ABOUT US

Our Mission

To elect Democrats up and down the ballot within Maricopa County. 

Our Vision

The Maricopa County Democratic Party (MCDP) works to elect Democrats across Maricopa County. We recruit, train, and promote Democratic candidates in Maricopa County to ensure Democratic values shape policy across the country’s largest battleground county.

To further this vision, MCDP works to:

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Works to increase the number of registered Democratic voters

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Recruits, trains, and promotes registered Democrats as candidates for elected office; supports their campaigns, and assists them in office

Works for and promotes accurate, transparent, and fair elections

Works to get out the vote

Conducts other activities as appropriate to strengthen and promote the aims and objectives of the Democratic Party

Raises funds to support the above activities and to advance our mission

What we stand For

Our Platform

The Maricopa County Democratic Party has developed the following platform – a living doctrine that can be adjusted and changed with the times. We agree these important objectives align with the principles of our diverse party and constituents.

  • Diversity and equity for all are what strengthens our communities and party.
  • Private, for-profit prisons must be eliminated.
  • No border wall. No immigration ban. Stop the deportations. No human being is illegal.
  • Every citizen has the right to vote.
  • People’s voices and grassroots movements to elicit change cannot be ignored. The right to peaceably protest must be protected.
  • We must overturn “Right to Work” and build strong unions (both private and public sector) that will help provide better living wages for workers. Ban the box!
  • We believe in a strong separation of church and state.
  • Public education must be properly funded and teachers should receive the pay they deserve. Public schools are our priority – not vouchers.
  • The right to call for referendum is vital to free society.
  • Climate change is real. It must be addressed immediately.
  • Black Lives Matter.
  • We support common-sense gun reform which includes a ban on assault weapons, studying gun violence as a public health risk, and no guns for domestic abusers.
  • All People should have equal status and protection under the law regardless of gender, race, disability/ability, religious affiliation or lack thereof, sexual orientation, or gender identity.
  • Women’s rights are human rights. The right to choose is essential to women’s rights.
  • Disability rights are civil rights. A barrier-free, inclusive, diverse community empowers and values each individual while creating autonomy, opportunity, and dignity.
  • Healthcare is an inalienable right and there should be universal healthcare for all.
  • Higher education is not a luxury. College, trade schools, and universities should be, as stated in the state constitution, as “nearly free as possible”.
  • We support the rights of all tribal people and their sovereignty rights.
  • Corporations are not people. Dark money must be removed from politics.
  • We support net neutrality. The internet must remain free from corporate control.
  • Equal pay for equal work.

Meet Us

MCDP Executive Board

Nancy Schriber

Nancy Schriber

Chair

As Chair of LD28 for the past four years, I worked hard with my Board to recruit, train, and engage a large community of volunteers that successfully lead to flipping our LD from red to blue. In 2018, we ran and elected a second state representative, and in 2020, our candidate for state senate defeated a 10-year incumbent. I have been involved in my legislative district since 2010, where I learned the value of volunteer recruitment, phone banking, and knocking on doors for local candidates. In 2012,  I became an elected Precinct Committeeperson in Solcito precinct. In 2014, I joined the LD28 Executive Board as secretary and in 2016 became the Chair. My background in strategic planning in healthcare became useful as I worked to strengthen the processes necessary to manage the army of volunteers that emerged after 2016. In 28, we have worked hard to identify and begin regular conversations with our Latino communities in the Sunnyslope and Black canyon areas of our district. Increasing youth involvement is also a priority. Turning LD28 blue has been hard work and resulted from the mobilization of volunteers who tirelessly showed up most Saturdays to knock doors pre-pandemic and showed up each Saturday to phone bank over 120,000 voters during the pandemic. My experience, work ethic, and passion for working down-ballot make the position of MCDP Chair a challenge I am ready to take on. We have so much to do to get ready for 2022.
Patti O'Neil

