It's 2021, and we here at Sister District remain laser-focused on building progressive power in state legistures. With the GOP doubling down on state-level voter-repression bills, there's no time to waste! This year we'll support Virginia's fragile Democratic majority, and through our new State Bridges initiative, work to strengthen on-the-ground collaborations with local organizers in VA and in critical 2022 midterm states (AZ, FL, GA, MI, NC, NH, PA, TX, WI, MN, CO, NV). We're supporting New Virginia Majority, one of the most effective grassroots organizations in the state, and one of Stacey Abrams' faves (!). Donate to NVM now!
ANNOUNCING (TA DA)... OUR CANDIDATES OF 2021
This is a banner general-election year in Virginia, with a competitive gubernatorial race and a fragile Blue majority in the House of Delegates at stake. Under the current Blue trifecta, Democrats have made thrilling gains in the Commonwealth - death penalty repealed! ERA ratified! Medicaid expanded! Voting Rights Act passed! and so much more! - but we must protect and expand the majority in order to pass other critical progressive legislation, e.g. banning assault weapons, raising the minimum wage, and implementing pandemic-recovery measures.
MEET ELIZABETH GUZMAN
Delegate Guzman came to the US more than two decades ago as a young single mother with just $300 in her pocket. After putting herself through community college and two Master's degrees, she built a career as a social worker protecting children from abuse. She delivered the 2018 Spanish-language response to Trump's State of the Union address, and has become one of the most prolific, progressive voices in Virginia politics, crafting legislation around voting rights, public-union collective bargaining, green-jobs investment, and worker protections... to name a few.
MEET CHRIS HURST
Delegate Hurst has a Boston connection, having graduated from Emerson College in 2009 with a BA in Broadcast Journalism. He began his career as a journalist, but left the industry to run for office after recovering from a profound tragedy, when his girlfriend and fellow journalist Alison Parker was murdered on live television. Sister District supported Chris when he first ran successfully for office in 2017. As a Delegate, he has fought tirelessly for increased access to mental health care, stronger gun safety laws, and quality and affordable schools.
MEET ROSLYN TYLER
Delegate Tyler was born and raised in Emporia, VA, and was first elected to the state's General Assembly in 2005. She's served as Clinical Coordinator of Physical Therapy at Southern Virginia Regional Medical Center for 20+ years, and is a member of the Virginia Physical Therapist Association. In the legislature, Roslyn chairs the House of Delegates Education Committee and serves on the Appropriations and the Agriculture Chesapeake and National Resources Committees. And - music to our ears - she's the organizer for the 75th District Gospel Choir.
All three of our candidates have earned a 100 percent rating from the Virginia Education Association, and a proud zero percent rating from the NRA.
Phonebanking has started! See our Mobilize Events Page to sign up for our weekly phonebank and see a complete list of upcoming events and actions you can take!
MORE ABOUT US
Our Past Candidates
Now, John's a State Senator, and Jennifer is running for Governor!
Historially heavy GOP gerrymandering made our victories in Florida and Pennsylvania especially sweet.
Blue Wave, baby: we helped usher in a blue trifecta in Virginia! With GOP obstructionists out of the way, Virginia has expanded Medicaid to 450K residents, protected undocumented immigrants, and passed gun-safety legislation -- a historic achievement given the state's centrality in the infamous "Iron Pipeline." BONUS: VA just became the first Southern state to pass a Voting Rights Act!
Between the pandemic, rampant voter suppression, and Former Guy, this was a tough year for first-time progressive candidates. We lost...this time. But we helped sow the seeds for future progressives, and supported the Black Male Voter Project , BlackPAC, Black Voters Matter, Higher Heights, TheCollective, and Voting While Black -- six organizations amplifying Black electoral power.
We've also taken part in Sister District Action Network's voter-engagement initiatives; forged partnerships with Reclaim Our Vote, MassVOTE, and Ohio Progressive Action Leaders' Mission Vote to expand voter registration; and maintained ongoing relationships with Indivisible and other progressive groups in New England.
2020 in Numbers:
These numbers represent the work of our MA-RI team. For the national effort, see the Sister District impact report.