Bristol Democrats welcome new members to committee

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The Bristol Democratic Town Committee  met on Monday, Jan. 27, the first time since its caucus elections were held earlier in the month. The Town Committee welcomed 15 new members to the organization, three months ahead of the Presidential Primary, which will take place on Tuesday, April 28.

The Bristol Democratic Town Committee is organized by voting precincts – six members from within the neighborhoods covered by the nine polling precincts are elected to represent that area.

“The 54 members serve two year terms and are elected each January of even-numbered years,” stated DTC Chairman Dean Kilbourne in a press release. “For the first time, we now have more women on the DTC then men. We also welcomed several members under 30 as well as a half-dozen minority members.”

Lanita Thomas came to the caucus because she wanted to get more involved in the community, said the press release. She was elected to fill one of the six seats at her South Side School polling place and is looking forward to the campaign.

“I grew up here and am raising my family here. I love Bristol and seeing all the recent growth made me want to be a part of it,” said Thomas in the press release. “I also want to encourage my generation to come forward, and show others that we all have the opportunity to make a difference.”

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Melissa Balsam moved back to Connecticut last summer to be with her father. Active in Texas state politics, Melissa volunteered at Democratic headquarters on the City Council campaign of her childhood friend Greg Hahn, knocking on doors for him and Scott Rosado to victories in the competitive First Council District, said the news release.

“I really enjoyed being back on the campaign trail and my husband also helped out with some graphic designs,” stated Balsam in the press release. “So we decided to get more involved by joining the 77-02 Precinct at Northeast School. “We are thrilled to be back living in my hometown with all the exciting things happening.”

The purpose of the Democratic Town Committee is to identify and endorse potential candidates for office, create platform issues that are important to the voters, and support the races of Democratic candidates for election, said the press release. The DTC will typically open a headquarters and fund political activities like meet and greet for the candidates, organize volunteers and help candidates get the word out about their campaigns.

Jack Ferraro is one of the longest serving members of the DTC, having joined almost 50 years ago as a Young Democrat. “I have been a Democrat all my life, and worked on my very first when I was in middle school,” he said in the press release. “During these 50 years, I have seen many changes in politics, and have made some wonderful friends along the way. Like all organizations, we always need new volunteers and members. There is nothing like taking part and being a voice in your party, government, community and representing your constituents.”

“The DTC has always been a snapshot of what Bristol looks like,” Mayor Ellen Zoppo-Sassu stated in the release. “I remember when the room was filled with UAW members who worked at General Motors, and when a ton of new faces came out in 2008 and then in 2016 because of the Presidential elections. It’s a wonderful way to meet people and get involved in your community at the grassroots level.”

The Bristol Democratic Town Committee meets on the fourth Monday of the month, at 7 p.m., in the City Council Chambers at City Hall. The meetings are open to the public and all registered Democrats are welcome to attend.

For information, visit www.bristolctdems.us.