Patti O'Neil

First Vice Chair

In LD23, Patti ONeil served as a PC, Vice-Chair of Organization Development, and most recently, as the first Latina Chairwomen. As chair, Patti worked with the board to develop a strategy to deploy 150 PCs and 600 volunteers, resulting in the county’s highest dem turnout at 90.9%. She created a Fort McDowell Yavapai Nation (FYMN) board position, so those Tribal Nation members will always have a seat at the table. She collaborated with LD24 to create the South Scottsdale Dem Club, resulting in an 11% increase in Dem turnout in 2020. Patti‘s leadership includes collaboration and inclusiveness as a formula for success.  
Alejandro Larios

Alejandro Larios

Second Vice Chair

Alejandro was born in Los Angeles California to Immigrant parents from Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico. They located in Phoenix, Arizona in the west Phoenix where he first attended school and still lives today. He is an entrepreneur, a former legislative candidate, and sits on the LD30 Democratic Party Executive Board as the Second Vice-Chair.

Having lived in a community that was dealing with a heavy amount of inequality and continued to see cuts in funding for education, after school programs, infrastructure, and was also dealing with attacks from the Sherif’s department, Alejandro began to get politically involved. He began as an active volunteer for the Adios Arpaio campaign after SB1070 was enacted. In 2018 he ran for the Arizona House of Representatives to represent the district he was raised in. Despite falling short of a win, Alejandro’s entrance in the race contributed to the largest voter turnout in District 30. Today, he is fully committed to building power in his community and across the state in order to improve the quality of life for all.

HEATHER MROWIEC

HEATHER MROWIEC

Treasurer

Heather, an IT professional, became involved in politics when a friend asked her to put her nerd credentials to good use by becoming her Congressional campaign Treasurer in 2017.  Enticed by the glamour of spreadsheets and rule interpretation, she found her niche putting her technical skills to use getting Democrats elected.  She engaged in local politics, becoming a PC, East Region Coordinator, and then Treasurer for LD24, where she recovered missing funds and brought district reporting into compliance. Heather also proved her ability to run field efforts by turning out more Dems than ever before in the 2020 General Elections.

REDEEM ROBINSON

REDEEM ROBINSON

Sergeant-At-Arms

Redeem Robinson is a minister, activist and community organizer. He is the founder and pastor of Ebenezer Church – PHX, a new church plant in Phoenix that’s inclusive and affirming for those who identify as LGBTQ+. He has also served in many ministry positions in Tucson, AZ, Baltimore, MD, Eastern North Carolina, Minneapolis, MN, and the Seattle-Tacoma Washington area and has been active in community activism in most of these places. Robinson has a major passion for fighting for justice, equal rights, fighting against poverty, being the voice for the oppressed, and standing up to those who wish to oppress others. He has been active in the Black Lives Matter movement in Tucson and Phoenix. He started the Black Lives Matter Chapter in Tucson in 2015. In 2019, Robinson started the Black Engagement Committee for the Maricopa County Democratic Party and also served as the Deputy Political Director for the former presidential candidate and billionaire, Tom Steyer. Robinson has also worked on many other political campaigns for federal and statewide races, helped organize around immigrant rights, the impeachment of Donald Trump with Need to Impeach, and around police accountability. Recently, he was the Black Outreach Campaign Manager for Arizona Coalition for Change which helped increase Black voter turnout in Arizona by 11%. On November 3, 2020, Robinson was elected to the Governing School Board in the Balsz School District in East Phoenix.

Jade Duran

Jade Duran

Secretary

Jade has spent her entire life taking care of and giving back to people. The oldest of her siblings, a leader in her community, and a role model for her peers; when asked, what gives her passion, she answers “advocacy for those who cannot advocate for themselves.” Much to the chagrin of her wife, she spends all her available time helping those in need, whether they be asylum seekers mistreated by ICE, refugees from the Middle East, at-risk youth, individuals with disabilities, or any underrepresented member of society. Evident by her chosen profession of Medical Device Engineering, she is technical, thorough, and efficient in all aspects of her life. Specifically, because she has such an intense fire for helping those around her, she often forgets and trivializes speaking up for herself. Which is why her wife, Roda, had to write this biography instead. Hi everyone!

