2021 DA France National Elections - The Candidates

2021 DA FRANCE NATIONAL ELECTION CANDIDATES

The nominations period for the 2021 DA France National Election has now closed. Thank you to everyone who has expressed an interest in running for something. Please find below statements for the candidates standing for election.

The National Election will take place online as part of the 2021 National Election and Annual General Meeting on April 17, 2021 starting at 2PM. RSVP here. All members of Democrats Abroad France are welcome to attend the meeting, hear candidate speeches, and to vote at that time. Additionally, all members of Democrats Abroad France will also receive a link to the Early Voting ballot via email. Voting early in advance of the Election on April 17, 2021 is optional, and is provided to encourage all members to vote even if they cannot attend the Election Meeting. As a result, no nominations from the floor will be accepted.

Want to meet the candidates before Election Day? Come to a "Meet the Candidates" Mixer via Zoom on Sunday April 11, 2021 at 3PM. RSVP here.

You must be a member of Democrats Abroad France in order to vote. New members are welcome but must join by April 15. To join: www.democratsabroad.org/join. You must be a US citizen 18 years of age or older by Nov. 2, 2021. Questions? Contact the DA France Election Board at [email protected]

If you are a member of Democrats Abroad France and do not receive a link to the online ballot but would like one, please email [email protected]

Democrats Abroad France Election Board
Kate Barrett, Didier Moutou, Linda Martin


NATIONAL OFFICER CANDIDATES

To see the National Officer position descriptions, please see here.

The following candidates are presented first by office being sought, and then listed in alphabetical order by last name. Because the Chair and Vice Chair positions must be balanced by gender, each candidates' gender is shown as applicable: M = Male, F = Female, and N = Non-binary.


CANDIDATE FOR NATIONAL CHAIR

JONATHON HOLLER (M) 

Currently the First Vice Chair of Democrats Abroad France, I respectfully request your vote to become National Chair of Democrats Abroad France and to faithfully guide our organization through this exciting, yet challenging, period. 

Since joining DAF in 2016, I have helped to boost and empower our membership, while maintaining a progressive voting record within the Democratic Party Committee Abroad. My contributions have included officializing the Young Democrats as a caucus, spearheading the creation of a separate Paris Chapter, and managing voter outreach initiatives. With the enormous contributions of our amazing communications team, I also oversaw our media relations operations, resulting in around 150 TV, radio, and newspaper appearances for our surrogates during the 2020 election season alone. My profound belief in the American Dream has driven my votes in support of the Equal Rights Amendment, Medicare for All, and strengthened labor unions, and for a DPCA charter providing for more equitable voting and more inclusive gender parity rules.

Amid both hard-earned victories and drawn-out crises, my mission is to unite us around our common values and to focus on concrete results. Together, we can prove what lies ahead is not another midterm curse but a big blue wave.

Email me.

This candidate has chosen not to seek or offer endorsements.


CANDIDATE FOR FIRST VICE-CHAIR

AMY BELOW (F)

I’ve been involved in DAF as National Voting Representative (2019-present), National Member-at-Large (2017-2019), Co-Chair of the Paris Steering Committee (2018-2019), lecturer and moderator for DAF events on voting rights and American Government processes, as a DAF Spokesperson via several media appearances this past election season, as a member of the DAF Women’s Caucus Steering Committee and as a member of the DAF Diversity Caucus.

I'm running to help ensure that DAF continues to grow and thrive. As Democrats, we need to redouble our efforts to be sure that we maintain (and increase!) our majority in the House and build on our now razor-thin advantage in the Senate. To do that requires us to push beyond our historically low voter turnout numbers abroad and “rally the troops” to the polls when the time comes.

With your vote, I will work fervently and diligently with the Chair, the rest of the Executive Committee, and with each and every one of you who chooses to get involved, to keep our values and ideals afloat, to engage Democratic voters, and to turn out Democratic votes in the highest numbers possible.

Thank you.

Please note that I have neither solicited nor accepted endorsements.


CANDIDATE FOR FIRST VICE-CHAIR

BROOKE BURNS (F) 

I have served as the Treasurer for France since 2017 and as a Deputy Regional Vice-Chair for Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) since 2019. My experience in DA is varied, including voter assistance, phone banking, international volunteer development, and supporting our Global Presidential Primary, Regional Convention, and Global Convention. For example, I planned and hosted the global 24-hour Election Night 2020, and ran community agreement activities at the EMEA meeting in Athens. I collaborated with DA leaders worldwide and learned practices that I am eager to adapt for France.

If elected, I’ll continue to work closely with my fellow leaders in France to expand volunteer development opportunities, to connect us with peers in other countries, and to vigorously support the voter outreach programs established by France’s GOTV and IT/Database teams during 2020. DA’s success in 2020 demonstrated the power of hope combined with organizing. With challenging midterms in 2022, I will put the full weight of my skills and attention to empowering our leaders, volunteers, and members in France to achieve a more democratic (and Democratic) future in the U.S.

Email me.

I have chosen not to seek or offer endorsements in this race.


CANDIDATE FOR FIRST VICE-CHAIR

DANIELLE FOLLETT (F) 

A lifelong Democrat, I have been participating in DAF events since 2017, getting more involved due to the urgent dangers presented by Trump’s presidency. The current moment is critical and we have a tremendous amount of work to do now, to fight against the extremely worrisome trends on the right and improve our majorities in Congress.

I have strong activist experience, including working on campaigns for environmental justice, fighting for Medicare for All as part of Our Revolution France’s working group and organizing with the France for Bernie campaign doing outreach, phonebanking and GOTV. I’m excited to bring these organizational skills to DA France.

