In a surprise upset, precinct committee person and Democratic activist Alison Jones won election as the Pima County Democratic Chair, ousting Jo Holt.
Jones got 156 votes and Holt got 151.
A total of 307 of Pima County’s 427 Democratic precinct committeemen arrived at the ENR2 Building on the UA campus for the vote.
“I am ready to make the party more efficient, inclusive and more powerful,” Jones said. “We need to reach out the Arizona Ground Game, Indivisible, AZBlue2020, and organized labor. They are entitled to claim some credit for our election victories, and there are hundreds more who could be and should be in this room.” She is a precinct committee person from LD9.
Marion Chubon, a precinct committee person (PC) in LD10 and founder of the anti-McSally PAC Represent Me Az, nominated Jones. “She may not have the connections yet, but she will hit the ground running, establishing relations with Arizona Democrats,” she said.
Jones emphasized six goals:
- Partner with community, labor and community groups to help elect Democrats.
- Build a bench of candidates and teach them how to win.
- Establish a more welcoming county headquarters and treating volunteers like royalty.
- Recruit a total of 1,200 PCs by 2020 (up from 427 today).
- Establish a party platform. “We need to stand for something. Let’s be a party that people want to belong to, and focus on climate change, sensible gun laws and skyrocketing college tuition costs.
See the article Alison Jones will Include Community Groups as Pima Democrats Chair.
Jones won endorsements from:
- Pamela Powers Hannley, a Democratic state House member from LD9.
- Susan Bickel, Precinct 158 Committee Person and State Committee Member, LD 9 Corresponding Secretary, LD 9 PC and Volunteer Development Committee.
- Connor Welton, Precinct 201 Committee Person.
- Leila Counts, Tucson Unified School District Board MemberLeila Kottabi Counts, Tucson Unified School District Board Member.
- Tamar Rala Kreiswirth, Founder The Arizona Ground Game and Precinct 56 Committee Person
- Richard Gooding, Co-Founder of AZ Blue 2020
- Marion Chubon, Founder of McSally Take a Stand and Represent Me AZ
- Gabriella Cázares-Kelly, President, Progressive Democrats of Southern Arizona, Co-founder of Indivisible Tohono, Member of the Tohono O’odham Nation, State Committee Member for LD9, PC, Precinct 134.
The assembled PCs also elected several party officers, including a Millennial:
- Recording secretary: Connor Welton won a three-way race that included Kim Khoury and Cecelia Aros Hunter. He is age 24 and is a new PC in LD9. “I believe the Democrat party must be the party of anti-white-supremacy. We have to root out racism from financial institutions, academic institution, our legal system, and our immigration enforcement. As Corresponding Secretary, I know I’m qualified in taking notes because I did so in college and high school,” he said.
- 1st Vice Chair: Luci Messing, who is Chair of the Tanque Verde Valley Democratic Club, and the representative for the Democrats of Greater Tucson to the PCDP Executive Committee. She was elected by acclamation.
- 2nd Vice Chair: Joel Feinman, the Pima County Public Defender and founder of the Pima Liberator website. His role will be to build the Democratic party’s bench by recruiting and training candidates. He was elected by acclamation.
- Treasurer: Mary Matiella, who was a Democratic candidate for Tucson’s 2nd Congressional District in the U.S. House. She was elected by acclamation.
- Corresponding Secretary: Connie DeLarge, who is the Chair of the Pima County African American Caucus, was re-elected by acclamation.