Democrats Abroad Spain Election Results for the 2017-2018 Term

The results of the election for the officers of Democrats Abroad Spain for the 2017-2018 term which was held during the Annual General Meeting in Barcelona on April 22 are as follows:

Chair: Jim Mercereau

Vice Chair: Anuradha Ghemawat

Secretary: Tim Lawler

Treasurer: Adrian Heredia

Counsel: Gil Carbajal

Thank you to all of the candidates who ran, especially those who stood for office for the first time! Thank you also to all of our members who took part in the election whether in person, by proxy ballot or by sending in an absentee ballot. It is the participation of all of us that brings life to Democrats Abroad Spain and to the party as a whole.

Agenda for the Annual General Meeting in Barcelona April 22, 2017

The following is the general agenda schedule for the AGM.


9:00-9:30 — Check in /  Registration

9:30-10:00  Welcoming remarks by Tammy Beaulieu Vice Chair DA SPAIN and acting Chair for the AGM: "Trying to keep up with Late Night Comedy Shows”

Remarks by Steven Tolliver, Chair DA Barcelona Chapter, hosting chapter of the AGM

10:00 - 11:30  Panel Discussion "Resistance to Persistance” moderated by Martha McDevitt Pugh (DA Netherlands and DNC Member), Stephanie Lovelace, Barbara Garrity (WMBCN) and others. 

10-30-1045  Coffee break 

1130-1200   DA Spain Business meeting

12:45 Remarks by Jim Mercereau DA Spain:  Whats in the pipeline and how can we move forward?

13:30 Close of meeting. Moving to Hawker 45 for  lunch (Note we will have a set menu with three options to choose from. Please pick up and return your menu form by the time of the coffee break).

Proxy and Absentee Voting Instructions for the 2017 DA Spain Executive Committee Elections

All currently registered members of Democrats Abroad Spain who are unable to attend the Annual General Meeting in Barcelona on April 22 are encouraged to participate in the election of the DA Spain Executive Committee by either delegating their vote via a Proxy to another member who will attend the AGM or by submitting an Absentee Ballot.


Instructions for submitting a Proxy Vote:

1. Please download a blank Proxy Vote for the April 22 election via this link.

2. Print the proxy ballot.

3. Complete parts 1 (your full name), 2 (the city or town in Spain where you now live), 3 (the name of the DA member to whom you are delegating your vote), 4 (your DA membership number; FYI this can be located by logging on to the website and clicking on “settings” from the drop-down menu that appears beneath your name on the far right hand side of the upper menu), 6 (your signature), and 7 (the date you have completed the proxy vote form).

4. Optional part 5: If you wish to indicate your vote for individual candidates, please do so in part 4. If part 4 is left blank, the person to whom you have delegated your proxy will be free to cast the proxy vote how ever they see fit.

5. Deliver the proxy to the person designated in Part 3 (this can be done by hand or by mail or the ballot may be scanned and sent to the designated person by electronically. In the latter case, the designated person will need to then print the ballot).

The person designated in Part 3 must present the printed and signed Proxy Vote to the Elections Committee at the AGM on April 22.

Please note that one single member can deliver no more than two (2) Proxy votes.


Instructions for casting an Absentee Vote:

1. Please download a blank Absentee ballot form for the April 22 election via this link.

2. Print the absentee ballot.

3. Complete parts 1 (your full name), 2 (the city or town in Spain where you now live), 3 (the name of the State in the US in which you are a voter), and 4 (your DA membership number; FYI: this can be located by logging on to the website and clicking on “settings” from the drop-down menu that appears beneath your name on the far right hand side of the upper menu).

4. Complete part 5 by indicating your vote for the candidates of your choice (please indicate only one candidate per position) or your abstention, if you so decide.

