Democrats Abroad Global Black Caucus - June 2, 2020 Online Vigil

On June 2, 2020, DA Toronto members joined DA members from all over the world to hear from each other about the work we must do, especially as allies, to end systemic racism and police brutality in the United States. Special guests included Nina Turner, Virgie Rollins, Michael Blake, Kelly Hall-Tompkins and Akilah Ensley.

If you weren't able to join live, please consider watching the recording here.

Some words from our members:
Starla Goggins, volunteer and former Board Member, DA Toronto Chapter:  "I share in the outrage, anger, pain, and gratefulness of unity around the world.  In the midst of Covid-19, diverse community members have protested globally, shared in strength, and voiced support for justice.  It will take continued commitment in many ways towards a more just outcome." 
Paulette Kelly, former Board Member, DA Toronto Chapter:  "In the midst of this recent tragedy, I am comforted by the positive actions shown globally from a tapestry of people who are standing up for changes in policing and other types of unlawful behavior that put Black lives at risk. The world is responding to the injustices that many people experience and, there will be no resolve to this problem until laws are put in place to ensure that justice for all is achieved."   
We stand in solidarity with our Black members, allies, and community members around the world taking a stand against systemic racism and raising the call for justice.  Black Lives Matter.

DEMOCRATS ABROAD TORONTO - February 25, 2020 AGM - Minutes

Annual General Meeting - February 25, 2020

Board Meeting Minutes – Draft

Attendance: Danielle Stampley, Karin Lippert, Mari Rutka, Virginia Smith, Brooke Scott, Stephanie Perry, Steve Nardi, Liam Keating, Kaitlyn Min, Yusuf Nakhooda, Mandy Moore, Carey Singer, Joann Sochor, Paulette Kelly, Jeanette McCabe, Reg Charney, Diana English, Tim Ellis, Tomas Bribriesco, Liz Olin, Dawn Lambert

Meeting called to order by Danielle at 6:05 p.m. Danielle asks folks to review 2019 AGM minutes. Steve reminds us that only those at the previous meeting can vote to approve.

Approval of the Agenda: 

Danielle asks to add discussion of Global Convention under other business. Mari moves approval, Karin seconds. Approved.

Vote for Co-Vice Chair: 

On-line ballot and paper ballot process closed as of Feb. 25th. Some paper ballots passed out at meeting to those who didn't vote. Mari held the ballots until Reg could take them and tally them at the end of the meeting.

Minutes and Business Arising from the Minutes:

Approval of March 17, 2019 AGM Minutes

Danielle asks for additions or corrections. None suggested. Stephanie moves approval of the minutes, Virginia seconds. Approved.

Treasurer’s Report: tabled for later in the meeting (see below).

Report on 2019 Events:

Karin speaks to events done last year, which included:

  • Toronto Women's March in January, 2019
  • Women's Caucus Movie Night
  • US Tax Seminars
  • Panel with Donna Brazile and Leah Daughtry
  • Rally to Release the Mueller Report
  • Women's Caucus Potluck at Mari Rutka's Home
  • Women's Caucus at Second City Toronto 
  • Global Climate Strike Rally at Queen's Park
  • Lights for Liberty Rally to Keep Families Together
  • Meet & Greet with Julia Bryan
  • "No One is Above the Law" Rally
  • Thanksgiving Dinner
  • Debate Watches

Karin reminds us to check our e-mails for upcoming events. Copy of list to be attached to minutes.

Future Scheduled Events:

GPP Voting Center, March 3, 7 & 8

Danielle speaks to the excitement of coming events. We have a debate watch after the AGM. She explains about the global presidential primary voting centers. Can vote on-line, but can also come to a voting center. There will be 4 centers. On March 3rd, one at East of Brunswick pub, one at Square One. She asks everyone to volunteer, especially in Mississauga. One on 7th at East of Brunswick and one in Mississauga on the 8th. Democrats Abroad get 21 delegates to the Democratic National Convention.  They are allocated according to percentage of votes for those candidates getting over 15% of votes.  Have gotten many new members over the past few months.

