We enjoyed another fine turnout at our last General Membership Meeting on March 2. Thank you to those who attended, and welcome to all those Democrats coming to a 26th LD meeting for their first time. For those who were not able to make the meeting, I will offer some highlights.
The Executive Board honored Randy Spitzer as the Democrat of the Month for March 2017. Randy made a name for himself the hard way in 2016, one doorbell at a time. Alongside February ’17 Democrat of the Month, Payton Swinford, Randy used his person-to-person skills to support South Kitsap School District levy and bond. He has also stepped up to help lead fundraising efforts in the 26th LD. “It feels good to win something,” Randy remarked.
Larry Seaquist then presented George and Cindy Robison with the Abigail Adams Award to honor their huge contribution to the Democratic Party and to the 26th LD. The Robisons are an invaluable resource for the 26th, and to its Chair, Executive Board and Committees. In addition to rebuilding a moribund Democrats group in the 26th, the Robisons remain active in Key Peninsula Lions and Democrats clubs, which they helped to create.
We had several guests from Kitsap County speak, including Bremerton Councilwoman Leslie Daugs, supporting the UFCW in their negotiations with CHI Franciscan. Bremerton Councilman Greg Wheeler announced his campaign for Mayor of Bremerton, and asked for our support. Deborah McDaniel also announced her campaign for Bremerton City Council. The 26th LD looks forward to helping these Democrats get elected.
RoxAnne Simon was elected Pierce County Vice Chair to replace Cecilia Hardy. RoxAnne was already an E-Board member, so we will be voting to fill her At-Large position as well as the position of Treasurer, for which Kathleen Tei was nominated.
Finally, we discussed our plans to rent an office for the 26th LD Democrats in Gig Harbor. I am confident that volunteer staffing of the office can be accomplished, given a wave of good Democrats from the Harbor. Jo Rodman’s last social club meeting at Round Table Pizza in gig Harbor was wall-to-wall Democrats. Negotiating a lease agreement and planning for funding are in the works.
I am extremely proud of the work being done by our Executive Board and our Committees. Our Candidate Recruitment Committee is drawing 30 or more potential Democratic leaders to its Leadership Development Workshop. Alec Matias, Legislative Committee Chair recently spoke in Olympia in support of a State Bank. His committee members also participated in the Mannette Bridge rally in support of a welcoming Kitsap County. State Committee Woman Joy Vartanian offered up a wall full of events, meetings, rallies and marches that our members are encouraged to attend and represent the values and causes of the 26th LD Democrats.
Joy’s efforts to get Democratic participation throughout the District fit with the theme of our meeting, “Resist!” Our newly elected state and national chairs are looking to us, the grass roots, for direction. We have the awesome challenge and responsibility to rebuild the Democratic party from the ground up. Please check our web page, 26d.org for ways to get involved, or feel free to contact me One of our PCO’s, Twila Slind, recently told me that she has a goal of doing at least one political action every day. If we all follow Twila’s example, we will once again elect Democrats to the State Legislature.