By DA Guatemala Chair John Chudy
The Democratic Party Committee Abroad (DPCA), the governing body of Democrats Abroad and the formal organization that represents Democrats Abroad as one of the 57 state and territorial parties comprising the Democratic Party of the United States of America, held its annual global meeting in Washington, DC May 17 to 19, 2019. The venue was the 20F Street conference center near Capitol Hill. Many of the approximately 220 Democrats Abroad members from 45 country committees who attended the DPCA global meeting, stayed on to participate in two days of door knocking on Capitol Hill May 20 and 21.
The annual meeting agenda included the normal business of officer and committee reports, as well as the election of international officers (chair, vice chair, secretary, treasurer and counsel) and the election of three regional vice chairs. In addition, the meeting also entertained discussion and debate on a variety of resolutions representing policy positions of the DPCA which included the approval of a Medicare for All resolution in support of the House bill presented by Rep. Jayapal, and several proposed amendments to the bylaws that form the DPCA’s Charter. Another important component of the agenda presented the DPCA’s planning efforts for the 2020 election cycle with respect to communications planning, platform content, the DPCA’s Global Presidential Primary, the DPCA’s global convention, 2020 Get Out the Vote planning, and Delegate Selection Plan for electing DPCA delegates to the 2020 Democratic National Convention that will take place in Milwaukee July 13-16, 2020. Details of meeting results and actions can be found at: https://wiki.democratsabroad.org/display/WashDC2019/Washington+DC%2C+DPCA+Global+Meeting+2019+Home
A highlight of the three-day conference was the appearance of guest speakers. Several came in person, while others appeared either live via video conference or videos made especially for our meeting. In-person speakers included presidential candidates Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand and Marianne Williamson, and from the DNC Jason Rae, Vice Chair and the youngest person ever elected to the DNC, Seema Nanda, CEO of the DNC, Liz Jaff, the DNC’s director of technical infrastructure, and from the Association of State Democratic Chairs (ASDC), Ken Martin, and finally, Josh Handelman, from the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee (the group associated with the DNC that works to elect Democrats to state legislative bodies). Live video hookup brought us encouraging words from Sen. Doug Jones , Alabama, and video presentations made for Democrats Abroad were provided from the campaigns of Bernie Sanders and Joe Biden. All of the presentations were inspiring for their focus on 2020 and getting out the vote to elect Democrats at all levels. If there was one common message across all the speakers, it was that in 2020 we must not let the perfect become the enemy of the good, that is, we must vote for the Democratic Party’s nominee in the general election, even if that person is not our preference at the outset of the primary season. As Ken Martin pointed out, many Democrats stayed home in 2016 because they felt let down by the outcome of the primary season; we cannot let that happen in 2020, lest we want to extend our national nightmare another four years.
The two-day door knock activity was directed at bringing three policy topics of interest to Democrats Abroad to the attention of House and Senate members and their staffs. The three items were: The closure of 22 US Citizenship and Immigration (USCIS) offices which complicates a number of actions affecting wait times for family reunification leading to permanent separation; HR1, a House bill intended to improve voting efficiency by requiring a durable voter-verified paper ballot, but which can lead to voter suppression for overseas voters with no access to postal service, e.g., Guatemala; Expatriate Tax Reform to encourage Residence Based Taxation in place of the Citizenship Based Taxation system that the USA now employs, apply Same Country Exemption for FATCA, and support for the Social Security Fairness Act which repeals the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP). See more details about these three issues in their respective briefs found at: https://wiki.democratsabroad.org.
Meet your new DPCA international Executive Committee:
Back row, L to R: Will Bakker (Belgium), Regional Vice Chair, for Europe, Middle East, Africa; Alex Montgomery (Hong Kong), International Vice Chair; Jeffrey Cheng (Sweden), International Secretary; Kat Allikian, (New Zealand) Regional Vice Chair for Asia Pacific; Joe Smallhoover (France), International Counsel. Front row L to R: Kathy Rothschild (Costa Rica), Regional Vice Chair for the Americas; Julia Bryan (Czech Republic), International Chair; Lissette Wright (Canada), International Treasurer.
Minutes of Democrats Abroad Guatemala
Executive Committee meeting on Thursday, May 23, 2019 at 12:00 noon
Members in Attendance: John Chudy, Chair; Kee Adams Evans, Events Coordinator; Dave Evans, Member at Large, and Juan Pablo Aris, Counsel.
Call to order: 12:06pm Central America Time (2:06pm EDT)
Agenda and minutes from April meeting were approved
Chair’s Report: On May 22nd, citing personal reasons, Tom and Lyn Totino submitted their resignations, as Treasurer and Secretary respectively. A motion was made by the Chair to accept the resignations. The motion Passed. Dave Evans, as Member at Large, will become Acting Treasurer until at new Treasurer can be named. John and Kee will tag-team the Secretary’s responsibilities until a new Secretary can be named.
