Home Virginia Politics Susan Mariner: “Why I Am Running for DPVA 1st Vice Chair of...

Susan Mariner: “Why I Am Running for DPVA 1st Vice Chair of Organization”


On June 12, 2010, the Democratic Party of Virginia (DPVA) will select a new 1st Vice Chair. The following statement is from former Webb “ragtag army” superstar Susan Mariner, who I am strongly supporting for this position.  Also supporting Susan so far are people like Sen. Chap Petersen, Del. Scott Surovell, Roanoke County Clerk of Circuit Court Steve McGraw, Prince William County Democratic chair Pete Frisbie, 10th CD Democratic Committee member Charlie Jackson, Isaac Sarver, Joe Montano, Joseph Puckett, 316 Facebook fans, and more. I hope you’ll support Susan too. Thanks!


I’m Susan Mariner, and I’m asking for your vote on June 12th

First and foremost, the job of the DPVA 1st Vice Chair of Organization is to elect Democrats.  I am running for this seat at this particular time because I believe I am uniquely qualified to accomplish that goal.   Here’s why–

*I have the proven ability to grow, strengthen, and diversify the Party:  In 6 months as Chair of the Virginia Beach Democratic Committee, I have increased our committee membership from 80 to 175, brought in a critical infusion of energetic young people, and vastly increased participation of minorities.  If you want a 1st Vice Chair of Organization who has the skills to grow, strengthen, and diversify the Democratic Party across the Commonwealth, I ask for your vote.

*I will leave no committee behind:  Over the years, my work with urban, rural, and suburban Democratic committees has made me acutely aware that the challenges faced by committees throughout the state are not the same and cannot be met with a “one size fits all” solution.  If elected, I will personally and actively support all committees across this great state.  If you want an energetic and knowledgeable 1st Vice Chair of Organization, one who will spend time helping any committee that seeks my assistance in creatively energizing, professionalizing or expanding their organization, I ask for your vote.

*I can improve relations between the Party establishment and the grassroots/netroots:  The Democratic Party of Virginia needs everyone’s support.  Unfortunately, there has been a feeling among numerous grassroots Democrats that the Party leadership is disconnected from the activists who support the Democratic Party every day.   Whether this feeling is justified or not, the tension damages the Party and weakens us in our efforts to elect Democrats.  Every election cycle, we rely heavily on our grassroots activists to do the heavy lifting on the ground.  Similarly, we rely on our netroots activists to articulate and disseminate a compelling political narrative to the mainstream media and the public.  Along these lines, I have credibility and strong support amongst the grassroots and netroots activist base of our Party.  If elected, I will serve as a bridge between the activists and our Party leadership, ensuring the best possible working relationships between these crucial groups.  Over the years, the DPVA has demonstrated that it can accomplish amazing things when we are unified.  If you believe in the value of electing a 1st Vice Chair who will help to improve relations between grassroots activists and Party officials, I ask for your vote.

*I have professional political campaign experience:  If you think that having a 1st Vice Chair of Organization who has professional experience working on campaigns in tough districts and who has a history of accomplishment winning tough races for Democrats would be a good thing for the Party, I ask for your vote.

*I know what it takes to win:  We must have a 1st Vice Chair of Organization who knows what it takes to win against difficult odds so that we preserve our critical State Senate majority and win back seats in the House of Delegates in 2011. Just imagine what Bob McDonnell and Ken Cuccinelli would do with control of the Senate as well as the House of Delegates.  Needless to say, that’s not acceptable.  Also unacceptable would be to have Glenn Nye, Tom Perriello, Rick Boucher or Gerry Connolly defeated in 2010.  As 1st Vice Chair of Organization, I will be able to use my training and experience to ensure that Democrats hold their ground and expand from there.  To that end, I ask for your vote.

If  I am afforded the extraordinary opportunity of serving as 1st Vice Chair of the great Democratic Party of Virginia, I will focus like a laser beam on strengthening the Party at all levels and will work tirelessly to put our Party in a position to win this year and beyond.   I will be responsive and inclusive and will work collaboratively with you at every turn because I am absolutely convinced that together we can make this a Bluer Virginia.  

I love this Party and want to serve.  I ask for your vote on June 12th at the Central Committee meeting in Charlottesville.