Global Convention for Democrats Abroad, May 15-17

In May, there will be up to 300 people from chapters all around the world in Toronto for the Global Convention.  This is where delegates will be elected. The more voters in the Canada in the GPP, the more delegates Canada could send.  There will be training as well on get out the vote activities at the convention. Toronto was chosen because of proximity to the US. Some folks may come up from the DNC and possibly even candidates.  Details on how to become a delegate are online.  

Liam says he gets questions he can’t answer. Steve points him to

We will be using Zoom for remote access to the convention. Steve says we’re all welcome to attend. A call-out went out for volunteers and home stays. There are dorm rooms at Univ. of Toronto and rooms at the Chelsea. Contact Danielle if you want more information on this.

Pride, June 26-28 

This is one of the largest community outreach opportunities. There are a lot of Americans that attend. We have a booth on Church Street. Hoping to march in the parade this year. Would like to get 100 people to march. Danielle gives examples of elections in Florida and Kentucky where the number of Democrats Abroad can make a difference in election outcomes.

There will also be other events to help get out the vote. Intend to set up on campuses. Would like to set up in Guelph because there are lots of Americans at the school because of their veterinary program. Liam says he’s met someone at Guelph who is interested. Steve says we need to connect them to local chapter. Danielle says please speak to her if you are interested in helping organize get out the vote events.

Danielle explains that most Democrats Abroad Toronto meetings are the second Tuesday of each month and everyone is welcome to come and help out.

Announcement of Election Results:

Reg says there were 76 votes for chapter co-vice chair.

Tim Ellis wins with 39 votes.

Carey Singer 28

David Green 9

No spoiled ballots.

Danielle thanks all who participated.

Treasurer’s Report (held from earlier):

Reg reports to the fiscal year end which is Dec. 31, 2019.

Reg submits details, which will be attached to the minutes for the AGM.

Motion to approve the report by Dianna, seconded by Danielle. Approved.

Next Meeting: 

Future scheduled Board meetings:

  • March 10, 2020
  • April 14, 2020
  • May 12, 2020
  • June 9, 2020
  • July 7, 2020

Adjournment moved by Mari at 6:46 pm.

Minutes respectfully submitted by Mari Rutka


DA Toronto Co-Vice Chair Candidate Nomination Statements - 2020 AGM


The DA Toronto 2020 Annual General Meeting ("AGM") is February 25th at 6 pm. We will be circulating ballots for the Co-Vice Chair elections on February 11, 2020 by email to members. Alternatively, members can vote in person at the meeting. The candidate who is elected will serve until the 2021 AGM.

Electronic ballots must be submitted by 12:00 am EST on February 25, 2020.



I have just recently re-joined Democrats Abroad Canada. I was the treasurer several years ago. I am a CPA from Chicago. I have been practicing US Taxation for Americans in Canada for 30 years. I have Board Experience from DemCan in the past. I also was on the Board of the Reelworld Film Festival. I would be glad to provide more information and provide references at your request.

Other Background: Married with 2 children. My wife is Canadian. My kids, ages 18 and 21, are dual citizens. I am passionate about the cause. I believe that my past experience with Boards, as well as my business experience would help make me very qualified for the position. Thank you for your consideration.


I am Visiting Professor of History at Cornell University, where I have taught a Summer Session course in American political communication four times since 1991 and will be teaching it again this summer. The course is entitled "Words as Weapons: Political Vocabulary, Mass Media, and the Evolution of Political Consciousness." I taught the same course at York University here in Toronto during the summer of 2006. The course is an outgrowth of my book, The Language of Politics in America: Shaping Political Consciousness From McKinley to Reagan, published by Cornell University Press in 1991.

Since 2012, I have also been a contributor to The American Interest, a bi-monthly political journal based in Washington, D.C. My most recent article, entitled "Is the Mainstream Left, Right, or Center?", was published on June 19, 2019, and can be found at If you go to their website and search my name, it will bring up five articles which I have published since 2012, beginning with "A Call to Linguistic Disobedience," which appeared on June 10, 2012. Alternatively, just email me and I can provide pdf copies of all five articles. 

