Madrid Chapter Leadership Candidates
The Nominations and Election Committee for Madrid solicited nominations at a meeting and with an email sent to all members in the Madrid region. These are the candidates who have been nominated.
Chair: Samuel Mattern
Vice Chair: Laura Hale, Khephra White
Secretary: Revé Fisher
Treasurer: Christina Samson
Please find the bios received from the candidates to date.
We all know what’s at stake in the 2020 election. Now more than ever, voter turnout is essential. And I want to help.
A Pacific Northwest native (Portland, OR), my feet are firmly planted on both sides of the pond after permanently settling in Spain in 2007. I joined Democrats Abroad in 2014 and became increasingly active in the run-up to the 2016 election, ultimately assuming my current position as spokesperson and press relations coordinator.
I enthusiastically believe in DA’s mission and work. Its members are uniquely poised with an outside perspective that translates to transformative, positive and long-lasting action when we cast our ballots. This is proof positive that DA plays a vital role in the political landscape back home, which redounds to our advantage in our adopted country of residence. In this vein, those who know me are aware of my passion for social justice and how much I care about the well-being of others. I would be thrilled to kick my current involvement up a notch and bring this passion to DA.
Running my own translation and communication business here in Madrid for the past decade has not only developed my strong command of the Spanish language; it has also honed my collaboration, organizational and coordination skills. My complete immersion in Spanish life and culture means that I can navigate the system and get things done on the ground, facilitating and streamlining the important tasks we have before us, especially as far as logistics and communication are concerned. Perseverant by nature, I’m committed to finishing the job.
The opportunity to dedicate my excitement and skills to the DA Chair position would be a privilege, and your consideration to allow me to serve an honor.
Vice Chair (1)
Laura Hale has lived in Madrid since 2013, previously having lived in Bratislava, Tinian and Canberra. Originally from the Chicago suburbs and a family of life long Democrats, she has an BGS and MSEd in Instructional Technology from Northern Illinois University, and a PhD in Communications from the University of Canberra. A data analyst and sports historian by training, in the past few years she has been active in disability activism through sports data related projects. She has been involved in further activist activities online and offline mostly centering around Wikipedia and related projects since 2011.
Vice Chair (2)
I’ve lived through 7 presidents and seen a lot of change over the years. However, the Presidential election in 2020 may be one of the most important elections we will see in this lifetime. I joined D.A. Madrid in 2015 because I believed in their mission and wanted to get involved any way I could. After five years of working with DA Madrid fundraisers, events, and voter registration, I still feel like I can do more.
A vote is a powerful thing. This is a belief my parents and grandparents, who grew up in the Jim Crow south, instilled in me from a child. I grew up learning about politics, and always found them fascinating, but what I cared about most was getting out the vote. On Election days, my grandmother always voted first thing in the morning. She would call me saying: “Don’t forget to vote today. They said you haven’t gone in yet.” When I made it to the polls, the workers would ask me: “Is your sister coming? She hasn’t been here yet.” Hey, my neighborhood in New Orleans was small. We were a community and everyone knew each other.
With DA Madrid, I have that same sense of community, and I believe that should be shared with every member: past, current, and future. I also believe that DA Madrid’s work with local social justice groups is especially important to fostering a welcoming environment for immigrants of color. I feel it’s important for us to have a support system, where we are free to discuss issues that we may face here in Spain.
Working with DA Madrid in any capacity is an honor. If elected I will dedicate every ounce of my passion to serve our community, increase voter registration, and show the world that the expat vote is a force to be reckoned with. Thank you for your consideration, and I’ll see you at the polls!"
As Americans overseas, we view the U.S. through an especially critical lens. When talking to citizens from other countries, we are often pushed into the role of impromptu ambassador and urged to give an opinion about the current administration. The actions taken by the U.S., which is unfortunately led by a reality TV show host with a Napoleon complex, affect the world...a cringe-worthy thought at times.
