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On Thursday, February 21, 2019 the meeting at the Willis Bldg. was called to order by Chair Peg Watkins.  There were 48 members and 3 guests present.  Names are recorded on the dated sign-in sheets.

Peg requested Joyce Bourgault led the group for the Pledge of Allegiance.

Secretary –  Peg then advised that the January minutes were posted on the website and asked for any comments, corrections or changes.  None stated.  Joe Diamond made the motion to accept those minutes and Mindy Hedges seconded.  All were in favor to accept and the motion passed.

Treasurer –  John indicated deposits made to the account from recent membership renewals. Other monthly regular activity was noted.  Ed Helvey made a motion to accept the report and Lee Lybarger seconded.  Motion was approved by all and carried.

Old business  –  Peg asked for nominations of any persons qualified to become Central Committee reps.  Emma Mirles nominated Georgia Tilton and Denise McCandless seconded.  Peg also requested Joe Diamond and Brad Shimp to come forward to state the Oath of Office. 

Peg stated the MLK breakfast was a huge success for our party attendance, in spite of the inclement weather that kept some folks away.  She said the theme was “Beloved Community” and she was drawn to the connection with locals to the ODP.

Peg recently hosted a conversation gathering for the Democratic Party chairs from bordering counties.  It was held at party headquarters and was an opportunity for each to share their pros and cons.

Peg advised that the Bd of Elections has added 5 new precincts.  There are now 164.  We need to recruit reps for those new precincts.  

Now is also the time to recruit candidates for the vacancies ahead – especially the nonpartisan seats.  We need to increase Democratic names on the ballot.  In the past too many seats didn’t have options.

Peg also mentioned the movie fundraiser but will defer to Julie for her report and details.

Membership – Brad Shimp explained the Membership Recruitment Committee is reaching out to all levels of the membership and new persons to aid in building the membership roster.  They intend to increase engagement to participate in things and educate on the resources available to connect with others.  Next week a phone bank effort is planned to take place at the headquarters office.  A survey is also in the planning stages.  There were 17 persons updating their membership tonight. 

Peg returned John Hartman for part 2 of his presentation “Red Ceiling”.  It was noted that his discussion was based upon his opinions.  He reminded us of results from the past election and commended Danny on how well he did – is spite of falling a bit short.  He had an exceptional ground game.  We need game changing plans to overcome the $$$, name recognition, signs, media coverage, etc from the other side.  To succeed we need a unique brand.  David Carpenter commented we need to improve our brand.  Lee Lybarger commented that the red history dates back many years ago.

Campaigns & Candidates –  Aileen ‘quietly’ announced she will be seeking Westerville City Council seat but it has not been made a public announcement yet.  She thanked everyone for the past support and will appreciate even more in the future for us to keep being effective.  She said there are about 100 races overall coming up in the future.  Please consider looking into one that might be of interest to you or someone you know.  There are many level positions coming open.  She encouraged support of Emma & Melanie.    Currently we have committed candidates in Orange Twp., Powell & 4 Delaware County wards.  Please get involved and work on a campaign.

Melanie Farkas introduced herself and spoke briefly about this new endeavor for her and wants to be known as the ‘other’ Melanie in Liberty Township!    She already has a fundraiser at the Drummond home on March 6.

Emma Mirles introduced herself also.  She is a local public defender/attorney.  She feels she has great opportunity to connect with the community and hopes she can count on support from everyone.

Fundraising  – Julie reported that the membership dues are a contributing part of fundraising but other options are being considered also.  She asked who preferred one large event vs. multiple smaller one.  It seemed split decision.  We’ll go forward accordingly perhaps with further discussion.  She also announced the movie planned on March 23rd.  It is about Ruth Bader Ginsburg and her struggles in the male dominated political arena. Details will be forth coming – but hold the date.

Peg is hoping to have Jim Browning is for next month’s meeting.

Peg then reviewed the upcoming events.  Those can be reviewed on the website.

Judy Carpenter invited (mostly the men) to a program on March 18 about the awareness of the poverty level.  Not sure where that will take place.

Barb Berry announced that the new 2019 Membership cards could be picked up immediately after the meeting.

No further matters presented and the meeting was closed.

Respectfully submitted,

Barbara Berry, Sec