Meeting Minutes – May 22, 2024

Disclaimer: timing and order of agenda items is tentative, subject to the availability of our guests and speakers.


We acknowledge that our legislative district is on the traditional homelands of the Puyallup and Muckleshoot tribes, who have lived on and stewarded these lands since the beginning of time, and continue to do so today. We recognize that this land acknowledgement is one small step toward true allyship and we commit to uplifting the voices, experiences, and histories of the Indigenous people of this land and beyond.

Participation in the Pledge is totally voluntary. Leroy leads us in the pledge.

APPROVAL OF AGENDA   Brian G: Moved to approve agenda Andrea O: Seconded. Agenda unanimously approved

READ/APPROVAL OF PRIOR MEETING MINUTES  Sarah E: Thank you to Helen Mansfield for taking last month’s minutes. Rudy A  motioned to approve Michelle DP  seconded. Approved unanimously.

ENDORSEMENT REQUESTS FYI: Only one US congressional candidate can be endorsed by the 31st LD Dems — according to our by-laws. Each of the following candidates were allotted from 10 to 3 minutes to address the assembled members and guests, followed by an additional brief period for Questions and Answers.

  • Hilary Franz6th U.S. Cong. District (questionnaire) (10 minutes.)
  • WA State Sen. Emily Randall6th U.S. Cong. District (questionnaire)  (10 minutes)
  • Ryan MelloPierce County Executive (questionnaire) (3 minutes)
  • Sara Sutterfield31st Legislative District Rep, Position 1 [no questionnaire] (3 minutes)
  • Philip ThorntonPierce County Superior Court, Dept 10 (questionnaire) (5 minutes)
  • Brian Gunn31st Legislative District Rep, Position 2 [no questionnaire] (3 minutes)


(By-laws allow only one endorsement of candidate per U.S. Congressional District)

Michelle DP moved to endorse Hillary Franz. Rudy A seconded. Michelle DP spoke on behalf of Hillary and her efforts to bring community together and address issues that are critical to our state. “She is knowledgeable and representative of the values that resonate with me.” Judith C: “Hillary was slow to enact programs for wildfire programs where I own property—And she didn’t answer my question about the harvesting of Legacy Forests 100 year old trees, and she is now taking funds from the company who profited. Kirby P:  Comm of Pub Lands “job” is management and fire prevention—which funds the school system in our state. This is part of her job. Some of the land that is forested –is a renewable crop; this is not old growth national forest. This is about harvesting and tree planting—and protecting waterways. John G: Emily is also a really good candidate—but I’m supporting Hillary, I worked for the DNR—for 34 years. Worked in High value ecosystem for their natural values, not commercial—hardcore conservation, Hillary promoted and advocated for those conservation areas.  Hillary was the strongest advocate for conservation values of all the Comm’s I worked for. Poll for voting was launched to qualifying members. 11 votes: 8 to 3 in favor of endorsing Hillary Franz.

Hillary Franz has been endorsed by the 31st LD Dems.

Judith C moved to endorse Camille Schaffer for Superior Court. Rudy A seconded. Judith C spoke on her behalf: “Camille has a lot of volunteer experience and I spoke with her personally about her role as a justice –she was patient and informative and worked as judge protem during Covid shutdown.  Sarah E opened the vote to endorse Camille Schaffer.

Camille Schaffer is unanimously endorsed by 31st LD Dems.

Brian G moved to endorse Ryan Mello. Rudy A seconded. Ryan has done great job on the council, instrumental in working across the other district to encourage democratic candidates to serve on the council. And his back ground on the conservation district.

Ryan Mello is unanimously approved for endorsement

Robin M moved to endorse Phillip Thornton.  John G seconded. Robin M spoke on his behalf based on his experience and overall demeanor would be an asset on the bench. Rudy A also spoke on his behalf. Phillip Thornton has been endorsed by the 31st LD

Sarah E: There are (2) additional candidates requesting endorsements tonight; we would need to vote to waive requirements for their endorsement to proceed. Chellie DP moved to waive requirement for questionnaire for Brian Gunn. Tamara S seconded. Mark B spoke on Brian’s behalf. Unanimously approved to waive requirement for questionnaire. Mark Boswell moved to endorse Brian Gunn for State rep Pos 2. Rudy A: Seconded.

Brian Gunn is officially Unanimously endorsed by the 31st LD.

Chellie DP moved to waive requirements for Sara Sutterfield. Brian G seconded. Chellie spoke on her behalf. Brian G: “We are both last minute filers who share strong democratic values.” Chellie DP moved to endorse Sara Sutterfield. Brian G seconded: Chellie: “Brava for Sara to step up and run and let’s help her get going.”

Sara Sutterfield is unanimously endorsed by the 31st LD.

Corey Young has applied to become a PCO: Brian G moved to appoint Corey Young, Judith Chelotti seconded. Corey is a new 31st LD member who applied for PCO during filing week.

Corey Young s unanimously approved as new PCO.

Rudy A moved to contribute $500 to Ryan Mello’s campaign. Judith C seconded. We all believe he would make a great P ty exec and we should do everything we can to support him. We have a total of $2500 for the year for candidates. Motion approved unanimously to contribute $500 to Ryan Mello’s campaign.

Andrea O. motioned to donate $500 to Brian Gunn’s campaign. Rudy A seconded. We know him—we support him 200%. Motion unanimously approved to contribute $500 to Brian Gunn’s campaign.

Mark B motioned to contribute $500 to Sarah Sutterfield for her campaign. Brian G seconded. Rudy A: Sarah is a very enthusiastic candidate. More than money—we need to help her by tutoring and coaching her. Motion unanimously approved to contribute $500. to Sarah Sutterfield campaign.


Treasurer’s Report: Mark D: Brian G moved to approve. Robin M seconded. Report approved.

Andrea Ornealus has qualified as a WA representative for the National Convention

Book Club meeting May 29 6-8pm at Muckleshoot Library

Summer Fairs coming up: schedule to be posted: We need volunteers to sign up for 2-hour slots—bring a friend, partner, spouse! New, colorful booth this year with great info.


Pierce County Dems are recruiting 2024 Election Observers and will train volunteers for primary and general elections. Your chance to be on the “front line” It is fun & exciting!


Brian G: Motioned to adjourn Tamara S Seconded.

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