State and national Democratic Party officials met with local Democrats on Saturday, April 23rd on the eve of the New Britain’s “Little Poland” Festival
Amy Dacey, CEO of the Democratic National Committee, State Party Vice Chair Nancy DiNardo and Alexandra Chalupa , the national party’s ethnic engagement liaison, addressed a gathering at the Belevedere Restaurant on Broad Street. DTC Member and Attorney Adrian Baron, his wife Aldona and White Eagle Newspaper Publisher Darek Barcikowski were instrumental in organizing the meeting about the Democratic campaign for multi-ethnic voter engagement. Dacey, experienced in national campaigns, has led the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, was special assistant to Senator John Kerry for his 2004 Presidential run and worked as director of government relations for the Service Employees International Union (SEIU).
Party officials urged involvement in the Democratic Party’s Ethnic Coordinating Council whose members “represent dozens of ethnic groups that are united because they share the principles and values of the Democratic Party.” The DNC Council is working with state party organizations in 10 states including Connecticut, Florida, Iowa, Illinois, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia. The Ethnic Coordinating Council is focusing on Immigrant Heritage Month in June to push voter mobilization for Democrats and immigration reform across ethnic groups.
City Democrats on hand for the ethnic voter engagement meeting reflected New Britain’s and the local party’s diversity. They included DTC Vice Chair Shirley Black, a city alderwoman and President of the Black Democratic Club; City Alderman Manny Sanchez representing Latino Democrats, Former Alderman Adam Platosz from the Ukrainian American community, Alderman Carlo Carlozzi who is active in Italian American organizations, State Senator Theresa Bielinski Gerratana, Attorney Baron of the Polish American Business Association, former Alderman Larry Hermanowski and former Mayor Lucian Pawlak. Pawlak, leader of the Pulaski Democratic Club, served four terms as Mayor during which he proclaimed New Britain to be “the city for all people” — a slogan that continues to resonate in a community that includes strong Polish and Eastern European residents and a rapidly growing Hispanic population. Also participating were representatives of Hartford’s Bosnian community and former Secretary of the State Susan Bysiewicz.
Following the meeting Dacey and other visitors toured the Broad Street business district designated “Little Poland”. She will return for the Little Poland Festival on Sunday that is expected to draw 10,000 or more participants.
For more information on the Democratic Party’s Ethnic Coordinating Council:
Alexandra Chalupa, Ethnic Engagement Liaison