Raymond Buckley (View Bio »)
- New Hampshire
Raymond Buckley was elected as Chair of the New Hampshire Democratic Party in March of 2007. Prior to serving as Chair he served as the Party’s 1st Vice Chair and Executive Director. His professional political involvement began when he was an organizer for Jimmy Carter’s campaign for President in 1976. Since then he has been involved with each Presidential campaign in New Hampshire as well as campaigns for Governor, US House, US Senate and the NH State Senate. During the 2006 election cycle he was the Executive Director for the NH Senate Democratic Caucus. In 1986 he was elected to the State House from Manchester where he served eight terms.
In January of 2009, Chairman Buckley was elected the President of the Association of State Democratic Chairs. He was re-elected to the position in February 2011 and again in January of 2013. In his role as ASDC President he also serves as a Vice Chair for the Democratic National Committee. Chairman Buckley also serves on the DNC Rules and Bylaws Committee.
As a national leader in the LGBT community, Chairman Buckley serves on the DNC’s LGBT Caucus as well as the National Stonewall Democrats. Chairman Buckley is the first openly gay politician to serve as the President of the Association of State Democratic Chairs and as a Vice Chair of the Democratic National Committee.
Karen Carter Peterson (View Bio »)
Senator Karen Carter Peterson was elected chair of the Louisiana Democratic Party in April of 2012, making her the first woman to ever hold this post. She represents New Orleans and parts of Jefferson Parish in the Louisiana State Senate. She is currently Chair of the Louisiana Women’s Caucus and Senate Select Committee on Women and Children. She also serves on the Senate Judiciary B, Insurance and Local and Municipal Committees. In 2012, she assumed the Chair position of the Louisiana Democratic Party, the first woman in Louisiana history to do so.
During her time in the Louisiana House of Representatives, Sen. Peterson established herself as a powerful, worthy asset to the legislature, serving on the House Appropriations Committee, the Joint Legislative Budget Committee, the House Governmental Affairs Committee, and most recently, she served as House Speaker Pro Tempore. During her service in the House, she was also the first woman to chair the House Insurance Committee.
Sen. Peterson is a 1991 graduate of Howard University School of Business, where she received a degree in International Business and Marketing, and of Tulane University Law School, where she was afforded the opportunity to attend both Boston College Law School and the University of Virginia’s Law School as a visiting student.
Sen. Peterson has many present and past professional and civic activities on her resume. She has been a board member and volunteer for a wide variety of organizations. Beginning at the age of 18 through the year 2008, she served as a delegate to Democratic National Conventions. She and her husband Dana are members of Blessed Trinity Catholic Church and live in downtown New Orleans.
Debra Kozikowski (View Bio »)
Massachusetts Vice Chair Debra Kozikowski serves as Northeast Vice President to the Association of State Democratic Chairs. A thirty-five year veteran of grassroots politics, Debra is an independent business and technical writer, former educator, licensed real estate professional and rural policy advocate. Friends and colleagues know her best for promoting rural-urban partnerships around local food and clean energy policies. Her passion for rural equity has recently focused on voter suppression aimed at disenfranchising women, minorities and seniors. She is co-founder of RuralVotes, a rural advocacy organization. Little known fact: Debra won first place for her Spicy Blueberry BBQ Sauce in the 2008 blueberry bloggers recipe contest run by the US Highbush Blueberry Council.
Jaxon Ravens (View Bio »)
Jaxon Ravens grew up in Missoula, MT. He has a bachelors degree in politics and economics from the University of California at Santa Cruz and an MBA from Thunderbird, the American Graduate School of International Management in Glendale, AZ. He was the Executive Director of the King County Democrats for a couple of years at the turn of the century and has been working for the Washington State Democrats since 2004. He served as President of the Washington State Young Democrats from 2000 to 2001 and as President of the National Association of State Democratic Executive Directors from 2009 to 2013.
In each of these roles, Jaxon has lead and worked with Democrats across the state, national party organizations, local party organizations, various constituency groups, allies, candidates, and elected officials, to help elect Democrats and build the Democratic community in order to promote the values expressed in the State Democratic Party Charter and Platform.
