Represent Me AZ CD 2 Democratic Candidate Forum


    4/24/18 UPDATE:  New CD 2 candidate attorney Yahya Yuksel will be participating in this forum.

    4/7/18 UPDATE: Ann Kirkpatrick will NOT be attending, per misunderstanding on the part of the organizers. See comment posted below.

    “Join us on Thursday, May 3rd at Catalina High School as Represent Me AZ presents our next CD2 Candidate Forum! We are pleased to welcome Dylan Smith of as our evening’s moderator.

    Doors will open early at 6:00 pm to give you an opportunity to meet the candidates informally, and the program will then begin at 6:30 p.m.

    We look forward to seeing you there!”
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    Carolyn Classen
    Carolyn Sugiyama Classen, a life long Democrat, was born & raised in the State of Hawaii, was a Legislative Aide for U.S. Senator Daniel K. Inouye on Capitol Hill, and practiced law for a while. In Tucson she worked as a tribal staff attorney for the Pascua Yaqui Tribe and later was the Interim Executive Director of the now defunct Domestic Violence Commission. In 2008 she became a “My Tucson” guest columnist for the Tucson Citizen newspaper, then continued blogging for for over four and a half years. Her blogsite was entitled “Carolyn’s Community” about community events and some political news, until Gannett Publishing shut down the site on January 31, 2014. She started with Blog for Arizona on Feb. 11, 2014. Part time she has been sitting as a Hearing Officer in Pima County Consolidated Justice Courts Small Claims Division since April, 2005. She is married to University of Arizona Distinguished Professor Albrecht Classen, a native of Germany. They have one son, who lives in Seattle, WA with his wife and daughter. She is also the Editor of the Southern Arizona Japanese Cultural Coalition website, (since Jan. 2013).


    1. About 250/300 people at this forum tonight, including the Raging Grannies singing as you entered the high school. Represent Me AZ handed out cards for the audience to “grade” the candidates on Health care, Immigration, the Economy with grades A to F, for feedback. Moderator Dylan Smith asked first question about their priority in the Congress and what issue would they break with their colleagues, then a series of questions on health care, opioid problem, on immigration/the border to Mexico, their fundraising efforts, the economy. Smith also asked all 6 as to whether they had enough signatures to get on the ballot (deadline is May 30) and only late comers Sherry and Yuksel said they were still gathering signatures. Lastly the candidates asked each other some questions, before closing remarks. Stay tuned for report from fellow blogger Larry Bodine on this forum. Also present tonight were LD 10 candidates Domingo DeGrazia and Cat Ripley, and TUSD Bd. member Mark Stegeman. Next CD 2 forum is slated for sometime in late June per organizer Marion Chubon. Hopefully former Congresswoman Ann Kirkpatrick can attend that one.

    2. This is a question regarding the meeting tonight in Tucson. I am campaign manager for Bill Pierce, who is running for State Mine Inspector. We are coming to this event, but I have a question. Should the candidates bring tables and chairs? Can’t seem to find a phone number to call. Could you let me know please?

    3. Just my humble opinion but Ms. Kirkpatrick, the Democratic establishment favorite, should find a way to make an appearance.

    4. FROM Represent Me AZ FB page: ANNOUNCEMENT:
      “Ann Kirkpatrick will not be attending our Candidate Forum.
      We were alerted earlier this week that due to a misunderstanding on our part, her campaign never confirmed attendance. The moment we became aware, we worked very hard to elicit a date from the campaign in May that would work for them. They informed us that Ann was too booked in May to participate, and that her first available dates were the last week in June.
      We asked all the other candidates if they would like to reschedule and they unanimously decided to attend this Forum as scheduled. We wholeheartedly agreed!
      We had committed to all the candidates and our members to host a Spring event and had made it clear to other organizers in the community that we would do so. The candidates, for the most part, are eager to get in front of you and welcome any opportunity to engage with voters. To that end, the candidates agreed to also participate when Ann’s schedule allows in June. We are working on a location for that later event, but for now, we have 5 great candidates that are committed to engaging with you in CD2 for this event!”

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