Dear friends,

Wow! What a summit – thank you to everyone who made it and those who helped make it possible, especially our New Colossus sponsor: The Woman's National Democratic Club!

In the morning, we learned from leading attorneys, refugees, policy experts and elected officials. Check out our website for all the speakers and bios. After lunch,, founded by Mark Zuckerberg, led a media training on effectively delivering an immigration policy message and your personal immigrant story. I’ve attached the PowerPoint for your use and reference. We also welcomed surrogates from all five candidates on Tuesday’s ballot.

This was the first of our three summits scheduled for this term. Mark your calendar for our second summit: Preventing Gun Violence on October 7th at Virginia Tech campus. It’s presented in partnership with the Young Democrats at Virginia Tech, led by President Charlotte Elwood. After a morning of panel discussions, we will put our words into action by canvassing to elect a common sense advocate, Chris Hurst!

Thanks again! 

Fight Back (your advocacy portal)
The Census - I know that sounds insanely boring but it’s really, really important. It determines representation in Congress, federal and state funding and underlies all government data.

45 is screwing this up too. The Census Director is resigning over a lack of resources; they cancelled the test run in Puerto Rico; and they’re on the verge of cancelling the West Virginia trial. If you’re interested in organizing a non-partisan effort to trigger strategic, federal pressure points, please let Maggie ( and I know ASAP. We especially need folks with connections to common sense, center/center-right leaders.

 The Battlefield (your campaign portal)


Go help your favorite candidate then vote on June 13th - see you at the polls!

Non-Virginia Battle Field


Jon Ossoff has raised an incredible amount of money and he has a slight-slight-slight lead in the polls, but Karen Handel has tradition and a hefty war chest on her side. Jon recently opened a strong lead and VAYD is making an impact. Some of our members are down in Georgia canvassing and others are hosting phone backs here at home.


Apparently in Trump’s America, you can body slam a reporter the day before you election and still get elected to Congress.

One note: Many Montanans vote by mail. According to anecdotal evidence from clerks/registrars, there were many calls about changing votes but Montana is one of only a few states that do not allow mail-in ballots to be changed. Perhaps Congressman-elect Gianforte is softer than he appears?


This district was represented by a Democrat from 1882-2011 and from 1832-1882, expect for three terms. Archie Parnell vs Ralph Norman; I’ve heard this race is closer positive than expected. Any possible victorious path requires policies and outreach for the district’s large African American population (28.6%).

Innovators (your new idea portal)
Looking to motivate your members to canvass and engage on social media? Check out this idea from EVP Alexsis Rodgers, president of the Metro Richmond Area Young Democrats.

The club is raffling off two JJ tickets with a social media contest. The rules are really simple, see their website.

Summit Thanks:

Everyone who attended!

Our amazing sponsors:

           New Colossus: Woman’s National Democratic Club

           Sponsors: & Tom Perriello for Governor

           Friends: Democratic Asian Americans of Virginia

Host Chapters: Fairfax Young Democrats, Annandale High School Young Democrats and Fairfax Democrats.

Our incredible speakers:

Delegates Mark Keam and Alfonso Lopez,

Nuchhi Currier, New Colossus sponsor and president of the Woman’s National Democratic Club,

Mike Donovan, CEO of Nexus Services,

Arlington Sheriff Beth Arthur and County Board Member Christian Dorsey,

Leading attorneys Hassan Ahmad and Alexia Palacios-Peters and

Experts: Wendy Chan, Landon Shroder, Vivek Patil, Stephen Allen, Mariam Fikre, Monica Sarmiento, Marvin Figueroa (DLOV), Kannan Srinivasan (DAAV) and DNC Member Yasmine Taeb.

My team:

Political Director Maggie Davis for spearheading this effort,

EVP Alexsis Rodgers for her help, support, guidance and day-saving fast thinking and

Former President Jamie Nolan for also helping to save the day and driving up from Richmond.

Social Media Fodder (Even Republicans think Trump is crazy.)

Trump is working to DESTROY rural communities: (The title says it all.) (Farmers take it on the chin in Trump’s budget.) (Rural communities need lifelines, not the Trump budget.) (TrumpCare in Trump country - $590/month increase.)

Mark your calendar

Join NoVa Friends of Refugees for a mentoring event on Saturday from 3-6p at St. George’s Episcopal Church in Arlington.

Join VAYD at the National March for Equality on Sunday; email me for details.

 The primary is June 13th, go vote!

The next VAYD Executive Board Meeting will be held on June 17th at 1p in the DPVA Conference Room. Thanks to Jamie Nolan and Kees Nordin for arranging the location. Stay for the JJ afterwards at 7p, email Jamie ( for the special YD rate of $75. 

Don’t go to bed after the JJ dinner with former Attorney General Eric Holder, dance the night away with the YDs at JJ After Dark! Join us, following dinner at Ms. Girlees for dancing, friends and fun – we’re just two blocks from the Marriott. Sponsorship opportunities are available.

Mark your calendar for our second issue summit: Preventing Gun Violence on October 7th on the campus of Virginia Tech. Following morning discussions, we’ll canvass for common sense advocate, Chris Hurst!

Democratically yours,

James Lewis
President, Virginia Young Democrats