5. Complete part 6 (your signature) and part 6 (the date you have completed the absentee vote form).

6. Deliver the completed and signed absentee ballot:

 A. By hand to a member of the National Election Committee (,

B. By postal mail (please contact for the address,

C. By making a digital scan or photograph of the completed and signed ballot and sending it as an e-mail attachment to, or lastly,

ALTERNATIVE ABSENTEE VOTING METHOD: Instead of printing, completing and signing the Absentee Ballot, members may vote absentee by coping the ballot text from the downloaded ballot form into an e-mail, completing all the necessary information (your printed name will serve as a signature), and sending the e-mail to

Please note that if you submit your absentee vote by e-mail, the e-mail address used must be the address listed in our database as being yours (i.e., the address to which this present e-mail was sent).

All absentee ballots must be received the day before the AGM, that is say Friday April 21. Any absentee votes arriving on April 22 will not be considered valid.

Should you have any questions regarding the proxy or absentee voting procedures, please contact the NEC at

Thank you,

Steven Tolliver,
Mark Carr,
Ellen Bergeron,
National Elections Committee

DA Spain Elections: the Candidates for the 2017-2018 term

We have our official slate of candidates who are running for positions on the Executive Committee of Democrats Abroad Spain.

The candidates are:

Chair: Jim Mercereau [unopposed] : Statement from Jim

Vice Chair: Anuradha Ghemawat : Statement from Anurahda | Brittany Hill : Statement from Brittany

Treasurer: Adrian Heredia [unopposed] Statement from Adrian

Secretary: Carolyn BaurleTim Lawler : Statement from Tim

Counsel: Gil Carbajal [unopposed] : Statement from Gil


The election will take place on April 22, 2017 the Annual General Meeting of DA Spain in Barcelona.

DA Spain Elections for 2017-18 Term and Call for Candidates

Democrats Abroad Spain’s 2017 Annual General Meeting (AGM) will take place in Barcelona on Saturday, April 22.

During the meeting elections will be held for the Executive Committee offices of :
1) Chairperson
2) Vice-Chairperson
3) Secretary
4) Treasurer and
5) Counsel. 

All members are invited to run for office! Any DA Spain member in good standing is eligible to run. Details on the positions and their respective responsibilities are available via this link: DAS Offices. Please note that the deadline for nominations is April 5th.

According to Democratic Party regulations:
1) The term of office is two years.
2) No officer may serve for more than two consecutive terms in the same office.
3) The Chair and Vice Chair must be of opposite gender. If a male and a female run for the office of Chairperson, a procedure will be provided to assure that the Vice Chair is of the other gender.

We are accepting nominations and seconds for each office from today to April 5.
To submit a nomination for yourself or another person, please send an e-mail to stating the name of the candidate and an optional candidate's statement (introducing the candidate, their background, why they are running and their goals for the 2 year term, etc. ). Please note all nominations must be seconded by another member, so if you do nominate yourself, please ask another member to send an e-mail to stating that they endorse you as a candidate.

Should you have any questions, please contact the Election Committee at

Democrats Abroad Spain’s 2017 Executive Committee Elections and Annual General Meeting (AGM)

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PLEASE BE ADVISED: Democrats Abroad Spain’s 2017 Annual General Meeting (AGM) will take place in Barcelona on Saturday, April 22. The venue and agenda will be announced later.


At the meeting elections will be held for the Executive Committee offices consisting of :
1) Chairperson
2) Vice-Chairperson
3) Secretary
4) Treasurer and 
5) Counsel.  

All members are invited to run for office! Any DA Spain member in good standing is eligible to run. The job descriptions for these positions are as follows:

