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Updated: Oct 8, 2023

The 2023 Fall Fundraiser Dinner was a resounding success. HQ looked fantastic. The food was good. The company was good, and Andre Washington, Vice Chair of the Ohio Democratic party gave a stirring keynote address that got us out of our chairs a couple of times (video link below). Kudos and many thanks to the Young Dems for organizing it; Xander Perrigan, Brandon Polak, Gerald Vega, Kaiya Bookman, and Mara Bookman. Thanks also to Venita Shoulders, Brenda Brooks, Carolyn Caudill, Drena Miller, Karla Hale, Deb Landin, Jill Van Harlingen, Mary Heminger, Matt Finfgeld, and Larry Weirich.

Watch this awesome call to action by the Vice Chair of the Ohio Democratic Party, Andre Washington, to us at oue 2023 Fall Dinner. Born in Michigan - not by choice he said - he recalled his cousins and him riding with his grandfather taking neighbors to vote. He told of encountering a woman at a dollar store in a southern Ohio county who didn't believe in book banning, didn't think voter suppression was right, and believed a woman should have the right to make her own choices. Yet she was a Republican, he said.

Vice Chair Washington called for Richland Dems to go beyond their comfort zones and carry the Democratic water to people who may not know they are Democrats. There are many people out there that share our values. We must reach them and get them to the polls. His grandfather never told people he how to vote but he talked to them about the issues that would make a difference in their community. "In as much as you have done for the least of them..." was the mantra that his grandfather embedded in his cousins and him.

"We must move from Position to Purpose" was his theme. Position is a place. Purpose is a lifestyle and key to fighting against racism, voter suppression, and gender inequality. It is the Democratic way, he said, and pledged that the Ohio Democratic Party would no longer ignore the rural Ohio. Mr. Washington closed with the question of "Who are we?" And answered, "We are Democrats. We are the protectors of the middle class. We are the protector of women's rights, children's rights, worker rights.....We are the carriers of the torch of Democracy that's been handed down from generation to generation, for times such as these."

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