My educational background is as follows: B.A. Cornell 1962; M.A. Stanford 1963; Ph.D. Cornell 1967. I was also an American Council of Learned Societies Post-doctoral Fellow in 1971-1972 at the Stanford Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences. In addition to Cornell and York, I have taught at Ohio State and given guest lectures at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, B.C. and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

In the real world, since 1998 I have been President & CEO of Berenson Green Financial Services, Inc., an independent financial consulting firm. I am married to Arlene Gehring, Cornell 1964, and we have four children and six grandchildren (so far). Finally, I am a lifelong registered Democrat and vote by absentee ballot in Ithaca, N.Y., where Cornell is located.


I'm proud to nominate Timothy Ellis for Co-Vice Chair of the DA Toronto Chapter. He has been active with our chapter attending events, actions and bringing in new members for several years. He is an organizer with a long list of experience, including at as a community organizer.

Also he's been a campaign manager and worked for candidates (ex. Bernie Sanders), worked as a union community organizer and event coordinator. His political knowledge and people skills - bringing people out and getting them energized - will invaluable during this election year. I can't think of any other young adult with more experience, intelligence, enthusiasm and talent that we could elect.

He was a speaker - along with Danielle Stampley, Chair of the chapter and others - at our recent IMPEACH/REMOVE rally in Toronto. He got everyone's attention with his enthusiasm, positivity and confidence about what we can accomplish TOGETHER! He is from Eden, New York and attended Jr. and High School there.

-- nominated by Karin Lippert, Co-Vice Chair Toronto Board, Co-Lead Women's Caucus Toronto Chapter

Call for Candidates for DA Toronto Co-Vice Chair for 2020!

Due to a resignation in 2019, we are looking for male/male-identifying/non-binary candidates to volunteer to serve as Co-Vice Chair of the Democrats Abroad Toronto Board for the 2020-2021 term. (Our DA Charter and the DA Canada Bylaws require Chapters to have a Vice-Chair of a different sex from the Chapter Chair (currently female), which is why this position has a restriction on who can run.)

Serving on the Board is a great way to take action and make a difference in 2020. We will be organizing debate watches, running a polling place for the Democrats Abroad Presidential Primary, and most importantly Getting Out the Vote for 2020!

The Co-Vice Chair performs the following role:

In the absence of the Chapter Chair, either of the Co-Vice Chairs shall call and preside at meetings of members and of the Executive Committee. The Co-Vice Chairs shall have such other duties as chairing one or more committees. The Co-Vice Chairs shall work with the Chair to ensure all responsibilities approved by and on behalf of the organization are supervised and executed appropriately.

Submit you nomination here by January 12, 2020.

The voting will take place online during February and at the DA Toronto Annual General Meeting on February 25, 2020. Further details of the AGM will be sent in January 2020 according to our Bylaws.

If you have any questions about what's involved and whether this is a good fit for you, email us at


Lights for Liberty: Democrats Abroad Joins Others to Protest Detention of Migrant Children

On July 12, about 100 people, including members of Democrats Abroad (DA), gathered near the U.S. Consulate in Toronto to protest the detention of thousands of migrant children in overcrowded settings in Florida, Texas, and elsewhere in the U.S. 

A lawyer who visited one of these facilities has reported that a large majority of the children have U.S. based family members who could take care of them. Instead, they are sleeping on mats and cement floors, and they are not being adequately nourished. Fruit and vegetables are not provided.
Reporters for the Miami Herald, who visited a facility in Homestead, Florida, said that children are identified by a number rather than a name and have very regimented schedules, including five-minute showers and two 10-minute calls a week to family members.

As protestors gathered in Toronto, gatherings were happening at detention centres across the U.S. and in other countries, including Germany and Ireland. The Toronto gathering included participants in the YWCA Settlement Program, the Canadian Association of Refugee lawyers, members of the Honduran community, and other groups, as well as DA members.

