by Shannah Redmon, Chair Coconino County Democratic Party
Your intrepid state committee members, Phil Dudas, Frank Brahnam, Matt Capalby, Pat Carr, Cathy Rutherford, and Mary Landahl made the trip to Yuma, Arizona to attend the January 25th Arizona Democratic Party State Committee meeting, carrying our Coconino proxies. Fellow travelers (not State Committee Members) were Nancy Branham and Austin Kerr.
The meeting was exciting and packed full of activity. I attended the Chairs meeting with our Second Vice-Chair Cathy Rutherford and we were able to hear from Emma Brown, the head of this year’s Coordinated Campaign. She introduced us to the newly hired Field Director named Sean McInerney. They have already hired 10 field organizers in Arizona! I have requested from them a one-page document that can explain the organizational structure of the Coordinated Campaign (which is a mystery to many of the Chairs!) and a contact list of the organizers as they are brought on. (Since the meeting, we’ve heard two names for the Coordinated Campaign. The latest is “Mission for Arizona” — as in NASA “mission.” They intend not to be yesteryear’s Coordinated Campaign.
We also heard an update on the organization Contest Every Race, which have been texting prospective Democratic candidates on a list of targeted races that the Chairs provided. So far, they have identified 100 interested Democrats in Coconino that might be interested in filling positions needed from PC open spots to Fire District Boards. We did not submit any offices already held by Democrats or with already declared Democratic candidates.
The Executive Committee of ADP approved the 2020 party budget, with a recommendation to the Executive Director to push for fundraising in order to increase the County Mobilization Fund (money that is given from the ADP to support the County Democratic Parties each year).
The afternoon Plenary Session was taken up by electing three new DNC delegates, whose term is 4 years. I was happy that the three delegates chosen were Debbie Nez-Manuel, Luis Heredia, and Mark Robert Gordon. I also thank Doug Ballard for his time serving as a DNC delegate! There were two open ADP Vice-Chair positions, to which Garrick McFadden and Patty Contreras were elected. We voted to support a resolution initially proposed by our own State Committee Member Donna Hanley regarding Tribal Lands and Rural Addressing. Also supported was the Healthcare Rising AZ Resolution – a speaker for this initiative will be speaking at our February 8th Monthly Action Meeting. We passed a resolution supporting the census and one submitted by the Disabilities Caucus with some changes in language. The resolution censoring Senator Sinema was tabled as well as the resolution calling for a more balanced Israel/Palestine Policy. In regards to bylaws, three bylaws amendments, including one that I submitted, passed. A bylaws revision to the Affirmative Action Section was passed. Please read this important bylaws revision as it provides a path to increasing diversity at the State Committee, which is sorely needed.
My parting thought is that I encourage you to consider becoming a State Committee Person in this next cycle (2021-2022). The first step is to become an Elected Precinct Committee Person by filing your Nominating Petition by April 6th! (We’ll discuss this at our next Monthly Action Meeting on Feb 8th) We need to encourage increased diversity among our Elected PCs, so please discuss this in your regions and recruit strong Democrats to this important office. The next step is to get elected to be a State Committee Person at our December 2020 Reorganization Meeting. (We are likely going to move it up to December from the January tradition this year.)
I would like to see more Coconino Democrats stepping up to leadership positions in the State Democratic Party! There are three State Committee Meetings per year. The next one is in May in Phoenix. You can attend one yourself right here in Flagstaff on September 26th, 2020. It is important that we are there representing Coconino, bringing in different perspectives, and pushing for change!