The Chair shall be the chief executive officer of the organization, shall call and preside at all meetings of members and of the Executive Committee, and shall have responsibility for all activities approved by the organization. The Chair shall sit ex-officio on all committees of the organization with full voting privileges.
In the absence of the Chair, the Vice-Chair shall call and preside at meetings of members and of the Executive Committee. The Vice-Chair shall have such other duties as the Chair shall define. In the case of a vacancy in the office of the DAS Chair, the Vice-Chair shall become DAS Chair until the next Annual General Meeting at which officer elections are held.
The Secretary shall maintain a current list of members of the organization containing such information as the DPCA may from time to time require (i.e. the name, mail and e-mail addresses, telephone and fax numbers and U.S. voting district/State, etc.*), minutes of all meetings, and all files and administrative records of the organization. Minutes of meetings shall be available for inspection by members who have not had their privileges restricted. The Secretary shall have such other duties as the Chair shall define.
The Treasurer shall manage the finances of the organization, maintain its financial reports to members and make and maintain such financial reports as may be required by law (including without limitation the laws and regulations of the United States and the several States applicable to political parties and contributions to them). All such records shall be open for inspection by members in good standing. The Treasurer shall have such other duties as the Chair shall define.


The Counsel shall be available for consultation by the Executive
Committee on interpretive and procedural questions relating to DAS and its activities. The Counsel shall consult with the Democrats Abroad International Counsel from time to time.
All of the above officers will be member of the Democrats Abroad Spain Executive Committee.
* Confidentiality of Personal Data. Personal data collected from DAS members (including names, addresses, telephone numbers and e-mail addresses) shall be kept confidential and shall not be disclosed outside of DAS other than to the DPCA as required by the DPCA bylaws. Within DAS, no person other than the Chair , the Vice-Chair and the Secretary (and with regard to the members of any Chapter, the relevant Chapter Chair) shall have access to any personal data collected from DAS members other than as necessary to carry out a specific task assigned to a DAS member by the Executive Committee.

According to Democratic Party regulations:
1) The term of office is two years.
2) No officer may serve for more than two consecutive terms in the same office.
3) The Chair and Vice Chair must be of opposite gender. If a male and a female run for the office of Chairperson, a procedure will be provided to assure that the Vice Chair is of the other gender.

We are accepting nominations and seconds for each office from today to April 5. A member may nominate himself or herself. If a member is nominated by another person, we will contact the nominated member to ensure they accept. (The nominated person’s acceptance counts as a Second). Nominations will not be accepted from the floor of the AGM, unless the position has no candidate. Nominees may post their bios or CV’s on the DA website or Facebook page. 

To encourage wide participation, voting by absentee ballot is open from April 8 to April 21. Ballots and Proxy forms will be sent to the members with voting instructions once the nominations have been closed. 

Members attending the AGM may vote in person and submit proxies from absent members; with a limit of two proxies per member. 
Democrats Abroad is all about having your voice heard by exercising your right to vote, so we hope you will exercise this right in electing the officers of DA Spain's Executive Committee.

Best Regards,

The Election Committee of DA Spain

Election Night Watch Parties in Spain - Tuesday November 8th

Don't miss out on this historic night!

Check out the various election night parties happening on Tuesday November 8th throughout Spain here!


The Hit Musical "Hamilton" scores big at DA Madrid event

BIG thank you to everyone who joined us Sunday May 22nd for our lyrical break down of Lin-Manuel Miranda's #‎HamiltonTheMusical! It was a great evening discussing Alexander #‎Hamilton's story and how he is one of our most influential founding fathers.

Ryan Turner, Chapter President welcomed the group of about 35 people to this special event at Variospintos.  Ryan announced for those who hadn't been at a previous meeting that he and his family will be moving to Milan in June.  His wife has accepted an position with a large Italian insurance company with responsibilities for Spain, France and South America.  Ryan will soon be brushing up his Italian before finding himself a position, and the little guy gets to master his third language. Ryan said it would be his last meeting as President, and announced that the Vice President of DA Madrid, Sarah Graves will assume the chapter presidency. Ryan said he was sad to leave behind so many friends, but he made a point to say that it is not an "Adios." 

Save the date for our Anniversary Party, Saturday June 11 where we will say "Hasta Luego" to the Turners.  We're looking for volunteers to help organize parts of the Party, food, entertainment, decoration and maybe a Silent Auction.  We're looking for talent as we repeat the very successful open mic once again. 