A native of Seattle and upstate NY (voting in Arizona), I came to France to study in the early 2000s. I’m an associate professor of American literature at the Sorbonne Nouvelle University (Paris). I also hold the elected position of auditor in the Association Française d’Etudes Américaines.

I’m inspired by what the current DAF leadership has accomplished in this critical election season to broaden the organization by welcoming new voices, expanding membership and raising voter turnout. I am committed to continuing this work and strengthening our dynamic organization.

I would be honored to receive your vote!

Email me.

See my endorsements.


CANDIDATE FOR FIRST VICE-CHAIR

TERRÉ LUNDY (F)

In 2003, months after I had arrived home from 2 years in Japan, I found myself opening and leading a local Iowan office for a Democratic Presidential Primary Candidate. By the time I had arrived back to the states, our country had questionably invaded Iraq, our citizen’s personal freedoms were at risk, and the danger of irreversible environmental damage lingered. It took very little time for me to jump into action to use my voice and passion to empower others to vote and to fight for democracy. Serving first as a community organizer, I quickly became Media Liaison and Spokesperson for my Candidate, traveling across the country, experiencing caucus life and the true power of community.  Although my candidate did not win the primary race, these experiences have inspired me to stay politically engaged and to help effect change wherever possible. As an American who deeply cares about the state of her country, moving it forward, and honoring those who have paved the way for us to do so, I continue to work diligently to empower our citizens to exercise their rights and duty as I truly believe that to see change, one must BE the change. 

See my endorsements.


CANDIDATE FOR SECOND VICE-CHAIR (CHAPTER LIAISON)

DREW LOMBARDI (M)

I have extensive experience organizing chapters of volunteers, and am passionate about progressive causes like Medicare-for-All, voter and worker rights, and environmental justice. If elected, I will build upon the tremendous work of DA France by launching a “50 state strategy” across all 12 local chapters to boost active engagement, recruit new members, and deliver Democrats decisive electoral victories.

As a digital outreach and GOTV coordinator for France for Bernie, I worked tirelessly to help recruit and train over a hundred volunteers in text and phone banking, reaching thousands of voters to help deliver Senator Sanders victory in the 2020 Global Presidential Primary. I’m a proud member of Our Revolution France, and performed digital outreach for both President Biden and the Georgia runoffs.

As Program Manager for a youth civic engagement organization in the US, I managed over 3,000 college volunteers across 13 chapters in Boston and NYC. As Liaison for the Manhattan Borough President, I coordinated three 50-member Community Boards representing 300,000 New Yorkers. These experiences taught me how to engage volunteers, build chapters, and fight for change.

I am eager to dedicate my energy and experience to DA France, and hope to have your vote!

Email me.

See my endorsements. 


CANDIDATE FOR SECOND VICE-CHAIR (CHAPTER LIAISON)

MARK SMYTH (M)

As a life-long Democrat and decades’ long expat, I have seen the positive impact that overseas Democrats can make on key elections. Impressed by the efficiency of the UAE chapter where I was resident for many years, I have now relocated to France and wish to do my part to support the party during an especially challenging time. 
Professionally I am a financial services executive, presently working on a high-profile impact project to assist Lebanon in the midst of their financial crisis.  In the course of my career I feel I have developed organizational and leadership skills that would benefit the efforts of Democrats Abroad. 

With the 2022 mid-terms just around the corner, it is naturally very important to maintain the momentum of last year’s successes and work for additional congressional gains. Indeed, with the curtailment of democracy a major and deeply worrying local, national, and international trend, we must not become complacent. If selected I would promise to do my best to seek consensus and work diligently in pursuit of success.

I would very much welcome questions from voters.

Email me.


CANDIDATE FOR SECRETARY

ALEJANDRA ROMAN (F)

Registered Democrat in Miami, Florida

I graduated from Boston University in 2006 with a double B.A. in Environmental Policy and Analysis and in Hispanic Language and Literature. In 2009 I graduated from an MSc program in Environmental Science, Policy and Management from Central European University and Manchester University. 

I believe in the power of voting and since living abroad have realized how crucial it is to maintain overseas voters engaged so that America continues to represent all our values. 

While I am new to France, I have been involved with Democrats Abroad in Mexico City since 2018. I became the chapter’s Membership Chair where my primary responsibilities included managing the database, assisting with communications, and aiding GOTV efforts leading up to the 2020 elections.  

I am running for Secretary at the national level because I would like to broaden my involvement with Democrats Abroad. 

My engagement with DA Mexico City has provided me with a basis of the institutional knowledge of the organization as well as some fresh perspectives I hope to bring to the table. Additionally, I have keen organizational skills and a familiarity and fluency with Nation Builder as well as other technology platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Google Drive.

Email me or call me at 07 84 70 05 69


CANDIDATE FOR TREASURER

[No candidate]


CANDIDATE FOR COUNSEL

JULIA GRÉGOIRE (F) 

Born in France and raised in America, I am licensed to practice law in both countries. I am passionate about the work that I do in my private practice representing American clients in France, and I have carried this spirit over to my position as Counsel for DAF since 2019.I have been proud to be part of a hard-working team that represents a specific group of Americans in France – Democrats. In my first term as Counsel, I have assisted with two thorough revisions of DAFBylaws,the constitution of our organization. I have ensured DAF compliance with French law governing non-profit organizations. I have collaborated with national and chapter leaders, providing answers to legal questions that arise regularly. Such questions were related to issues including the handling of funds, fundraising rules, and DAF privacy policies and respect of the GDPR.I was also proud to represent DAF on French national television throughout both the presidential primary and the 2020 election, including one appearance as a DAF spokesperson on President Biden’s Inauguration Day. I hope to represent Democrats in France for the next two years and I look forward to promoting our voice as your Counsel.

