Report of the Nominations Committee | Democrats Abroad Canada – Vancouver Chapter | Submitted: April 4, 2017

The Elections of new officers of Democrats Abroad Canada Vancouver Chapter will take place at the Annual General Meeting on Saturday, May 6, 2017. Please click here for details on DA Canada Vancouver AGM. Please SCROLL DOWN to read candidate statements.

The electronic ballots will be emailed to members on April 21, 2017 and must be submitted by 11:59 pm PDT May 5, 2017.

ELECTION 2017 PROXY | ALL NOMINEES WERE SELF NOMINATED

Chair:  Susan Brennan  |  Bodil Geyer

Vice Chair:  Robert J. Petrusa  |  Doug Sarti

General Secretary:  Lissa Robertson

Treasurer:  Pat Fournier  |  Rick Havlak

Development & Community Outreach SecretaryNo Candidate

Policy Secretary:  Amanda Bristow Macpherson  |  Tara Ryan |  David Hoyt

Communications Secretary:  Matthew Borghese  |  Julie Boton

CANDIDATE STATEMENTS

CHAIR

Susan BRENNAN – 2017 Candidate for Chair of DA Vancouver

As a staunch lifelong Democrat, I am a dual US-Canadian citizen who was raised in the Chicago area and votes in Cook County. I hold a Bachelor's degree in Mathematics from Mundelein College (now a part of Chicago's Loyola University)..

*****    Long History of Participation with Democrats Abroad    *****

A member of Democrats Abroad since 2006, I have served on the executive board of the Vancouver chapter as the Community Outreach Secretary since 2013.

As Community Outreach Secretary, I was instrumental in organizing many DA Vancouver events over the past 4 years:

  • two Roy Zimmerman concerts
  • annual State of the Union watches
  • tax seminars
  • Fourth of July picnics
  • Thanksgiving dinners
  • 2016 primary debate watches and global primary election

In addition to the duties of Community Outreach Secretary, I organized and chaired our chapter's annual general meetings in 2014 and 2015.

*****    Extensive Leadership Experience    *****

I bring to DA Vancouver a solid background in leadership and working with boards. Certified in Non-Profit Sector Management from Simon Fraser University, my background includes both paid and volunteer management experience.

Paid management experience:

  • IT Manager of S.P. Richards Canada
  • Executive Director of Strathcona Health Society
  • Director of Special Projects and Client Services Coordinator for the Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society.

Volunteer management experience:

  • founding and managing the Seymour Area Youth Services Society
  • serving as board chair of the Pacific Coast Computer Fair Association, Capilano Community Services Society and the North Shore Community Garden Society
  • chairing two District of North Vancouver's granting committees for local non-profits.

*****     Why I Am Running     *****

I am running for Chair because I feel that Democrats Abroad, our Vancouver chapter and other chapters around the world, must work with the Democratic Party leadership to regenerate our party with our eyes firmly fixed on the future.

To do this, the party must vigorously fight gerrymandering and voter suppression and support Democratic candidates in local, state and federal elections where more than 1,000 Democrat-held spots have been lost in the last 8 years.

I believe that the Democratic Party must get back to basics as a progressive grassroots party that supports workers' rights, public health, civil rights, women's rights, public works, and environmental protection and not be beholden to corporate interests that weaken our party's values and vision.

With DA chapters worldwide, I will strive to engage more ex-pat US citizens in Democrats Abroad and help to ensure a higher voter turnout on November 6, 2018 when 33 Senate seats, 435 House seas, and 14 governorships will be up for re-election. One way that I want to do this is by encouraging the formation of DA Vancouver interest groups in all areas of our vast province.

Hopefully, it won't be too late to save American democracy and the US Constitution.

I thank you for your consideration and would be very grateful for your support.

Find me at www.facebook.com/Brennan4DAYVR.

Susan Brennan

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Bodil GEYER COO

Swim Recruiting

Email: bodil.geyer@swimrecruiting.com

Mobile: 778-385-7946

March 3, 2017

Re: Self-Nomination of Bodil Geyer for Chair, Democrats Abroad Vancouver

My Vision for Progressive, Unifying and Collaborative Leadership

I am thrilled to submit my nomination for Chair, Democrats Abroad Vancouver (DAV). I affirm I have the unique combination of business and non-profit leadership expertise—as well as community and political volunteer qualifications—to succeed in this dynamic role.