A number of speakers talked about urgent need to close these prison-like facilities:
Irit Printz, the rabbi of B’nai Shalom v’Tivah synagogue, said that “This is not a moral gray area. Children should not be held in detention in conditions that are worse than the conditions in which people can keep animals. Parents should not be torn away from their children. Providing people with basic necessities and a safe place to stay should be obvious, not a matter of debate.”

Karin Lippert, DA Toronto chapter Vice-chair, stated later that “Our message at the Lights for Liberty was: Close the Camps. Americans and people around the world are horrified by the images of children in cages, sleeping on the floor in their own feces, without adequate food and water. This is not reflective of American and Canadian values and must not continue. Close the Camps was both a solemn demonstration and a sacred space. Several speakers reminded us of the decades of exploitation of Central America by American corporations – supported by the U.S. government – and the general disregard there has been for the PEOPLE of Central America.”

Ed Ungar, DA Canada Vice-chair, stressed that action is required: “If you do not provide the basics of life (toothbrushes, showers, and so on) for children in your custody, that’s child abuse – child neglect. Society removes those children from custody. This is just as society must remove children from the Trump administration’s custody.”

The gathering concluded with candle lighting, song, and words of encouragement for the journey forward. Julie Buchanan, DA Canada Executive Vice-Chair recalled that “after moving stories and inspirational speakers, we sang John Lennon’s ‘Imagine’”: Imagine all the people living life in peace. You may say that I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one. I hope someday you’ll join us, and the world will be as one. ”True, I may be a dreamer but clearly I was not the only one there that day. There is always hope,” said Ms. Buchanan.

In her statement, Rabbi Printz noted the meaning of candle lighting: She said that Jews light candles on Hannukah “because of the principle that light should always be increased in the world, that the world is dark enough without removing what light there is. I am so proud to stand with you today as we add our light to the world with the hope that we can make the world a little brighter, a little more caring, perhaps even a little more just.”

For DA members, the July 12 protest pointed the way toward action that is needed in 2020. Karin Lippert said that the gathering was a powerful reminder of our shared humanity. “ Going forward, the activism of Democrats Abroad living in Canada and around the world, and also our voter turnout in 2020 will be an affirmation of our values and an expression of the collective power of every vote.”

Authored by Virginia Smith



Dealing With Challenges to Choice

The DA Toronto Women's Caucus brings members together on a key issue

A group of about 20 Democrats Abroad Toronto members, all women except for one, gathered over a June 9 potluck dinner to discuss strategies for resistance to the anti-choice laws that have been recently enacted in Alabama and elsewhere.  The Alabama law, which is the most restrictive in the nation, would outlaw nearly all abortions and make performing an abortion a felony.  Legislators in a number of other states, including Georgia, Mississippi, Kentucky, and Ohio have also recently passed bills limiting women’s right to terminate a pregnancy.  It has become evident that the 1973 Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision is not an adequate protection of American women’s ability to control their own bodies.

The pro-choice potluck dinner was graciously hosted by Toronto Board Secretary Mari Rutka at her home.  The comfortable atmosphere enabled people to talk about their own lives.  Toronto Women’s Caucus Chair Karin Lippert noted that “bringing women together, especially at a potluck in someone’s home, just like a quilting bee or a consciousness-raising group, gives women an opportunity to talk about their personal experiences.  The story telling builds solidarity. It leads to unity, determination, and action.”

Jennie Toby, one of the participants in the dinner and discussion, talked about her stance on women’s right to choose this way: “I believe it is incredibly important that women have the right to choose what is best for them.  The nuances and considerations that get factored in when making such an important decision, such as to continue or terminate a pregnancy, rest solely within the realm of the woman and her day to day life.  No one can possibly know what that woman’s life is like, what her situation is, or what she should do.  I do not and cannot support any laws that remove that choice from a woman.  To do so is to remove any faith and trust in a woman’s capacity to make an informed choice about her life and future.”