Email me.


CANDIDATE FOR NATIONAL MEMBERSHIP DATABASE/IT MANAGER

MAX DUNITZ (M)

I love to use technology to make civic engagement—including voting, issue advocacy, and campaign volunteering—easy and accessible for all Americans in France, no matter their location. As DAF’s Database/IT Manager since 2019, I added many new tools to our digital organizing toolkit, from peer-to-peer texting to state voter file data, to inform voters about ballot deadlines, rejected ballots, and voter assistance options. I created and helped staff our voter-help hotlines +33 OHGODVOTE and +33 07 555 FRDEM, improving our ability to respond to voting barriers, like trouble printing forms or getting information from overwhelmed elections systems.

I was active in Our Revolution MA and am part of Our Revolution France.

Too few overseas Americans know about their voting rights and Vote from Abroad's assorted services. My work with the youth caucus bringing the Global Presidential Primary and twice-weekly in-person voter assistance events to more convenient locations for students and youth showed me how much further we need to go to make sure all overseas Americans' voices are heard—not just come election season but always, with constituent calls and meetings. On that note, call the US Capitol switchboard to speak to your reps: +33 07 55 53 64 46.

Email me.


CANDIDATE FOR GOTV OFFICER

DORI SCHWARTZ-LABOUNE (F)

After the 2016 presidential election I joined the newly formed Lyon chapter where I have been serving as a member at large.  I'm passionate about Medicare for All, addressing Climate Change, access to Healthy Food, and making sure workers can live a Dignified Life at a Fair Wage. 

I mobilized GOTV for the 2020 Bernie Sanders primary campaign, recruiting and engaging volunteers, doing outreach and phone/text banking.  In Lyon, we made 100,000+ voter contacts. I’m a strong supporter of Our Revolution France.

I bring a lifetime of experience and organizational skills from my labor organizing, event planning and volunteering for social causes. Originally from Oregon, I worked for 20 years stateside as a Certified Spanish Language Court Interpreter. I currently work as an in-home health aide.  If elected, I can bring a working woman's point of view, at a time when our party needs to fortify support among blue collar workers.

I'm running for GOTV officer because I am committed to increasing our efforts to turn out voters for the midterm primaries and 2022 elections.  This moment in history is too important not to do so.  I look forward to working with all of you.

If you need to contact me, feel free to call me or text me at 06 67 84 84 00.

See my endorsements.


CANDIDATE FOR COMMUNICATIONS COORDINATOR

AMY PORTER (F)

Hello, I’m Amy Porter, the current DA France Deputy Communications Officer, and candidate for Communications Officer. A third-generation American, I have been living in France since 1987. In my former professional life, I served as Marketing / Communications Director for IT companies and PR agencies and ran my own executive training company for 7 years.

I currently wear two hats at DA France: managing content on the DA France Facebook page and coordinating the national media team. In the runup to the 2020 election, I selected and trained a diverse group of 18 media spokespeople from all around the country. As a Paris-based spokesperson myself, I was part of the media team that appeared on television, on radio and in print over 180 times in the 5 months between September 2020 and January 2021.

If elected as Communications Officer, my objectives are to continue building on the solid foundation created over the past two years by building out the team; coordinating the use of our multiple channels—social media, website, email—for recruiting new members, increasing current member engagement levels and helping members to vote, and working closely with the chapters and caucuses in support of their communications efforts. 

Email me or call + 336 0959 8763

See my endorsements.


CANDIDATE FOR ISSUES, PROGRAMS, AND EVENTS COORDINATOR

PIERRE FILATOV (M)

I am a franco-american young student studying in Strasbourg, France. I have been a member of Democrats Abroad for the past five years. I have been volunteering especially helping to get out the vote in the 2016 and 2020 elections, doing mostly phone banking and text banking Democrats Abroad members all over France. I have also served on the youth caucus steering committee from 2017 to 2019, where I helped organize many different kinds of events aimed at young Americans in France. The events industry is very familiar to me, coming out of a bachelor’s degree in Marketing and Event Management, while now completing a Master’s degree in Events, PR and Media. I have always had a passion for organizing and planning events, for people all ages, not only young people. As a national events officer, I aim to work closely with the different chapters in order to help them implement the operational and marketing strategies that are needed for event planning as well as preparing all the logistics and turning local events into national events. Events always bring people together and create memories even during a pandemic. If elected, I will hit the ground running from day one. 

Email me.


CANDIDATE FOR ISSUES, PROGRAMS, AND EVENTS COORDINATOR

LISA GENTILE (F)

Ph.D. French Studies & Politics (NYU), M.A. in Law and Diplomacy (Tufts)

Professor of French and Comparative Health Policy; Study Abroad Management

From: Las Vegas, NV; Current Location: Tarn

As a lifelong Democrat and unabashed leftist, I have always been a close observer of US politics. In 2018, I volunteered to manage a campaign for an outsider candidate in Nevada where I vote. With a barebones ragtag team motivated to challenge the status quo, we did our part in advocating for progressive causes such as Medicare for All, a New Deal 2.0, higher wages, and the fight against climate change.

