The following was written by guest author Estella Morales. 

Picture(L-R) Democratic party activists Estella Morales and Janice Brown.
With a very heavy and sad heart, I give tribute to a very special person that some of you may not know. 

Janice Brown was the Executive Director of the Nevada State Democratic Party. She served in 2000 with then Chair, Rory Reid. I had the immense honor of serving with both of them as an unpaid staffer. 

Janice put in place our first website.  It was beautiful, our flag unfurling, with the voices of Presidents FDR, JFK, Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton. Erin Bilbray worked with us, also. We talked about a Democratic Institute for candidates.  See, someone told me that we need more Latina/o elected officials.  Well, Erin took the idea and ran with it, thus Emerge Nevada.

Janice was Native American, Osage Nation, to be exact. She was bent on making sure the Nevada State and County Democratic Parties were a great big tent. She did this work with Chairman Reid's urging and blessings.

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Janice spoke frequently about starting a Democratic Hispanic group, but it would have to include all of the Hispanic Nations.  We called the Latina/o members of the state central committee to a meeting at party headquarters.  Thus, the Nevada Hispanic Democratic Caucus was born.

Our first NHDC Chair was Margarita Rebollal. A few weeks after we elected her, she stood on the McCarran tarmac greeting President Clinton. That made the front page of the Review Journal, with a notable caption regarding our new NHDC Chair.

We also started the Nevada Native American Democratic Caucus. Janice, joked that I was indeed Native American, also. Since I was the temporary Nevada Hispanic Democratic Caucus Secretary, Janice asked me to serve as secretary for the Nevada Native American Democratic Caucus as well. 

With our hands full, we also kick started the LGBT Democratic Caucus. The name has since changed. As you can see, we had an LGBT gala dinner that included Congressman Barney Frank.  

Between the 2000 Presidential campaign and all of the regular monthly or quarterly club and caucus meetings, we still managed to hold weekly voter registration drives at the federal building. 

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These are just some of the efforts  our dear friend Janice Brown organized. They energized us to get voters to register and vote. And for the first time, we implemented a Ride to the Polls service.

Truly we stand on the shoulders of tough, talented and dedicated people like our friend Janice Brown.

We that knew her, will miss her terribly. If you didn't know her, you at least enjoy all of the amazing things Janice and Chair Rory Reid put in place for us.

Our solace is that she is pain free, and now we have an Angel helping us in everything we do for others.

Estella Morales 
July 8, 2014

 
 
Your next steps after today's Hobby Lobby decision
View this email in your browser

Dear DWA Partners -

Today's decision by the Supreme Court in favor of Hobby Lobby legally allows for-profit corporations to deny their employees access to contraception. I cannot express my disappointment this morning or my determination to ensuring we elect a Democratic Congress - taking back the House and keeping the Senate - as well as more Democratic women up and down the ticket this November.  

Below please find social media graphics, talking points, and other tools you can use to remind your friends, family, and community what is at stake in this election. We must make our voices heard today and at the ballot box because if we don't the Republican Party and their supporters like Hobby Lobby will continue to restrict access to our health care and move women's rights further back decades. 
Kate
 
Kate Yglesias Houghton
Director, Democratic Women's Alliance
P: 202-863-8000 | E: houghtonk@dnc.org | 
T: @DNCWomen

PS.  Don't forget to FORWARD to your networks to get the message out even further!  Community leaders can get tools and resources sent directly to their inbox by clicking HERE
Graphics for Facebook and Twitter





And here are some suggested tweets to use with these graphics:

RT if you disagree with the #SCOTUS #HobbyLobby decision.
 
My medical decisions are #notmybossbusiness.
 
[Organization name] is proud to #standwithwomen.
 