We also need to fill MeetUp Group chair for Guatemala City.
Events for 2019 Film Series update. Next film: ‘Fahrenheit 11/9’. Date, time, place will be set when John returns with a copy of the film in June. Future films may include Green Book, To Kill a Mockingbird, Matewan.
Outreach to younger voters: Venue research of Frida’s and Saul’s was not carried out. Discussion ended on agreement that it would be best if a millennial were to organize events with a younger-voter focus. Details will continue to be discussed.
June 26 and 27 Debate Watch Parties: Dave and Kee Evans will host debate watch parties both nights of the first Democratic debate that will take place in June. Both will pot luck events. Mark your calendars!
July 4th Sundowner with Fireworks at CCC Kee will send out an email to survey the membership by June 1st, on holding an event this year. In the meantime, Kee will check availability of space @CCC 5pm to 8pm, Thursday, July 4th and make a reservation. A final decision and details will be worked out at June meeting.
Fund Raisers: Democrats Abroad Guatemala bumper sticker campaign is moving forward. Kee suggested ordering 3 x 11 stickers in batches of 100 and will get price and production data in batches and increments by the next meeting. The message would be the logo of Democrats Abroad Guatemala as it appears on our stationery, e.g., these minutes, and contact information firstname.lastname@example.org email, and www.democratsabroad.org website, as well as, We Vote!
2019 FPCA promotion Results of May 18th event at Enlaces were disappointing with no voters showing up. John proposed an idea he heard at the DPCA global meeting from Liz Jaff, who heads the DNC’s digital infrastructure division. When asked about a low-cost way of reaching out to voters, Liz said one tool that has been effective is making short 90 second videos in a question and answer format about Democrats Abroad. For DAGT purposes, such a setting would be Kee being asked by a member why they should prepare an FPCA every year. The short video would be posted on our DAGT group FB page, and members would be encouraged to share the video so that it reaches even more people. It can also be posted on Twitter. We could ask Scotney to post and promote the video. Multiple videos could be made around FPCA and GOTV questions.
DPCA Global Meeting in Washington, DC, May 17 to 19, with Capitol Hill door knock May 20 and 21 John reported some of the details of the meeting. Members are encouraged to go to the
https://wiki.democratsabroad.org/ wiki site for more details about the business conducted at the meeting, including bylaws changes and resolutions. One resolution that passed was Medicare for All, in support of the several House bills on the topic. Elections were held for International officers, and for Regional Vice Chairs, International Chair, Julia Bryan -- Czech Republic; International Vice Chair, Alex Montgomery --Hong Kong; International Treasurer, Lissette Wright – Canada; International Secretary, Jeffrey Cheng – Sweden; International Legal Counsel,
Joe Smallhoover – France. (FYI: Juan Pablo Aris will serve as Americas Region Counsel Assistant to Joe).
At the three Regional Meetings, the following officers were elected for two year terms:
Americas Regional Vice Chair; Kathy Rothschild -- Costa Rica; Asia Pacific Regional Vice Chair, Kat Allikian -- New Zealand; Europe Middle East and Africa Regional Vice Chair,
Will Bakker -- Luxembourg
DAGT June meeting – via Skype June 13th 12:00 noon Guatemala Time.
Travel Notes: Mary Lou will be in and out. Juan Pablo will be out June 16 to 23. John returns to Guatemala June 18th.
Democrats Abroad Global Meeting
Global Meeting Prep List
Agenda for the meeting
Register for the global meeting (May 17-19)
Review proposed charter bylaws amendments and the Bylaws Committee report
Review the 1p1v Special Purpose committee initial report
Review proposed resolutions
Tax Reform Door-Knocking – How can you help?
The Democrats Abroad Taxation Task Force is back on Capitol Hill on 14, 15 and 16 May putting tax reform for Americans abroad at the center of discussions with Congress. We have meetings scheduled with members in both Houses of Congress and on both sides of politics. We will be discussing the need for residency based taxation and the design elements of the proposed legislation to enact it.
We need those determined to see this important reform enacted to reach out to their members of Congress this week and next week to demand it. Please consult this grassroots campaign guide for background on our advocacy work and for sample language you can use to call or write to Congress.
Please send questions to email@example.com
YOU MAY HAVE MISSED…
DA Caucus Leaders Meeting
· Black Caucus seeking assistance to run its Facebook page; Will likely re-start its podcast in the near future
· Progressive Caucus working on Medicare-for-All initiative; Sponsoring resolutions at the DA global meeting
· Disability Caucus newsletter from last month
· Women's Caucus discussion on fundraising and promoting an upcoming DA calendar; Seeking women from all global regions to attend its caucus' Planning Session on May 19th.
