Update from Hunter Mill District School Board Member Melanie Meren

Concluding this school year brings with it a whirlwind of emotions. While there is much to celebrate, there have also been incidents in our community and nation that should bring us great pause. 

I remain committed to working with other elected officials to provide safe learning and living environments for the children and adults. Here are some updates on these latest efforts:

  • Gun violence prevention:
    • FCPS has a plethora of information here, sadly, for student support resources regarding gun violence prevention as well as about FCPS’ safety practices
    • The School Board approved my motion to prioritize $15 million of the Fiscal Year 23 Budget to ensure all facilities have “security vestibules” – a needed strategy that you can read about here in this Fairfax Now article
    • At the June 16 public Regular Meeting, the Board adopted a guns-free school policy.
    • I am seeking opportunities to inform the community about what levels of government – local, state, federal – are responsible for gun violence prevention policy and laws. If this is something you’d like to be involved in, please contact me here
  • Traffic and pedestrian safety:
    • I continue to work with FCPS and Fairfax County staff, alongside community members, to improve transit safety for pedestrians, cyclists, and vehicles. While improvements have been made near several Hunter Mill District schools, please be sure that you prioritize driving responsibly.
  • Welcoming a new Superintendent:
    • The June 30 public Regular Meeting will include the Administration of the Oath of Office for FCPS’ incoming Superintendent, Dr. Michelle Reid. The public is welcome to attend, and details will be updated on Board Docs, here. Dr. Reid brings vision, enthusiasm, creativity, and curiosity to the implementation of excellent public education. I am thrilled to have this 2021 National Superintendent of the Year at the helm of our public schools beginning July 1!  
  • Investing in environmentally sustainable schools:
    • Providing a secure learning environment includes having spaces that mitigate climate change, and preparing students for workforce needs to implement climate change solutions. Through my collaborative efforts with Board Members and staff to identify funding, FCPS is doubling the number of staff in Fiscal Year 23, who work centrally to support environmental education and sustainable facilities! To be transparent, it’s going from two to four people – but it’s progress! This is one step in a multi-year approach to expand professional development, outdoor learning spaces, and content including STEM core academics so that ultimately, every student in FCPS experiences the research-proven success of environmental education on academic and emotional learning, in spaces that promote greater sustainability of resources.
    • FCPS is hiring a new Assistant Superintendent for Facilities and Transportation. This is an opportunity to further the community’s green goals. If you have suggestions for candidates, please inform me!

              Melanie Meren
               Hunter Mill District School Board Member
               Melanie.Meren@fcps.edu 

Get Tickets for the May 22 Lasagna Dinner!

46th Annual Hunter Mill Democrats Lasagna Dinner

Join us for our 46th Annual Hunter Mill District Democrats Lasagna Dinner on May 22. We are coming back from the hiatus due to the pandemic and we will be making sure to take some extra precautions as we come back to an in-person event. Our Hunter Mill District Democratic Committee is our signature event of the year and a very important fundraiser to help support our Democratic candidates. Our format will follow previous years with a reception and a dinner program. The Lasagna Dinner is an excellent opportunity to invite local democrats who might not be familiar with our committee and interact with our elected officials in a casual setting. As always, we will be awarding two awards during the ceremony: the Ed Herlihy Activist Award and the Martha Pennino Community Service Award. These awards denote exceptional service both within the Democratic Party and throughout our Hunter Mill District community. 

Buy your tickets today! Ticket prices will increase on May 11. It is crucial that we have the resources to support our candidates and voter outreach into the community. This work is especially important following the devastating losses in 2021.  Our committee will support Democratic candidates like Congressman Gerry Connolly and prepare for the important 2023 election year too. The Hunter Mill Democrats Lasagna Dinner is a volunteer lead operation and we are still looking for some volunteers. If you are interested in lending your talents or donating some food, you can sign up here. We will be adding some updates about the Lasagna Dinner over the next weeks so be on the lookout and we hope you are able to join us.

First Hunter Mill Meeting of 2022 on Wednesday, January 12

Meeting Graphic

Happy New Year, Hunter Mill Democrats! Thank you for joining the party for the 2022–2023 biennium. We’re glad to have you with us, and we have a lot of work to do. We will get started with the first meeting of the biennium on Wednesday, January 12, 2022 starting at 7:30pm. As you are no doubt aware, the COVID-19 pandemic is still very much with us, so the meeting will be held virtually via Zoom (register here). We look forward to seeing everyone for the new biennium.

Also, don’t miss the Fairfax County Democrats reorganization meeting the night before ours on Tuesday, January 11. There, voting members will be able to vote for County Officers and other important priorities for FCDC.

Early Voting Has Begun!

You can help Democrats get out the vote by voting early and removing your door from the ones volunteers must knock before election day.