We support our female employees’ right to make their own medical decisions. 
Hobby Lobby Talking Points
 prepared by DNC Communications Team
  • Today’s Supreme Court decision in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby will make it more difficult for women to access basic, preventive health care benefits.
  • Now, the religious beliefs of a corporation officially can trump the health care options of their individual employees, and access to the health care benefits you receive could be determined by your boss, not by you or your doctor.
  • This is disappointing and deeply concerning.
  • Today’s decision takes money out of the pocket of women and their families and allows for-profit employers to deny access to certain health care benefits based on their personal beliefs.
  • No employer or politician should be able to interfere with a woman’s health care decisions, including access to contraception. The vast majority of American women use contraception at some point in their life, and it should be treated like what it really is – a basic part of women’s preventive care.
  • Nearly 60% of women who use birth control pills do so for reasons other than just family planning including treatment for ovarian cysts, endometriosis, migraines, and hormone replacement after chemotherapy.
  • The issue in Burwell vs. Hobby Lobby is not just a health care issue and it isn’t just a women’s issue – it’s an economic issue and a family issue.
    • Nearly 50 million women are now guaranteed access to contraception without a copay while access to birth control at no-cost could save the average woman up to $600 each year -- that’s up to $600 that a family could use to put gas in a car, food on the table, or put toward a child’s education.
    • Birth control has helped women move closer to economic equity. Research finds that availability of the pill is responsible for a third of women’s wage increases relative to men since the 1960s.
    • Birth control expands opportunities for women. A 2012 report by the Guttmacher Institute confirmed that women use contraception to better achieve their life goals, with the majority of participants reporting that contraception has had a significant impact on their lives
  • The leaders of today’s Republican Party, including some who want to run for President, support companies like Hobby Lobby’s efforts to restrict access to health care and some filed supportive legal briefs in this case.
  • This isn’t surprising coming from today’s Republican Party. They have repeatedly stood on the wrong side of many issues important to women - from opposing equal pay legislation, to delaying the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, to insisting politicians make medical decisions that belong between a woman and her doctor.
  • This is also just the latest example of a Republican Party that is not listening to the American people.
    • A Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll asked whether employers should be able to choose what forms of contraceptives their health plans provide based on their religious beliefs. Of those responding, 53 percent disagreed and 35 percent agreed.
    • The Kaiser Health Tracking Poll, released in April, found “the public supports the requirement by a nearly 2-to-1 margin (61% support, 32% oppose).”
    • According to a PRRI Religion and Politics Tracking Survey, the majority of Americans believe that publicly held and privately owned corporations should be required to provide contraception coverage at no cost to their employees.
    • A Hart Research Poll found that 68% of women voters between the ages of 18 and 55 say that corporations should not be able to exempt themselves from the requirement of covering contraception in their health plans because they object to contraception on religious grounds. More than half of women characterize their opposition to this exemption as strong.
  • Democrats will continue to oppose any attempts by Republicans to place a GOP legislator or a woman’s boss between her and her doctor and we will continue fighting to make quality affordable healthcare available to more Americans.
Take a look at this video laying out exactly what was at stake in today’s decision. 
Statement from our Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz

For Immediate Release
June 30, 2014
 
Contact: DNC Press Office – 202-863-8148
 
DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s Statement on the Supreme Court’s Decision in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby
 
Washington, DC – DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz issued the following statement today on the Supreme Court’s Decision in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby:
   
“I am disappointed and deeply concerned by the Supreme Court’s decision today in the case of Burwell v. Hobby Lobby. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, millions of Americans have gained access to preventive services without out-of-pocket costs, including birth control. However, this decision takes money out of the pockets of women and their families and allows for-profit employers to deny access to certain health care benefits based on their personal beliefs. Nearly sixty percent of women who use birth control do so for more than just family planning.
 
“It is no surprise that Republicans have sided against women on this issue as they have consistently opposed a woman’s right to make her own health care decisions. Republicans have also blocked the Paycheck Fairness Act, which would bring us closer to the promise of equal pay for women. In the wake of this dangerous precedent set by the Supreme Court, Democrats in Congress will continue to fight on the issues of importance to women and their families.”
 
