Summer Reading for Future Congresswomen

The 11 Books Recommended During Running Start’s 2019 High School Program

This June, Running Start’s annual week-long, residential political leadership program brought together 50 high school women leaders from across the country. In addition to meeting their Member of Congress and participating in a campaign simulation, the participants heard from over 40 speakers from the world of politics and leadership. A common theme among all of these speakers’ remarks? Book recommendations! Here are all of the books our expert speakers say helped them on their leadership journey.

The Confidence Code: The Science and Art of Self-Assurance — -What Women Need to Know by Claire Shipman and Katty Kay

Confidence. We know it when we see it or think we do. And we want it for ourselves. The authors of the New York Times bestseller Womenomics deconstruct this essential, elusive, and misunderstood quality and offer a blueprint to bring more of it into our lives. Ultimately, they argue, while confidence is partly influenced by genetics, it is not a fixed psychological state. You won’t discover it by thinking positive thoughts or telling yourself (or your children) that you are perfect as you are. You won’t find it either by simply squaring your shoulders and faking it. But it does require a choice: less worrying about people-pleasing and perfection and more action, risk taking, and fast failure. Inspiring, insightful, and persuasive, The Confidence Code shows that by acting on our best instincts and by daring to be authentic, women can feel the transformative power of a life on confidence.

Represent: The Woman’s Guide to Running for Office and Changing the World by June Raphael and Kate Black

Turn “can I do this?” into “yes, I can!”

Join the growing wave of women leaders with Represent, an energetic, interactive, and inspiring step-by-step guide showing how to run for the approximately 500,000 elected offices in the US. Written with humor and honesty by writer, comedian, actress, and activist June Diane Raphael and Kate Black, former chief of staff at EMILY’s list, Represent is structured around a 21-point document called “I’m Running for Office: The Checklist.” Doubling as a workbook, Represent covers it all, from the nuts and bolts of where to run, fundraising, and filing deadlines, to issues like balancing family and campaigning, managing social media and how running for office can work in your real life. With infographics, profiles of women politicians, and wisdom and advice from women in office, this is a must-own for any woman thinking of joining the pink wave.

Go Fish: How to Catch (And Keep) Contributors: A Practical Guide to Fundraising by Nancy Bocksor

This 66-page book is full of practical advice about how to ask for money, organize finance committees, host profitable events, write successful fundraising letters and other best practices for political and non-profit fundraisers. You’ll learn how to develop successful strategies in this step-by-step guide that demystifies the fundraising process. In Go Fish, Nancy Bocskor has translated her years of fundraising experience into the definitive fundraiser’s handbook.

7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey

Stephen R. Covey’s book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People®, continues to be a best seller for the simple reason that it ignores trends and pop psychology and focuses on timeless principles of fairness, integrity, honesty, and human dignity.

One of the most compelling books ever written, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People®, have empowered and inspired readers for over 25 years and played a part in the transformation of millions of lives, across all age groups and professions.

Love Your Enemies: How Decent People Can Save America from the Culture of Contempt by Arthur C. Brooks

In Love Your Enemies, the New York Times bestselling author and social scientist Arthur C. Brooks shows that abuse and outrage are not the right formula for lasting success. Brooks blends cutting-edge behavioral research, ancient wisdom, and a decade of experience leading one of America’s top policy think tanks in a work that offers a better way to lead based on bridging divides and mending relationships.

Love Your Enemies offers a clear strategy for victory for a new generation of leaders. It is a rallying cry for people hoping for a new era of American progress. Most of all, it is a roadmap to arrive at the happiness that comes when we choose to love one another, despite our differences.

How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie

You can go after the job you want…and get it! You can take the job you have…and improve it! You can take any situation you’re in…and make it work for you!

Since its release in 1936, How to Win Friends and Influence People has sold more than 15 million copies. Dale Carnegie’s first book is a timeless bestseller, packed with rock-solid advice that has carried thousands of now famous people up the ladder of success in their business and personal lives.

As relevant as ever before, Dale Carnegie’s principles endure, and will help you achieve your maximum potential in the complex and competitive modern age.

Learn the six ways to make people like you, the twelve ways to win people to your way of thinking, and the nine ways to change people without arousing resentment.