Note: I am also running as part of “Democrats United Vancouver” or “Team DUV,” a group of four local, active DAV members, contending for the election as your Progressive Leadership Team.

Confirmation of Meeting Nomination Requirements

I confirm:

  1. I am a U.S. Citizen.
  2. I am living abroad in Vancouver, B.C., residing in Canada since 1974.
  3. I enthusiastically adhere to the principles of the Democratic Party of the U.S. and strive to exemplify democratic values in all I do.

Distinguishing Qualifications Benefitting DAV

1.   Lifelong Commitment to Progressive Values and Political Service

    • Active in local politics since youth
    • Organized many successful events as DAV Acting Events Manager in 2016 including voter registration, membership drives and debate and election-watch evenings—the latter breaking all prior records with a turnout of 1,600+ people and full press and TV coverage
    • One of Five Key Members who organized the successful Women’s March on Washington, Vancouver, garnering nearly 20,000 participants
    • Serving on the National Board to arrange ongoing marches and events

2.   Proven, Fair-minded, Collaborative Executive Leadership Experience

  • Co-founder and Chief Operating Officer of Swim Recruiting – A highly profitable and culturally diverse Vancouver company, growing to 25 full-time employees since 2007.
  • Award-Winning Past Chair of ACSESS BC, the Canadian industry association for recruitment – Won a Special Achievement Award In Recognition of Volunteer Service during role (2013-2015)

 3.   Lifetime of Experience Leading and Participating in Charitable and Sustainability Initiatives

Through my company, I have spearheaded significant participation in many local programs:

Canadian Blood Services; Muslim Food Bank, Muscular Dystrophy Canada; Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation; Movember Foundation; Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre; Union Gospel Mission; Green at Work.

4.   Commitment to Serving Two-year Term and Leading DAV in Achieving its Mission

It is important to note I have a supportive child and husband, a writer who lives with Muscular Dystrophy. Further, I have the unique ability to lean on my corporate administration.

5.   Platform Vision – Progressive and Collaborative Leadership

I truly believe we have a significant opportunity to increase membership, voter registration and voting to positively affect U.S. election outcomes. I envision a three-pillar approach reaching students, millennials and thousands of local Americans. If elected, I will reenergize a Student Board position and expand social and mainstream media coverage, similar to my recent work for DAV. I will also conduct membership demographic analytics and draw from this data to target our GOTV voter registration and phone-banking campaigns, all in an effort to reach more voters and help the Democratic Party win in key battleground areas in 2018.

In summary, I look forward to serving DAV and hope you will favor me with your support.

Sincerely,

Bodil Geyer

COO, Swim Recruiting

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VICE-CHAIR

Robert J. PETRUSA

                  I, Robert J. Petrusa, am asking for your nomination for the position of Vice Chair of the DAV Chapter.

Brief History ~

                  I am originally from Joliet, Illinois. After graduating high school, I attended Mt. Carmel College/Monastery (this included academic, 1st year and religious formation in the second).  I decided to leave seminary in 1969 and returned to Joliet, where I attended Joliet Junior College for one term.  After leaving JJC, I was faced with the potential of being drafted into the Military.  I chose to apply for a Conscientious Objector deferment.

                  Having completed my duties as a CO, I moved to the East Coast.  I lived in Cambridge, MA for approximately 15 years.  I worked in numerous occupations including arborist, mental health worker, drug rehab counselor and finally settled into the building trades as a carpenter/builder.                     

                  I married a Canadian lady in 1982 and we have two children together.  We moved to Vancouver, Canada in 1987, where we have lived since.  We have resided in New Westminster for the past 29 years.  I worked for a local developer/builder, Concert Properties, for 20 years as a quality control advisor, customer service representative and warranty services provider.  I retired from Concert in 2014.

