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Mole's Progressive Democrat

The Progressive Democrat Newsletter grew out of the frustration of the 2004 election. Originally intended for New York City progressives, its readership is now national. For anyone who wants to be alerted by email whenever this newsletter is updated (usually weekly), please send your email address and let me know what state you live in (so I can keep track of my readership).

Location: Brooklyn, New York, United States

I am a research biologist in NYC. Married with two kids living in Brooklyn.

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  • Thursday, September 24, 2009

    Progressive Majority in Washington State

    "Progressive Majority is not giving conservatives a chance to regroup. We haven't let up on recruiting and electing progressives since we opened our doors in Washington State in 2004. In 2008, Progressive Majority elected 10 progressives to local and state offices. Through their successful campaigns, our candidates are proving that progressive values are American values."

    -Gloria A. Totten
    President, Progressive Majority

    Here are the results in Washington State:

    PROGRESSIVE CANDIDATES IN WASHINGTON STATE: Here are some Progressive Majority endorsed candidates in Washington State:

    Jennifer Armenta
    Candidate for Bothell City Council - Position 5 (Challenger)

    Jennifer is a first-time candidate who has served her community as vice chair of the Bothell Parks and Recreation Commission, board member of her homeowner's association and umpire of local softball games. If elected, Jennifer would be the only non-white city council member in Bothell. Bothell City Council currently has a five to two Republican majority. Jennifer is a former naval intelligence officer and was awarded the Navy Achievement Medal for creating an advanced program designed to provide efficiency in order to save money and time. Jennifer's priority on the Bothell City Council will be to protect the area's natural resources and preserve Bothell's unique ''hometown'' environment in order to maintain Bothell's charm and livability as the city grows.

    Click here to support and learn more about Jennifer.

    De'Sean Quinn
    Candidate for Tukwila City Council - Position 7 (Incumbent)

    De'Sean was appointed to the non-partisan Tukwila City Council in 2008 after losing a close race for Tukwila City Council in 2007, for which Progressive Majority recruited him. A Morehouse graduate, De'Sean represents a new generation of up-and-comers in the African-American community. His entry into politics began in 2001 with the management of Richard McIver's re-election campaign to Seattle City Council. He recently served as King County Executive Ron Sim's director of council relations. As liaison between the executive and county council, De'Sean was required to have an understanding of the region's complexities as well as the ability to build consensus on critical policies. He would like to use these skills to expand transportation choices, and preserve and strengthen sidewalks, parks and public safety for the residents of Tukwila. De'Sean is the second African American council member to represent the diverse community of Tukwila (30 percent people of color).

    Julie Anderson
    Candidate for Pierce County Auditor (Challenger)

    Julie Anderson is well known to progressives in Pierce County and Washington. Julie is in her second term as a Tacoma City Council member and previously was the executive director of the YWCA of Pierce County and political strategist of Planned Parenthood Votes! Washington. This month, Julie will be leaving her job with the Washington State Department of Community, Trade and Economic Development as a senior policy advisor to campaign full time for the auditor position. As auditor, Julie will oversee the elections office of Washington's second most populous county and has a goal to increase voter participation and make ballot access easier for school districts for bonds and levies. Julie's opponent, Jan Shabro, a former conservative state representative, was controversially appointed to this position earlier this year. Pierce County now features ranked choice voting, and this will be the only Pierce County race this year.

    Click here to support and learn more about Julie.

    Laurie Caskey-Schreiber
    Candidate for Whatcom County Council - At Large (Incumbent)

    Currently a council member representing the second district, Laurie Caskey-Schreiber is now running for the at large position on the Whatcom County Council. In addition to serving on the council, Laurie is the academic department manager for the Sociology Department at Western Washington University. Laurie has been a progressive champion for decades as a founding member of her chapter of the Washington Public School Employees Association union, board member of the Opportunity Council, board member and chair of the Northwest Clean Air Agency, and committee member of the Marine Resources Committee. As a champion for smart growth, Laurie has helped with maintaining Whatcom County's natural beauty and preventing the collapse in housing values that other communities are facing. Developers have signaled that they are going to invest heavily in Whatcom County candidates this cycle to get a more sympathetic council.

    Click here to support and learn more about Laurie.

