Democrats Abroad Austria Executive Committee Elections 2023
The 2023-25 Executive Committee will be elected at this year’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) on March 19, 2023. Voting will be conducted electronically or in person at the AGM.
The the following positions will be elected:
- Up to two DPCA Voting Representatives
- Up to three DPCA Non-Voting Representatives
- Up to six Members-at-Large
A description of these offices’ responsibilities can be found in the DAA’s Bylaws on the Executive Committee here.
*** 2023-25 Executive Committee ***
I am a longtime DA Austria member who became an active volunteer starting in the 2020 election cycle. I have had the privilege of serving as chair of DA Austria for the past two years, and am allowed under our bylaws to serve one more term. Professionally, I work in the Global Communications team at SOS Children's Villages International, a children’s charity, where I manage a global team of six communications experts. Before that, I was a newspaper and radio reporter (20+ years), working in both the US and internationally. I have lived in Austria since 2005, moving here from Chicago (making me an Illinois voter). I am the proud father of two grown sons, also DA members. For fun, I am a marathon runner (not always fun), do ballroom dancing, play drums in a rock cover band, and am a rapper (you may have seen the VoteFromAbroad rap). You can learn more about my professional life on my LinkedIn profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/richard-miller-2350809/.
Another area I am interested in is the burden put on overseas voters due to FATCA and the filing of FBARs. I think this needs more input from those of us affected and would be interested in drumming up interest among members to push legislators to either remove the necessity of filing an FBAR for accounts in the country we live and work in and possibly in the meantime raising the cap on the filing requirement so that it does not affect those without significant funds.
The last area that interests me is working with state legislators to allow overseas citizens who do not intend to return to vote in state elections. As governors and legislators have a great deal of influence on how federal elections are run and how overseas ballots are handled, the decisions they make affect us and our right to vote. Therefore, I feel that all overseas voters should be eligible to vote at least for governor and the state legislature.
I have lived in Graz since 1981 and have been involved in English language teaching since the mid-1980’s. I have worked in adult education at the WIFI in Graz, as an in-company trainer, teacher trainer, and as a lecturer at the University of Graz language center and the Pädagogische Hochschule as well as writing course books and methodology books for teachers. This work led to my presenting at international conferences and eventually into leadership roles in the field of English language teaching. I served as the Chair of the Teachers of English in Austria from 2003 to 2005, after having joined the board in 1998. From 2009 – 2015 I was the Coordinator of the IATEFL (International Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Language) Business English Special Interest Group and stepped down from this role to take on the Vice Presidency and then Presidency of IATEFL, serving as a Trustee for the association until 2018. This position meant that I worked closely with others in a leadership team and was responsible for running board meetings, working on strategic development ideas for the association along with the other Trustees, codifying procedures, encouraging ongoing training for the board, and taking on the job of Chair of the Conference Committee, an event which attracts some 3,000 – 4,000 international attendees. As an association, we embraced technology early on and I was involved in helping to organize our first on-line conference and was tasked with setting up a webinar series for the association. Since 2013 I have been officially retired, although I have continued as a conference presenter and keynote speaker, and continue to do corporate training and write materials.
*** Candidate Statements for DPCA Voting Representatives ***
As a Member-at-Large for Austria, Jen has continued to publish the monthly DAA newsletter, register and call voters, and organize fundraisers to support our work. Amongst her many contributions in past years, organizing the 2016 Rockin’ the Vote fundraiser concert, being DAA liaison for the January 2017 Women’s March, and attending in-person Democrats Abroad meetings in Madrid, Athens, and Munich were highlights.
While her position as RVC-EMEA has been challenging, she has enjoyed having a broader perspective of the organization and has been able to develop programs across the region including the establishment of the DA Africa Committee, the development and oversight for the inaugural elections of DPCA Voting Representatives for non-CC members, and was the International ExCom’s liaison for a major 2022 fundraiser — Say Gay, Vote Blue -- at the Amsterdam Canal Pride Parade.
*** Candidate Statements for DPCA Non-Voting Representatives ***
With DA members Juan Cerda and Antje Lewis, I co-founded Solidarity Sundays as a platform for people like me to amplify our political interaction from abroad. Over the past couple years, I‘ve also been a Member-at-Large on DA Austria‘s Executive Committee. I appreciated being part of a team dedicated to deepening the impact of expat Democrats on U.S. politics.
Biden and Harris are in the White House because citizens voting from abroad made up the margin of victory. This is a historic achievement. But we don‘t have a secure, filibuster-proof majority yet. I ask for your vote so I can help DA‘s Austria chapter build on its accomplishments. I bring commitment and passion, and the conviction that, as our Republic faces historic challenges, Democrats have what it takes to meet them.