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Volunteers across America: Montana

My name is Paul Jordan. I'm a PhD student at Montana State University and a volunteer with President Obama's campaign in Bozeman, Montana.

I went to my first campaign meeting last summer, and from there, I couldn't help but get involved. The Bozeman team is one of the best organized in the state, and it's inspiring to be involved with so many people who bring their own unique skills to the team—like Thomas, who I originally called at a phone bank. He's now the state digital director. I was at Judith's first phone bank—today, she's our neighborhood team leader. It's been exciting watching these people progress into leadership roles.

I'm studying biochemistry, so I really appreciate how the President has supported research and science. His policies don't just encourage innovation—they support my research, which is the first step in a new way of thinking about alternative fuels. The President is making that all possible.

The people I've talked to in Montana care a lot about health care and tax reform—and we have a large Native American population here, so the issues important to that community are close to home for all of us. We live in an awesome place—it's truly breathtaking, and that's what makes organizing here so exciting.

I spend a lot of my time doing phone banks, and I work with young people in the community, helping to mobilize local high school and college students. My primary focus right now is one-on-ones: my neighborhood team leader puts me in touch with people who are interested in coming on board, and I meet them for coffee and help find them a place in the campaign. Recently, I met with someone who had been a producer for a film, so I put her in touch with our digital coordinator—I have a lot of fun putting those pieces together. I get to meet people I'd never get to meet otherwise.

The most surprising part of my work with the campaign has been that there are this many people in a relatively small town like Bozeman, Montana standing behind the President. It's happened fast—last summer, five or 10 people would show up to our events; just the other month, 40 showed up to our team meeting, and they were all ready to make a commitment to volunteer.

As for me, I make the time by volunteering after work. It's a priority because I don't see an alternative: It has to be President Obama in this election, and I want to do everything I can to make that happen.

Join Paul and volunteers all over the country by getting involved near you.

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