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Mailing Address:
Democratic National Committee
430 S Capitol Street SE
Washington, DC 20003

 
 
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 
 June 27, 2014

Contact: Caitlin Teare
Phone: (202) 225-5965

MEDIA ADVISORY: Titus to Meet with Southern Nevadans, Discuss Need for Immigration Reform

Las Vegas, NV – Today, June 27 at 11:00 a.m. PST, Congresswoman Dina Titus will meet with Southern Nevadans, including Orland Mata and Juan Brijido, who with assistance from the Congresswoman’s office recently had their cases with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) successfully resolved. The event will highlight the immigration services available through the Congresswoman’s office and discuss the need for immediate action to fix our broken immigration system. Orland and Juan will also have the opportunity to share their stories with attending media.

WHO:             Congresswoman Dina Titus

Orland Mata:  The Office of Congresswoman Titus helped reunite Mr. Mata, an American citizen living in Las Vegas, with his wife and one year old daughter who were living in Michoacán, a highly volatile area of Mexico. After learning that the case would take 18 months to complete, Mr. Mata sought the assistance of Congresswoman Titus in January 2014.  Fearing for the family’s safety, Titus’ office worked to expedite the visa application, which USCIS agreed to at the end of February. The visas were finally approved at the beginning of this month and the family has since been reunited in Southern Nevada. 

Juan Brijido: Mr. Brijildo was granted deferred action in October 2013. His Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) case shows how successful the program has been to help young people be able to attend school without the fear of deportation. The Office of Congresswoman Titus helped Juan compile all the necessary documents and guided him through the necessary applications.
WHERE:     Office of Congresswoman Dina Titus
                        550 East Charleston Blvd. Suite B
                        Las Vegas, NV 89104

WHEN:        Today, June 27 11:00 a.m. PST
###
 
 
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 27, 2014
   PRESS CONTACT:
 Jose Borjon 956.459.2415  Jose.borjon@mail.house.gov

Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, Congressmen Filemon Vela, Congressman Steven Horsford, and Congressman Rubén Hinojosa to Visit South Texas Detention Center Saturday

Will receive briefing from Customs and Border Protection regarding the surge of unaccompanied minors in the South Texas Detention Facility

WHO: Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi
U.S. Representative Filemon Vela, member, House Homeland Security Committee
U.S. Representative Rubén E. Hinojosa, Chairman, Congressional Hispanic Caucus
U.S. Representative Steven Horsford, member, House Oversight and Government Reform Committee 

WHAT: Will receive briefing from Customs and Border Protection regarding the surge of unaccompanied children crossing our southern border and will walk through the Brownsville Border Patrol Station, where unaccompanied children are being temporarily detained.  Following the briefing, the Members will hold a press conference.   

WHEN: 10:00 a.m. CT, Saturday, June 28, 2014         

NOTE:  Press and camera crews must RSVP to Jose Borjon at jose.borjon@mail.house.gov or (956) 459-2415 to receive media credentials and information regarding location. 

 
 
For Immediate Release, June 27, 2014
Contact: Erica Prosser, 702-381-4054
eprosser@erinbilbray.com

Erin Bilbray Calls on Congressman Heck to Pass Comprehensive
Immigration Reform

“It’s been a year of excuses from Joe Heck and the Republican leaders since the Senate passed
the Comprehensive Immigration Reform bill, it’s past time he stand up for Nevada families.”

(Las Vegas) A year ago today, the Senate passed its version of comprehensive immigration reform
with broad bipartisan support. Since then Joe Heck has heard from constituents across our district
asking him to bring the legislation to a vote in the House of Representatives. Yet while Heck has talked
about being on the side of Southern Nevadans he has joined Speaker Boehner and the Republican
leadership in blocking the House from voting on the reform.