· Veterans & Military Families Caucus-in-formation currently awaiting global ExCom approval on its draft Terms of Reference (to become an official global caucus); Currently conducting outreach to recruit DA members in several country committees including France, Australia, Japan, Philippines, Germany, Norway, and Mexico
· Hispanic Caucus improving the quality of its overall podcast with each new episode; Committed to having more bilingual information and content moving forward
A FEW WORDS FROM THE DNC
DNC on Asian Pacific American Heritage Month
DNC Chair Tom Perez, DNC CEO Seema Nanda, DNC Vice Chair Congresswoman Grace Meng, and DNC AAPI Caucus Chair Bel Leong-Hong released the following statement on Asian Pacific American Heritage Month:
“This month, we celebrate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, commemorating the history of Asian American and Pacific Islander communities and their contributions to our country. From the Chinese Americans who fought school segregation in Mississippi and San Francisco and the Japanese Americans who fought against discrimination during World War II to the Filipino Americans who stood side by side with Latino migrant workers during the Delano Grape Strike, AAPIs have been instrumental in our country’s steady march toward equality and justice.
“Democrats believe that diversity is our country’s greatest strength. As we observe Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, we recommit ourselves to standing alongside our AAPI brothers and sisters who are fighting to create a more inclusive society, and electing leaders who will stand up against Trump’s attempts to tear AAPI communities and families apart.”
DNC Announces 20th Annual LGBTQ Gala Celebrating 50 Years Since Stonewall
Every LGBTQ Member of the House Democratic Majority, Queer Eye’s Karamo Brown to attend
Fresh off helping elect the largest number of LGBTQ members Congress has ever seen, the Democratic National Committee will host its 20th Annual LGBTQ Gala in New York City on June 17. Attending the event will be DNC Chair Tom Perez, along with every LGBTQ member of the new House Democratic majority, and special guest Queer Eye star Karamo Brown, who will highlight the historic progress the LGBTQ community has made since Stonewall 50 years ago.
Additional speakers and celebrity guests will be announced in the coming weeks.
“In 2018 we reset expectations across the country of who runs for office and who we support as candidates. In the 116th Congress, there are more women, people of color and members of the LGBTQ community than ever before. Together we are working to ensure that everyone's voice is heard and everyone has access to opportunity. I'm proud to be a part of this new House Majority -- and a co-chair of the Equality Caucus -- as we work towards these goals, “ said Rep. Sharice Davids
National Finance Chair of the DNC, Henry Munoz will be stepping down
MINUTES OF THE ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING DAGT
Casa Convento Concepción in Antigua
At 11:05am, the secretary determined that we had met our quorum of 25. There were 26 members in attendance, and we had 10 proxies which totaled 36. The secretary also noted that we now have a total of 502 members which is an increase from the 470 reported in 2018.The official membership count with the DPCA in 2019 is 498. The difference is due to new members joining since the official count.
The Chair welcomed the members and introduced the officers in attendance, and then presented the agenda.
EXCOM members present: John Chudy, Chair; Mary Lou Ridinger, Vice Chair; Tom Totino, Treasurer; Kee Evans, Events/membership/Fundraising Coordinator ; Lyn Totino, Secretary; Annie Vanderboom, Member at Large; Dave Evans, Member at Large; Rachel Shenyo, Occidente MeetUp Group Deputy Chair; Juan Pablo Aris, Counsel (interim).
First on the agenda was a summary of the minutes of the AGM of 2018 which was read to the members. The minutes were approved unanimously.
Next on the agenda was the treasurer’s report. As required by our bylaws, Tom Totino, Treasurer, summarized the past year’s accounts for the general membership. As a preamble to his report Tom mentioned that the numbers presented were in Quetzals not dollars, that the figures presented were summarized for presentation purposes -- a detailed report is presented to the ExCom at monthly meetings, that numbers in brackets represent negative amounts and finally that our fiscal year runs from March 1 through the end of February. He spoke about three things; Income and Expenses, Cash Flow and gave a three year comparison.
Our gross income was Q10,320. Our total expenses were Q12,058 giving us a net loss of Q1,738. He mentioned that we had a very succesful potluck and raffle at Len Clark’s home which netted Q2,775. We also made money selling hats and calendars which brought in Q1,679 and we made another Q865 showing movies. He also mentioned the generous donation of Q768 made by Dave and Kee Evans. This income was offset primarily by the Q4,169 we spent registering voters and the Q2,565 in costs associated with hosting the July 4th Sundowner event. As far as our cash flow, we started with Q6,451 and subtracting this year’s loss we end the year with Q4,713. Finally, Tom mentioned that the three year comparison shows that our expenses were about the same as the previous year. However, our income was considerably less this year because last year we had a direct email fund drive that brought in over Q3,000. There were no questions and the motion to accept the report was seconded on passed unanimously.