As Issues, Programs, and Events coordinator, I would like to see DA France integrate more voices not heard in the mainstream and appeal to independent voters as well as to help maintain and even grow the membership with engaging programming. As a political podcast junkie, I do not lack for ideas for debates or interesting people to invite. I am a team player with proven organizational, planning, and social media skills that I would like to put in service of DA France.

Email me. 

See my endorsements.


CANDIDATE FOR ISSUES, PROGRAMS, AND EVENTS COORDINATOR

GRETCHEN PASCALIS (F)

A Maine voter and founding member of DAF Rhone-Alps, I've served as chapter vice chair and chapter chair, national spokesperson, and volunteered as national volunteer coordinator when the position was vacant. I know first-hand the challenges that chapters can face, including vast geographical areas and difficulty in mobilizing members. Events make organizations come alive, energize and inform members, and help recruit new members. As a leader of the association France Etats-Unis Grenoble, I planned successful annual events such as Thanksgiving and our Tex-Mex Presidents’ Day dinner.

My professional life compliments this role, as I am a faculty member at the Université Savoie Mont Blanc in the tourism, hospitality and events management department and have worked with students in creating online events over the past year. If elected, I will involve my events management Master’s degree students in projects where they can be of help with their growing expertise, which would be a win-win situation. I'm also a vinyasa and kundalini yoga instructor, and have held online yoga classes to fundraise for DA France. Helping chapters create successful events and making sure that they are promoted by liaising with the communications officer is something I'm excited to do.

Email me. 

See my endorsements.


CANDIDATE FOR MEMBERSHIP OUTREACH/VOLUNTEER COORDINATOR

MARJORIE BERNSTEIN (F)

I offer my continued commitment to Democrats Abroad France and submit my candidacy for Membership Outreach/Volunteer Officer.

I have always felt that our strength is the strength in each of us. Every person has something to offer. Nothing is too small.   

I look for new members wherever I go and encourage all to volunteer. Some say they don’t have time, don't know how. I respond, "Just show up!"  That’s half the battle. "Try it, you'll like it."

As your secretary, I have welcomed hundreds of new members when verifying their membership. Many live in areas far from chapter centers. I will reach out to those in every town and support the development of subchapters. We can then enlist their help in finding even more Americans to join and volunteer.

I came to Paris more than 40 years ago as a Computer Project Manager and have a Mathematics degree from the University of Pittsburgh. I have three sons, born in Paris, attended French schools, all three are DEMOCRATS, and VOTE! 

I have had the honor to serve you as Secretary and as Treasurer. I will carry out my new responsibilities with diligence, perseverance, and diplomacy. I ask for your vote as Membership Outreach/Volunteer Officer.

I'd be happy to accept calls or emails from anyone who might have questions.

Email me or call 0672944374

See my endorsements.


CANDIDATE FOR MEMBERSHIP OUTREACH/VOLUNTEER COORDINATOR

FLORENT MARCHAIS (M)

After graduating college in Austin, Texas, I spent 3 months organizing and mobilizing students on my college campus for the 2020 Democratic Primaries to volunteer and advocate for the Bernie Sanders campaign and progressive candidates on the local level. The first day after moving to France in March 2020, I canvassed expatriate voters with organizers in France For Bernie in Paris during the global primary. I continue to fight for climate action and social justice with political groups in France and, during the pandemic, have hosted political education webinars on French issues in English and American issues in French. 

As a young activist advocating for progressive values, I don’t have decades of experience, but I have a strong, promising record of dynamic, energetic, and fast-paced youth organizing in Texas and France. As a volunteer coordinator for DA France, I will make a special effort to engage alongside the GOTV and Events officers. I will mobilize volunteers to participate in phone-banking, social-media activism, and after the pandemic, in-person volunteering and rallying in solidarity for international causes like climate action and Black Lives Matter.

Email me.

See my endorsements.


VOTING REPRESENTATIVE CANDIDATES

In addition to the Chair and the Vice Chairs in the previous section (who will carry 3 votes total), Democrats Abroad France will also elect nine (9) Voting Representatives to vote on matters of the Global Democrats Abroad organization, for a total of 12 votes. As this delegation must be balanced as to gender, each candidates' gender is shown as applicable: M = Male, F = Female, and N = Non-binary. The following candidates are presented in alphabetical order by last name.


CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

AMY BELOW (F)

My name is Amy Below, and I'm running for Voting Representative.

I’ve been honored to serve DA France as: National Voting Representative (2019-present), National Member-at-Large (2017-2019), Co-Chair of the DAF Paris Steering Committee (2018-2019), lecturer for DAF events on voting rights and American Government processes, and as a DAF Spokesperson via several media appearances this past election season.

I'm running to be a powerful voice for you.

As a teacher of American Government & Politics for 16 years before moving to France, and as a former professor of U.S. Constitutional Law here in Paris, I know as you do that we must be ever-vigilant to ensure the protection of our Constitutional rights.

The previous hideous and criminal administration tried its best to restrict the fundamental rights and freedoms of all Americans and if we allow our majority in the House or our razor-thin advantage in the Senate to dwindle, we could see our hard-fought gains disappear. It has never been more essential to fight for the Democratic ideals we believe in to ensure the United States stays a bastion of the rule of law.

With your help, I will use every fiber of my being to do so.

Thank you.

Please note that I have neither solicited nor accepted endorsements.


CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

WILLIAM BELOW (M)

My name is William Below, and I’m running for Voting Representative.

I have lived in France for over 30 years and have been proud to serve as your Voting Representative for the last two years.