Joe Heck is more intent on protecting his out-of-state, billionaire super-pac friends than families in
Southern Nevada that are being torn apart every day by our immigration policies. After a year of
excuses, inaction and talking out of both sides of their mouth on immigration reform it is time for
Congressman Heck and the Republican leadership to act on immigration reform,
” said Erin Bilbray,
candidate for Nevada’s third Congressional district. “Immigration reform is not a Latino issue or an
Asian Pacific Islander issue, it’s a community issue and Southern Nevada families deserve a
representative who will stand up and fight for them in Congress
.”

Immigration reform is not only about families but also about our economy and jobs. Comprehensive
immigration reform will lead to job creation that empowers small business, fuels innovation, raises
wages, and reduces the deficit by nearly $1 trillion while it energizes our economy.1

Furthermore, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) have
estimated that changes in direct spending and revenues under the Senate passed version of the bill
would decrease federal budget deficits by $158 billion over the decade following enactment.2

In the year since the Senate passed bipartisan immigration reform, House Republicans have refused
to allow a vote on this critical legislation – even though it has the votes to pass.

In response to Erin Bilbray calling on Congressman Heck to move the bill to the floor of the House,
Joe Heck’s political spokesperson said it was a “political gimmick
”3 – yet Joe Heck has joined House
Republican leadership in catering to the most radical, anti-immigrant wing of their caucus,” said Erica
Prosser, Bilbray campaign manager. “They continue to obstruct and shift blame even as they block the
immigration reforms that Americans overwhelmingly support.


More than a year of pandering and posturing is the real political gimmick, enough is enough -- It’s time
to pass comprehensive immigration reform
,” said Bilbray.

###
http://www.democraticleader.gov/sites/democraticleader.house.gov/files/hr15.pdf
2 Congressional Budget Office, The Economic Impact of S. 744, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and  Immigration Modernization Act (June 2013), www.cbo.gov/publication/44346
3 The Hill, Dem Challenger Attacks on Immigration Reform (June 17, 2014) http://thehill.com/blogs/ballot-­‐box/house-­‐races/209559-­‐dem-­‐challenger-­‐attacks-­‐on-­‐immigration-­‐reform
 
 
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Early voting for the 2014 election cycle begins this coming Saturday in Nevada. Many people have already made their candidate decisions and know who they'll be voting for. There are several races where there are a LOT of candidates. So how do you make your choices? The following are 10 basic things to look for in a candidate. Before you cast your ballot, take a look and make sure your chosen candidate(s) meet the criteria. If they don't, find one who meets it most closely. And if no one meets the criteria, find one who does. 


 
 
This list may not be complete. Please check with your county chair if you have questions. 

Carson City 

Silver State Charter School
788 Fairview Drive
Carson City, NV 89701 
Time: 10AM - 1:00 PM, doors open at 9AM 
Contact Marty at (775) 690-3913 or marty@vramonline.com for more info

Churchill County
Old Post Office
90 N. Maine Street
Fallon, NV 
Time: 9:00 - 11:00 AM, doors open at 8:30 AM
Contact Nyla at (775) 867-4229 or roctech@cccomm.net for info

Clark County
Tropicana Las Vegas Convention Center 
3801 S Las Vegas Blvd 
Las Vegas, NV 89109
Time: 9AM -4 PM, doors open at 8AM 
Donation: $30
Register here

Douglas County 
Douglas High School
Highway 88
Minden, NV
Time: 10AM - 11:30 AM, doors open at 9:30 AM
Contact Kimi at (775) 721-1212 for info

Humboldt County
French Ford Middle School Library
5495 Palisade Drive
Winnemucca, NV
Time: 10-11:30 AM, Doors open at 9:30
Click here for info

Lincoln County 
Hartman Residence 
3133 Barbara St.
Highland Knolls/Caliente, NV 89008
Time: 10AM - Noon, doors open at 9AM 
Call (775) 962-3110 for more info

