Each candidate was asked to provide a brief answer to the question: Why do you want to serve on the Executive Board of the Ann Arbor Democratic Party?


Jessica Kelly

Chair

During my 2018 campaign for AAPS Board of Education, I approached thousands of our neighbors to talk about schools, and I found that folks are eager to talk about all other aspects of our community and local government, too. I believe that the AADP should be the place where neighbors, community leaders, and our elected officials can come together to learn, think, and discuss the issues that face Ann Arbor today. From local policing to water safety to gearing up to make Democratic candidates successful in their 2020 elections, the AADP has an important role in the conversation.

Years ago, I was active in my local Democratic party. I knocked on thousands of doors, organized other canvassers as a precinct captain, and did advertising for John Dingell and progressive organizations from 2003 to 2008. I loved that work, but stepped away from it when we moved towns with our three small children.

If I am elected as Chair, I will bring my facilitation skills, my passion for public service, and my dedication to the Democratic Party to the job. I believe in Democrats working together at all levels, and I believe that I can help the AADP focus on the work we need to do to further our shared ideals.


Megan Foster Friedman

Secretary

As Secretary, I'll work to ensure that our organizational structure contributes to our success, with a goal of transparency and inclusion in our club's processes. I'll commit to holding regular, consistent membership meetings, with meeting agendas and materials published ahead of time, and meeting minutes posted in a timely fashion. With the project management skills I've built during my career, I'll make sure that we as a club are doing what we need to do to achieve our goals and build a healthy organization. I've lived in Ann Arbor for five years, and I'm proud to call this lovely, welcoming city my home. While I am a relative newcomer to local politics, I have been working and volunteering in public policy and politics for my entire adult life. I've worked in government at the federal and local levels, serving as a legislative aide in the U.S. Senate and working in the office of Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan. When I lived in Washington, D.C., I worked at the Women's Campaign Fund and She Should Run, nonprofit organizations dedicated to electing more women to public office. I've volunteered on several campaigns in Ann Arbor, across Michigan, and at the national level. With a Master's in Public Policy from U of M and a passion for local policy and politics, I'll bring an analytic, detail-oriented, goal-focused approach to my leadership role with the Ann Arbor Dems. I hope I can earn your support, and look forward to working together.


During my run for City Council in 2017, I knocked on many doors and spoke to a wide range of people about their concerns for the city.  I also saw that many people were not aware of how they could get involved themselves and a sense of frustration that came with it.

This concerned me as I believe everyone should have some voice and I will work to ensure that nobody is shut out of any discussion, I think many people are not aware of groups like the Ann Arbor Democratic Party and I would like to work on changing that.

I have been actively involved in my community from addressing safety concerns in our neighborhood with the city and organizing a resident led petition drive for traffic calming measures.  

I currently work as a Commercial Operations lead for a large Consulting company; implementing and tracking all aspects of the work we do for a large Health Care account.  I believe the experience I have with writing policy, ensuring all areas of compliance, and communication will serve well in the Vice Chair – Organizing.

Also, as some know I am an actor.   With that comes a unique skill set of listening, finding creative solutions to problems, communication, and working with others to achieve a common goal.

I have served on the Board of Ann Arbor Civic Theatre where I wrote and implemented a new by-law and worked to ensure the stability of their Second Stage program.  I also served on the Board of Managers of the New York Choral Society during a period of financial instability where we helped usher the group through that time and it is now thriving.

I love our community.  I know that others are passionate about it as well.  I believe there are many ways to approach any problem or issue and that we can all work together to achieve our common goals.  With that in mind I look forward to working with the executive committee and the membership as whole on any issues and moving the AADP into the future.

Jared Hoffert

Vice-Chair of Organizing


Ingrid Ault

Vice-Chair of Programs

As a life long resident of Ann Arbor, I am deeply committed to the preservation of life and community in our area. I have been involved in varying capacities with the Ann Arbor Dems over the years, recently as the VC of Policy and Bylaws.

I’m interested in moving into the role of VC of Programming, as I have served as Chair of the Parks and Recreation Commission, VC of the Housing and Human Services Advisory Board, and VP of Meals on Wheels to name a few of the human services organizations I have been involved with. Plus I believe my experience and connections as an Urban Planner for MSU Extension (a statewide role) and the Executive Director for Think Local First (a local role) positions me well to serve in this position.

I have done a fair amount of event planning from small venues up to hosting 1,200 people. I have recruited and funded national speakers to present on topics in our area. I believe in open and transparent government that is inclusive to all, but mostly as an urban planner, I’m proud of my work seeking out and engaging underserved populations. I have a track record for increasing outreach on the projects that I work on.

I am asking for your vote, as I believe strongly in our community. I would like to bring thoughtful programming to the Ann Arbor Democrats monthly meetings. My thoughts at this time are hosting speakers on relevant local topics, Q and A from our local leaders, and anything else that the membership is interested in learning. As a planner, I listen first and then act. Thank you for your consideration.


Having been involved with multiple democratic clubs over the last few years, I see a great opportunity to grow the Ann Arbor Democrats presence within the community. We started many good projects in 2018, including beginning to re-do our website, adding hundreds of subscribers to our email list and Facebook page, and hosting successful events such as the chili cook-off and Labor Day picnic.

Being involved with communications for the Washtenaw Dems and 12th District Dems, allows for our local democratic club to be interconnected with other local activists, and the information the can help us distribute. This is an invaluable asset.

I would like to continue my board service with a goal of increased transparency in our meeting announcements and minutes, completing our website re-design, and helping the next Chair and Executive Board of the Ann Arbor Dems deliver regular email and social media content to our members about local issues and candidates.

Jeremy Glick

Vice-Chair of Communications


I am involved in Democratic Party organizations from the local to the national level. I have a passion to work for Unity !!! We are stronger together.

Mary Hall-Thiam

Vice-Chair of Statewide

Engagement


I would like to work to increase involvement by younger and more diverse audiences. I would also like to directly connect the Sierra Club (I'm on the Executive Committee) with A2 Dems. Both to increase Democratic voter turnout in future elections to make sure Ann Arbor, Michigan, and (fingers crossed) the country continue to elect Democratic representatives.

Jason Frenzel

Vice-Chair of Membership


I am a longtime Ann Arbor resident interested in developing a welcoming and inclusive membership program for the Ann Arbor Democratic Party. If elected, I would work closely with other Board members (especially Programs and Communications) to create a support structure for new members and help people figure out where they fit best within the organization. I am creative, collaborative, and will work diligently to advance the goals and priorities of the Party.

Natalie Fulkerson

Vice-Chair of Membership


It will be crucial for the Ann Arbor Dems and the College Dems at UM to be connected ahead of the 2020 elections - I think we can do a lot of good work together to register voters and knock doors in the community and I plan to stay in Ann Arbor for a while, so I would love to facilitate that connection and make sure the groups are being more collaborative than they've been in the past.

Kellie Lounds

College Dems Liaison