Haley Lickstein: Empowering Youth Through Civic Influence

Article written by Marjorie Blankfort:

In today’s fast-paced digital era where there’s a fine line between staying informed and being inundated, Haley Lickstein stands out as a guiding light for the youth by helping them navigate the intricate terrain of politics. At 27, Lickstein has become a pivotal “civic influencer” who has dedicated her social media presence to mobilizing young people into political action and civic participation.

Lickstein’s journey into the world of politics began early. With internships at the United States Senate during high school and a president’s role in her high school, she was no stranger to leadership roles from a young age. Her college years in Washington, D.C., saw her work on Capitol Hill and with organizations like EMILY’s List and the Democratic National Committee, further honing her understanding of political mechanisms and advocacy.

Her mission is clear: to prepare, inspire, and empower, especially young women, to voice their concerns and influence change. Since October 2022, Lickstein has utilized her social platforms—Instagram, TikTok, and Snapchat—to demystify politics for young voters. She crafts easily digestible content that breaks down court cases, election processes, and critical legislative updates.

“I am determined to help to prepare, inspire, and empower young people, especially young women, to make their voices heard,” said Lickstein. “I love the idea of using my platform to help bridge the disconnect between civic engagement and civic participation and using social media as a tool for grassroots advocacy.”

Haley Lickstein’s impact extends far beyond the ephemeral stories and posts on social media platforms. Her strategic collaborations with key national advocacy groups have led to a powerful synergy that amplifies crucial action items, propelling a movement of grassroots advocacy that resonates across the nation. Lickstein’s approach is pragmatic and purpose-driven; she curates content that not only informs but also equips her followers with concrete steps they can take to engage with political issues. By doing so, she transforms passive scrolling into active participation.

Her efforts are relentless and meticulously tailored to ensure that the message of civic involvement is not just heard but also acted upon. She is a catalyst for change and inspires her audience to move beyond the comfort of online activism into the realm of real-world action. By highlighting the significance of local elections and shedding light on legislative developments, she reinforces the notion that political participation should be woven into the fabric of daily life, transcending beyond the buzz of election cycles.  For Lickstein, staying politically active is not merely a response to an upcoming election but a sustained lifestyle choice.

“I post about all things politics, with a goal of making politics more accessible, and less taboo to younger voters,” said Lickstein. “I break down court cases, how elections work, important dates to know and legislation happening across the country in easy short videos. I am extremely impact oriented so I try to help give my audience quick action items and ways they can make an impact year-round, not just during election season.”

The demographic of Lickstein’s audience is predominantly young women aged 18-35, a group she has inadvertently but fortuitously resonated with. An unexpected and yet promising segment of her followers includes the 13-17 age bracket, who, despite being ineligible to vote, are politically curious and eager to contribute to societal change.

“I am really lucky to have a strong audience,” said Lickstein. “This year I became a ‘snap star’, a platform with a younger audience. Almost 40% of my audience on that platform are females ages 13-17 who are not of voting age yet but incredibly politically curious and searching for ways to make their voices heard outside of opportunities at the ballot box — it is so energizing to hear from them and see their passion and commitment for change.”

Lickstein is poised to play a crucial role in the 2024 election cycle. With over 40 million Gen Z members eligible to vote, including 8 million first-time voters, she stands at the forefront of a potential seismic shift in electoral dynamics. Her message to her audience is compelling: go beyond the ballot box, engage in meaningful discussions, and embed civic engagement into the fabric of daily life.

As an influencer, Lickstein envisions a future where her peers are not just content creators but key players in political discourse and advocacy. She calls for a harmonious relationship between traditional political media and influencers, aiming to integrate youth perspectives into mainstream political narratives.

Haley Lickstein’s work epitomizes the intersection of digital influence and democratic engagement. Through her efforts, she not only informs but empowers, not just mobilizes but inspires. As she continues to build her platform, one post, one video, one story at a time, the impact of her young audience in the political process seems destined to grow under her guidance.

For more information and to join her community, follow Haley Lickstein on Instagram, TikTok, and Snapchat.