Lyon County
Silver Stage High School Cafeteria
3755 Spruce Avenue 
Silver Springs, NV 89429
Time: 10AM - 11:30 AM, doors open at 9AM 
Call (775) 577-4083 for more info

Mineral County
Mineral County Public Library
110 1st Street
Hawthorne, NV 89415
Time: 10AM - Noon, doors open at 10AM 
Contact Virginia at (775) 945-9022 or dumas.v@sbcglobal.net for more info

Nye County
Nye County Democratic Party Office
1251 E. Basin #12
Pahrump, NV 89060
TIme: 10AM - Noon, doors open at 9AM 
Contact Jannis at (775) 727-9685 or clessaunders2@att.net for info.

Washoe County
Wooster High School Cafeteria
1331 E Plumb Lane 
Reno, NV 89502
Time: 9:00 AM - 2:30 PM, doors open at 8:30 AM 
Click here for info

 
 
The majority of the country is outraged over the blatant disregard for the law that Cliven Bundy has shown by allowing his cattle to graze on public land and refusing to pay taxes for more than 20 years. By now, most everyone has heard about the Bundy saga; the rancher just outside of Mesquite who cried foul earlier this month when the Bureau of Land Management attempted to seize hundreds of Bundy's cattle who continued to graze on public land. The BLM claims Bundy owes more than $1 million in back taxes, Bundy claims he owes nothing because his family has been on that land for more than a century. Bundy also refuses to recognizes the authority of the U.S. federal government. 

The situation escalated to the point of armed militia coming to Bundy's aid from various outlying areas and neighboring states. Wanting to avoid a violent confrontation, the BLM called off their cattle roundup. WaPo has an excellent timeline of events

As the standoff continued, many, including Congressman Steven Horsford, have worked hard to defuse the situation. Yesterday,  the tension increased substantially because of outrageous comments Mr. Bundy made. While the situation started as an issue of federal oversight and taxation, it's now become a hotbed of racial divisiveness with supporters on either side. Here's what Bundy said in that New York Times article: 

"The question is are they slaves the way they are, or where they live, to charity or government subsidized homes. And are they slaves when their daughters are having abortions and when their sons are in the prisons? This thought goes back a long time."

“I want to tell you one more thing I know about the Negro,” he said. Mr. Bundy recalled driving past a public-housing project in North Las Vegas, “and in front of that government house the door was usually open and the older people and the kids — and there is always at least a half a dozen people sitting on the porch — they didn’t have nothing to do. They didn’t have nothing for their kids to do. They didn’t have nothing for their young girls to do.

“And because they were basically on government subsidy, so now what do they do?” he asked. “They abort their young children, they put their young men in jail, because they never learned how to pick cotton. And I’ve often wondered, are they better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things, or are they better off under government subsidy? They didn’t get no more freedom. They got less freedom.”


Ahem. See what U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and  Congressman Steven Horsford had to say about that. 

One entity that had no problem standing by Bundy's side is the Nye County Commission. Items 31 and 35 on the April 22, 2014 Nye County Commission agenda  recommended approval of two resolutions. One resolved to support the limited powers of the U.S. Constitution, etc.,  and the other resolved to support "ranching in Nye County." Don't be fooled. They're both about Bundy.  And yes, they both passed unanimously. 

Read on to see the actual resolutions. 

 
 
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Henderson resident and local activist Teresa Crawford has been selected one of nine White House Gun Violence Prevention Champions for Change. Her work in Nevada has been critical to the success of the work done to date and pivotal to changes that we are seeing locally. 

When asked about the honor, Crawford says, "Each and every one of you share equally in this honor. Every rally, every beautiful sign, heartfelt remarks to media, our phone banks to encourage calls to federal and state officials and our presence on social media add up to a real movement to make our schools and communities safer that has attracted national attention. Our Nevada-style strategy of close collaboration and shared resources should be a model for other Champions of Change." 