Much of the discussion at the potluck focused on ways to make the case for women’s right to choose.  We know that we have made the case many times before, but laws related to choice never seem to get finally settled.  Therefore, it is vital to keep showing why protection of the freedom to choose is the only fair and just way to proceed.  We agreed that we might be able to change people’s minds about choice, not by making theoretical arguments, but by telling stories and asking questions.  We can ask: what would you do in this impossibly difficult situation?  We can tell stories about why women make the difficult decision to terminate a pregnancy.  We concluded our discussion by writing postcards to our Congressional representatives, urging them to uphold the right to choice.

*Thanks to Toronto Board Member Virginia Smith for writing this post.


Congratulations to the new Toronto Board!

At the 2019 AGM, the DA Toronto membership elected the following members to its 2019-2020 Board:

  • Danielle Stampley, Chair 
  •  Karin Lippert, Vice Chair 
  •  Reg Charney, Treasurer 
  •  Mari Rutka, Secretary 
  •  Janette McCabe, Member at Large 
  •  Brooke Scott, Member at Large
  • Kate Leuschen-Millar, Member at Large 
  • Sam Rowan, Member at Large 
  • Stephanie Perry, Member at Large
  • Ed Ungar, Member at Large
  • Arielle Loeb, Member at Large
  • Virginia Smith, Member at Large

They all look forward to serving the chapter members as we approach the 2020 election. Ever forward!


Democrats Abroad Toronto

DA Toronto (DATO) is a chapter of DA Canada, the official country committee for US Democrats living in Canada.

We help US citizens vote in US elections through voter registration and keeping people informed on key issues. We also have lots of opportunities to volunteer with our Get Out the Vote efforts! 

Past DATO events include Women's Marches, Tax Seminars, Fourth of July parties, Thanksgiving dinners, Election and Debate Watch parties, voter registration events and pub meet-ups.  We are active in-person and online as much as possible.  Please check our Events page and News page for more information.

We also post voter and event information as well as current political news on social media. Please follow us on Instagram and our Facebook page and share!

If you have questions or would like to help with Democrats Abroad Toronto, please contact us at:

Spring Cleaning - $20 for 2020 Fundraiser

Julie Buchanan, our past DA Toronto Chair, has been doing some spring cleaning and would like to offer a deal to our members for some of our 'vintage' T-Shirts in our $20 for 2020 Fundraiser. T-shirts and swag will be sent straight to your shipping address, via Canada Post.

Sign up here! Help support our Get Out the Vote efforts for 2020!


AGM Information, Nominations and Election Commitee (NEC) Report, Candidate Statements

Toronto Chapter AGM
Center for Social Innovation
192 Spadina
Sunday March 17th
3-4 pm

We will tallying ballots and finalizing the election, taking nominations from the floor if necessary, reviewing our many accomplishments over the last term.

We are planning to celebrate after the AGM at a nearby pub so stay tuned!

RSVP here to attend in person

You may also attend virtually by Web Ex on your own device! RSVP here to receive those instructions.



NEC Toronto Report 2019

The NEC held conference calls and evaluated the 2019 Nominee Statements.  We kept minutes, sent agendas, and worked towards filling all positions.  Our final report will be given at the AGM.

Erin Campeau, Teller
Reg Charney
Star Goggins, Chair




Danielle Stampley

Chapter Chair

I am the outgoing Co-Vice-Chair of the Democrats Abroad - Toronto Chapter, and I am running for Chair because I would like to build on the momentum we created in 2018 by increasing engagement in 2019 and getting out the vote in 2020. I am also the current Counsel of Democrats Abroad Canada.

Before joining Democrats Abroad, I worked with other small volunteer projects. In the short time I have been with DA (since 2017), I have learned a lot about organizing and how to best deploy the resources we have available. We are all volunteers, which means we have limited time and have to be strategic in how we invest that time. We are getting better and better at this, and our enthusiasm is limitless.

As a Vice Chair, I helped plan meetings and chair them in our Chair's absence. I organized volunteers, sent out communications and planned events. I also worked to organize chapter resources online and train volunteers. I have attended our international DA Meeting and have developed a good understanding of the organization's resources and rules.