    Ken Mann: Candidate for Whatcom County Council (Open Seat)

    Ken Mann is running for the non-partisan Whatcom County Council. He is a property manager and historic building re-developer in Whatcom County and a local talk radio host. Ken is currently chairman of the Whatcom Planning Commission and is involved with the Downtown Renaissance Network & City Club. Ken ran two years ago against a conservative incumbent, Sam Crawford, losing by less than 1,000 votes in a district that George W. Bush received over 60 percent in! This year, Ken is running for an open seat being vacated by progressive Councilmember Laurie Caskey-Schreiber. After Ken ran in 2007, the county has changed the voting system; in the general election, candidates now run countywide rather than just in their particular district, which will be advantageous for Ken as he lives in the most conservative district in the county.

    Click here to support and learn more about Ken.

    Dan McShane: Candidate for Whatcom County Council (Open Seat)

    Dan is running for Whatcom County Council, District 1, Position A. The seat is being vacated by retiring conservative councilmember, Ward Nelson. This is a rare opportunity to pick up a seat on the Council, which currently has a 4 to 3 Democratic majority. Dan, a former Whatcom County Councilmember, was recruited by Progressive Majority and unsuccessfully ran for Bellingham Mayor in 2007 rather than running for releection to the Council. Dan, a geologist and former California Education Association member, owns the Stratum Group, a geology and environmental consulting firm. As a County Councilmember, Dan will work to protect agricultural land from further development. In his previous stint on the county council, Dan successfully worked to protect the Lake Whatcom Watershed, reduce sprawl, and brought forward a resolution requiring county government to protect the rights of all citizens regardless of race or sexual orientation. Dan and his wife Lisa have both been tremendous allies for Progressive Majority in the past, helping to recruit candidates in Whatcom County.

    Click here to support and learn more about Dan.

    Marilyn Strickland: Candidate for Major of Tacoma (Open Seat)

    Marilyn Strickland, whom we recruited and successfully fielded in 2007 for Tacoma City Council, is now running for mayor. The seat is being vacated by the incumbent due to term limits. Born in Seoul, South Korea, Marilyn's parents moved to Tacoma when her father was stationed at Fort Lewis a little over 40 years ago. A graduate of the University of Washington, Marilyn earned an MBA from Clark-Atlanta University and is the Interim Director of Marketing & Communications for Bates Technical College. She has worked in both public and private sectors, holding marketing positions with the American Cancer Society and Starbucks, and has an extensive list of non-profit boards she was served on. She is currently the only person of color in the area elected to any municipal office (local school board, city council, or county government).

    Brian Bennett: Candidate for Burien City Council (Open Seat)

    Brian Bennett is running for Burien City Council. Brian, who has worked in the legislature and on the campaign trail for several progressive Democrats, was referred to us from about half of our South King County farm team! Brian is corporate counsel for F5 Networks, but also represents numerous clients on a pro bono basis through the Northwest Immigrant's Rights Project and other nonprofits. A passionate environmentalist, Brian has served as editor of the New York University Environmental Law Journal, president of the Animal Legal Defense Fund and worked at an environmental non-profit in Ukraine. Brian is a native of the Highline area (where Burien incorporated) and has lived there for five years with his wife, Oksana, and their daughter. Brian is a true progressive, and is eager to serve on the Burien City Council to ensure that all citizens have equal access and opportunity, particularly as it pertains to public access of shorelines, recreation opportunities and services.

    Amy Ockerlander
    Candidate for Duvall City Council (Challenger)

    Amy Ockerlander, a first time candidate, has packed a lot of progressive experience into her 31 years. Currently vice chair of the Duvall Planning Commission, Amy is an executive analyst for Snohomish County Executive Aaron Reardon. She previously worked in the legislature for Rep. Larry Springer and managed Rep. Springer's campaign. Additionally, Amy is on the NARAL Pro-Choice Washington Board of Directors and chair of the PAC. A native of Washington, Amy has lived in Duvall with her husband Brady for eight years. Amy is running against the incumbent, Anne Laughlin, who is a former staffer for conservative Congressman Dave Reichert. The Duvall City Council currently has a six to one conservative majority. As a city council member, Amy will push for smart growth in an area that is a growing bedroom community for Seattle, Everett and the Eastside.

    Priya Cloutier: Candidate for Edmonds City Council (Challenger)

    Priya Cloutier is a first-time candidate running for the non-partisan Edmonds City Council. Priya was born in India, and came to the United States with her parents when she was two years old. Priya lives in Edmonds with her husband, Todd, a Navy Commander, and their two sons, Phoenix and Pascal. An attorney and active Democrat, Priya's work has been recognized for her community dedication by the Washington State Bar with its Pro Bono Publico commendation in 2007, and was selected by the Obama campaign to attend the inauguration due to her high-level volunteering on the race. Priya is also an Eagle Member of the Washington Association for Justice, an organization on our Advisory Council, and a Democratic PCO and Executive Board Member of the 32nd Legislative District and Snohomish County Democrats. Priya is running against City Councilmember Michael Plunkett. Plunkett has served on the City Council since 1998, and is the former chair of the 21st Legislative District Republicans and a former Republican candidate for the legislature. Republicans currently hold a one seat majority on the City Council, and a victory from Priya would give us a progressive majority.