Please help congratulate Teresa Crawford and make sure to watch the live stream of the event Thursday morning at 7:00 a.m. PST. 

THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of Communications
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 

March 31, 2014

WASHINGTON – On Thursday, April 3, the White House will honor 9 grassroots leaders taking critical steps in their communities to reduce gun violence. Although a minority of the Senate voted down common-sense legislation, the Administration is continuing to take key steps to reduce gun violence by implementing more than 23 executive actions and elevating successful local efforts. This week, the Administration will highlight the critical work some of these local leaders have spearheaded to make their neighborhoods safer and to keep firearms out of the wrong hands. 

In his State of the Union Address, President Obama declared, “Citizenship means standing up for the lives that gun violence steals from us each day. I have seen the courage of parents, students, pastors, and police officers all over this country who say ‘we are not afraid,’ and I intend to keep trying, with or without Congress, to help stop more tragedies from visiting innocent Americans in our movie theaters, shopping malls, or schools like Sandy Hook.”

The White House created the Champions of Change program to feature individuals doing extraordinary things to empower, inspire and support members of their communities.  

The event is closed to press but will be live streamed on the White House website. To watch this event live, visit www.whitehouse.gov/live at 10:00 am ET on April 3rd.  To learn more about the White House Champions of Change program and nominate a Champion, visit www.whitehouse.gov/champions.
 
Teresa A. Crawford, Volunteer for Gun Violence Prevention
Henderson, NV

Teresa A. Crawford, BA and RN, is retired from a career in health care. She is the Organizing for Action Nevada State Lead for Gun Violence Prevention and a board member of ProgressNow Nevada. 

To support federal and state legislation and executive action that addresses gun violence, Teresa has helped organize and delivered remarks at more than twenty events since Jan. 19, 2013 and developed a list of GVP activists. These events include rallies, vigils, phone banks, petitioning, petition delivery and press conferences. Teresa presented on grassroots strategies at trainings in 2013 and 2014. 

In addition to providing sound bites, Teresa has appeared on Ralston Reports and My News 3, in interview format to advocate for gun safety legislation. Teresa has participated in lobby sessions with senior staff of a senator and congressman and asked questions about pending background checks legislation at Town Halls hosted by a congressman. At the Mayors Against Illegal Guns “No More Names” bus tour in July, 2013, Teresa delivered an overview of presidential action and GVP legislation and introduced the state legislator who championed a background checks bill. 

Through involvement in every Gun Violence Prevention organization active in Nevada, Teresa encourages collaboration and shared resources, the key to making our schools and communities safer.

Other Honorees

James Johnson, Chief of Police, Baltimore County; Chair, National Law Enforcement Partnership to Prevent Gun Violence
Baltimore, MD
Baltimore County, MD, Police Chief Jim Johnson began his career with the Baltimore County Police Department in 1979 as a Cadet in the 911 Center and served in every sworn rank in the Department before being named Chief of Police in June 2007. Chief Johnson holds memberships in several professional organizations, including the Major Cities Chiefs Association (MCCA).  He is MCCA’s representative to and Chairs the National Law Enforcement Partnership to Prevent Gun Violence, a coalition of nine national law enforcement leadership organizations.

Chief Johnson works daily in his own jurisdiction to reduce incidents of gun violence and make his community safer. A highly respected leader in his state and at the national level, Chief Johnson is an active voice for law enforcement on the policies and practices that will help reduce gun violence. A gun owner and hunter, Chief Johnson has been an effective advocate for sensible policies that protect the rights of law abiding gun owners while keeping guns out of dangerous hands and excessive firepower off our streets.  In 2013 Chief Johnson testified before Congress in support of expanding background checks to all purchasers, and was instrumental in changing Maryland’s law prohibiting assault weapons and limiting high-capacity ammunition magazines.  He holds a Masters Degree in Applied Behavioral Science from Johns Hopkins University and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Baltimore.