Ryan introduced our summer interns, Andrea Parra and Stephen Read who will help us get ready for the coming election with a focus on building our social media outreach, phone bank coordination and coordinating events in June and July.  They have completed the Federal Voting Assistance training program and are Certified Voting Assistance Officers.  

The idea of using the Broadway play, Hamilton as the focus of an event was the brainchild of of our Events Chair Nicole Pearson.  She's been wanting to get tickets for the play for months only to find out that it is sold out for two years.  We soon learned why as we enjoyed some of the rap lyrics as they told the story of the life of Hamilton and the founding fathers.  The dynamics of politics that we know today have solid roots. This format for telling history was amazing.  While we got only a taste of the staging we were able to enjoy some of the play that they performed at the White House.

Nicole was joined by Michael Beeson who had an excellent grasp of the historical fact, providing great background to the story that we enjoyed.  As the story progressed and the first election was held following the two terms of President George Washington, we had the opportunity to enjoy another episode of Mikey's Corner.  

Mike Presiado stepped up and provided the color of the messy process of electing the second president of the US.

This was another in a series of wonderful events that DA Madrid has offered. Hope you have the opportunity to enjoy the next one soon to be announced in June. 

To volunteer for the party please contact Jim Mercereau 

And another big thank you to our host, Variopintos. Thank you for providing us with such a welcoming space and delicious food & drink!


Some Thoughts on Immigration

By Leselle Hatcher

A Democrats Abroad Spain member living Madrid.

Born in the DMV [DC, MD, VA metropolitian] and bred in NYC, Leselle is a writer, musician and current ex-pat living in Madrid. You can follow her on twitter @LeselleM or on Instagram @lhatcher88

I am an American. I was born on American soil. I grew up in the nation’s capital. English is my first language. Growing up, I watched TGIF, Sister, Sister, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. I ate Lunchables and Little Debbie snacks (much to the protest of my mother), and recited the pledge of allegiance with as much disinterest as the next kid. I listened to N*SYNC and Sublime. I fell in love with Art Blakey and Sonny Rollins. I was leveled by Phife and De La Soul.

Soy estadounidense. I am also the child of a Honduran immigrant. I spent summers in Sunset Park, Brooklyn. I ate arroz con garbanzos and plátanos maduros. I spoke Spanish with my grandmother and my extended family. I watched Sábado Gigante and sang along to Selena; and every night, before I went to sleep, I’d pray with my grandmother in Spanish: “En el nombre del Padre y del Hijo y del Espíritu Santo…” And every morning before I left for school I would turn to her and and say: “Te quiero, Tita.” “Yo tambien te quiero, mi amor,” she’d reply, “mucho mucho te quiero.” That was my life. It was all I knew.

A few days ago, at the Spain Democrats Abroad Annual General Meeting, I had the great pleasure of listening to Nevada Representative to Congress Dina Titus speak on the topic of immigration. As I listened to her share her perspective on one of the most consequential issues of our time—a perspective she shared with great eloquence and wit—I began to reminisce about my own upbringing and the profound impact immigration has had and continues to have on my life (even here in Spain, as I live out a different kind of immigrant experience). I thought back to all those mornings I had woken up to the music of Carlos Gardel as my mother began the protracted process of preparing Sunday dinner. I thought back to the afternoons I spent helping my grandmother press tortillas (with our hands of course), and the evenings I spent helping her clean frijoles for her black bean soup. I thought about the old black and white photos that hung on our walls: photos filled with people I had never met, people I would never know, from a time and place wholly foreign to me save for the memories and mementoes my mother and grandmother had brought with them to the United States.

As I stood there listening to Congresswoman Titus speak, I found myself in awe of the myriad ways in which Honduras was in me despite the fact that I was not, nor had ever been, in it.

