Last night, we had the third DC Democratic State Committee meeting since my term began. I live-tweeted the proceedings on this thread, if you want to read the play-by-play.
It’s the second meeting presided over by Chair Charles Wilson, who was elected in the September Annual Meeting.
While there is much left to be done, there is an overwhelming sense among committee members that the organization is getting back to work after years of quiet. Meetings are scheduled far in advance and being better publicized. Agendas and rules of the day are being distributed in advance. Regular updates are being posted on the DC Democratic Party website for both members and voters alike.
In fact, the perception of improvement is bringing back into the fray former committee members who had left in exhaustion or disgust under the prior administration. Some even ran for Add-On positions in last night’s election!
That said, we still probably have a couple of months of restorative work before the committee begins making bigger moves. Next up is the selection of co-chairs for the various subcommittees:
- Constitution and By-Laws, which does deep work on committee governance
- Finance and Fundraising, which is self-explanatory
- Issues and Resolutions, which helps review resolutions submitted by members and select topics for committee discussion
- Party Organization and Function, which helps manage committee elections and relationships with caucus and constituency groups
- Voter Outreach, Training and Education, which coordinates voter registration, organizes public fora, and develops relationships with other groups across the District
- Voting Rights and Statehood, which is self-explanatory
- Kennedys-King, which is responsible for organizing the annual fundraising dinner
- Blue Wave, which coordinates with the DNC and helps DC voters support pro-Statehood candidates in other jurisdictions
- Communications and Publicity, which is self-explanatory
- Hospitality, which is responsible for making DCDSC meetings comfortable and accessible for all attendees
Once these committees are established, the real work begins. Committees can meet on schedules of their own choosing. That’s when I plan to start moving the items you elected me to move. Some of those are internal, like addressing the DNC’s continued gender segregation of committee seats, which disenfranchises people who don’t subscribe to the outdated idea of gender as binary. Most are external, like how the committee engages rank-and-file Democrats, articulates clearly the position of local Democrats on key issues like affordable housing, holds local elected officials accountable to those positions, and equips community organizations that are already doing important work that advances the platform and mission of the party.
Joining me and those DCDSC members elected by you in the primary or appointed by constituency and caucus groups will be twelve new Add-On Members. I explained in an earlier post what Add-Ons are and how they’re elected.
In total, 24 candidates ran for twelve Add-On positions, six reserved for women and six for men. Some people I favored lost, and some won. I especially want to thank Kishan Putta, Franco Ciammachilli, Anita Cafiero, and Pamela Gomez for running, despite falling short. I’ve worked with Putta and Ciammachilli in the past and know that they’re dogged workers and creative thinkers. Cafiero ran a really communicative campaign, and Gomez represented a group that the committee has often overlooked: inactive and newly-active voters.
I also want to congratulate those who were victorious, some brand new to the committee and others returning after previous terms.
For Add-On Committeewomen, we elected:
- Channell Autrey
- Janeese Lewis
- Dorinda White
- Deborah Shore
- Tiye Kinlow
- Lynn French
For Add-On Committeemen, we elected:
- Bob Brandon
- Kevin Chavous
- Franklin Garcia
- Brandon Frye
- Troy Donte Prestwood
- Alan Karnofsky
Congratulations to each of my new colleagues. Now, let’s get to work!