Where and When to Vote:

North County Governmental Center, 1801 Cameron Glen Dr, Reston

From now – October 30th
Monday – Friday: 12:00pm – 7:00pm
Saturdays, October 23rd and October 30th: 9:00am-5:00pm
Sunday, October 24th: 1:00pm – 5:00pm

Fairfax County Government Center, 12000 Government Center Pkwy, Fairfax

From now – October 30th
Monday – Friday: 8:00am – 4:30pm
Saturdays, October 23rd and October 30th: 9:00am – 5:00pm
Sunday, October 24th: 1:00pm – 5:00pm

The Coordinated Campaign needs help NOW to get out the Democratic vote by knocking doors and calling voters.

To sign up to canvass, use one of these links:
Reston / Herndon: https://www.mobilize.us/virginiaturnoutproject/event/410404/
Reston: https://www.mobilize.us/virginiaturnoutproject/event/409498/
Vienna: https://www.mobilize.us/virginiaturnoutproject/event/410428/

Join the DPVA Northern Virginia phone bank by using this link: https://www.mobilize.us/virginiaturnoutproject/event/403445/

Hunter Mill Democrats need help to staff the Democratic visibility tables at the North County Governmental Center Early Voting site and at the polls on Election Day. If interested, please contact hmdprecinctoperations@gmail.com

Candidate Petition Signing Event!

DATE: Saturday, January 30

TIME: ​​Noon – 2:00pm

LOCATION:​ North County Health Services parking lot
1850 Cameron Glen, Reston,
Across from the North County Governmental Center (police station)

The Hunter Mill District Democratic Committee (HMDDC) recognizes the difficulty Democratic campaigns may be having collecting petition signatures in the pandemic environment.  We want to help.

On Saturday, January 30, HMDDC will be staging a multi-campaign, drive-up event to facilitate signature gathering. All statewide campaigns have been invited to participate. House campaigns for announced candidates serving the Hunter Mill District have also been invited to participate. Confirmed campaigns include:

Governor 

  • Justin Fairfax
  • Jennifer Carroll Foy
  • Terry McAuliffe
  • Jennifer McClellan

Lieutenant Governor

  • ​​Hala Ayala
  • Elizabeth Guzman
  • Mark H. Levine
  • Andria McClellan
  • Sean Perryman
  • Sam Rasoul
  • Xavier Warren

Attorney General

  • Mark Herring
  • Jay Jones

House of Delegates

  • ​​Jennifer Adeli
  • Ibraheem Samirah

We are very aware of pandemic restrictions on outdoor gatherings. Therefore, we are going to set up three areas well-spaced apart where campaigns can be staged to collect signatures from people arriving in their vehicles.

Participants must arrive by car, must stay in their car, and are required to be masked. No walk-ups.

Participants wishing to sign a petition for a House of Delegates candidate must live in that District. You should know in which House District you reside, or at least the candidate’s name.

Participants wishing to sign a petition for a statewide candidate do not have to live the Hunter Mill District. To expedite the process, you should know in which Congressional District you reside.

Participants can sign petitions for more than one candidate in a race!

No registration is required.

Hunter Mill 2021 Virtual Straw Poll Results

On January 7, 2021, the Hunter Mill District Democratic Committee held the first-in-the-Commonwealth straw poll for statewide candidates.

HMDDC had three primary goals for this event: 1) raise money for the committee, 2) present statewide candidates to HMDDC members and volunteers, and 3) get an early look at how the candidates lined up against each other. By most accounts, we achieved all three goals.

The event was open to all, and the individual campaigns were encouraged to bring supporters to participate. Participation did require pre-registration and the purchase of a “ticket.” Over 250 tickets were sold, which exceeded the Committee’s expectations, as did the total amount raised ($6,100+), which included contributions in excess of the ticket price.

It is important to note that this straw poll was not a scientific poll of the candidates’ support across the Commonwealth. Roughly 60% of the ticket purchasers were from Northern Virginia. Fewer than 20% of purchasers were HMDDC members. Participants skewed heavy to the campaigns that recruited them to attend. And voting was done using the Zoom Webinar polling feature which may not be as secure as in-person paper ballots.

In the end, attendees came away excited at the prospects for 2021 in Virginia. Democrats have a strong field of competitive candidates in every statewide race.

Below are the results.

Governor

Three of the announced gubernatorial candidates spoke to attendees. Justin Fairfax and Terry McAuliffe did not attend.

  • Jennifer Caroll Foy: 36%
  • Jennifer McClellan: 36%
  • Lee Carter: 14%
  • Terry McAuliffe: 11%
  • Justin Fairfax: 2%
  • None of the above/No preference: 2%
Lieutenant Governor

Only one of the announced Lt. Governor candidates (Paul Goldman) did not attend the event. Due to technical and timing issues, Elizabeth Guzman did not have the chance to speak until after the poll had been conducted. In an effort to achieve a more equitable result, another poll was taken after Del. Guzman spoke. In the interest of transparency, the results of both polls are shown below. While the need for two polls came about by accident, seeing both numbers may provide some interesting insight. Notably, both polls reflected consistent number 1, 2, and 3, rankings.