Jaxon spent the 1990s traveling overseas and in 2003 biked solo across the US following the Lewis and Clark Trail. Jaxon has been actively involved in several local non-profit organizations including the School for Acrobatics and New Circus Arts (SANCA), where he serves as Board President, and Seattle Works. In 2011 he was presented with a Washington State Volunteer Service Award from Governor Christine Gregoire. He also served as a member of the Washington State Arts Commission from 2012 to 2014.
Rick Palacio (View Bio »)
Rick is a 6th generation Coloradan who was born and raised in Pueblo. The son of a steel worker and homemaker, Rick’s family’s roots are in the southern part the state where both of his grandfathers were coal miners.
Before serving in his current role, Palacio worked in a variety of roles in Colorado and national politics. He was the Assistant to Colorado House Majority Leader Alice Madden. He served as the Regional Director of the Colorado Democratic Party’s Coordinate Campaign. In 2006 he sought the Democratic nomination for Clerk and Recorder in Pueblo, Colorado where he earned 49.9% of the Democratic vote – only two votes shy of becoming the party’s nominee for the general election. Palacio then held multiple roles with U.S. Rep. John Salazar of Colorado’s third Congressional District, including Legislative Assistant and later Deputy Communications Director. In 2008 he was hired as Deputy Director of Member Service in the office of the House Majority Leader, Congressman Steny H. Hoyer, the second highest-ranking member of the U.S. House of Representatives.
Rick was elected Chairman of the Colorado Democratic Party on March 5, 2011. He is the first Latino in Colorado to hold the office of chair of the Colorado Democratic Party, and when elected was only the second in the nation.
Alexandra Gallardo-Rooker (View Bio »)
Born in Mexico City and a graduate of Cypress College, Ms. Alexandra Gallardo-Rooker is an accomplished leader in the political arena at both the national and state level. Her insight into the inter-workings of California’s legislative and political process has proven to be a valuable asset to her colleagues in the Democratic Party and the individuals she represents as the Legislative Advocate in California for the Communication Workers of America (CWA).
Ms. Rooker has a proven track record as a leader. During the past two decades Ms. Rooker has taken on a variety of roles with CWA Local #9400 ranging from Shop Steward to Vice President.
In addition, she was elected to the position of Second Vice Chair of the California Democratic Party in 1997 and currently serves as Female Vice-Chair, a position she has held since 2001. Her unfailing commitment to Democratic values and proven leadership skills are among a list of attributes that has made her a valuable member of Democratic National Committee and Governor Howard Dean’s Transition Team.
As a former recipient of the “Si Se Puede Award For Distinguished Service,” from the Los Angeles Chapter of Labor Council for Latin American Advancement, Ms. Rooker has routinely demonstrated her commitment to Democratic values through her continuous efforts to fight for a better quality of life for hard working Californians across the state.
Finance Committee Chair
Roberto Prats - Puerto Rico
Dominic Balletto - Connecticut
Dottie Deans (View Bio »)
Dorothy Deans has been an active and loyal member of the Vermont Democratic Party for years. In 2007, she was elected Town Chair of Pomfret in Windsor County. In 2008, Deans was the recipient of the David W. Curtis Award for outstanding Vermont Democrats. In 2009, she was elected Windsor County Chair. Deans also serves on the 2012 Affirmative Action Delegate Selection Committee.
Deans is a graduate of Green Mountain College with an AA in Education and the University of Denver with a BA in Elementary Education. Before returning to Vermont in 1984, Deans taught first and second grades for 14 years in Denver, Colorado. In 1999, Deans became involved in HIV/AIDS activism, first as a volunteer and then as a paid staff member with the HIV/HVC Resource Center. After serving as board chair from 2008-2011, Deans serves the center as a member of the board.
Nikema Williams (View Bio »)
Nikema Williams is currently the Vice President of Public Policy for Planned Parenthood Southeast, incorporated (PPSE). Nikema serves as the primary contact with Key community leaders and coalition partners in helping to build a long term public policy, legislative, and community engagement program to promote reproductive healthcare throughout Alabama, Georgia, and Mississippi. She also serves as the Vice President of Planned Parenthood Southeast Advocates, the affiliated political arm of Planned Parenthood Southeast.
Nikema served as the National Committee Woman for the Young Democrats of Georgia. She was honored to serve as a Delegate to the 2008 and 2012 Democratic National Convention. In recognition of her work to engage more young people in Democratic Politics, she was named Georgia Young Democratic of the year in 2009 and received the 2009 Future is Now Young Leader award from the Young Democrats of Atlanta.