When I'm not working with DA, I'm a lawyer. I started out practicing in a large law firm in New York, and now I represent workers and unions in an employment and labour practice. In both settings, organization, planning, and leadership are key to a successful practice. I rely on these skills in my work with DA.

I am a Missouri voter, and I won't be satisfied unless we do everything we can to turn out every overseas Democratic vote in 2020.  I would very much appreciate your support.


Karin Lippert


We need people like Karin Lippert who inspires the people with hope and
justice in their heart to devote enough time into changing the world.

She has devoted hundreds of hours to voter outreach events, hitting the
streets and handing out literature, working in voter outreach booths at
street fairs, organizing events like debate watches and producing a voter
outreach video at Second City.

In the last term she co-chaired the first ever Women's Caucus in Toronto and has been fighting for womens' rights for 50 years.

As our media contact, she sent out press releases and organized at least 3o interviews with various board members. The key in terms of media is establishing good relationships, providing accurate information and putting forward spokespersons who can put the
issues and Democrats Abroad role in getting out the vote to as wide an
audience as possible. Building the media relationships is especially
important in a large media market like Toronto.

She has the experience, expertise and is an inspiration to us all

Julie Buchanan


George Polak



I am a retired sales and marketing leadership professional with some 44 years of doing the work and leading the work of others in a team-oriented setting.

I am committed to the ideals of the Democrat party who, I firmly believe today more than ever needs to take back the White House and Senate while retaining the House.

I am an Army veteran of 3 years which included a tour in 1970 in Vietnam Nam and feel I did not make this sacrifice so that our thin skinned, no nothing, egomaniac could become leader of the US and the free world.
It would be my honour to serve!


Mari Rutka


I have enjoyed my duties as co-secretary for the Toronto Chapter and am willing to continue in that role.  It has been a pleasure to be around so many who are dedicated to making a difference by helping to support Americans abroad, both in their ability to vote and in supporting matters of particular concern to Americans living in Canada.   Hope I can still help.



No nominee

Kathleen Leuschen

Member at Large

Hailing from Omaha, Nebraska with stops in Virginia and Maryland along the way, I have been a Toronto resident for over 20 years.  I have served as a Member-at-large for the Toronto Chapter for the last two years and as the Treasurer for the last few months.  I bring to the position my experience in the non-profit sector, including various roles in high profile private and public foundations.

Currently my passions include gender equity and parent engagement in education.  I volunteer in various roles that blend my own love of social justice with being a policy nerd and strategic planner.

This year, I hope to use my background in organizational governance and strategy to engage our younger, progressive members in our get out the vote efforts. Toronto has an amazing number of Americans living abroad that simply need the right reason to join us.


Arielle Loeb

Member at Large

I’ve been living outside of the US since 2006; first in Europe and now in Canada. While a proud resident of Toronto, I continue to be a fiercely proud American. I have chosen to submit my candidacy for Member-at-Large at Democrats Abroad Canada because I believe the upcoming 2020 elections are too important for me to remain a bystander and voter only.

While living in Canada, I want to do whatever I can to ensure fellow Americans living here are registered to vote. I want to show how easy it is to vote absentee from Canada and the importance of doing so. The midterm elections have demonstrated that every vote truly counts.

I have worked in marketing my entire career. First at General Mills in the US, followed by stints in Europe and Canada. Currently, I am the EVP of Marketing for Spark Power, an independent power company based in Oakville.

I would like to bring these experiences to Democrats Abroad Canada. While I am a relatively new member of Democrats Abroad, I think the upcoming elections offer a great opportunity to increase awareness about the organization, its cause, and how Americans living in Canada can engage and ensure their votes are counted and their voices are heard.

To the position of Member-at-Large and the Board overall, I will bring my passion for making positive change happen—as well as over 20 years of persuasive marketing and communication know-how—in any way that can serve the organization and its members.

Some races in the midterms were decided by as little as a percentage point. “With America’s elections increasingly decided by far less, participation in early voting can decide races from Congress to school boards” (Quartz article, After 2018, the US should stop calling it election day), I want to do my part to ensure that every American living in Toronto/the GTA have the chance to participate in a way that works for them. 