Meet Us

MCDP Staff

Maritza Miranda Saenz

Maritza Miranda Saenz

Executive Director

Maritza is the proud daughter of two farmworkers who instilled in her a sense of responsibility to care for her community and be an advocate for others. Currently, Maritza serves as the proud Executive Director of the Maricopa County Democratic Party (MCDP) where she has worked since 2017, serving first as the Director of Operations. She is the former Chair of the Latino Outreach Committee of MCDP and former Vice Chair of Legislative District 27. 

Laura Copple

Laura Copple

Field Director

Laura has served as MCDP’s Field Director since early 2016. Her work at MCDP also includes Precinct Committee/Volunteer Training and has trained more than a thousand people during her years of involvement in the Democratic Party. Laura formerly served as Chair of MCDP and Chair of her legislative district in Scottsdale and Fountain Hills. She is passionate about electing Democrats at every level and knows that a good field program can move the needle enough to win close elections.

Edder Diaz-Martinez

Edder Diaz-Martinez

Communications Director

Edder has been involved in the nonprofit and community advocacy world since 2011. He was first a field organizer, but soon transitioned to communications during his first political campaign. Having produced and hosted his own radio show in the past, he was a natural in this role. Shortly after a few stints with various community organizations, he returned to school and graduated from Arizona State University in the spring of 2018. He previously worked with organizations like Promise Arizona, Mi Familia Vota and One Arizona. 

Meet Us

MCDP Legislative District Chairs

Chris Miller, LD1 Chair

Chris Miller has been a lifelong Democrat and a native of Arizona. Since moving into LD1 over 20 years ago, he was not involved in politics as the area was super red. In 2017, the Presidential election changed his mind to get involved and highly engaged in the local LD. After registering as a PC and taking on the Precinct Captain role for the Majesty Precinct, he was elected to the LD1 Board as First Vice Chair. In 2020, Chris was focused on Election Day work efforts and working through the Field Ops plans during this vastly different election. LD1 had a 90.3% Democratic turnout, the highest ever recorded in the LD. For his day job, Chris also handles a large portfolio for an international technology company focusing on 5G technology and security. He has been traveling internationally for many years and works with people from over 50 countries on a daily basis usually starting his day around 3am. In his spare time, Chris volunteers his time as a Scoring Services Chairman at the Charles Schwab Cup golf tournament(November) and works with the Pac-12 Conference to handle basketball replay during games. Chris and his wife Jill were also highly involved working with asylum seekers housing over 300 asylum seekers at the beginning of 2019. Chris’ goal is to retire early and travel the world extensively with his wife Jill while continuing to make Arizona solidly blue!

Peten

Dr. Gerae Peten, LD4 Chair

Greetings …. I am Rep. Dr. Gerae Peten until Jan. 10, 2021

I thank you all for your incredible support in my re-election campaign.  We ran a good fight.

Basically, my Career has been in the helping profession of teaching and being a servant leader.  With your support, I can continue that work for LD4.

My passion is bringing people together to fulfill a common vision, with a strategic mission and goals planned for success.

As a Teacher, construction manager, Turn-Around Principal and retired School Superintendent I was able to recruit, unify and mobilize entire groups of individuals by creating incredible teams, to focus on what is best for us to reach our achievement goals.  We created environments where ordinary people did extraordinary things.  Failure was never an option.

Serving in the House of Representatives for LD4 has expanded my knowledge base and horizons as to what we can do when we are laser-focused and committed to specific outcomes.  

Now is the time for me to give back to our community the expertise and lessons I have learned from 51 years as an educator, 12 yrs. of active political engagement, a founding member of Legislative District 4,  over five years ago, and as their secretary for 2.5 yrs.  as well as being your State Representative for 3 years.

It is an honor, privilege, and pleasure to continue serving our community as the LD4 Chair. 

