Letter from the Executive Director – November 9, 2022


Yesterday’s election was unlike any other in our state’s recent history. The redrawing of our political boundaries led to a significant transformation in the statehouse, ultimately resulting in a nearly 50% turnover of our representation. Idahoans once again stood up for the natural environment at the polls, electing candidates that ran on pro-conservation platforms and demonstrated commitment to protecting our land, water, and air for future generations. 

Several of these victories carry substantial weight, and will shape Idaho’s political future for years to come. Additionally, the success of any common sense candidate is a win, particularly in a time where our state has struggled with encroaching extremism within our leadership.

We aren’t celebrating these wins alone. Our hearts are full today because of people like you, who were engaged and involved from start to finish, in a multitude of ways: donating, sharing information, volunteering to get out the vote, and most critically, casting your ballot in favor of pro-conservation candidates. Yesterday’s election results secured key victories for some of Idaho’s most populous counties and legislative districts. 

Full List of Elected Champions

ACHD District 3Miranda Gold
ACHD District 4Kent Goldthorpe
Latah CountyTom Lamar
Teton CountyBob Heneage
Teton CountyMichael Whitfield
District 8 SenatorGeoff Schroeder
District 8 RepresentativeMatt Bundy
District 15 SenatorRick Just
District 15 RepresentativeSteve Berch
District 16 SenateAli Rabe
District 16 RepresentativeSoñia Galaviz
District 16 RepresentativeColin Nash
District 17 SenateCarrie Semmelroth
District 18 SenateJanie Ward-Engelking
District 18 RepresentativeIlana Rubel
District 18 RepresentativeBrooke Green
District 19 SenateMelissa Wintrow
District 19 RepresentativeLauren Necochea
District 19 RepresentativeChris Mathias
District 21 RepresentativeJames Petzke
District 26 RepresentativeNed Burns
District 29 SenateJames Ruchti
District 29 RepresentativeNate Roberts
District 31 RepresentativeJerald Raymond
District 34 RepresentativeBritt Raybould
District 35 RepresentativeJosh Wheeler

Conservation & Democracy win BIG

We received outstanding support for our candidates in Districts 16, 18, and 19, where pro-conservation candidates won the entire slate of races. Congratulations to Ali Rabe, Janie Ward-Engelking, and Melissa Wintrow on their victories in the senate races, and to Sonia Galaviz, Colin Nash, Ilana Rubel, Brooke Green, Lauren Necochea, and Chris Mathias for their wins as Idaho’s representatives. To see our full list of winning candidates, visit cvidaho.org/2022-results/

Newly elected Secretary of State Phil McGrane, who CVI endorsed in the primary, secured more votes than any other candidate statewide. McGrane’s commitment to transparency and maintaining our safe and secure electoral process is crucial to our state’s democracy. We are confident Idaho’s elections will remain fair, secure, and accessible under McGrane’s leadership.

Ada County Highway District

While the race was hidden at the bottom of Ada County ballots, Ada County Highway District (ACHD) has the third largest local budget in the state and controls nearly all roads in one of the fastest growing metropolitan areas in the nation. We are thrilled to share that both of our endorsed candidates — Miranda Gold and Kent Goldthorpe — were victorious yesterday. These wins, along with past victories by Jim Hansen and Alexis Pickering, have created an ACHD led by strong conservation champions. Together, we can implement ambitious and proactive policies to protect our clean air, take advantage of millions in federal funding opportunities, and build a transportation system that supports the bike and pedestrian infrastructure that Ada County needs.  

District 15
We have claimed a significant seat for conservation in the Senate. Our endorsed candidate Rick Just secured the victory as the new senator for District 15. This is a seat we have been working to win for nearly ten years. Just has an extensive resume in conservation, including roles with the Department of Parks & Recreation and Friends of Idaho State Parks. This knowledge and expertise on land use and open space will be a significant asset in advancing conservation policy for Idaho communities.

District 29

Voters in District 29 demonstrated they have no place for extremism in their community when they elected James Ruchti. Ruchti’s victory over Worley aids our fight for common sense over extremism in the Senate. In addition, we preserved a District 29 house seat with the victory of newcomer Nate Roberts. As a union electrician and a clean energy advocate, Roberts knows first hand that climate action means good jobs for everyday Idahoans.


We were disappointed to see that the Constitutional Amendment (SJR 102) passed. This amendment will allow legislators to call themselves into special session at any time to attack our public lands, undermine our voting rights, and cost taxpayers $30,000 per day. Despite the challenges this amendment presents, we remain committed to defending conservation values and the lands we love, and will be to engage as needed. We will also need you to be prepared to testify and send in comments at unexpected times. It will take all of us. 

By the Numbers

With the encouragement from over 17,000 supporters Conservation Voters for Idaho ensured conservation remained at the top of Idahoans’ priorities for the 2022 general election. Together, we completed the following direct voter engagement strategies in the general election:

Total Voter Contact by strategies: 

  • Mail reached 52,500 voters
  • Digital reached 154,643 voters
  • 86,000 voters contacted by text
  • 28,000 doors knocked
  • Total Voter Contacts this cycle: 303,643

I’d like to congratulate all of the hard-working candidates, and thank our voter outreach staff and volunteers for their tireless efforts over the last few weeks. We know that all your conversations with voters have helped make our community and our state a better place, and have uplifted conservation values in the minds of our neighbors as well as our newly elected leaders.

And, of course, I’d like to thank all of you for casting your votes for conservation, and continuing to support Conservation Voters for Idaho.