Lewis Luo

Member at Large

I'll say thank you to Julie for her email at the beginning. Julie said "We need you to volunteer to be a member of the Board of the Toronto Chapter".

I've known Julie, Star, Sherry, David, Ed, Bennett, Lissette and many other fellow Americans here and among Expat American abroad friends for some years now. Frankly, I've learned a lot from YOU and obtained both your helps and your friendships as well in many aspects. I feel grateful to your friendship, in particular David, Ednar and Starla 'Star'.

Participating DA branch organized "Register and vote abroad" community event, to advise citizen students in Toronto area to sign up online and to demonstrate the privilege right vote from abroad; attending Tax seminar in local library and tele-conference workshop on overseas American TAX issues and concerns; assisting in election-watch party, pub night and election debate, handling vote from abroad postings and accepting training in Toronto Consulate General etc. I've been a pretty active participant in the local branch community.

I'm passion of public service, obligated to voice people's concerns about their responsibilities verse their legal rights. i fully understand the role that DA can play in community and in electoral democracy process. Too often, I told myself it's not always about to win or to lose, but to show your passion and your care across the party line.

Ten years went through and gone by, since I left home state. I crossed over day by day and another, while missing home, friends and family relatives, too painful to tell. I never have such kind of feelings in my life!

Member-At-Large position can be a fit to fulfill my passion and to be ALWAYS ready on-call to GO HOME.

Thank you for your consideration.


Janette McCabe

Member at Large

Although my family and my roots are in Toronto, I have spent almost 25 years of my adult life living in the United States and my husband and I raised our three children there. When then candidate, Barack Obama became the Democratic nominee in 2008 I became highly energized to become an American citizen so that I could vote in this historic election. I was ecstatic with his victory and felt that the values and causes for which he and the Democratic party stood aligned with mine. Throughout my adult life I have been involved in social justice issues; in particular those related to Latin America, human rights/refugee rights and in the latter part of my professional life worked with a refugee resettlement agency in Louisville, Kentucky as the Special Medical Needs Coordinator. I have an undergraduate degree in Nursing and an M.A in Political Science. In the 2012 and 2016 Presidential elections I did some door to door canvassing in Cincinnati for Democratic candidates as well as some phone banking and most recently worked as a volunteer in the Toronto office assisting with phone banking for the 2018 mid-term election. In December I was invited to join the Toronto Board as a Member-at-Large and was happy to accept this position. I am deeply concerned about the events I see happening in the U.S. and feel a responsibility to work to bring about the changes necessary to reverse the course taken by the Republican government over the last two years. I am committed to working diligently with other Board members and volunteers with the goal of engaging and increasing the membership of Democrats Abroad, getting out the vote and ultimately, ensuring a Democratic victory in the 2020 Presidential election which by almost any measure will be the most consequential election of our time. I would be grateful for your support in this effort. Thank you.


Stephanie (Sarah) Perry

Member at Large

I am a retired lawyer, age 62, and as a phonebanker during the recent mid-terms I was one of the most committed (in terms of hours worked, not in terms of the fervour we all shared) volunteers in the Toronto campaign centre. I believe I may have been the "top-producer" for the Toronto chapter, and I know we all had a great time working together on a project we passionately believed in.

I'm really, really OLD, so I've done volunteer work for many organizations, dating back to handing out anti-war -- that's the VIETNAM War -- flyers every day after middle school, without my GOP parents' knowledge.

Most relevant for this position is that I chaired a non-profit community organization, The Cabbagetown Tour of Homes, here in Toronto. I had started as a one-day volunteer, then for a few years thereafter served as the volunteer co-ordinator and was responsible for organizing over 200 volunteers at multiple locations and in varying functions, for the weekend of the event, and eventually I got stuck running the whole damn thing for 5 years as chair.  We raised tens of thousands of dollars annually ( at a time when that was LOTS of money)  for local charities, including an after-school arts programs for at-risk kids in Regent Park which combined counselling with creativity, and an English literacy group for new Canadian women , many of whom couldn't read and write in their own languages and who were socially isolated.