Alex Cardona, LD12 Chair

Alex is currently an innovator in the technology sector focused on smart cities and automated vehicles working with state government, corporations, startups, and universities. Alex has almost 20 years of leading corporate initiatives including community development, environmental efforts, and diversity and inclusion. Alex has a master’s degree in Political Science and has volunteered for several mayoral, city council, school board, and legislative district candidates helping with campaign strategy. In addition to his social justice efforts and non-profit experience, Alex has extensive public administration experience serving as an appointed official for the Bloomington (IL) Cultural Commission, Bloomington (IL) Public Library Board, and Gilbert (AZ) Citizens Transportation Task Force. As the son of Colombian immigrants, he is a proud supporter of Public Broadcasting and a product of public schools, bilingual education, and city parks and recreation programs. Outside of work and family, Alex is a soccer coach and enthusiast who lives and breathes for the beautiful game.

Gene Giordano, LD13 Chair

After serving in the Navy, Gene spent 37 years in the global pharmaceutical packaging industry and now serves as an industry consultant.  A strong believer in community, he has coordinated and led events for the American Red Cross, Habitat for Humanity & other service-based organizations.  He has been politically active since being a teenager.  A resident of Buckeye since 2017, where he is a PC in Sun City Festival, he served as Chair of LD13’s Outreach Committee before joining the Board as 2nd Vice Chair in 2019.  LD13 continues to focus on registering voters, increasing engagement, and working to elect candidates who embrace Democratic values in the West Valley.  Gene and his wife, Jan, have three adult children and are planting roots here in Arizona after numerous career relocations.   

Joyce O'Daniel LD15 Chair

Joyce O’Daniel joined LD15 in 2012 as a PC.  She began her board service as Secretary in 2013. She has continued her board service as Second Vice Chair since 2014.  During her tenure, the LD has grown from 12 PC’s to 110.  Recruiting, training, and onboarding PC’s have been her primary focus as Second Vice Chair.  She has assisted the Chair on a regular basis, attending County meetings in her place and advising the Chair.

Joyce has volunteered as a canvasser and phone banker for LD candidates, attempting to turn the LD blue by electing legislative candidates.  She has worked toward electing all Democratic candidates up and down the ballot in every election since 2012.

Sharon Stinard, LD16 Chair

The newly elected chair of Legislative District 16 is Sharon Stinard.  She is a long-time resident of the East Valley and was a candidate for the Arizona House of Representatives in 2016 and 2018.  She is a retired educator of 42 years with 22 years in the secondary school classroom and 20 years working at the community college level.  Her leadership skills have been developed through serving as an elected officer on various non-profit and service organization boards of directors.  The women’s domestic violence shelter program in the far east valley she founded recently celebrated its 20th anniversary.  She looks forward to building a team of Democratic activists in LD16 that will enjoy working together to elect Democrats and grow our party in Arizona for years to come.

Steve Weichert, LD17 Chair

Steve Weichert was elected Chair of LD 17 Democrats in November 2020. After running his own hard fought campaign for the Arizona State Senate in 2018, Steve shifted his focus and worked as the campaign manager for Jennifer Pawlik and AJ Kurdoglu in the 2020 campaign cycle. Steve’s proven leadership abilities and experience as a PC in the Lantana Canyon precinct will be crucial as we head into the 2022 election cycle and the pending redistricting process.

Born and raised in San Jose, California, Steve has called Chandler home since 2003. His passion for serving his community and improving educational opportunities in Arizona is only surpassed by a commitment to be a model husband to Maria and father to his two daughters. In his spare time, Steve and his family love spending time with extended family and friends, making music, volunteering in the community, and experiencing all the beauty that is Arizona.

Alison Porter Headshot

Alison Porter, LD 18 Chair

Alison Porter went to school in Tempe, after her family moved there when she was a child. Her parents set an example of demonstrating a commitment to their communities – her mother was a teacher, and while teaching in Guadalupe, assisted in formation of a town in the 70’s, and her father worked at the Phoenix Urban League around the same time.