Nikema also serves on the Board of Governors for Red Clay Democrats. In 2007, she was elected Chair of the 13th Congressional District for The Democratic Party of Georgia. Upon election, she became the youngest Congressional District Chair ever elected in the state. In January of 2011, Nikema was elected as the 1st Vice Chair of the Democratic Party of Georgia, again, distinguishing herself as the youngest person in DPG history to ever hold this position. In this role, Nikema represents the state of Georgia at the Democratic National Committee. Nikema served as a member of the Obama Victory Fund 2012. Through her fundraising efforts with Gen44, Nikema has been recognized as one of the top ten influential African American bundlers for President Obama by Huffington Post.
The Apex Society designated her as one of their Power 30 under 30 in the field of politics for 2008. She is an alumnus of Leadership Atlanta’s LEAD class of 2009 and a 2009 graduate of Yale University’s Women’s Campaign School. She was also recognized in the 2009 and 2010 publication of Who’s Who in Black Atlanta as a community leader. She was honored in 2010, by Outstanding Atlanta, the city’s premiere honor for community involvement. Most recently, Nikema was named one the Women of Influence for 2011 by the Atlanta Business League. Currently, Nikema is a member of the 2013 class of The New Leaders Council, an organization dedicated to train and promote the next generation of progressive political entrepreneurs. She is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated.
In 2011, Nikema was appointed to the Advisory Board of SCLC W.O.M.E.N. Inc, by founder, Mrs. Evelyn G. Lowery. SCLC Women, INC is a civil rights group dedicated to offering intergenerational programs designed to empower women, girls, and families as they relate to human rights, social action, economic self-sufficiency, reduction of health disparities, and leadership to build strong families and communities.
Born in Columbus, Georgia, Nikema was raised nearby in Smiths, Alabama. She attended Talladega College, a private liberal arts HBCU in Talladega, Alabama. She is married to Mr. Leslie Small, and they reside in Historic Westside Village in Atlanta with their two rescue Yorkshire Terriers, Ginger and Belle. Nikema and Leslie are members of Central United Methodist Church in Atlanta.
David Pepper (View Bio »)
David Pepper was unanimously elected Chairman of the Ohio Democratic Party on December 17, 2014 and began his term on January 1, 2015. Knowing that the strength of the Ohio Democratic Party has a direct impact on the outcome of national, state, and local elections, David is committed to creating the most robust party infrastructure possible, supporting and implementing policies that improve Ohioans’ lives, and recruiting and assisting the next generation of public servants as they run for office at all levels and helping them make a difference once they get there. Born and raised in Cincinnati, David is a fifth-generation Cincinnatian. David was first elected to public office in 2001 when he served on the Cincinnati City Council, finishing first out of a field of 26 candidates, and was reelected for a second term in 2003, again leading the pack in votes. David came to the Cincinnati City Council as riots, a severe crime wave and a public safety crisis rocked the city. David was nominated by Ohio Democrats to run in statewide elections twice. In 2010, David ran for the office of Ohio Auditor campaigning on a platform of increasing efficiency and transparency in government while ending the gerrymandering that has poisoned politics in Columbus and Washington. His platform gained him the endorsements of virtually every major Ohio newspaper. And, in 2014, David ran an intense campaign to unseat the incumbent Attorney General, calling for greatly improved transparency and integrity in that office. Although both years proved to be wave years against Ohio Democrats, David set records (for a non-incumbent) in fundraising for both offices and received praise for running aggressive, substantive campaigns. David earned his B.A. magna cum laude from Yale University, where he was Phi Beta Kappa, and later earned his J.D. from Yale Law School. David is married to Alana (Swartz) Pepper. Alana grew up in Adams County, graduated from the University of Cincinnati, and earned her Master’s Degree in Public Administration at Northern Kentucky University. Alana has spent her career helping those faced with mental illness. Last May, David and Alana welcomed their first child, Jacob “Jack” Hamilton Pepper, into their family.
Rhine McLin - Ohio
Frank Dixon (View Bio »)
Frank Dixon is currently serving his first term as Chair of the Democratic Party of Oregon, after serving three terms as First Vice-Chair. He has been a member of the Democratic National Committee and the DNC LGBT Caucus since 2007, and was elected in 2013 by the Western Region of the Association of State Democratic Parties to serve on the national ASDC Executive Committee.