Qualifications ~

I have been a life long Democrat.  I have been involved with Democrats Abroad since 2010 and an active member since 2013.  During my involvement as a member at large of the executive committee, I have been active in fundraising projects and DA group activities such as Thanksgiving dinners, and 4th of July gatherings.  I have always had a keen interest and volunteered with community organizations in the Downtown East Side.  They include Union Gospel Mission functions in Oppenheimer Park (3 years); RayCam Community Centre, outreach work providing necessary supplies and appliances to those in need; Trade Works, a training center for men and women interested in learning trades and job skills.  Most recently, since retiring, I have redirected my volunteer energies into my local community where I am active in our Resident Neighbourhood Association as a traffic advisor to New Westminster.  I will also be involved with the Heritage Advisory Committee and the Emergency Preparedness Committee come the beginning of 2017.

Reason for seeking office ~

My primary reason for seeking office with the DAV is to further people’s awareness of social issues, to inspire participation and most importantly, to nurture progressive actions and policies.  My objective is to become a more dynamic contributor to our society here and in the USA, where the need for generous cooperation and robust solidarity to our values of Liberty and Equality are so desperately needed.  My passionate beliefs in environmental justice, in voting rights and in civilian participation in governance is what fosters my dedication to grass roots involvement with Democrats everywhere…but most specifically Vancouver.  Finally, I adhere to the principles of the Democratic Party and the Constitution of the United States of America.

Robert J. Petrusa, Executive Member at Large

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Doug SARTI

Self-Nomination of Doug Sarti for Vice Chair, Democrats Abroad Vancouver (DAV) Advocate for Progressive, Unifying and Collaborative Leadership

I enthusiastically submit my nomination for Vice Chair, DAV. I affirm I have the combination of business experience and a lifetime of Democratic Party service to carry out the critical responsibilities of this position.

Confirmation of Meeting Nomination Requirements

I confirm: 1. I am a U.S. Citizen, born in Phoenix, Arizona, and have lived in Virginia, Michigan, Massachusetts and Rhode Island. 2. I am living abroad in Vancouver, B.C. 3. I unequivocally adhere to the principles of the Democratic Party of the United States.

Distinguishing Qualifications Benefitting DAV

1. Lifelong Commitment to Progressive Political Values and Service • Raised in a Progressive Household – As the product of two 1960s liberals, I grew up in an environment championing democratic values. • Vice President of Young Democrats, Rhode Island • Managed State Senate Campaign and Other Political Work– I did many jobs in the world of east coast rough-and-tumble politics, from phone banking all the way up to managing a state senate campaign. I have worked on many municipal, state, and federal campaigns, including those of Senator Claiborne Pell and President Bill Clinton, and I even ran as a delegate to the Democratic National Convention in 1996. Note: I am also running as part of “Democrats United Vancouver” or “TeamDUV,” a group of four local, active DAV members, contending for the election as your Progressive Leadership Team.

2. Fair-minded, Collaborative Leadership and Business Experience

• Editorial Administrator, the Georgia Straight newspaper with over 800,000 Weekly Readers/ Visitors1 –As a regular contributor, I write about U.S. politics, books, history and more.

• Published Writer Promoting Democrats Abroad– I have completed a number of interviews and articles about DAV and the local GOTV effort, including an interview with singer Roy Zimmerman for his local DA fundraiser.

• Community Leader–I am President of my condo strata and coach Little League baseball.

3. Commitment to Serving Two-year Term and Devoting Time to Lead DAV in Achieving its Mission

I have the full support of my wife, Loree. Our six-year old son, Frankie, is also American and we are raising him to be a good Democrat (and future president).

4. Vision and Motivation for Seeking Office

The election of Donald Trump was a shock and a wake-up call. There has been a tectonic shift in the state of our nation and all hands are needed on deck. It is not enough just to vote; we must be activists and help keep the spirit of American democracy and fairness alive. In the face of right-wing vitriol and with a very real sense of duty, I offer myself as candidate for Vice Chair, DAV.

I would very much appreciate your support. Sincerely, Doug Sarti

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GENERAL SECRETARY

Lissa ROBERTSON

Re: Self-Nomination of Lissa Robertson for General Secretary, Democrats Abroad Vancouver Enthusiastic, Highly Experienced General Secretary Candidate

I am delighted to submit my nomination for General Secretary of Democrats Abroad Vancouver (DAV).