Alison was a single parent for two boys, who both live in Tempe. In 2001, after suffering a life threatening illness, and related health issues, she used her abilities to advocate for gifted children. In 2010 she became a PC, with a determination to help elect more legislators with a strong commitment to public education. Being redistricted from a district with Democratic legislators to LD18 with Republican legislators, she continued to focus on organizing and building, as the district moved from red to purple, to blue. Recently, in an opinion piece Stacey Abrams said, make a plan and work it, even if it takes 10 years. With an unrelenting understanding of engaging more volunteers, building more of a community movement, Alison read Stacey’s piece with a deep appreciation for all those who continued over the years to work the plan in LD18.
Alison was also one of the founders of Save Our Schools Arizona and managed the signature collection for the SB1431 referendum in 2017 that became the “No on 305” PAC in 2018.
After serving on the board and working in the background, Alison was elected Chair of LD18 in November 2020 and is determined to not only help Democrats in her district, but others as well, be as prepared as we can be for elections in 2022.

 

Devin Del Palacio, LD19 Chair

Devin began work as a Community Organizer in 2012. In that year alone, he helped register over 34,000 new minority voters that were engaged throughout the 2012 election cycle. That success continued in 2013 as Devin served as a community organizer throughout South Phoenix & West Phoenix working to increase civic engagement in communities of color. In 2014, Devin ran for a seat on Tolleson Union High School District Governing Board. In which Devin won his election and was voted Vice President by his fellow board members.  In addition to serving as a school board member; Devin was also elected in 2015 to serve as the Regional Pacific Director for the National Black Council of school board members. As a Pacific Regional Director, overseeing 5 states; Devin works to increase academic achievement from ethnic and racial minority groups. 

Eric Shelley, LD20 Chair

Eric Shelley has been active with the Maricopa Democrats since 2008. After getting his feet wet working as a volunteer and activist for several campaigns in 2008, Eric ran as a candidate for Arizona State Senate in 2010 and again in 2012. That experience helped Eric understand what works – and what doesn’t work – when trying to elect Democrats in Arizona. Between his two runs for the legislature he held the office of Chair of LD 7 in 2011 (North Phoenix/Scottsdale/Cave Creek).

Since 2012 Eric has begun helping various candidate & committees better understand their voter universe through data analysis and mapping strategies. Eric favors a numbers-driven approach to improving Democratic election success. Eric believes in helping PCs and other activists “build their army” of voters in their neighborhood to turn streets, precincts, LDs and communities blue everywhere possible.

Jose Quinonez , LD21 Chair

First and foremost I’m a proud Latino, a proud American, and an even more proud resident of LD 21. I am 20 years old and currently working on a major in Political Science at ASU West. I was born and raised in LD 21. My family has lived in the community since the 1950s. We have seen the district grow from dirt ranches and crop fields. I volunteered for my first campaign at 16 during the election of former Surprise Council Woman Rachel V, who remains a personal friend and mentor.

In 2018 I was hired as the full-time field director for Gilbert Romero’s state house campaign and personally knocked on thousands of doors within  21. I dedicated my heart and soul to the election. I also was responsible for coordinating efforts with several local campaigns throughout the district which gave me close personal relationships with elected officials such as mayor Alexis Hermosillo of El Mirage.

In the 2020 we saw history made in our state but came up short in 21. I believe because of who I am, my experience and my deep roots in this community. I can successfully work to bring in those voters who are critical to flipping this district. I see those voters that we need to bring in as being large Latino and largely young. As chairman I will work to reach out to those groups and bring them into the political process.

Cheri Tomlinson, LD22 Chair

Cheri was a public servant for 30+ years in Arizona. In 2018, she became a volunteer, then a PC for the West Wing precinct, where she learned the value of canvassing and increasing the number of voters on PEVL. 