After moving eight times with his military family between five U.S. states and Germany, Frank graduated from Mount Carmel High School on Chicago’s Southeast side and the University of Notre Dame with a BA in American Studies and Communications.
He entered active duty as an Infantry Unit Commander in 1973 and retired in the Army Reserves after serving with the 104th Division as a commander of the Leadership Academy (drill sergeant school) and as the Division’s internal auditor.
Frank arrived in Oregon in 1976 to attend Lewis & Clark Law School. After receiving his law degree, Frank practiced consumer law for fifteen years in state and federal courts. He was the lead attorney on early cases filed in the Oregon Court of Appeals and US Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals on behalf of consumers under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act. Frank taught other lawyers about consumer protection and is a published author on the subject.
Frank started community organizing as a precinct committee person and neighborhood association leader, and went on to lead the group of neighborhood associations for West and Northwest Portland. Appointed to serve on numerous city and countywide commissions, Frank became the Portland City Commissioner’s staff liaison to the Office of Neighborhood Involvement in 1999.
Frank was one of the founders of Veterans for Human Rights, an early LGBT war veterans group. Frank served on the Board of Directors of Right to Pride PAC in the 1990s. Frank became a Director of Basic Rights Oregon in 2002 for ten years, co-chairing the Board and PAC for several years; and later serving as co-interim Executive Director. In 2004, Frank organized and was the first President of the Democratic Party of Oregon GLBT Caucus.
Frank owned property outside of Tumalo, spending a month or more of each year east of the Cascades, for almost 20 years. As part owner of his great-grandfather’s homestead and farm established in 1856 in Northeastern Kansas, Frank continues to respect the rural way of life. Frank lives with his partner of over 30 years, real estate broker Dan Volkmer, in Northwest Portland. They enjoy spending time together with Watson, their Boxer, and Ertha Cat at their other home in Netarts.
ASDC Representatives to DNC Executive Committee
Jaime Harrison (View Bio »)
- South Carolina
As the former director of floor operations and counsel for former House Majority Whip, Rep. James Clyburn (D-SC), South Carolina Democratic Party Chair Jaime Harrison was responsible for the successful navigation and passage of key legislation and served as a senior political and legislative adviser. Accumulating a wealth of experience and a deep bench of relationships, Jaime worked closely with House and Senate leadership in the United States Congress.
Previously, Jaime served as executive director of the House Democratic Caucus. Widely recognized for his work, Jaime was named six times as one of Roll Call’s “Fabulous Fifty Movers and Shakers Behind the Scenes on Capitol Hill” and listed as one of The Hill’s “35 Stellar Staffers Under 35.” In 2010, The Root web magazine included Jaime on its list of 100 “emerging and established African-American leaders who are making extraordinary contributions.” He was also dubbed one of the “Top 40 lawyers under 40” by the National Bar Association and Impact DC.
Jaime has appeared as a political strategist on CNN and MSNBC. He is a regular guest lecturer for the Brookings Institute and the Congressional Black Caucus Political Education Leadership Institute’s Political Training Boot Camp. In 2009, he served as a lecturer for the Harvard Kennedy School’s Black Policy Conference. Jaime has developed and conducted a small business development seminar and provided legal technical assistance to small business owners in Washington, DC. Before entering politics, Jaime worked in education serving as chief operating officer and director of program development for the College Summit, a national nonprofit organization that assists low-income students enroll in college.
A teacher at heart, Jaime once taught world geography at his high school alma mater in Orangeburg, South Carolina. A first-generation college graduate, Jaime earned a bachelor’s from Yale University and Juris Doctor from Georgetown University Law Center.
Ken Martin (View Bio »)
Ken Martin has a long history of involvement in campaigns in Minnesota and around the country. It was during his senior year at Eden Prairie High School that Ken started his political activism having been inspired by a Carleton college professor`s campaign for the U.S. Senate. Like many people, Sen. Wellstone inspired Ken to a life of organizing for social justice, electing progressives, and building electoral power. To this day Ken believes strongly that we can change the world through electoral politics.