I affirm I have the distinct combination of senior secretarial and political volunteer experience to excel in this role.

Confirmation of Meeting Nomination Requirements

I confirm: 1. I am a U.S. Citizen, born in North Dakota. 2. I am living abroad in White Rock, B.C. 3. I wholeheartedly adhere to the principles of the Democratic Party of the United States.

Distinguishing Qualifications Benefitting DAV

1. Lifelong Commitment to Progressive Political Values and Service

• My interest in social justice formed as a youth in California and evolved as I resided in Arizona, Hawaii and BC. • In 2008 I served on the DAV Board and assisted with the organization of the Fourth of July picnic and Thanksgiving dinner and other activities. • In 2012 I volunteered my time with DAV call campaigns. • Today, I continue to encourage voter registration and actively participate in DAV events. Note: I am also running as part of “Democrats United Vancouver” or “Team DUV,” a group of four local, active DAV members, contending for the election as your Progressive Leadership Team.

2. Proven and Senior Administrative and General Secretary Experience

 • My career began in Administration. I have worked as an Executive Assistant in both public and private sectors. My direct, “General Secretary” experience includes: developing meeting agendas, taking notes, producing meeting minutes, coordinating activities and chairing meetings. • Qualification highlights: o Resourceful, versatile professional with a background spanning administration, customer service, sales, business owner, career counselor and life coach o Outstanding organizational, planning and prioritization skills; strong attention to detail o Excellent verbal and written communication skills; experienced public speaker and facilitator o Proficient computer skills o Flexible with a positive attitude o Self-motivated, collaborative team member

3. Commitment to Serving Two-year Term & Devoting Time to Support DAV in Achieving its Mission

I have the full support and encouragement of my family to serve on the DAV board for the full term. 4. Vision and Motivation for Seeking Office Understandably, I was devastated watching the 2016 election results with my fellow DAV members. As Trump’s cabinet takes shape, I am concerned with the direction of the country. I feel we are moving backwards with many of the democratic principles I espouse such as basic civil and human rights, economic empowerment, expanded education and access to social services. The bottom line: I feel my country needs me more than ever. I would be honored to serve on the Board and am genuinely passionate about dedicating my time to help the Democrats regain power in the House, the Senate and the Oval Office.

Thank you for your consideration. Sincerely, Lissa Robertson Lissa Robertson Case Manager / Life Coach

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TREASURER

Pat FOURNIER

Self-Nomination of Pat Fournier for Treasurer, Democrats Abroad Vancouver

Licensed U.S. and Canadian CPA for Treasurer Candidate

I am pleased to submit my nomination for Treasurer of Democrats Abroad Vancouver (DAV). I affirm that I have the skills and experience to successfully manage the finances of the chapter, create and maintain financial reports, manage the organization’s bank account and maintain such financial reports as may be required by law.

Confirmation of Meeting Nomination Requirements I confirm:

1. I am a U.S. Citizen. 2. I am living and working abroad in Port Coquitlam, B.C. 3. I whole-heartedly adhere to the principles of the Democratic Party of the United States.

Distinguishing Qualifications Benefitting DAV

1. Commitment to Progressive Political Values and Service • I am an active member of DAV and have attended many events over the years supporting the Party and its mission. • I have voluntarily presented the Tax Seminars for DAV for the past four years.

2. Licensed Accounting and Business Leadership Experience

• Licensed CPA in both the U.S. and Canada – I am a local, practicing CPA that specializes in cross-border taxation, earning my Canadian license in 2001 and my U.S. license in 2006. • Active Local CPA Serving U.S. Citizens Living Abroad in B.C. – Most of my clients are U.S. citizens living abroad in the Lower Mainland—a key DAV target demographic. • Sole Practitioners Forum Steering Committee Member (Vancouver CPAs) – In this role I aid in setting the meeting agenda for this local organization that promotes the sharing of best practices. Note: I am also running as part of “Democrats United Vancouver” or “Team DUV,” a group of four local, active DAV members, contending for the election as your Progressive Leadership Team.

