So here’s the deal – this Tuesday (3/10), voters in Fairfax County’s Braddock District can move the County Board forward by electing a Harvard-educated School Board veteran, Ilryong Moon , as the County Board’s first Asian-American Supervisor. If they are wise enough to do so, Braddock then gets a chance at a two-for-one special – Moon as their Supervisor, and Braddock’s Liz Griffith as his School Board replacement.
Her leadership among Democrats includes serving as a member of the FCDC Steering Committee and serving as one of the first leaders of the Brigades group of former Webb volunteers. But besides being a good Dem, she is also well suited to the School Board. Her experience includes a PhD in Political Science, four children who have attended Fairfax County Public Schools, and work as a high school teacher, former PTSA President and Program Director of a children’s summer arts camp. She is currently active on the School Board's Human Relations Advisory Committee, serving as chair of its Communication Subcommittee.
Liz went out on a limb for the Democrats 2 years ago, challenging an incumbent Republican on the School Board in her very first race – and coming only 153 votes shy of victory. She is well known among Democratic volunteers in Virginia for her enthusiastic and energetic work on the Webb and Obama campaigns. For Obama, she helped set up the volunteer leadership team in Fairfax County, worked Hampton Roads, and for her efforts was elected an Alternate Delegate to the Democratic Convention in Denver.
Her previous run for the School Board involved a listening tour that brought her to every school in Braddock district, during which time she met with everyone from parents to bus drivers about the state of our schools and how to improve them. This time, if Moon wins, he will vacate an at-large seat that the whole county gets a vote to fill. There will be a special meeting of Fairfax County Democratic Committee members on Thursday the 12th to decide whom FCDC will endorse for this seat.
I strongly encourage the Committee to endorse Liz. Besides her qualifications, energy and dedication to hard work, she represents a group that Fairfax Democrats clearly need to cultivate – what I call the Obama Generation. We can no longer rely on the core Democratic base voters, who are mostly older and white. We need to excite the type of voters who turned out for Obama but who often don’t turn out for state and local elections. It’s a highly diverse group that includes more young people, more minorities, and more professionals.
To turn on and turn out the Obama Generation, we need candidates like Liz Griffith who are part of that demographic and understand it – and who can help move the creaky institutions of our state and local governments into the 21st century.