The Green Party of Texas Annual State Meeting took place Saturday and Sunday at the Bethlehem United Center on the southeast side. We spent a whole business day Saturday conducting, y'know, business, plus five hours Sunday. The Party business was interspersed with some mighty fine meals.
One of several items of business conducted at this past weekend's Annual State Meeting of the Green Party of Texas was the election of a mostly new State Executive Committee. The photo above shows how transparent the process of vote-counting was: Everybody not only got to observe but to participate. Yes, the furniture in the photo is rather low to the ground: We retreated to the Bethlehem Center's Pre-K classroom to tabulate the ballots.
- Young Dallasites Aaron Renaud and Roy Carl Stanley were elected co-chair and secretary, respectively. Aaron will serve alongside Harris County's Laura Palmer.
- Yes, Dallas County is back, several years after the DCGP disintegrated in a storm of acrimony.
- The youthquake (defining youth as "those under 45") continued in the election of the five at-large members, including 2014 Railroad Commission candidate Martina Salinas (Tarrant County), District 18 Congressional candidate Remington Alessi (Harris), Father Fred Clarkson (Harris County Secretary), and Joel Brotzman-Gonzales (Cameron). Also elected a member-at-large was outgoing GPTX Secretary Dan Monahan (El Paso).
- There will still be some GPTX veterans on the Committee to provide needed experience and serve as its "institutional memory."
Young people in charge means that the Party has a future in this state. True, we have placed energetic, articulate young people in positions of responsibility before, and then seen them disappear as job opportunities or other interests took precedence, or they got cross-wise with somebody older and more stubborn, or they just burned out and never returned. If, as I hope, we have learned from those losses, we can prevent such attrition from happening again.
Texas also has a mostly new slate of delegates to the National Committee, with Seven of Nine new faces in our delegation. The indomitable outgoing state co-chair kat swift and the awesomely cantankerous Paul Pipkin will continue to serve in this capacity. They will not be paid for this service. (You couldn't pay me enough to serve on the NC, a high-stress-low-thanks job if ever there was one.)
Other business in Fort Worth included the usual discussion of amendments to our state by-laws and platform; a workshop on using NationBuilder for contacting volunteers; and a presentation by Laura Pressley, a recent candidate for Austin City Council who has pretty definitive proof that the Travis County Clerk's office not only commits election fraud, but is really good at it.
Although I understand its importance, I'm not big on by-law and platform work. I'd prefer to hand that stuff off to a committee of members who enjoy it, consigning that work to committees may become a necessity.
For me, the absolute highlight of the entire weekend was seeing my Green Siblings from all over the state, especially kat. But the bonus highlight was the presence of David Cobb, one of the founders of the Harris County and Texas Green Party organizations. He was also the 2004 Presidential nominee, and now he serves as a leading light for Move to Amend. He was not a delegate at the state meeting, but his Remembrance of Things Past and his very presence were invaluable. Cobb has dwelt in Northern California since just after his 2002 campaign for Texas Attorney General (spoiler alert: he didn't win), but now he is moving back, hoping to settle in Hays County just south of Austin.
DK Cobb (who at times sounds eerily like Jello Biafra) is back. I wish I could even convey how deliriously excited that makes me.