3. Commitment to Serving Two-year Term & Devoting Time to Support DAV in Achieving its Mission

I have the full support of my family to serve on the DAV board for the full term and a proven track record for meeting my professional obligations.

4. Vision and Motivation for Seeking Office

In light of the current U.S. political shift, I am deeply inspired to contribute more to DAV and the position of Treasurer is a natural fit. There were not many who foresaw the recent political changes and clearly, there are large gaps among the diverse political views being aired. I feel there is no better time than the present to get out and be heard and to help push along this worthy movement. My goal is to be part of the solution. I am confident my training and experience as a licensed accountant will enable me to provide the full scope of duties required for the position of Treasurer, DAV.

I sincerely thank you for your consideration. Sincerely, Pat Fournier, CPA (CA), CPA (WA)

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Rick HAVLAK

I hereby nominate myself, Richard Rhodes Havlak, for the board position of Treasurer for Democrats Abroad Vancouver. I would not intend to fill both roles, but am ready and willing to serve as one or the other. I am a US citizen by birth and reside full time in Vancouver, BC. I do adhere to the principles of the Democratic Party of the United States.

I have supported Democratic candidates since before I had the right to vote, and for the last three election cycles have participated in the Democratic primary as well. My support has included phone banking, door to door engagement, and more. In 2012 I appeared in a Vancouver paper as the Obama supporter with all the American flags. While these are troubling times for our country, I remain proud of my identity as an American and hope to positively impact the trajectory of our country despite continuing to live abroad.

I believe my small business background will allow me to make great contributions to the DAV chapter. I wear many hats and am used to getting things done. My company has put on hundreds of workshops and other community-building events, and I have a strong IT and communications background.

I also bring considerable board experience. I am entering my fourth year on the Board of Directors of the Strathcona business improvement association, and my second term as the Vice-Chair of the Board.

I look forward to the opportunity to serve and would be happy to answer any questions or discuss my qualifications further at any convenient time.

Cheers,

Rick Havlak
cell: 604-612-2525
rick.havlak@gmail.com

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DEVELOPMENT & COMMUNITY OUTREACH SECRETARY

No Nominee

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POLICY SECRETARY

Amanda MACPHERSON

My name is Amanda Macpherson, and I am putting my name forward for the role of Policy Secretary for the Vancouver branch of Democrats Abroad.

I am the daughter of a long-time member of the USAF, and the granddaughter of two men who served in the Army, both in WWII and Korea.  I also come from a very long line of Democrats!  I have been living out of the country since 2003, when I married a Canadian.  We (me, my husband, and two sons who are dual-citizens as well) live in Abbotsford. 

My qualifications for this particular role come from both my education and work experience.  I have a BSc. in Public Management, which has an emphasis on community building, public administration, and public policy and strategy.  My work experience has included work in the nonprofit sector where I had to interpret changing government rules and regulations and help formulate policies and procedures to ensure our compliance with these.  This was a very important role, as most of our funding came from government contracts, and if we were found not to be abiding by these guidelines, we could have contracts pulled and be shut down. 

I am asking to be involved because I am scared of the direction our home country is going.  I know I’m not the first to say so, but I am willing to do what I can from where I am.  Absentee voting from out-of-country tends to be very blue, and though we may not live the US anymore, we are still citizens that can help shape policy that will affect all of us, no matter the citizenship or country.  I watched the election results with lead in my gut and tears in my eyes, and the only things that comforted me was the majority of the country feels as we do and that if we band together, we can fight the rollback of our civil rights.  It will take concerted effort, and a united voice.  We’re just a smaller part of that overall group!

I end this letter by addressing your qualifications: I am an American citizen, I am a member of Democrats Abroad, and I certainly align with the principles of the Democratic Party.

If I may answer any questions regarding the information above, I may be reached via phone at 604-765-2117 or at ​amandammacpherson@gmail.com.

Yours truly,

Amanda Bristow Macpherson

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David HOYT

Democrats Abroad Vancouver – Nomination for Policy Secretary: David Hoyt        

I would like to nominate myself for the above position with the BOARD OF THE Vancouver chapter of Democrats Abroad Canada.  I am somewhat familiar with the board through my position as treasurer of the chapter over the last four years.