That’s what it is to be the product of immigration. It is to be the product of intersections, cultural collisions and accretions. It is to be made of pieces, fragments and threads which, when pulled, tug at other nations. It is to be, in many ways, of somewhere other than here all while feeling yourself firmly anchored in a sense of home. I have been shaped by my Honduran immigrant upbringing as much as I have been shaped by my blackness, my gender and my education. Were it not for immigration, which is to say, were it not for the long-standing motif of human movement across the globe and the cultural, economic and social changes which inevitably result, I would not be who I am in the way that I am today—nor would the United States. To say that the Immigrant narrative is a crucial part of the broader American story, is to state the obvious, and quite reservedly at that. "We Need To Talk About Immigration" wrote Ryan Turner, a sentiment with which I wholeheartedly agree; because, as Randolph Bourne once wrote,“America shall be what the immigrant will have a hand in making it.”


We Need to Talk About Immigration

By Ryan Turner 

International Relations Professor and Chair of the Madrid Chapter of Democrats Abroad


On April 9, 2016, Democrats Abroad Spain will have the pleasure and honor of hosting U.S. Congresswoman Dina Titus who, at our Annual General Meeting, will be sharing (among many things) her personal story with us. She, like so many Americans, has immigrant roots and will be discussing this issue with us at length. Her story and voice on the issue is a welcome contrast to the hate-slinging rhetoric we are constantly bombarded with from Republican presidential campaigns. Their rhetoric is so vile and dismissive of our country’s past and history that you’d think both republican candidates’ families had been immaculately conceived in the Land of the Free and Home of the Brave… Families so purely American that their lineages actually trace back to bald eagles that cried tears of freedom into the soil of Plymouth Rock where their forefathers sprouted from the ground while The Boss’s “Born in the USA” blared from sea to shining sea. (Seriously that’s what they sound like.) But no, both of the Republican frontrunners are the products of immigrant families, one of them the son of Cubans that migrated to Canada and then America and the other of German descent from the clan of Drumpf.  

Let’s face it, America is a nation founded by immigrants and slaves. EVERYONE in America is tied to immigration or slavery. Sure, Native Americans were here, but according to the last U.S. Census, only 0.9 percent of the total U.S. population identified itself as Native American or Alaskan Native. So basically, that leaves the other 99.1 percent of America. It’s hard to imagine how a country MADE UP of immigrants so easily ignores that fact. The truth is that we don’t talk about it and when we do, immigrants and minorities usually end up getting demonized, whether it’s being blamed for American job loss or for violent criminal activity.  With candidates like Donald Trump and Ted Cruz leading the Republicans, it’s clear that America’s fear of immigrants has been exacerbated and is now oozing like a bad case of acne that has contaminated the surface of conservative political platforms.  

Perhaps it wouldn’t be so bad if the issue weren’t so important but the fact is that, by 2018, America will have created 2.8 million jobs in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) and the problem is not whether or not immigrants will be taking those jobs from Americans, but whether or not America will even have enough qualified laborers to fill those jobs.  America is looking at a massive deficit in human capital and despite what conservative pundits will have you think, America’s population is shrinking while demand in new innovative sectors to create more jobs is increasing.  This is a recipe for disaster that immigration alone can’t fix, but could definitely help.  

Besides the economic need for immigration in America, it should be a matter of principle. Comedian Dave Chappelle had a character on his hit show Chappelle’s Show named Clayton Bigsby who was a blind white supremacist. The only caveat was that Clayton Bigsby was African American and never knew it. It certainly pushed limits, but it was a hilarious comedy bit because the parallels were eerily familiar. Has America become Clayton Bigsby? Ninety-nine percent of our population is from somewhere other than America. How seriously can the world take us (who many countries consider to be a “young” country) if we can’t even remember who we are or where we come from?

As Democrats we believe that a diverse nation makes us a stronger nation, because we come from every nation. We have the advantage of getting the best ideas from everywhere and our immigration policies affect how the rest of the world views us. We should embrace immigration and own it. It is, after all, who we are.     

And this is why, in this volatile time in history, we as Democrats Abroad Spain chose to dedicate our Annual General Meeting to the topic of immigration, focusing on it being a source of strength in our heritage and our future, with Democrat Americans living in Spain sharing their stories that stretch back to every continent.