    Click here to support and learn more about Priya.

    Adrienne Fraley-Monillas: Candidate for Edmonds City Council (Challenger)

    Adrienne Fraley-Monillas is running for the non-partisan Edmonds City Council. She is an executive boardmember of the Washington Federation of State Employees, an affiliate of AFSCME. This year, Adrienne will be retiring from Fircrest, a Washington State Residential Habilitation Center (RHC) for the developmentally disabled, located just north of Seattle. Fircrest offers habilitation services to its permanent residents, and is able to offer various licensed professional services to developmentally disabled clients who are served in community settings. She is married and has one son, Dominic, who has Down's Syndrome. Adrienne is a Democratic Precinct Committee Officer and is running for Edmonds City Council against the most conservative member, City Councilmember Ron Wambolt. Conservatives currently hold a 4-3 majority on the Council, and a win from Adrienne would give us a progressive majority. Adrienne ran for the Council two years ago and nearly defeated the current council president even though she was significantly outspent.

    Strom Peterson: Candidate for Edmonds City Council (Incumbent)

    Strom Peterson is running to keep his seat on the non-partisan Edmonds City Council. Strom was appointed earlier this year filling the vacancy of a moderate Democrat. Since taking office, Strom has been a strong progressive council member, particularly on environmental issues, leading to his early endorsement from the Washington Conservation Voters, an Advisory Council Member. Strom and his wife, Maria, have been married for 15 years and moved to Edmonds in 2001. Strom and Maria own Olives Cafe and Wine Bar and Resident Cheesemonger in Downtown Edmonds. Strom became Vice President of the Downtown Edmonds Merchants Association in 2003 and President in 2004. In 2004, he was also appointed to the Board of the Greater Edmonds Chamber of Commerce. Maria is also the Executive Director of a charitable foundation that provides scholarships and grants to military families. Strom was recruited and fielded by Progressive Majority two years ago and lost by only 131 votes. Strom is one of the three progressives on the 7 person council, and protecting his seat can help lead to getting a progressive majority on the City Council this fall.

    Click here to support and learn more about Strom.

    Eric Choiniere
    Candidate for University Place City Council - Position 3 (Challenger)

    Eric Choiniere, a military veteran and current member of Communication Workers of America Local 7800, has always been active on Democratic campaigns. After being referred to us by farm team member and fellow 2009 candidate, Sam Ross, Eric decided to finally run himself for University Place City Council. Eric currently serves on the University Place Parks and Recreation Commission and on the Pierce County Citizens Advisory Council. Eric is running against the most conservative member of the city council, Lorna Smith. Smith has been elected three times, and has been an outspoken critic and denier of climate change at city council meetings. As a city councilmember, Eric will fight for living wage jobs and increasing opportunities for youth in the city.

    Click here to support and learn more about Eric.

    Sam Ross: Candidate for Lakewood City Council (Open Seat)

    Sam Ross is running for Lakewood City Council, Position 1. Sam has been a member of our farm team for the last several years and has attended many campaign trainings, including Camp Wellstone and Advanced Campaign Management School. He has also been very active in the community and serves on the city's Public Safety Advisory Committee, the Lakewood Lions, Relay for Life and his local Democratic Party. Sam works for American Reprographic Company, is under 35 and is running to bring a progressive voice to the city council. Lakewood is a highly swing city located in a highly swing legislative district in swing Pierce County. This area has been targeted by Progressive Majority since we opened our doors in 2004. If Sam is successful, he will take over from 2005 Progressive Majority candidate Helen McGovern, who is the lone progressive currently serving on the council and is retiring.

    Click here to support and learn more about Sam.