I am a U.S. citizen, living in Delta, British Columbia, which is within the area covered by the DA Vancouver chapter.  I will also adhere to, and I believe I have adhered to in the past, the principles of the Democratic Party of the United States.

I have an Honors degree in Economics and Political Science from Swarthmore College, Swarthmore, Pennsylvania.  Although this was some time ago – 1974 – I believe I have kept current with many developments in the popular political field, although not in the academic world.  I also have a law degree from the University of British Columbia, practiced law in both B.C. and California for a total of about seven years, and have for most of the past 25 years worked for the Competition Bureau, a Canadian federal agency which is part of the Department of Innovation, Science and Economic Development (formerly Industry Canada).

In my spare time, I have developed a keen interest in health care reform in the U.S., and have kept current with the topics of immigration and the taxation of U.S. citizens living in Canada and elsewhere outside the U.S.

I have also taken courses, in recent years, in Conflict Resolution, Mediation Skills and other topics.

Yours truly,

David Hoyt

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Tara RYAN

Self-Nomination for the position of Policy Secretary

Affirmation:

I, Tara Ryan, affirm that I am a citizen of the United States, living abroad as a resident of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, and will adhere to the principles of the Democratic Party of the United States. 

Narrative:

As a native Nebraskan and registered Democrat, I have always been part of the political minority. This has given me some unique skills in terms of looking at all sides of issues and critically thinking about longer term implications of governmental policies. I have been living in Vancouver for the last 3.5 years as a graduate student in the clinical-forensic psychology program at Simon Fraser University. As a student in this program, I have special knowledge of the intersection between law and psychology (i.e. mental health) and the criminal justice system. I have taken graduate coursework related to policy including a Mental Health and Law course as well as a Mental Health, Law, and Policy course. I am a member of the Mental Health Law and Policy Institute at Simon Fraser University and have a unique sense of the comparative criminal justice and law policies and implications between Canada and the United States as well as those implemented throughout the world. Although I have an interest and knowledge in law and policy as it is related to criminal justice and mental health, I am generally interested in governmental policies and positions and avidly consume the news and media in various formats to understand governmental actions domestically and internationally. In terms of domestic policy, I am especially aware and concerned about voting rights and voter suppression issues. Internationally, I have a distinct interest in United States policies within the Middle East.

Given the current state of politics in the United States and implications within the country and abroad, I think it is imperative that citizens are aware of the most pressing and relevant policies and actions taken by the federal and state governments. As the Policy Secretary, my excellent written and spoken communication skills that will aid in advising the general membership about government policies and implications. Strong and direct communication regarding the policies and decisions of the incoming administration will be imperative and vital to strategically fighting injustice and bringing the branches of government back into balance in the 2018 midterm elections. I look forward to empowering and energizing Democrats Abroad-Vancouver members in being voices and actors of dissent as well as reasonable compromise as it pertains to policy decisions of the federal and state governments in the United States.

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COMMUNICATIONS SECRETARY

Matthew BORGHESE

I'm Matthew Borghese, a lifelong Democrat and communications specialist living in Canada and I humbly put my name forward for the DAC-V Communications Secretary Position (2017-19).

I was raised in Miami in a family of both refugees and immigrants, and began my work with the Democratic Party as a high school student, volunteering to go door-to-door, phone banking, and helping with data entry for a liberal Guardian Ad-Litem named Cindy Lerner who was running for the Florida legislature (she won and has gone on to be the Mayor of the town). As part of the Young Democrats club at my school, we all signed on to help Vice President Al Gore’s 2000 presidential campaign. From the             Summer heat in Miami, to the bitter defeat in November, the experience inspired in me a lifelong love for politics which I was lucky enough to turn into a career in journalism.

I spent seven years as covering hard news for a private wire service in Florida. As an impartial journalist, I was watched from the sidelines during the tumultuous Bush years and celebrated the historic election in 2008. I was especially proud we were able to finally turn Florida “blue” - twice!

In 2011, I moved to Vancouver after falling in love with a fantastic woman. Fast forward to 2016, we were married in November and I am a permanent resident in Canada. I have steered my career from journalism to communications and I currently handle public relations for the largest non-profit provider of employment services in British Columbia. 