We can now look back at the 2020 election and shout with pride ‘Yes, we did!’. But, with the GOP’s ongoing assault on democracy and with Republican media blasting falsehoods and bile 24/7, our work is far from over. If we’re not sufficiently active, I worry that our majorities in Congress will erode or disappear. Statewide elections are also crucial to extending and consolidating Democratic leadership. The 2022 elections are just around the corner. They’re certain to take place under conditions of extreme voter suppression. It is vital to ensure that democrats everywhere remain engaged during this non-presidential election cycle and prepare to massively turn out to vote. I will do what I can to help DAF achieve this.

As a longstanding member of Democrats Abroad, I would be proud to once again represent this tenacious and focused organization as one of your Voting Representatives. As such, I will strive to embody the plurality of voices of DA France with allegiance and integrity.

Thank you.


CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

MARJORIE BERNSTEIN (F)

I have had the honor and privilege to serve you as National Voting Representative for the past 4 years. I always kept my cool and often kept my smile. I love to research the issues, charter amendments and resolutions. I don’t stop until I've understood the pros/cons and cast a vote in the best interests of DAF.

I participated in DPCA meetings online. I did not have the financial means to attend in person, nor the freedom to travel due to family responsibilities. I WAS THERE, night and day! When the roll call began in Tokyo, I proudly responded 'PRESENT' from France.

You can count on me again, to be present, online, non-stop, for the upcoming DPCA meeting in May starting at 3 AM.

I came to Paris more than 40 years ago as a Computer Project Manager. I have a mathematics degree from the University of Pittsburgh. I have three sons, born in Paris, attended French schools, all three are DEMOCRATS, and VOTE! SI NON, EN GARDE!

I have served you as your Secretary and your Treasurer. I offer my qualities of thoroughness, dedication, enthusiasm, AND FRIENDLY PERSUASION and ask for your vote as National Voting Representative.

Email me. 


CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

CONNIE BORDE (F)

My name is Connie Borde and I’d like to have your vote for the position of Voting Representative for Democrats Abroad France. I’ve served over the years on the DAF Executive Committee in many positions including Chair and Vice Chair and have had two separate terms on the Democratic National Committee. I’ve also worked within the Women’s Caucus on a national (in France as co-Chair) and Global level. Supporting women’s issues has been one of the passions of my political involvement, and I applaud the recent success of women and minorities within the Democratic Party. Because of the many experiences I’ve had within Democrats Abroad, I feel I know the issues that concern and benefit DAF very well. My record of commitment, involvement in Party and policy issues, familiarity and friendships I have forged over the years and around the world within Democrats Abroad qualifies me to take on this new assignment of representing you globally with vigor and enthusiasm. Vote for me!

Email me.

Please note that I have neither solicited nor accepted endorsements.

 


CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

CAMILLE CANTER (F)

Growing up in Seattle, WA I first came to France in 2017. I then completed an Msc in Dublin where I helped organize with People Before Profit, mobilizing Irish voters ahead of the Dublin City Council elections. Settling definitively in Lyon in 2019, I became increasingly active with our Democrats Abroad chapter and currently serve on its board. I actively organized with the France for Bernie campaign, textbanking and mobilizing voters for the Global Presidential Primary. I have since been involved in political organizing with other progressive Americans, including in Our Revolution France.

As a National Voting Representative, I will bring organizational experience, energy and commitment to go the extra mile, regardless of the timing of a global meeting. I’m a hard worker and a team player. As a young restaurant worker (both in the U.S. and France), the unique impact of the pandemic on the industry has reinvigorated my commitment to ensuring dignified working conditions for all. I am currently an associate employee of a collectively owned and cooperatively managed restaurant. As such I am dedicated to the democratic process and look forward to bringing this passion and commitment to Democrats Abroad France as a National Voting Representative.

Email me.

See my endorsements.


CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

JUAN CERDA (M)

Bonjour! Je m’appelle Juan Cerda, and I currently have the privilege of leading the Paris Chapter as its Chair. I would be honored to receive your vote as a voting representative for France. As a lifelong Democrat, I have played an active role in volunteering for numerous political campaigns and grassroots activities for the Democratic party and served in key leadership roles.

I have worked with and supported Democrats Abroad leadership worldwide for over 5 years, as the Global LGBTQ Caucus Coordinator, Global Diversity and Inclusion Committee for Democrats Abroad and in 2020, I became the EMEA regional Biden Delegate. In my capacity as a Delegate and Vice-Chair of Austria, I represented and voted in the EMEA regional meeting in Athens and in the regional and global conferences.

I understand the commitment and responsibility to serve as your Voting Representative and am looking forward to meeting with you all soon.

Email me.


CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

JIM CHRISTIANSEN (M)

I’ve been a member of DA France since the mid-90s. In that time, I have seen our organization grow exponentially and become much more active, not just in “getting out the vote,” but also in influencing Democratic party policy in multiple areas. I have been a proud member of the DA France Environment & Energy Policy Committees since 2005. I helped draft climate change policy language for the Global DA Platform in 2016, and again as a member of the Global Platform Committee in 2020. I am a longtime supporter of Sen. Bernie Sanders, having voted for him in both the 2016 and 2020 primaries. I believe it is absolutely imperative that Americans and Democrats everywhere, and Democrats Abroad in particular, continue to fight for climate justice and sound policy approaches to combating and mitigating climate change. As Voting Representative, I pledge to ensure that DA and the Democratic Party advance progressive goals embedded in the DA platform across all issues — climate, but also economic, infrastructure, and social justice issues, as expressed in the Green New Deal. I am eager to welcome more young Democrats into DA leadership at the local, country and international level.