    Amber Waldref: Candidate for Spokane City Council (Open Seat)

    Amber Waldref is running for Spokane City Council, Position 2, an open seat. Amber was referred to us from former Progressive Majority candidate, Spokane City Councilmember Richard Rush, and with his help, we were able to recruit Amber to run. Although only 32 years old, Amber has an incredible resume; organizer for Heart of America Northwest, Vice Chair of her neighborhood council, founding board member of the Faith and Environment Network and is currently the development director for The Lands Council. Amber, a Spokane native, lives in Northeast Spokane with her husband, Tom Flanagan, a high school chemistry teacher and their 1 year old daughter, Karolina. Amber will be a strong environmental and neighborhood advocate, and put a second progressive on the city council. She is currently running against conservative initiative promoter Mike Fagan. Spokane is Washington's second largest city, and has fairly high number of progressives. However, the city council has a conservative majority, located in a swing county that has a conservative county commission. Progressive Majority successfully fielded a candidate for Spokane City Council in 2007 and we are looking to build on our success.

    Click here to support and learn more about Amber.

    Roger Zabinski: Candidate for Bremerton Port Commission (Challenger)

    Roger Zabinski is a first-time candidate running for Bremerton Port Commission, position 1. Although Roger's career is as a scientist in the bio-tech industry, he is a very involved member of the environmental and Democratic community on the Kitsap Peninsula. The West Sound Conservation Council and Hood Canal Watershed Education Network are just a few examples of his leadership in the area. Roger also served as a flight-crew medic and hospital supervisor with the US Air Force Reserves. Roger is running for port commissioner to address the lack of leadership on the Commission. Many of the Port's contracts are awarded to the lowest bidder resulting in jobs outside the area. Roger would like to strengthen the local economy by prioritizing contracts with local companies. He also plans to address food security issues as any emergencies resulting in closure of the Port also closes off food supply to the Peninsula.

    Click here to support and learn more about Roger.

    Rob Holland: Candidate for Seattle Port Commission (Open Seat)

    Rob is running for Seattle Port Commission, position 3, being vacated by long-term incumbent Pat Davis. As Rob's qualifications are quite extensive, a highlighted few include: industrial real estate professional, marine transportation specialist, former King County Agriculture Commissioner and has a degree in Seaport Management at the School of Marine Affairs at the University of Washington. Rob's history with the Port began with his childhood as his father worked for the Washington State Ferries for 34 years and was a member of the Inland Boatman's Union. Rob will bring his passion for the environment and his experience to help the Port become a leader in providing green jobs. Being a community leader has paid off for Rob. He has received the endorsement of seven Seattle City Council members and a number of VIPs in the local Democratic Party. Once elected, Rob will not only be the first African-American to serve as Seattle Port Commissioner, he will also be the first openly gay man on the commission. Rob has been on our farm team member for a number of years. We connected him with the Blue Green Alliance, a coalition of environmentalists and labor. In both 2005 and in 2007, we fielded two candidates for the Seattle Port Commission with the hopes of gaining a progressive majority. Each year, were able to switch one seat from conservative to progressive, however, each year also lost a progressive incumbent, thus continuing a 3 to 2 split. This year we have another chance to swing the Commission as an incumbent will be retiring.

    Click here to support and learn more about Rob.

    Amy Pivetta Hoffman: Candidate for Graham Fire Commission (Challenger)

    Amy Pivetta Hoffman, who has been on our farm team for nearly three years, is running for Graham Fire Commission. A Tacoma exurb, Graham's population has doubled in the last nine years bringing in young families and a host of new needs. Amy is under 35 and is running to reflect the changing demographics and dynamics of the area. As a practicing attorney with the Skokomish Tribe and former policy analyst with the WA Indian Gaming Association, she will bring much needed understanding of public policy and advocacy to the fire commission. Amy has volunteered as a pro-bono attorney with the Tacoma-Pierce County Bar Association and is the former chair of the Pierce County Women's Political Caucus. She is challenging Rick Skaggs, an incumbent of over 18 years. This area is very conservative; McCain won this area by 8 percent despite losing the state by 10percent, and a 22 year incumbent conservative Democratic State Senator lost her seat in November.

    Click here to support and learn more about Amy.

    Angelica Alvarez
    Candidate for Highline School Board - Position 2 (Open Seat)

    Angelica Alvarez is a first-time candidate running for Highline School Board. Angelica, who has worked for Child Care Resources for 10 years, would be the first Latina to serve on the Highline School Board, and her goal as a school board member is to represent all children, no matter their social or economic background and to bridge the gap between early learning and entering the public school system. Angelica is married to a local minister, and they have four children, two who have graduated from Highline High School and the other two are soon to follow. Angelica has strong progressive ties, including being a member of the California School Employees Association, and her long list of endorsements including Rep. Dave Upthegrove and Highline School Board Member Sili Savusa.

    Click here to support and learn more about Angelica.


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