In my spare time, I volunteer and support progressive organizations. I have worked with the Lookout Emergency Aid Society to combat homelessness in Vancouver and Anika Youth Services to support at-risk young women in Surrey. I currently serve on the Board of Directors for the Vancouver Association for Survivors of Torture (VAST), the only organization in British Columbia that supports the mental health of refugee claimants escaping trauma.

The 2016 election was not only a shocking event, but a wake up call for everyone who believes in and champions progressive causes. I have been on the sidelines for too long, and I want to volunteer my time to help our party and America stand up for the values that have always made us strong; our diversity, our united strength, and our role as a champion of democracy across the world. We must engage all Americans, especially us who live across the border, in the unending work of expanding freedoms and speaking truth to authoritarianism. 

My vision for DAC-V is for us to stand as a positive, outspoken force to remind voters abroad that not only does our voice matter, but is an essential patch in the quilt that is our democracy. While we may spend the next two years in the minority, we will never compromise our values or vision for our friends, family, and fellow Americans.

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Julie BOTON – Candidate’s Statement – Communications Secretary

I am nominating myself as a candidate for the position of Communications Secretary of the Vancouver Chapter of Democrats Abroad (DA).

Why I am Running for Communications Secretary

As a concerned citizen I’m running for Communications Secretary because I wish to boost Democratic Party involvement. We must build a party of the people, for the people, that can win elections and turn our nation from the disastrous course the far right and the GOP have set us upon. We must welcome new members and embrace the progressive vision that brought so many to Bernie Sanders’ campaign. And we must do this in a way that unites rather than divides our base. I hope to bring in new members and see closer cooperation and communication between our chapters worldwide. I believe we are in an “all hands on deck” moment.  We must oppose the agenda of Donald Trump and the Republican right, and ensure high voter turnout in the 2018 mid-term elections and beyond.  

Democrats Abroad & Political Service

I became involved in Democrats Abroad events in 2010, and served briefly on the executive board of the Vancouver chapter as Communications Secretary in 2015 prior to the candidacy announcement of Senator Bernie Sanders. At that time I left the board to work for Sanders campaign, and am the founder of BC For Bernie. BC For Bernie helped sign up hundreds of unregistered US citizens to vote as Democrats in the Democrats Abroad Global Primary. Once Hillary Clinton was declared the nominee I enthusiastically supported her candidacy, and worked to persuade our supporters to support her candidacy and the platform she developed with Senator Sanders.  Prior to moving to Vancouver I served as an elections judge for the Democratic Party in Wilmette, IL for 9 years.

Professional Communications Background

An award-winning copywriter/content provider originally from Chicago, I’ve lived in Vancouver since 2009. My clients range from prominent Chicago-area non-profits to major grocery chains, Fortune 500 Financial/Insurance Institutions and leaders in the natural/organic food industry. My background includes Ad Agency Creative Director, and starting my own consulting company in the mid-80’s. In the 1990’s I created Dave Ivaz Music with my husband. We took it from start-up to one of Chicago’s respected live event entertainment companies with annual sales of $ 200K, and I handled all marketing and sales. Since moving to Vancouver I’ve written for the organic food industry while maintaining Dave Ivaz Music offices in Chicago and Vancouver.  I am experienced at project management and team coordination and hold Senior Management Certification in New Media and Web Design from BCIT.

Volunteer and Activism

A long-time activist for social and environmental justice, my work in Illinois included communications consulting for organic farmers, social and environmental justice activism and promotion assistance for the 1985 Farm Aid Concert. Our company, Dave Ivaz Music has donated performing services to not-for-profits ranging from AIDs organizations to The American Cancer Society and Planned Parenthood. In Vancouver I’ve volunteered for on actions to protect Howe Sound, and am a proud member of Democrats Abroad. Dave Ivaz Music continues to donate services for charitable causes.

Thank you for accepting my application. I confirm that I am a US citizen and will adhere to the principles of the Democratic Party of the United States.

Julie Boton
8542 Seascape Court
West Vancouver, BC V7W3J7

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