On July 17-21, 2019, the Ohio Young Democrats (OYD) sent 55 members (most but not all pictured) to attend the 2019 YDA Convention in Indianapolis. Ohio was one of only a handful of states to send a full delegation and as such were able to cast all of Ohio's 110 votes in the YDA elections/business matters. Our delegation was diverse. Our delegates came from counties, large and small, north and south, east and west. It was 50% female, 30% black, and 20% LGBT+.
At least one OYD delegate was in every training, caucus, session and panel that took place over the four day convention. OYD delegates will be reporting out what we've learned with local chapters across the Buckeye State and at OYD's next statewide meeting.
In addition, OYD members came home with a few new national roles. Ohioans were elected to following roles within the Young Democrats of America:
- YDA Black Caucus Chair - Dontavius Jarrells (Franklin)
- YDA Muslim Caucus* Chair - Reem Subei (Lucas)
- YDA Veterans Caucus Vice Chair - Andy Price (Franklin)
- YDA Veterans Caucus Treasurer - Stef Wise (Summit)
- Asian American and Pacific Islander Caucus Vice Chair - Spencer Dirrig (Delaware)
- Jewish Caucus' Great Lakes Regional Director - Max Seeley (Wood)
- Environmental Issues Caucus Great Lakes Regional Director - Jordan Perry (Stark)
*This caucus has never existed before. Reem and several other other Muslim delegates started it, drafted all the governing documents, and subsequently were able to get the caucus approved by the convention delegates.
Two other OYD leaders also continue to hold leadership roles in YDA. Christopher Clevenger-Morris (Portage) serves as the YDA Great Lakes Region Director. He was unanimously elected to this role at the Great Lakes Region Convention in May 2019. The Great Lakes Region includes Ohio, Illinois, Michigan, Indiana and Wisconsin. In addition, OYD President Jen House (Franklin) continues to serve as the Chair of the YDA Association of Chartered Unit Presidents and in this capacity serves as an ex-oficio member of the YDA Board of Directors.
Finally, Ohio had an important role to pay in the drafting of YDA's platform for the next two years. The state's platform delegates spent nearly 20 hours discussing and debating language with representatives from across U.S.. The final platform, as approved by the convention delegates, is most progressive and forward-thinking platform in YDA history. Some highlights:
- Climate Change is real and requires Action NOW
- Charter Schools require true oversight and regulation
- Rural Communities must be a part of our climate plan
- Campaign workers are workers and have the right to unionize
- LGBTQIA discrimination must end in all sectors
- Young people are the present and must take leadership in our party and across the country
Thank you to everyone who support our delegation. Your financial support helped make all of this a reality! In particular, we'd like to extend a special thanks to these contributors for their continued support of OYD:
- Franklin County Democratic Party
- Cuyahoga County Democratic Party
- Dayton Municipal Court Clerk Mark Owens
- Franklin County Recorder Danny O'Connor
- Ohio House Minority Leader Emilia Sykes
- Ohio House Assistant Minority Leader Kristin Boggs
- Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley
- Former Senate Minority Leader Joe Schiavoni
- State Representative Brigid Kelly
- Franklin Township Trustee Aryeh Alex
- State Representative Beth Liston
- FCDP Chair Mike Sexton
- Former YDA VP Antone White
- Former OYD President Gen Murphy
- ODP Secretary Bill Demora
- Mike Hobbs
- Anthony Caldwell
We're more fired up than ever to elect young democrats across the Buckeye State. Our Campaigns Committee has begun their planning/organizing work for this fall and we'll be rolling out YD candidate profiles soon. Go team, OYD!