As Chairman, Ken has rebuilt the DFL party restoring confidence amongst donors, elected officials and party leaders that the party has a plan and vision to win elections and advance a progressive agenda forward. Inheriting a party deeply in debt and coming off of bruising defeats in 2010, Ken raised records amount of money both retiring the debt and building successful and permanent campaign infrastructure. Because of this work, the DFL party had one of the most successful election cycles in the party’s history in 2012 – winning majorities back in both legislative chambers, winning the seat in the 8th congressional district, and playing an instrumental role in defeating both divisive constitutional amendments. Under his leadership, the DFL Party now sits at the apex of political power – now holding more electoral power than at any other point in the DFL party’s history.
Before his election as Chair, Ken spent the past two decades working for several elected officials and managing a variety of issue and election campaigns. In 2010 Ken worked to elect a DFL governor as the Executive Director of WIN Minnesota and then as the Director for Governor Dayton`s recount efforts. In 2008, Ken ran the Vote Yes campaign to pass the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment, a ballot initiative to dedicate funding to Minnesota`s arts, environmental and historical treasures. It is the largest conservation finance measure in the nation to ever become law.
For many years Ken has helped our candidates here in Minnesota and around the country. His extensive campaign experience includes playing leadership roles on the following campaigns: Hatch for Governor in 2006, Kerry for President in 2004, Humphrey for Secretary of State in 2002, Gore/Lieberman Minnesota in 2000 and various other races at the national, state, and local levels. Ken served as the Political Director for the Minnesota DFL in the 1998 cycle and as the Field Director for the Kansas Democratic Party in the 1996 cycle.
He has served on the DFL Party as a member of the State Executive Committee, Budget Committee and other Party offices since 1997.
Ken holds a B.A. in Political Science and History from the University of Kansas. He and his wife, Jennifer O`Rourke, currently live in Eagan, MN with their two sons, Sam (10) and James (8) and spend most of their time attending numerous school and athletic activities.
Roberta Lange (View Bio »)
Roberta has worked as an activist and elected leader in Democratic organizations and professional consultant in national, state, and local campaigns for over twenty-five years. Recently Roberta was recognized by Campaign & Elections magazine as one of Nevada’s top 50 influencers and named to Who’s Who in Nevada in 2012 and 2014.
Moving to Nevada in 1995, to marry Ken Lange, former Executive Director of the Nevada State Education Association, Roberta joined the staff of Durango High School in Clark County. In 1998, she left teaching to become the Deputy Campaign Manager for U.S. Senator Harry Reid in 1998 and served as Operations Manager for the dramatic recount. Turning full time to politics, working as Finance Director for Bernstein for U.S. Senate, Operations Manager for Tom Gallagher for Congress, and Nevada State Director for Bill Richardson for President.
Currently Roberta is serving her second term as Chairwoman of the Nevada State Democratic Party, working tirelessly to elect Democrats and build the Democratic Party. In 2012 Roberta proudly led the Nevada Delegates at the DNC Convention to nominate the President for a second term.
Recently, her peers re-elected her to a second term on the Democratic National Committee Executive Committee and the Association of State Chairs Executive Board representing the Western Region.
Roberta is married to Ken Lange, currently a PhD student at the University of Nevada Las Vegas studying Public Policy. They have 4 children, Hilary, Jake, Liz, and Taylor and four grandchildren, Nate, Charlotte, Erick, and Xavier.
Association of State Democratic Executive Directors
Sally Boynton Brown (View Bio »)
- Idaho Executive Director
Sally was first hired by the Idaho Democratic Party at the start of 2011 as their Field Director and became the Communication Director in November of 2011 and then moved into the Executive Director position in March of 2012. She received her B.A. in Communications from Boise State University in 2005 and began her career in politics shortly afterwards. She specializes in building volunteer capabilities and operational structure for successful campaigns. She ran Rep. Sue Chew’s legislative campaign in 2006 and Rep. Phylis King’s legislative campaign in 2008. In 2010, she was Gubernatorial candidate Keith Allred’s Field Director/Volunteer Organizer. Sally strongly believes that democracy only works when individuals participate to the fullest extent possible. Voting is just the beginning step to ensuring our Government is of, by and for the people. Sally is an Idaho native. She enjoys yoga, running, hiking, and escaping into any of Idaho’s natural playgrounds – from our hot springs to our back country. She and her husband are raising their two beautiful daughters in Boise.