The following is an excerpt from County Chair Shannah Redmon’s speech at the 2019 Roosevelt Kennedy Dinner on March 30:
Good Evening everyone, I’m Shannah Redmon and I am the Chair of the Coconino County Democratic Party. We are grateful for your being here and sharing this evening with us! We are so thankful to our auction donors that allowed us to put on this amazing auction…. And, the Precinct baskets are awesome! Thanks to our PCs for putting those together creatively. The Precincts baskets in my region split their time between beer and health and fitness which actually is a perfect representation of Flagstaff.
Finally, I would like to send a big shoutout of appreciation to the RK Committee who worked hours to host this evening! Sallie Kladnik as co chair [with Shannah], Nancy Branham, Donna Hanley, Ann Heitland, Kelsey Blakley, Mary Mckell, and Marj Gillis.
We are here riding the waves of excitement of finally having some Democratic statewide wins in Arizona and we are grateful to have 3 of the 4 2018 Statewide Democratic elected officials here as our honored guests this evening. You are already transforming Arizona. Senator Sinema couldn’t be here tonight but she did donate $1000 dollars in her place from her Senator Sinema State Leadership PAC, Getting Stuff Done AZ. The PAC is for supporting county parties and the State party, and we appreciate her support. Your victories in 2018 have motivated us more than ever.
The Coconino County Democratic Party Executive team has not slowed down since January, and we are not planning on letting up. We need to do more than we did in 2018 and we need to do it smarter to get our Legislative District 6 candidates across the finish line. We plan to bring an even bigger margin of victory so that we are celebrating victories ON ELECTION NIGHT, not five days later!
Our County Party is the grassroots – these are our neighborhoods, these are our neighbors. Campaigns will come and go, but our County Party stays. I’d like you all to find the donation envelopes on your tables and hold them up for me please. Every single dollar that you put in this envelope or you donate online will be staying right here in Northern Arizona. You will be able to see your money put to good use right here where you live.
If you are having a hard time deciding how much to give, Let me help you with that: We are starting an intern program and a donation of $600 will support the stipend of one intern for one semester. In a town of 70,000 people with a university population of over 20,000, we cannot afford to ignore the student vote. And students are activated. These interns will be working to empower non-voters and first-time voters to cast their first votes for President of the United States as well as all other offices down the ballot! These interns will be the next leaders of our Party.
We are also working with the Navajo and Apache County Democrats in an effort to create Democratic clubs, provide training, and support paid canvassing positions across the Navajo Nation. If we are able to increase voter turnout to the state average (on the Navajo Nation), there are in excess of 20,000 Democratic votes just on the Navajo Nation in Arizona. Our motto is “Yadilah” – Vote!
However, it is not just about getting votes – it is about having a party that represents all our Democratic voters and helping to amplifying Indigenous voices and issues in our politics. Your donations can help make that happen. I have one last request. After you make your donation, I’d like you to think of three people who have some extra spending cash, especially those California friends! Tell them how important Coconino is to turning Arizona Blue, even to turning the U.S. back to Blue, and ask them to become a supporter.
We are here tonight because we have chosen not to sit on the sidelines. If you haven’t yet, and you have the time, I’d like to encourage you to become a Precinct Committee Member or volunteer with the Coconino County Democratic Party….. Talk to your friends, family, neighbors, and complete strangers! It is not the time to be silent and avoid politics in your day-to-day conversations. Talk about our Democratic values. We will no longer settle for a government that doesn’t represent us and our values. And we are ready to fight for 2020!