In 2019, she joined the LD22 Executive Board as First Vice Chairwoman where she focused  on recruiting volunteers and collaborating with other organizations to work on specific GOTV projects. As the newly-elected Chairperson,  she is ready to serve and build on past successes, to increase LD22’s capacity to reach beyond our base, and inform voters why local candidates are relevant to our neighbors’ day-to-day lives.

Victoria Kauzlarich, LD23 Chair

Victoria has been an LD23 PC since 2017. She was the facilitator of the LD’s strategic plan in 2019 and joined the LD23 board later that year as the VC of Organization Development. In that role, she recruited PCs, trained them and engaged them throughout the election cycle. She developed & conducted training programs & authored weekly tips – small bites of training – which ran for over a year. She stopped at tip #55 when she was elected to be the LD Chair.

Victoria’s prior experience includes over 20 years as a Human Resources executive, working for the US Army as a civilian, teaching at an Illinois Community College, social work with delinquent & pre-delinquent adolescents and, more recently, graduating from the Botanical Garden’s Desert Landscape School.

She lives in Scottsdale with her crime-fiction-writer husband, James L. Thane and their cat Zane Grey.

 

Deborah Nardozzi, LD24 Chair

Deborah’s role as president of an executive assistant company allows her to be fully submersed in Phoenix metro events and nonprofits. She is also an instructor for the FEMA Community Emergency Response Team training program and a certified trainer for the Department of Homeland Security Stop the Bleed program.

Deborah became involved with Legislative District 24 in early 2017 and quickly organized her precinct and the East region. Deborah accepted the Field Director position on the board in February 2018. Since then, Deborah has implemented a training series to ensure consistent and continuous training for new and seasoned PCs. Deborah enjoys her work on the board, striving to engage and remove barriers for all communities in LD24.

Iain Hamp, LD25 Chair

Iain Hamp has served in roles within the Democratic Party since 2017, first as a Precinct Committeeperson and then as First Vice-Chair of his Legislative District, before being elected as Chair of LD25 in November of 2020. He is a tenacious advocate and supporter of local Democratic candidates, and believes we are at our best (and give ourselves the best chance to win) when we drop our egos and serve whenever and wherever the work of electing Democrats needs us.

Professionally, Iain is a data analyst and business systems consultant. Prior to being involved in political volunteer work, Iain was heavily involved in non-profit leadership. He has served on the board of directors for Junior Achievement of Arizona, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona, and Arizona Forward, and in 2015 he was the founder and founding chair of the Phoenix Community ToolBank. Outside of the Democratic Party, his political volunteerism has also included board service with Save Our Schools Arizona and providing ongoing support to Civic Engagement Beyond Voting.

Iain resides in Mesa, Arizona with his wife, his dog, and his chickens. He loves the people of Arizona, he wants to help them have happier, healthier lives, and he believes the Democratic Party can help make that happen.

Julie Golding, LD26 Chair

I am an Arizona native who grew up in Mesa, Arizona. I became fully active in politics in May of 2016 helping out the Hillary campaign doing everything I could do to get her elected. Talk about baptism by fire, the campaign had me canvassing, phone banking, registering people to vote, and then training the new volunteers.

After the devastating loss on 11/8/16, I knew that I couldn’t stop fighting for what I believed in.

In the many protests, marches, rallies, sit-ins, and die-ins that I have been a part of either as an attendee, Host or co-host, I know that I am not alone in the fight.

Since 2016 I have worked tirelessly as a volunteer to get Democrats elected throughout the valley.

I became a PC in 2017, a State Committee Member in 2018, and joined the LD26 Board as a 2nd Vice Chair in July 2019.

My goal as LD26 Chair is to work with our PC’s and volunteers by giving them the training and resources they need so we can build a better relationship with our Democratic/Independent neighbors.

When we have a strong relationship with our neighbors we help to elect our Democratic candidates and this is a win for everyone.

 

Patrick Brown, LD27 Chair

Patrick Brown is the Chair of Legislative District 27. As a lifelong progressive, the events of 2016 encouraged Patrick to leave the academic side of politics and get more involved in the process. This began by getting involved in Legislative District 27 as a Precinct Committeeperson, Social Media Chair, Board Secretary, and now as Chair.