Glenn Garrett Grayson, Pastor of Wesley Center A.M.E. Zion Church; Founder of the Center That C.A.R.E.S.
Pittsburgh, PA
Rev. Glenn Garrett Grayson, M.Div is currently the Pastor of Wesley Center A.M.E. Zion Church in Pittsburgh, PA and also served for 17 years as the presiding elder of the Pittsburgh District. In 2000, Rev. Grayson founded The Center That C.A.R.E.S. (Children/Adults Recreational and Educational Services). Presently, The Center That C.A.R.E.S. is highly noted for its after school tutorial and enrichment programs, serving over 125 families from grades Pre-K through college throughout the Hill District Community of Pittsburgh. C.A.R.E.S. recently purchased a new site for its permanent location with the hope of increasing the amount of families they are equipped to serve and further promoting their gun violence prevention initiative; as well as preparing the youth to become leaders in their community and beyond.

Jamira Burley, Executive Director for the City of Philadelphia, Youth Commission and Co-Founder GenYNot
Philadelphia, PA
At 25 years old, Jamira Burley works as the Executive Director for the City of Philadelphia, Youth Commission. As an advocate for authentic youth civic engagement, global citizenship, comprehensive education reform, black male achievement and gun violence prevention. Jamira is the United States representative to the United Nations Global Education First Initiative, Youth Advocacy Group. She is also the cofounder/co-host for GenYNot, a youth platform that allows young people to be the experts of the own experience and create solution-driven dialogue. In 2005, Jamira’s brother was shot and killed, since then she has worked to employ her personal experiences as the driving force to improve the lives of others. Currently, Jamira works on both local and national initiatives to eliminate gun violence and help create safe living and learning environments for youth. From advocacy to program development, Jamira helps lead the youth engagement on the working group for the National Forum on Youth Violence Prevention, Cities United and is a member of the Roosevelt Institute Millennial Gun Violence Prevention Task Force.

John Woods, Texas Violence Prevention Advocate; Member of Texas Gun Sense Advisory Board
Austin, TX
John Woods, Ph.D., graduated from Virginia Tech in May 2007, just weeks after the worst mass shooting in American history. As a doctoral student in molecular biology at the University of Texas at Austin, he became involved in the gun violence prevention movement after members of the Texas Legislature tried to use the Virginia Tech tragedy to push an ideological agenda having nothing to do with campus safety: forcing colleges and universities to allow guns in classrooms. Texas violence prevention advocates successfully organized against the so-called “campus carry” bills in three consecutive legislative sessions, and several special sessions, despite a majority of Texas lawmakers registering as sponsors of the legislation. In the wake of the Sandy Hook shooting, Dr. Woods helped found Texas Gun Sense, a state-focused educational charity which promotes a fact-based dialogue on gun policy, and which incidentally coined the term “gun sense.” In its first eighteen months, Texas Gun Sense has worked to educate lawmakers and the public on universal background checks as they would apply to Texas. Dr. Woods now serves on Texas Gun Sense’s advisory board, and is a post-doctoral fellow at West Virginia University’s Applied Space Exploration Laboratory and the West Virginia Robotic Technology Center.

Mark Barden, Director of Advocacy, Sandy Hook Promise
Newtown, CT
As Director of Advocacy, Mark Barden leads policy and outreach efforts for Sandy Hook Promise and frequently serves as a spokesperson for the organization.  Since the tragic loss of his son Daniel at Sandy Hook Elementary School, Mark has dedicated himself to bringing people together to prevent future tragedies and spare other families the pain of losing a child to gun violence.  His journey has taken him from a Tea Party congressman’s Florida town hall to introducing President Obama in the Rose Garden to meetings with Members of Congress, governors and state legislators, media interviews and speaking to civic groups, faith groups and colleges. An accomplished professional musician, Mark still finds time to perform and be with his wife Jackie, his son James and daughter Natalie.  The extended Barden family has also created a foundation, What Would Daniel Do? to honor the extraordinary spirit of Daniel Barden. 