I am grateful to DemsAbroad for keeping me informed on the issues most relevant to Americans abroad (of ANY political denomination) and for the help voting over the 25 years I've been here in Toronto, but I only got involved, came out to an event, and signed up to work for the organization as a phonebanker,  after Trump came in.

There is no cause more important to me at this time than 2020, and I understand that the Toronto Chapter is looking for competent and committed members with the time to step up and do more. 

If you can use me, I'm available.


Sam Rowan

Member at Large

I am self nominating myself to be a member-at-large for the next election cycle because as the posting on the website states, this is probably the most important election of my lifetime and want to help Democrats Abroad in any way possible. I recognize the importance that having an engaged base for the in the Toronto area as Democrats Abroad play a massive role in holding the Democratic Party to a progressive platform. Having volunteered municipal and provincial political parties in Canadian elections I have gained valuable experience talking and working get members and potential members of political parties to engage in the electoral process and look forward to doing the same in this coming election.

As a current student at Ryerson University, I feel that I'm an ideal candidate to be a member at large as I can help recruit fellow students who are eligible to vote yet haven't been engaged in American politics before to vote in this upcoming election. Being in a University environment ensures that I've been writing consistently over the past year in a way that will be considered professional and competent for this position. Additionally I find my current enrollment at a local University to be important because issues like climate change and financial equality are the most pressing issues of this next election and considering the enthusiasm that politicians like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib and Ro Khanna , show that mobilizing a young and progressive vote in Toronto will help assure that the party runs a optimistic campaign in order to combat the Neo-Fascist platform the Republicans will be running on the next election. As the last election proved a lesser of two evils platform is simply not good enough to beat Donald Trump's populist appeal.


Brooke Scott

Member at Large-York Region

My name is Brooke Scott and I am running for Member at Large-York Region. For nearly the past two years I have been the Member at Large for York region attending monthly Toronto board meetings both in person and online. I have participated in and run several events to engage US eligible voters. Beginning in 2018, I began became co-chair of the Women's Caucus Canada and recently have begun running the Women's Caucus Canada. I believe in grassroots activism and the power of our vote to create progressive change.


Virginia Smith

Member at Large

I think that I have made some significant contributions to the work of Democrats Abroad during my current term on the Toronto board as a member-at-large, and I would like to be able to continue those contributions. I may also start contributing in new ways if I am elected again.  My worked has been focused in two areas: as a mover of Democrats Abroad Vietnam project and as a writer of articles for the DA website.
A primary goal of the Vietnam project has been to tell the stories of DA members who moved to Canada from the U.S. during the late 1960s and early 1970s. The turbulence caused by the Vietnam War was a factor in the moves made by many Americans at that time. The project also aims to discover the contemporary relevance of the experiences of those who moved. Some of the stories told to DA can be found on the Democrats Abroad Canada website.
I have written a number of articles for the DA website, including articles on Hillary Clinton's visit to Toronto, on DA Toronto's response to the Parkland shootings, and on DA's efforts to get out the vote for the 2018 election.
My professional experience includes writing, editing, and community organizing. I have worked with a number of community-based initiatives, for example, the Out of the Cold program. I am currently a member of the council at my church. I have been involved in effort to develop bonds of friendship with Muslim organizations and families in Toronto.
I came to Canada as a student and became a permanent resident in the late 1960s. I am from New York, and I continue to vote from there.


Ed Ungar

Member at Large

 I've been on Toronto's ExCom since Toronto was effectively Canada's Ex Com. Among other activities. It's been wonderful to see Democrats Abroad Toronto and Canada grow to where we are. It is also important to keep in mind how far we have to go. Along with attending and organizing our reach outs at street fairs and labor day parades I'm proud to, along with Adrian Jones, to have  organized the first DA phone bank in the world right here in Toronto. Right now, I am a member emeritus. But that does not carry voting privileges nor does it allow me to help contribute to a quorum. I am running for member at large so I can further contribute in the next crucial years.

Ed  Ungar