Warmest Regards,

Susan Mariner

(757) 692-0989

  • Tom

    Susan’s statement is the best I’ve seen from a candidate for this or any other elected office. She makes it crystal clear why netroots leaders like you and those of us who participate in your blog diary comments are such strong supporters of Susan. I have never read a better job application resume than Susan’s.

    Please join Susan in Charlottesville 11-12 June so you can both lobby in person for her election and help celebrate a major step forward toward strengthening our ability to “make a Bluer Virginia”. Thanks for your strong support for this incredible leader.


  • Elaine in Roanoke

    One way that people serving on the Central Committee can make victory by Susan a reality is for them to contact others on their district committees and pass along this awesome message from Susan.  

  • Shenandoah Democrat

    who are the members of the Central Committee? At the DPVA website I only see “steering committee”. Is every county chair a member of the Central Committee?

    Go Susan.

    And don’t forget today, a moment of silence at 1500 hours (3 P.M.)!

  • Tom

    I believe I recall from my last reading of the DPVA Party Plan (the state-level equivalent of By-Laws) that elected officials, e.g. Bobby Scott 3rd CD Congressman and Glenn Nye 2nd CD Congressman, are also voting members of the Central Committee. I know Jim Webb is both an Ex-Officio and a regular elected voting member of the 11th CD so if my recollection is correct the big unknown about their “yes’ votes is whether they will be present.

    This suspense is too much for me, Lowell. I don’t want to put anyone on the spot with respect to whether Susan is running unopposed so I’ll avoid that question. Have you thought about making your own “best guess” vote count of the people who you know are voting Central Committee members who have already publicly endorsed Susan, minus a few we know will be unable to attend that weekend ? From what I’ve observed since my first Central Committee meeting at Va. Beach at the Spring meeting in 2006, the typical attendance is roughly 60%, with the Winter 2009 meeting in Staunton being what was probably the lowest attendance on record since became active in politics in 2006, which I think was probably less than 50%because of the bad road condition.

    Going with 65% turnout, which I think might be pretty much on the high side given the fact that a lot of people are unavailable to attend that weekend and including my assumption of elected officials, from what I have seen so far with your BV strong support Susan might be getting reasonably close to a majority of likely Central Committee attendees.

    BTW, you agreed with my comments about Susan but didn’t say if you can join Susan, me and her many other dedicated fans to lobby for her election, and if successful participate in a celebration Friday evening if by then we can confirm that she has the votes to move the DPVA powerfully in the right direction. I’d be most happy to buy you as many rounds of drinks of your favorite poison if you could just show up to help with the lobbying and to report on what you observe Friday evening and Saturday morning. You and all of us on your blog have a serious vested interest in getting this woman elected. Just say “Yes” to this request for your presence; you are more persuasive than I can ever hope to be. You and Susan together made it possible for us to defeat George Allen, and I know you can help Susan win her election and take all of us in the Grassroots/Netroots direction that will make the DPVA a powerful force for all Progressives in Virginia.

  • Isaac Sarver

    The membership of the Democratic Party of Virginia’s State Central Committee is actually a fairly flexible figure. As currently comprised…

    20 members (10 men, 10 women) from each Congressional District are serving 4 year terms that will expire in 2013. These are the 220 elected SCC members.

    Additional members of State Central include –

    Party Chair Richard Cranwell

    1st Vice Chair Jennifer McClellan

    2nd Vice Chair Fred Hudson

    Vice Chair for Technology and Communications Craig Fifer

    Vice Chair of Finance Jim Turpin

    Vice Chair of Outreach Donald McEachin

    Secretary Steve Bunn

    Treasurer Barbara Klear

    4 members of the DNC elected at State Convention: Frank Leone, Mame Reiley, Lionell Spruill, Doris Crouse-Mays

    Democratic Members of Congress from VA: Nye, Boucher, Perriello, Connolly, Scott, Moran, Warner, Webb

    Chairs of the HOD and State Senate Dem Caucuses: Ken Plum , Mary Margaret Whipple

    Democratic Speaker of the HOD or President Pro Temp of Senate: Chuck Colgan

    Chair of VA Association of Democratic Chairs: Gene Magruder

    There’s also a number of seats reserved for the Women’s Caucus (2 votes), VA Young Democrats (6 votes), Labor Caucus (1 vote), Democratic Black Caucus (1 vote), and Democratic Business Caucus (1 vote)

    By this math, assuming that state party officers don’t count against their local congressional district’s 20 members, the current number of votes (at a maximum) on State Central are 255.