importance of social workers' role in the formulation of sound public policy and seeks to build constructive working relationships with elected officials by:
  • Advancing social workers as candidates for public office.
  • Organizing social workers to help elect endorsed candidates to public office who support legislation and public policy consistent with the aims of NASW-PA.
  • Providing political education about endorsed candidates and issues to members of NASW-PA.
  • Promoting the adoption of public policy through political action that is in the interest of the social work profession and consumers of social work services.
How do We Meet These Goals?

PACE compiles voting records for state elected officials, makes endorsements, donates money in the name of NASW-PA, and mobilizes members to get out the vote in targeted races.
2016 Endorsements: Click HERE to view

How Are Endorsements Made?

The PACE Trustees make endorsements after reviewing staff research and recommendations. Staff consults with varying resources and compiles information about the candidate’s viability and support for key issues of concern to the social work community. Candidates who are social workers, women, or people of color are given special consideration. PACE endorsements are then reviewed and approved by the NASW-PA Board of Trustees.
For more information, visit NASW’s How Endorsements Are Made.


Where do PACE Funds Come From?
PACE funds come from voluntary member contributions. Each year on the membership renewal form members are asked to contribute $10 to PACE. Half of members’ contributions goes to national PACE for federal candidates, and half goes to the chapter PACE for state and local candidates. Members also have an opportunity to contribute to the "PACE pot” at the regional conferences’ advocacy lunch every year. Lastly, members can make contributions at any time of the year directly to national or chapter PACE.
How Can I Donate to PACE?
The work of PACE cannot be done without donations from NASW-PA members. If you are interested in supporting the work of PACE, you can:

1) Click HERE to donate online

2) add the $10 onto their membership each year for PACE, and
3) make a donation to:
1000 Bent Creek Boulevard, Suite 40
Mechanicsburg, PA

Attn: PACE Donation

How Can I Get Involved?
Political action is the key. The involvement of thousands of social workers working together can dramatically increase our influence and power in the political process. With your commitment and support, we can strengthen the voice of social work in the PA General Assembly. You can be a part of the NASW-PA PACE team by:
  • Contributing to the NASW-PA PACE fund, which is used to provide financial support to candidates and to organize social workers in campaigns. See instructions above in "How Do I Donate?”
  • Voting for endorsed NASW-PA candidates
  • Volunteering to work for a NASW-PA PACE endorsed candidate. For more information, visit NASW’s Get a Job on a Campaign
  • Helping candidates for public office build ties to the social work community by sponsoring candidate forums.
  • Running for state or local office. For more information, visit NASW’s Why Social Workers Should Run for Office
Who do I Contact with Questions?
Tara Breitsprecher
National Association of Social Workers-PA
1000 Bent Creek Boulevard, Suite 40
Mechanicsburg, PA 17050


717-232-4125 ext. 104


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