Washington County Democratic Party, enlarged and engaged

Image by Brett Barrett, St. George News

WASHINGTON CITY – The Washington County Democratic Party held its 2013 Organizing Convention at the Washington City Community Center on May 18. New county party officers were elected and bylaws were adopted at the meeting.

Chair Dorothy Engelman addresses the Washington County Democratic Party 2013 Organizing Convention, Washington City, Utah, May 18, 2013 | Photo courtesy of Dorothy Engelman
Chair Dorothy Engelman addresses the Washington County Democratic Party 2013 Organizing Convention, Washington City, Utah, May 18, 2013 | Photo courtesy of Dorothy Engelman

The convention was open to all interested Democrats, but only precinct chairs and delegates were allowed to vote. Dorothy Engelman was reelected chair and will serve until 2015. Robert Maloney was elected as vice chair, Katie Madsen will serve as treasurer and Randy Thomson was elected as the new county secretary. Additionally, the County Central Committee is expanding to nine people as a result of growth within the party.

At the convention, Utah State Democratic Party Chair Sen. Jim Dabakis spoke about the successes and challenges of Utah Democrats and charted a course forward for party growth. Party Program Director Lauren Littlefield discussed upcoming voter registration drives targeted toward eligible, non-registered citizens.

Elizabeth Roberts, LDS Dems Outreach & Policy Coordinator for the Utah Democratic Party, spoke with members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints prior to the meeting and described the goals of the LDS Caucus, the largest Democratic caucus in the state. Roberts will be scheduling activities for this group in Washington County in the near future.

Sen. Jim Dabakis attends the Washington County Democratic Party 2013 Organizing Convention, Washington City, Utah, May 18, 2013 | Photo courtesy of Dorothy Engelman
Sen. Jim Dabakis attends the Washington County Democratic Party 2013 Organizing Convention, Washington City, Utah, May 18, 2013 | Photo courtesy of Dorothy Engelman

A “State of the County” report was presented by Engelman, who highlighted advancements in the past year including an increase in caucus and convention attendance in 2012, more involvement by 30 to 50-year-olds in party activities, the establishment of a year-round Southern Utah Democratic Party Field Office and more visibility in the media. Barbara Rusick, president of the Democrats of Southern Utah and Linda DiSante, co-chair of the Women’s Democratic Club of Southern Utah, also touted achievements of their respective organizations.

As part of its growth, the Washington County Democratic Party will host the following activities in the coming months:

Conversation Over Easy, a new informal breakfast gathering to be held Wednesdays at 9:30 a.m. at George’s Corner Restaurant, 2 West St. George Blvd. in St. George beginning this week.

The Women’s Democratic Club will meet June 1 at 11 a.m. at the Wagon Wheel Restaurant on St. George Blvd. Reservations are required.

A Progressives’ Potluck Picnic in the Park is being sponsored by the Democrats of Southern Utah and will take place from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on June 15 at Vernon Worthen Park.

Chris White attends the Washington County Democratic Party 2013 Organizing Convention, Washington City, Utah, May 18, 2013 | Photo courtesy of Dorothy Engelman
Chris White attends the Washington County Democratic Party 2013 Organizing Convention, Washington City, Utah, May 18, 2013 | Photo courtesy of Dorothy Engelman

More information about these activities and other party activities can be found on the party website or by calling Engelman at 435-879-1558.

The State Democratic Convention is scheduled for June 21 and 22 in Ogden. Delegates will be electing new state officers as well as deciding whether to continue using the caucus system to choose state candidates or to begin using a direct primary approach.  The decision will be first implemented in the 2016 elections. More information about the Utah State Democratic Party can be found on the party website.

Ed. note: Elizabeth Roberts’ title has been corrected.

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Submitted by: Dorothy Engelman

Email: news@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Image by Brett Barrett, St. George News
Image by Brett Barrett, St. George News

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5 Comments

  • Aros May 21, 2013 at 11:50 am

    Since when did the LDS church start giving this calling? “Elizabeth Roberts, Democratic outreach coordinator for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints”.

    • Joyce Kuzmanic Joyce Kuzmanic May 21, 2013 at 12:08 pm

      Aros, we can provide you some answer. The topic of LDS Democrats has been included in many reports on St. George News – you can search “LDS Democrats” if you’d like to pull them all up – but here are two in the past year or so which are specific to the emergence of LDS Democrats as a group:

      National organization supporting LDS Democrats announced
      http://www.stgeorgeutah.com/news/archive/2013/04/05/kessler-national-organization-supporting-lds-democrats-announced/

      Lively LDS Democratic caucus at State Nominating Convention
      http://www.stgeorgeutah.com/news/archive/2012/04/21/lively-lds-democratic-caucus-at-state-nominating-convention/

      ST. GEORGE NEWS | STgnews.com
      Joyce Kuzmanic
      Editor in Chief

      • Aros May 21, 2013 at 4:02 pm

        Though LDS Democrats are few and far between, I am pretty sure everybody knows they exist… The article is implying that a representative of the LDS church was in attendance. I am guessing that the comment “Elizabeth Roberts, Democratic outreach coordinator for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,” is meant to say “Elizabeth Roberts, Democratic outreach coordinator focusing on The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints”. Maybe I am wrong and an official representative of the LDS church was there.
        Regards
        Aros

  • JJ Slice May 21, 2013 at 2:58 pm

    Wow 15 people attended this year? That is 50% enlargement!

  • Joe Alaska May 22, 2013 at 7:26 am

    And this is worthy of a news article? Also, the headline seems a little “Left-Leaning”. Not surprised since it is our wonderful American media.

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