Nosheen Hydari, Crisis Therapist, Community Counseling Centers of Chicago (C4)
Chicago, IL
Nosheen Hydari, AMFT, is a crisis therapist for the Emergency Services On-Call team at Community Counseling Centers of Chicago (C4). C4 is a leading community mental health agency in Illinois, providing a comprehensive range of mental health services, crisis intervention and substance use treatment to more than 10,000 low-income children, adults, and families each year. In her role at C4, Nosheen provides crisis assessments for hundreds of children and adults in severe psychiatric distress, many of whom are victims and/or perpetrators of violent acts. She supports individuals and families by helping to de-escalate their psychological symptoms, offering an appropriate level of care in either psychiatric hospitals or outpatient therapy settings. Much of Chicago’s inner-city gun violence involves individuals and groups whose psychological distress has been overlooked. Nosheen’s role at C4 serves to battle the root cause of these overlooked problems by helping people access the appropriate resources they need to address their mental health challenges.

Pamela K. Simon, Survivor, Gun Violence Prevention Advocate
Tucson, AZ
Pam Simon served as the Community Outreach Coordinator for Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords following a career of two decades teaching middle and high school. On January 8, 2011, while staffing the congresswoman at a Congress on Your Corner event at a local grocery store, Pam was shot in the arm and the chest. Twelve others including the congresswoman were wounded and six people died on that day. Upon retiring from the congressional office, Pam helped launch the Mayors Against Illegal Guns' Demand a Plan initiative that asked the Presidential candidates to offer a plan to reduce gun violence. Since that time she has spoken out in news media interviews, documentaries, rallies, forums, survivor events and speaking engagements. She has worked with numerous organizations including Moms Demand Action, Arizonans for Gun Safety, Moms Rising, Organizing for Action, Tucson Community Against Gun Violence and Americans For Responsible Solutions as a voice for common sense gun legislation.  Pam has traveled extensively to meet with local, state and national leaders to share her story of survival and to seek ways to reduce the national epidemic of gun violence. She is currently writing a memoir about her experience with violence and the healing power of speaking out for change.

Sarah Clements, Founder and Chairwoman, Jr. Newtown Action Alliance
Newtown, CT
Sarah Clements founded and serves as Chairwoman for the Jr. Newtown Action Alliance. She is a senior at Newtown High School in Newtown, CT. On December 14th, 2012 her mother survived the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School. After the shooting, Sarah began using gun violence prevention advocacy to transform her painful experience into positive action. Jr. NAA is the student branch of the Newtown Action Alliance, and the group focuses on educating, empowering, and collaborating with other Millennials to address gun violence in every type of community, through legislative action, cultural change, and bridge building. The group's goal for 2014 is to bring together urban, suburban, and rural youth to share stories and work together to reduce gun violence, as the issue so disproportionately effects the millennial generation. Sarah is also a Gun Violence Prevention Network Volunteer Lead at Generation Progress, the youth advocacy branch of the Center for American Progress, where she assists in creating a national network of young people working on gun violence prevention on high school and college campuses. 

 

 
 
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It is rare to find such superlatives as "sweet," "kind," and "gentle" used in sentences describing a well-known political activist. But such was Vincent Frey, the rare bird who made and maintained decades long relationships with friend and opponent alike. 

His unexpected passing on January 3, 2014 has stopped hundreds of Nevadans in their tracks, from neighbor to Congressman, who remember Vincent for his activism, loyalty, kindness, and generous spirit. The Blue Nevadan sends condolences to Vincent's family, especially his partner, Chris Beeson. 

Funeral services will be held on Sunday, January 12, 2014 at the Eastern Palm Mortuary, located at 7600 S Eastern Ave in Las Vegas. Visitation will take place between 11:00 a.m. and 11:45 a.m. 

The world has become a little dimmer without the bright light that was Vincent Frey.