First Poll (Before Del. Guzman spoke)

  • Sam Rasoul: 46%
  • Sean Perryman: 24%
  • Elizabeth Guzman: 8%
  • Mark Levine: 7%
  • Hala Ayala: 5%
  • Andria McClellan: 5%
  • Xavier Warren: 3%
  • None of the above/No preference: 2%
  • Paul Goldman: 0%

Second Poll (After Del. Guzman spoke)

  • Sam Rasoul: 45%
  • Sean Perryman: 22%
  • Elizabeth Guzman: 17%
  • Hala Ayala: 6%
  • Andria McClellan: 4%
  • Mark Levine: 3%
  • None of the above/No preference: 1%
  • Xavier Warren: 0%
  • Paul Goldman: 0%
Attorney General

Both announced Attorney General candidates spoke to attendees.

  • Mark Herring: 64%
  • Jay Jones: 30%
  • None of the above/No preference: 6%

Virtual Straw Poll Fundraiser—Statewide Candidates

StrawPollLogo

January 7, 2021 – 7:00 pm

Come Show Support for Your Preferred Candidates!

Please join the Hunter Mill District Democrats for their Virtual Straw Poll Fundraiser on the evening of Thursday, January 7, 2021. All current or expected candidates for Governor, Lt. Governor and Attorney General have been invited to participate. This event will be an excellent opportunity for these candidates to get a sense of their early support in NoVa.

Each candidate will be given an opportunity to make a statement regarding their candidacy. Because of our limited time and the number of candidates, there will be no Q&A. Once all candidates for a particular race have concluded their remarks, participants will be asked to vote virtually for their preferred candidate in that race.

This event is a low-dollar fundraiser. You will need to register in advance, and a non-transferable link will be sent to participants approximately 24 hours prior to the event.

REGISTER HERE

Biden Wins the Presidency!

Congratulations to all Americans on Joe Biden’s victory! We also managed to send our Democratic representatives and Senator back to Washington. Under some of the most difficult circumstances in the history of American elections, you all volunteered and worked tirelessly to turn out and inform voters in record numbers. This victory belongs to every American, but in particular to every Democrat who has put their time and energy into building a blue wave that has sustained over years. We have put so much on the line, even risking our very lives in the face of a global pandemic to fight for what we believe in.

Take some time to relish this incredible victory. Take some time to savor the possibilities for repairing our damaged democracy over the next four years. And rest up so that next year you are ready to fight to keep Virginia’s legislature and statewide offices in Democratic hands.

Here’s to you, Hunter Mill Democrats!

Meet Mac Callahan from the Virginia 2020 Coordinated Campaign

Mac Callahan is a Field Organizer with the Virginia 2020 Coordinated Campaign. His “turf” includes Herndon and North Reston, which overlaps with both Congressional Districts 10 and 11.

Mac is currently taking time off from school as a student at Tufts University in Medford, MA. His experience with campaigns first arose during the 2018 midterms as a volunteer for Senator Angus King’s reelection bid in his hometown of Brunswick, Maine. In December of 2019, Mac moved to Des Moines ahead of the Iowa Caucuses to work for the Biden Campaign. From there, he worked as a Field Organizer in Biden’s Columbia, SC and Tampa, FL field offices for those states’ respective primaries.

After a few months organizing virtually into states on the West Coast, Mac is excited to be a part of the Coordinated Campaign and begin organizing the Herndon-Reston Area to boost Democratic turnout and keep Virginia Blue. While campaigning in the midst of a pandemic certainly is challenging, Mac is prepared to innovate and get scrappy.

Feel free to contact him by email or phone. He is more than happy to get you connected with the Coordinated Campaign.

mac.callahan@virginiavictory.org
(207) 208-6547

Calling ALL Volunteers!

We may not be able to knock on doors but we still need to reach voters in this high stakes election year and we need to get started NOW.
Please sign up to phone bank with us next Thursday, July 9, 2020, 5:00-8:00pm, when we kick off the first of our weekly Thursday Phone Bank Zoom parties. This Thursday we welcome Mac Callahan, Field Organizer for the Virginia 2020 Coordinated Campaign.  He will fill us in on the Coordinated Campaign and get us started on direct calls to voters on behalf of our combined Congressional, Senate and Presidential slate.
We will be phone banking every Thursday from 5:00pm to 8:00pm, so please mark your calendars from now to November and use the link below to register:
https://www.mobilize.us/huntermilldems/event/285405/
For more information contact Hunter Mill Democrats at hmdprecinctoperations@gmail.com