Email me. 


CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

MARNIE DELANEY (F)

I’m Marnie Delaney, candidate for Voting Representative. I live in Lorgues, having arrived two years ago from California.

Since joining DA last June I’ve been working full time to support candidates and issues important to me and the Democratic Party. I organized two month-long events for the Global Women’s Caucus (Suffrage Centennial and Women’s History Month), provided research support for Global Comms leading up to the election, joined the GWC Steering Committee, was elected Secretary for the Aix-Marseille Chapter and organized a Violence Against Women Action Team for the Global Women’s Caucus.

I’ve had two careers, advertising/marketing and teaching art to children. I’ve always worked on political issues, including several years where I left my job and worked with NOW President Eleanor Smeal, in DC and on the road for the ERA. I’ve won public election as a delegate from Los Angeles to the Democratic National Convention and awards for community service.

I’ve tried to earn the right to run for this position and hope you’ll consider supporting me as a voting representative for France. I promise to show up with the best of intentions, be prepared, honest and direct and to do everything required to represent you well.

Email me.

See my endorsements.


CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

MAX DUNITZ (M)

Those of us participating in Democrats Abroad elections on a springtime afternoon are total weirdos, so winning these elections does not equip us to reach and inspire the 95% of overseas US citizens who do not yet vote in US midterms. Boosting civic engagement and voter turnout in 2021 and 2022 requires our constant attention and intentional activist energy.

This energy I hope to bring to our party as a voting representative.

My recent experience on the DAF GOTV team and the global data team has shown me how the global DPCA and country committees can improve our coordination and where we can profit from global scale. With a decade of campaign and tech volunteering for Democratic campaigns and progressive orgs like Sunrise, I am always on the lookout for new ways of meeting voters.

A strong supporter of Our Revolution France, I am excited to learn from progressive campaigns, which, in seeking to activate high-potential young voters, have been particularly adept at introducing new means of engaging voters, like the open-source Spoke project for textbanking (sorry, Georgians).

With the right leadership, focus, and tools, we can continue becoming the party our dedicated volunteers deserve and our moment demands.

Email me.


CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

ARNIE EGEL (M)

I would like to be a Voting Representative for DA France.

By providing the right to the essentials of life, we can increase Democratic control of the legislative branch of government, saving the country from Republican control in the mid-term 2022 elections.

The progressive members of congress share these immediate goals, and most of the people in the USA do too.

By using money from the Federal Bank, - quantitative easing – as was done in 2008, we can immediately provide basic security for everyone , without dealing with the restructuring which is so badly needed.

More than half the people in America have no security for the basics of life. Government has not done enough. Many do not vote at all or use voting as an opportunity to express disgust with government.

The government can provide immediate access to existing resources for life and the environment.

Modern Monetary Theory is the branch of academic economic theory which shows that the mechanism used to finance the banks in 2008 can be used to activate unused resources.

health care
food
housing
education

a foundation for the future

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CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

PIERRE FILATOV (M)

I am a franco-american young student studying in Strasbourg, France. I have been a member of Democrats Abroad France for the past five years. I have attended numerous webinars organized by Democrats Abroad Global. I have also attended many events organized by global caucuses, such as the global Hispanic caucus, the Asian American caucus, the global youth caucus and the global military families caucus, where I exchanged with DA members worldwide. I also phone banked in Spanish for members located in Colombia or the Dominican Republic during the 2020 election cycle. Aside from being a member of Democrats Abroad France, I have also served as a member-of-large of Democrats Abroad Ireland during one of my study abroad years. I came in contact with Democrats Abroad Spain as well, where I was planning to live, before the travel restrictions were put in place. As a GOTV volunteer, I have participated in voter registration led by Democrats Abroad United Kingdom. As a voting representative, I look forward to representing Democrats Abroad France, voting on issues that matter the most, particularly for the youth, while electing qualified leaders globally and adopting measures for the greater benefit of Demcorats Abroad in its entirety.


CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

SUSAN FITOUSSI (F)

A native of Los Angeles California I arrived in Europe in 1985 as an ‘au pair’ girl in Italy.

I moved to France in 1987 with my French husband.

I have been an active member of Democrats Abroad Aix Marseille chapter since 2007

I became Chair of the Aix Marseille chapter in 2019 and I will continue to be Chair until 2023

After participating in the 2020 EMEA Delegates Meetings, invigorated to continue our job in GOTV efforts I was active until the end of November doing GOTV with DA.

I learned so much from all this I would hate to lose the momentum.

Thus, I would like to move up to the National Level in France and I choose to run as a Voting Representative.

I see myself as someone reliable, kind and sincere.

We must continue to fight for the ERA, Gun Control, Global Warming, Environmental Awareness, Veterans rights, LGBTQ rights... the list is long!

I will be there when asked to be and I will listen to you and our members because I care!

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See my endorsements.


CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

LISA GENTILE (F)

Ph.D. French Studies & Politics (NYU), M.A. in Law and Diplomacy (Tufts)

Professor of French and Comparative Health Policy; Study Abroad Management

From: Las Vegas, NV; Current Location: Tarn

As a lifelong Democrat, unabashed leftist, and keen observer of US politics, I am motivated to get off the sidelines and use my voice representing those in the party who would like to see it out of the grip of corporate interests and in the hands of ordinary people.

Seeking a more active role in the party, I hope to foster more self-critique and introspection about what led to the authoritarian trend in the era of Trump which shows worrying signs of infecting the left. I also think it time to capitalize on the renewal of left-wing movements and to focus on the needs of younger generations to breathe new life into the party.