Next, Kee Evans, Events Coordinator, presented a summary of the DAGT events held in 2018. There were seven voter registration events held at Enlaces in Antigua throughout the year--in March, April, June, August, September, October and February. Kee stressed that there was great participation by people requesting ballots for the 2018 General Election. People called and emailed Kee up to the last minute just to be able to vote in that extremely important election. There was a Voter Registration event at Enlaces in February 2019 that not one member attended. This is because there is no general election this year. However, Kee hoped members would keep up the momentum from the 2018 election. She stressed that members should submit a new FPCA each and every year to ensure they will not be purged from their state’s voter rolls. The next Voter Registration event will be after Easter.Read more
Call to 2019 DPCA Global Meeting
45 Day Announcement -- April 2, 2019:
Democrats Abroad will hold our 2019 DPCA Global Meeting on May 17-19, 2019 at the 20 F Conference Center, 20 F St NW, in Washington D.C. (across the street from Union Station). Find out more information about the meeting at the registration page here.
The DPCA Global Meeting will be called to order at 9am Friday morning, May 17th and will end at 5pm on Sunday May 19th, Eastern time. A draft agenda will be available soon.
- The AP Regional Meeting will be held on Friday, May 17th, at 8am Eastern
- The Americas Regional Meeting will be held on Saturday, May 18th, at 8am Eastern
- The EMEA Regional Meeting will be held on Saturday, May 18th, at 8am Eastern.
The deadline for submitting resolutions to be considered at the Global Meeting is 30 days out, or the end of the day (Eastern time) on April 17. If you have questions or would like to submit a resolution, please write to the Resolutions Committee Chair Susan Vaillant or Resolutions Secretary Will Bakker at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you all for a successful and well attended AGM for Democrats Abroad - Guatemala!
There were approximately 35 folks in attendance between in-person attendees and proxies.
We want to congratulations to the election winners and (re-)introduce them to all.
For elected offices, our new Excom includes:
- Chair: John Chudy
- Vice Chair: Mary Lou Ridinger
- Secretary: Lyn Totino
- Treasurer: Tom Totino
- Counsel: Juan Pablo Aris
- Member at Large: Dave Evans
- Member at Large: Hyungjoon Jin
Non-elected officers were ratified by acclamation by the membership in attendance. These officers include:
- Media Contact & Communications Chair: Scotney Young
- Issues/Special Events Chair: Kee Evans
- Membership/Voter Registration Chair: Kee Evans
- Fundraising Chair: Kee Evans
- Guatemala City MeetUp Group Chair: (Vacant)
- Lake Atitlán MeetUp Group Chair: Traci Styner; Madeline Kreider Carlson (Acting)
- Occidente MeetUp Group Chair: Sara Castellano; Rachael Shenyo (Acting)
We also want to thank and recognize members for their financial and/or outstanding volunteer contributions to DAGT during the past year or previous years. We could not make an impact without you!Read more
Read the full minutes of the Annual General Meeting of 2018 here:
Please don't forget the Annual General Meeting of the full membership of Democrats Abroad Guatemala on Saturday, March 30, 2019, from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM at Casa Convento Concepción, 4ta Calle No. 41, in Antigua Guatemala.
Our bylaws require that we have on hand a quorum of 25 members in order to carry out business, so if you can't attend in person, then give your proxy to someone who will be attending by completing a proxy form (click here) and returning it either to our Secretary, Lyn Totino, or to our events chairperson, Kee Adams Evans (instructions are on the form). All you need to do is download the proxy form into WORD, type in your information, save it with your name, for example, DA_Guatemala_Proxy_John Doe, and return it to Lyn or Kee as an email attachment. It’s best to mark your proxy GENERAL, and TRANSFERABLE.
- Secretary’s Report – 2018 Minutes Approval
- Treasurer’s Report and 2018 Accounts Approval
- Communications Media Contact Report – 2018 activities
- Events Coordinator Report for 2018
- events scheduled for 2019
- MeetUp Group Chair reports
- Chairperson’s Report of 2018
- Election of officers for 2019-2021 term
- Recognition of significant volunteers and donors
- DPCA Global Meeting Washington, DC, May 17-19, 2019
- Update your FPCA now
- Other items and recommendations from the floor
Coffee and cookies will be available. DA members and U.S. Citizens invited.
You can also find the meeting minutes for the February Excom meeting here
Further questions can be directed to: John Chudy at: 7832-4581 and email@example.com