How to Win Friends and Influence People for Teen Girls by Donna Dale Carnegie

Donna Dale Carnegie, daughter of the late motivational author and teacher Dale Carnegie, brings her father’s time-tested, invaluable lessons to the newest generation of young women on their way to becoming savvy, self-assured friends and leaders.

How to Win Friends and Influence People for Teen Girls offers concrete advice on teen topics such as peer pressure, gossip, and popularity. Teen girls will learn the most powerful ways to influence others, defuse arguments, admit mistakes, and make self-defining choices. The Carnegie techniques promote clear and constructive communication, praise rather than criticism, emotional sensitivity, tolerance, and a positive attitude — important skills for every girl to develop at an early age. Of course, no book for teen girls would be complete without taking a look commitment issues and break-ups with romantic partners. Carnegie also provides solid advice for older teens beginning to explore their influence in the adult world, such as driving and handling college interviews.

Full of fun quizzes, “reality check” sections, and true-life examples, How to Win Friends and Influence People for Teen Girls offers every teenage girl candid, insightful, and timely advice on how to influence friends in a positive manner.

Art of Intelligence: Lessons from a Life in CIA’s Clandestine Service by Henry A. Crumpton

Revelatory and groundbreaking, The Art of Intelligence will change the way people view the CIA, domestic and foreign intelligence, and international terrorism. Henry A. “Hank” Crumpton, a twenty-four-year veteran of the CIA’s Clandestine Service, offers a thrilling account that delivers profound lessons about what it means to serve as an honorable spy. From CIA recruiting missions in Africa to pioneering new programs like the UAV Predator, from running post–9/11 missions in Afghanistan to heading up all clandestine CIA operations in the United States, Crumpton chronicles his role — in the battlefield and in the Oval Office — in transforming the way America wages war and sheds light on issues of domestic espionage.

Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In The Sun, and Be Your Own Person by Shonda Rhimes

The instant New York Times bestseller from the creator of Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal and executive producer of How to Get Away With Murder shares how saying YES changed her life. “As fun to read as Rhimes’s TV series are to watch” (Los Angeles Times). With three children at home and three hit television shows, it was easy for Shonda to say she was simply too busy. But in truth, she was also afraid. And then, over Thanksgiving dinner, her sister muttered something that was both a wake up and a call to arms: You never say yes to anything. Shonda knew she had to embrace the challenge: for one year, she would say YES to everything that scared her.

This poignant, intimate, and hilarious memoir explores Shonda’s life before her Year of Yes — from her nerdy, book-loving childhood to her devotion to creating television characters who reflected the world she saw around her. The book chronicles her life after her Year of Yes had begun — when Shonda forced herself out of the house and onto the stage; when she learned to explore, empower, applaud, and love her truest self. Yes.

The 5 Second Rule: Transform your Life, Work, and Confidence with Everyday Courage by Mel Robbins

Throughout your life, you’ve had parents, coaches, teachers, friends and mentors who have pushed you to be better than your excuses and bigger than your fears. What if the secret to having the confidence and courage to enrich your life and work is simply knowing how to push yourself?

Using the science of habits, riveting stories and surprising facts from some of the most famous moments in history, art and business, Mel Robbins will explain the power of a “push moment.” Then, she’ll give you one simple tool you can use to become your greatest self.

It takes just five seconds to use this tool, and every time you do you’ll be in great company. More than 8 million people have watched Mel’s TEDx Talk, and executives inside of the world’s largest brands are using the tool to increase productivity, collaboration, and engagement. The 5 Second Rule is a simple, one-size-fits-all solution for the one problem we all face — we hold ourselves back.

Quiet: the Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain

At least one-third of the people we know are introverts. They are the ones who prefer listening to speaking; who innovate and create but dislike self-promotion; who favor working on their own over working in teams. It is to introverts — Rosa Parks, Chopin, Dr. Seuss, Steve Wozniak — that we owe many of the great contributions to society.

In Quiet, Susan Cain argues that we dramatically undervalue introverts and shows how much we lose in doing so. She charts the rise of the Extrovert Ideal throughout the twentieth century and explores how deeply it has come to permeate our culture. She also introduces us to successful introverts — from a witty, high-octane public speaker who recharges in solitude after his talks, to a record-breaking salesman who quietly taps into the power of questions. Passionately argued, superbly researched, and filled with indelible stories of real people, Quiet has the power to permanently change how we see introverts and, equally important, how they see themselves.