When Patrick isn’t working to get Democrats elected to office, he spends his time volunteering, spending time with family, and playing video games.

Lucy-Marshall

Lucy Marshall, LD28 Chair

Lucy started volunteering with DIstrict 28 Democrats the year before the fateful 2016 election, working to bring Representative Kelli Butler into the Legislature. She is a PC in the Lookout Ridge Precinct and was a Team Leader, has been the Vice Chair of Communications, started the LD28 Internship program, and was First Vice Chair. She is an active canvassor, knocking on almost 2000 doors in the 2018 cycle which brought Representative Aaron Lieberman into the Legislature. Lucy transitioned to phone banking and lit dropping for the 2020 cycle in support of the re-election of Representatives Lieberman and Butler, and the successful election of Senator Christine Marsh.

Monica Pimentel, LD29 Chair

Monica is a proud seventh-generation Arizona Native who grew up in Glendale, Arizona. She got her first taste of activism by participating in voter outreach by becoming a voter registrar while at GCC, became involved in MEChA and later served as Vice President.

In 2012, Monica and her husband, Marshall, were both active in his union, AFSCME 2384. It was there that they became involved with several campaigns, including NO on 487, Steve Gallardo, Martin Quezada, and Richard Andrade. This activity brought them to LD29 where they immediately signed up to become appointed PCs. In 2014, Monica was elected as chair and has been re-elected in the following years.

Being a public servant is a role that Monica takes very seriously. She is an active labor member of AZPOA, AFSCME Local 2960, Pride-at-Work Arizona and a is MALF delegate. She serves as a governing board member for the Glendale Elementary School District, treasurer for AzLSBA, and graduated from HLI-West in 2019. 

Crystal-Carillo

Crystal Carillo, LD30 Chair

Crystal Carrillo started her path in politics at a very young age. Being led by her grandmother, a public health nurse and union leader in Los Angeles, she learned early on the importance of social justice and empowering communities. Since then, Crystal has been a fierce advocate for women’s reproductive rights, immigration, healthcare access, sustainability, and criminal justice. She’s done work with grassroots organizations like LUCHA, Puente, Planned Parenthood, and the Abortion Fund of Arizona. She’s also volunteered on local and state campaigns since 2016 and in 2018, she took on a role as campaign manager for Matthew Marquez for State Senate in LD 20. Engaging young people and low-propensity voters in the district was the main focus in order to build long lasting change. She plans to continue this work into LD 30 to grow the district and empower Democrats for years to come.

In her off time, Crystal enjoys eating vegan food from her favorite local spots, taking naps with her dog son Koko, and watching Shark Tank with her partner Fernando.

 

Meet Us

MCDP Committees

Imelda Ojeda, Latino Outreach Committee Chair

Imelda Ojeda is a social worker, immigrant, and community servant with years of experience working in the social and behavioral health systems. She is a nonprofit professional, an intervention therapist for family reunification cases and is an instructor for the school of social work.  Imelda is one of the founding members of Latinx Therapist in Action Network, a network of Latinx mental health practitioners who support the self-determination and dignity of migrant communities. Imelda was born and raised in Guadalajara, Mexico and after completing high school decided to move to Arizona to pursue higher education. She holds a Bachelor’s in Psychology and a double Master’s degree in Social Work and Public Administration from Arizona State University. As a Social Worker and public servant, Imelda strives to continue fostering her passion and career in the public sector to address the unique needs of the Southwest population. 

Pastor Warren Stewart Jr., Black Engagement Committee

Over the last 20 years, Warren has fostered diverse relationship capital that builds bridges for all people and forwards proactive change in our culture through servant leadership. As an influencer, he uses his voice to forward strategy and solutions in the community through faith-based and civic engagement projects. Warren ran as a strong candidate for Phoenix City Council in District 8 and inspired new voters with his platform.

