Updated: Oct 4, 2021
LITTLE ROCK, AR一 The Young Democrats of Arkansas are proud to congratulate our party’s new leadership, especially Chair Grant Tennille, and we send our gratitude to Interim Chair, now-sitting Vice-Chair Nicole Hart.
The Young Democrats of Arkansas also extend our congratulations to new Vice-chair of County Parties Dustin Parsons and Treasurer Phillip Hood. We urge every officer in the Democratic Party of Arkansas to prioritize transparency and open communication.
The Young Democrats of Arkansas affirms our support for many of the much-needed reforms passed today, but must admit our disappointment to see other, necessary reforms not receive a vote today, including one proposal to update the party’s rules because of outdated language. The requirement that the chair and vice-chair be of opposite sexes could have been altered and the rules could be more inclusive of our trans and gender-nonconforming members.
Especially in light of the constant legislative attacks directed at trans people in our state and across the nation, we urge the Democratic Party of Arkansas to do everything it can to ensure that people of all gender identities feel like they have a place in our party.
“Leadership changes can be hard, but with energetic voices like Chair Grant Tennille, I feel confident that we have the enthusiasm in the State Party, and within the Young Democrats, to get to work and get it done,” said Young Democrats of Arkansas President Micah Wallace. “Just today, Arkansas Democrats showed up across the state to fight for reproductive justice, and I believe that we should be (hesitantly) hopeful and stay motivated.”
“The state party must be a service center,” said Democratic Party of Arkansas Chair Grant Tenille, in a statement to the Democratic Party of Arkansas State Committee preceding his election.
The Young Democrats of Arkansas are proud to report that we have filled two seats on our Executive Committee, our Executive Vice President and Vice President of High Schools. At our Chapter Presidents’ meeting following the YDAR Leadership Inclusivity Training, R. Roosevelte Williams III (pictured below) accepted the role of Executive Vice-President and was confirmed by the Local Presidents’ Assembly and Executive Committee.
“I am excited to be able to work with like-minded Democrats to carry out a plan of action that is bold, inclusive, and strategic,” said Executive Vice President R. Roosevelte Williams III. “As we continue to grow and develop our team, I want Democrats across Arkansas to know that we value your time, your energy, and your experience. We can push forward, together.”
Williams comes onto the team ready to serve, aiming to strengthen outreach to college campuses, to have young adults take better ownership of their vote, and to align service and outreach minded constituents with the efforts of our party leaders and elected officials. R. Roosevelte Williams III previously ran for State Representative in Central Arkansas. A Central Arkansas Young Democrat, Williams works with educators and students at a college in Little Rock.
Our Vice-President of High Schools position has been filled by ASMSA Young Democrat Talana Small, who has agreed to serve as the mouthpiece of the high school caucus and their representation on the Executive Committee.
The Young Democrats of Arkansas will continue to stand in solidarity with those fighting for Arkansans to have access to healthcare, across the state. Whether care is inaccessible because of restrictive costs, our broken healthcare system, or anti-choice laws, the Young Democrats that showed up in every Congressional District to fight for reproductive justice today will keep showing up when healthcare access is restricted.
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