As Voting Rep, I would take a critical approach to progressive causes--even those thought to be settled such as the notion of human rights and the promise of renewable energy. As a specialist of the French health care system, I bring a unique perspective to health policy issues and the Medicare for All debate.

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See my endorsements.


CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

JOSHUA KOUMA (M)

As a US Army Vet and a person of Jewish descent, I have always believed in the ideals of freedom, democracy, and equity. For the last decade, I have become more than just interested in politics, I have lived and breathed them. As an empathetic person, I found the last years exhausting while the US teeters on the brink of fascism. The words of my people have been ringing in my head. “Never Again”. Never again will my people, or any people, fall victim to such oppression and discrimination. Never again will we let the venerable people be silenced. Never again will we let populism dictate over logic and compassion. This is why I would like to do my part.

I am 43 years old, hold a BSc in Business Administration, am a certified English teacher, a certified sommelier and have 20+ years of customer service experience. I am a New Deal Democrat with priorities in environmental, social, and economic issues. Some of my stances are M4A, tuition free universities and trade schools, and Biden Plan for Clean Energy Revolution Environmental Justice. With my extensive organizational and people skills, I believe I am the best fit for the job.


CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

RICKY J. MARC (M)

Hello, everybody! My name is Ricky J. Marc, I am the newly-elected Co-Chair of the DAF Youth Caucus Steering Committee, and I am offering my candidacy for Voting Representative. For more background information about me, my credentials, and all that fun stuff, please visit rickyjmarc.com or rickyjmarc.com/francais.

I first moved to Paris in August 2019 to lay the groundwork for a Ph.D. degree that I am currently working towards for the next few years, and since this time, I've tried to do what I can to continue making it possible for my fellow Americans to be able to register to vote in time for the 2020 elections. Thank goodness, we managed to pull it off!

I believe that, in order to move forward, we must always make sure all voices within our movement are represented for the sake of progress, and I believe that my candidacy, which aims to increase outreach, voter participation, and general social improvement among Americans abroad, will realize that, especially for the next generation of Democrats Abroad.

I look forward to working with this organization in as many capacities as I am helpful, and I look forward to your support in this election!


CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

GILBERT VANSOI NGUYEN (M)

As a member of the Asian-American LGBT community, I have been involved in Democratic politics since the early 1990s and it would be my honor to represent my communities within the greater Democrats Abroad France organization. After spending the last 3 years reacclimating to French society following our move at the end of 2017, I am ready to reengage in US political involvement and actively work towards promoting the Biden administration’s domestic and international priorities.

The American expatriate community remains a strongly reliable yet often overlooked source of Democratic support, and we could benefit from US congressional representation in the same manner that French overseas citizens are represented in the French Assembly. While constitutional requirements would remain to be addressed, I strongly believe that American expats would gain an expanded voice if we were allowed to be represented in US federal elections as a separate and distinct voting group, rather than being comingled with individual states’ voting rolls.

I humbly submit my nomination for the office of Democrats Abroad France Voting Representative.


CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

GRETCHEN PASCALIS (F)

A Maine voter, I've been involved in Democrats Abroad for a decade in local and national roles. A founding member of DAF Rhone-Alps, I've served two terms as chapter vice chair and three terms as chapter chair, and drove efforts to create the Lyon chapter, which split Rhone-Alps into Lyon and Grenoble after Trump was elected. In the year leading up to November 2020, I volunteered for and was appointed National Volunteer Coordinator, a position which was until then vacant.

As a local and national DAF spokesperson, I've appeared in local and national news (newspaper, radio and TV) speaking on a variety of topics related to US politics including but not limited to the midterms, the global primary, impeachment proceedings, the Capitol riots, and of course election races and results.

I take voting very seriously and was immensely proud when my two sons, now 21 and 19, voted for the first time. Ian first voted in the 2018 midterms, and Andrew in the Global Presidential Primary in 2020. If I’m elected Voting Representative, you can count on me to vote in every global meeting.

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CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

KIT RASMUSSEN (M)

I'm Kit, I'm 23, and I'm standing for a position as a National Voting Representative for Democrats Abroad France. As a committed Democrat back home in New Hampshire and a Youth Caucus member during my studies in the UK, I’m really excited to see the energy that's present in the progressive movement here in France – it’s amazing to see what DAF members were able to accomplish in the last election, and I am excited to participate in carrying on their work of building membership through canvassing and exciting events, and bringing the spirit that defeated Trump into a new administration, where there’s so much potential for positive change.

Having served for several years on the youth executive committee of my church’s national governing body, including as co-chair, I hope I can bring passion and experience in institutional organizing to this role. What matters most to me is building and maintaining a friendly, fun, and open community where we can share the Democratic message and organize our movement. We have the opportunity to change how America is run – I look forward to working with you to build engagement and to make our voices heard, here in France and in the Democratic Party as a whole.

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CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

ALEX REHBINDER (M)

I believe people can organize in extraordinary ways. This is the foundation of my commitment to demonstrating that Americans abroad play a critical role in influencing global culture and policy. Democrats Abroad France's activities demonstrate that DA France is not only aware of the key cultural, political, and environmental changes that must occur, but is actively equipping future leaders to spur a transition. I would like to represent DA France’s work as a National Voting Representative. I am the current Co-chair for the DA Global Youth Caucus and the former Co-chair of the DA France Youth Caucus. I am currently pursuing an MBA in Sustainability at Bard College (remotely) and my day-to-day work pushes the needle towards meaningful progress in not-for-profit and for-profit sectors. This decade will be marked by a massive shift in power, let us make sure that it reaches hands that ensure that we are not overwhelmed by catastrophe. I would ask that all DA France voters please consider my candidacy and the statements of the other youth members. I am 27, a dual French American national, and have had an established residence in France since late-2015.