Warren is a passionate pastor who preaches the gospel in a powerful way that ignites listeners to pursue their purpose. Being blessed to speak for thousands, he is one of the most sought after voices for churches, government organizations, and universities because of his dynamic delivery of culturally relevant messages. Warren is a graduate of Arizona State University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications and earned a Master of Arts in Ministry from Phoenix Seminary.

He is a chosen prominent leader of activist movements and conversations around social justice, diversity and equality, systemic racism and injustice, police accountability, foster care, women’s rights, immigration advocacy, and racial reconciliation. Warren started ProactiveJustice.com to provide solutions & strategies for justice, diversity, and equity education.

He holds awards as one of the “Top 40 diverse leaders under 40” from the Greater Phoenix Urban League Young Professionals. He is a 2018 recipient of the Arizona Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. “Living the Dream” award for his active work as a pastor and social justice advocate in the community.

Karl E. Gentles, APR, MBA, Black Engagement Committee

Karl Gentles is a partner in The Gentles Agency, a strategic communications and public relations firm. With 30 years of corporate, political and nonprofit experience in the Phoenix community, Gentles leads the agency’s strategic direction for its clients that span multiple industries including banking, economic development, public policy, healthcare and others. Prior to forming the agency, Gentles served in executive leadership positions at USAA, Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC), Bank One, and began his career as a staff assistant for U.S. Senator John McCain.

In 2020, Gentles was a Democratic candidate for U.S Congress to represent Arizona’s Sixth Congressional District.

In addition to his agency work, Gentles is the executive director of Back to School Clothing Drive, a 51-year old nonprofit that provides 25,000 elementary school students attending 260+ schools with new school uniforms, outfits and supplies. Their annual New Clothes, New Beginnings distribution event is the largest and most successful summer volunteer event in the state. The organization also runs a highly acclaimed and unique social enterprise that stocks onsite school clothing closets for students in need.

Gentles is a 2011 Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust Fellow. He has completed executive certificate courses in Nonprofit Management from the Georgetown University Center for Nonprofit and Civic Leadership, and a certificate in social entrepreneurship from the INSEAD School of Business in Fountainbleau, France. He is accredited in public relations (APR) by the Public Relations Society of America.

A proud two-time Sun Devil, Gentles earned his master’s of business administration and bachelor’s of science in organizational communication from Arizona State University. His community involvement includes an appointment to the Arizona Corporation Commission, Power Plant and Transmission Line Siting Committee, by a 4-1 vote of the Commissioners; Morrison Institute for Public Policy, Maricopa Integrated Health Systems Audit & Finance Committee; Black Chamber of Arizona; Grand Canyon University Honors College and Business College Advisory Boards; Phoenix Industrial Development Authority Past Director; Valley Leadership Class XV; FBI Citizens Academy; and Phoenix Citizen’s Police Academy. Gentles is a member of Sigma Pi Phi, Gamma Mu Boule, the Phoenix chapter of the nation’s first African-American professional fraternity.

Karl is married to Carla Wright Gentles, a 29-year U.S. Army Reserves (Ret.). Carla is the managing partner of The Gentles Agency, and a PhD candidate at Grand Canyon University. They have one son, Jordan Gentles, grandson, Jordan, Jr., and a Shih-Poo named Ever.

 

 

Cameron Adams, ASU Young Democrats President

Cameron Adams is a third-year Global Studies student at Arizona State University. Born and raised in Tempe, AZ, she began her involvement in politics by registering students to vote in high school but became more motivated after her involvement in the Red for Ed teacher strikes in 2018. Cameron has worked on several campaigns ranging from city to statewide races and is especially passionate about local organizing. She has been active in the Young Democrats at ASU since her first week of college and is very excited to be leading them in 2020. Cameron, along with her executive board, is looking forward to getting students mobilized on campus and helping to flip AZ blue and elect Democrats up and down the ballot!

Get In Touch

Maricopa County Democratic Party
PO Box 33817, Phoenix, AZ 85067

info@maricopadems.org

(602)-298-0503

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