Although we live far from home, we can still make an impact. Our opinions can be heard, and our votes can make a difference. 2020 does not need to experience the same disastrous results as 2016. Democrats Abroad will ensure that we overseas Americans have a visible role in the U.S. political fabric.
As secretary of DA Madrid, I will help you to stay informed about DA events (and make sure that you feel welcome if you attend :)), write up the minutes (so you can be in-the-know if you don't attend), organize the Madrid chapter database, and provide voting information to everyone who wants to be heard in our nation's elections.
My career as a writer, editor, and content marketer has given me with the skills to support DA's communication and outreach efforts. My role as a volunteer at SOS Racismo Madrid and back home in Chicago motivates me to help alleviate the issues that affect my local community. I'd love to have the opportunity to serve the American community in Madrid. We WILL make a difference in the 2020 election.
She is currently the Treasurer of Democrats Abroad Madrid and on the road for the United Nations..
Chapter Elections Set for Sunday, March 26th, 2017
The bylaws of Democrats Abroad Spain, require that each chapter hold officer elections every two years. In compliance with this rule, DA-Madrid Chapter will hold our elections on Sunday, March 26th before our soon to be announced event Women's Healthcare and Reproductive Rights.
The positions of Chapter President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer will be elected for a two-year term, effective when the results are announced. At this time, some of the incumbents are seeking another term, but in any case, nominations for all positions are open until Thursday, March 9th. Nominations will not be taken at the time of the election, since a ballot will be sent out for voting for all positions by e-mail. The Madrid chapter adheres to the Equal Opportunity rule of the Democratic Party that the Chair and Vice Chair must be of the opposite gender.
You are welcome to nominate yourself. You can also nominate someone else; the nomination needs a second by another member, either in the same email or a follow-up email from the seconding member. The Nominations and Elections Committee will confirm that the member wishes to run. Nominations can be made by email to DAMadridVotes2017@gmail.com and must be submitted by Thursday, March 9th. The Nominations and Elections Committee may also seek out and nominate candidates.
The main duties of each officer are as follows:
President – The candidate should be a team player who works with the Executive Committee, preside over monthly meetings, and represent the Madrid Chapter on the DA Spain Ex Com. Events in the next term, include: monthly meetings, special events; and activities related to 2018 Midterm elections, including the coordination of the Get Out The Vote effort.
Vice President – An activist who can support the president and the Executive Committee in the organization of chapter meetings and events; preside over monthly meetings; and attend DA Spain Ex Com meetings in the president's absence.
Secretary – A highly organized individual with good writing and computer skills, who can maintain an up-to-date list of chapter members, take minutes at monthly meetings, post them on the website, and send out notices of meetings and special events.
Treasurer – Responsible management of the Chapter's finances, keeping accounts of chapter monies collected and spent; storing reserve funds; assisting in fundraising and presenting a monthly report at chapter meetings.
Contact the Nominations & Election Committee at: DAMadridVotes2017@gmail.com
Sarah Graves current president will not be running and has agreed to chair the nominating committee. Carolyn Baurle will help coordinate the election. More information to follow when the nominating process is complete.
DA members and friends:
We are pleased to invite you to join us in watching the fourth round of primary debates at The Village Tap Room, c/ Martín de los Heros 28 (metro Plaza de España/Ventura Rodríguez) on Wednesday, October 16th, at 6pm.
This is an exciting one as the race presses onward. We look forward to discussing and considering each candidate’s particular viewpoint over drinks with you after watching the event. Your perspective is valid, and we want to hear it!
This specific occasion makes history. Never before have twelve candidates shared the stage during a primary debate. Moderated by CNN anchors Erin Burnett and Anderson Cooper, along with Marc Lacey, national editor of the NYT, more developments in the race are bound to take place.
In addition to the ten participants in last month’s debate:
Two more candidates will be present in Westerville, Ohio:
Tulsi Gabbard, Representative of Hawaii, will be returning
Tom Steyer, a newcomer, will be making his debut
We kindly request that you RSVP; it is a huge help with our organizational tasks.
Looking forward to seeing you there!
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