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CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

ADA SHEN (F)

I'm Ada Shen, and I am the outgoing Chair of DA France. It's been a great honor to serve you, and to work with such an incredible community of like-minded American activists and leaders. I served as GOTV Officer for DA France in 2017; prior to that, I founded the DA China country committee where I had organized since 2007. In France, I brought new ideas and fresh approaches to dramatically grow our voter engagement and organizing base, working with our Chapters and Caucuses but also activist orgs like PAGE, Indivisible France, OR France, and Women’s March. We led with our values as Americans and Democrats in a time of great chaos and fear, and my National Officer team transformed how we use technology, media & social media, and how we help voters. Community efforts to postcard, phonebank, textbank, and registering voters made the difference -- DA delivered victory for Biden-Harris in AZ and GA, and the US Senate to Democrats. Our work is not done -- as DPCA Voting Rep, I pledge to continue to push DA to work smarter, to become more open, agile, and impactful as we prepare for our fights in 2022 and 2024. Thank you.

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CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

SALLI SWARTZ (F)

I am seeking a second term as a female voting representative, having served DAF loyally and faithfully for over 15 years and most recently as a Voting Representative.

I have attended most if not all EMEA Regional and Global meetings, am a former DAF counsel (2 terms) and a former Vice Chair (two terms) and have served as Vice Chair of the 2020 Democrats Abroad Platform committee. Currently, I am a Steering Committee member of the Global Women’s Caucus (GWC) and Chair of the Reproductive Rights Action Team.

The position of voting representative is an important job which I know well and requires time, DA and DAF experience and lots of enthusiasm, all of which I have.

If elected, I promise to serve DA’s and DAF’s interests wisely and efficiently and will attend all of the EMEA regional and Global meetings.

On a more personal note, I have been living and working in Paris for over 40 years, am an international business lawyer and a feminist and do a lot of pro bono work in Africa.

Please note that I have chosen not to seek or offer or accept endorsements, as I believe that voters should choose their representatives based on their qualifications and personal attributes and not on what others have to say about them. 

Many thanks for your consideration.

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CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

BARBARA WELLS (F)

I have been active in DA France Strasbourg and am now running for Voting Representative partly because I was fortunate enough to live the American Dream and I want that opportunity for my son and all of his and future generations.

Self-supporting since the age of sixteen, I studied part-time, while working my way into a management position. After completing studies in International Relations and History at Tufts University and graduate work at the London School of Economics, I lived in the Czech Republic, before settling with my son in Strasbourg where I teach at the University. I was honored to serve as Vice Chair and then Chair of the DA Strasbourg Chapter, which remained active throughout these last four, challenging years.

I will remain engaged in DA Strasbourg/locally, but now wish to help bring our voices to the global level as a Voting Representative. Our country narrowly survived an attempted coup. It will continue to take all our engagement, support, and efforts to maintain and strengthen our democracy and “build back better”. I want to be part of that effort and hope that you will support my candidacy as a Voting Representative. I have chosen not to seek endorsements.

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CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

MEREDITH WHEELER (F)

I’ve been an active member of Democrats Abroad France for over 20 years, including founding the Toulouse Chapter, where I served as Chair for many years.

Recently, I’ve had the role of Second Vice Chair, Chapter Liaison.

I have twice served on the DA international Elections committee administering the global elections.

I was Editor-in-Chief of the 50th Anniversary Book for Democrats Abroad.

I regularly attend both regional and international DA gatherings and am one of the key photographers documenting those events.

My proudest achievement for DA was organizing the Obama Bridge Project--which mobilized Americans around the world in support for Barack Obama's candidacy at famous and scenic bridges. Yes, we span!

I’ve organized several speaking tours for DA with relevant experts, both within France and throughout Europe.

I’m a former writer and producer for ABC News and ex-radio reporter for NPR and ABC.

I am the American Flag bearer at commemorations locally and received a Fulbright from the American Embassy in Paris to document the history of an OSS team active in the Tarn in 1944.

Originally from suburban Chicago, I vote in Manhattan.

I would be proud to be a voting rep for DA France.

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This candidate has chosen not to seek or give endorsements.


CANDIDATE FOR VOTING REPRESENTATIVE

JERRY ZELLHOEFER (M)

I’m a lifelong trade unionist, committed to improving the lives of the many. A revitalized labor movement is indispensable to ensuring Democratic victories. A strong labor movement (and passing the PRO Act) are essential for strengthening democracy and achieving economic and social justice for workers and their families. I became active in my union while performing alternative service as a social worker, as a conscientious objector to the Vietnam War.

My electoral organizing ranges from registering voters, knocking on doors, GOTV and recruiting volunteers to coordinating and implementing electoral strategy for thousands of workers while heading a regional body of trade unions.

I joined DAF upon moving to Paris in 1991 and currently serve as a National Voting Representative. Active in “France for Bernie,” I mobilized for the GPP, and like Bernie, worked after the primary for Clinton in 2016 and Biden in 2020. I’m active in Our Revolution France, focusing on efforts to win Medicare for All.

I was the AFL-CIO European Representative and the U.S. Worker Delegate to the International Labor Organization, negotiating with employers and governments. If re-elected, I’ll work hard to ensure that DAF fights for the needs and aspirations of the working class.

See my endorsements.