Distinguished Democrats: Josh Ferguson

Josh Ferguson

Political Consultant & Kent Dems Field Director

Josh is a proud trans woman. She shared, “How you look at me says more about you than what it says about me. I take a great deal of pride in giving people practice in challenging their assumptions.”

Growing up in a household that kept playing West Wing over and over, she thought that being like some of the actors was a job she actually could do and aspired to work in politics, even if it was behind the scenes. 

Pursuing a degree in Economics at Valparaiso University in Indiana, she was inspired by South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg’s impact on the queer community. 

After Josh graduated, jobs were hard to come by, so she volunteered to do data work for Bryan Berghoef, who was running for office. Every day, Josh would ask for a summer job to be his Campaign Manager. Bryan eventually hired her, because he said nobody wanted the job more than she did. 

Josh said the deep introspection she had to go through, pulling from her internal strengths, helped shape who she was as an authentic person. She said, “The more open and honest you are with people, they respond because they can tell that I have a clear sense of who I am and what I want to do.”

From August, 2021 until November, 2022, she served as a Field Organizer for Governor Whitmer’s campaign. She said, “It was illuminating to work for a massive statewide apparatus versus a local campaign. In the end, all you really have is what you have between your ears.”

In April, 2023, Josh was hired to do consulting work for 270 Strategies to keep an eye on renewable energy in Michigan and to help with its implementation across the state. She has a flexible schedule which allows her to be active in the Kent Dems as a Field Director, where she builds out teams of people to engage neighborhoods in one-to-one conversations. 

Josh says, “In order to cut through divisiveness, we need to get to know each other better. Nothing beats a five minute conversation. No one human can win an election by themselves. It comes down to one collective coalition versus another collective coalition. It is really important to keep the focus on the coalition and having genuine deep conversations. Strong coalitions build strong communities.” 

Josh sees herself as a “trouble maker because I inherently throw people off balance. People make assumptions and by discovering that they were wrong sets people back. Assumptions are rarely challenged on the news or social media, so I take a great deal of pride giving people practice in throwing off their assumptions. Ultimately, it makes the world more wholesome. I am hopeful that through the power of authentic conversations, humans will have the ability to work together better.”