Lee Dems is ready to soar in 2022. Bring your friends!

The newly elected leadership of the Lee District Democratic Committee had hoped to kick off a new era the old-fashioned way — an in-person meeting on Jan. 13 for the first time in 22 months, in addition to an online option.

Kathy Rhem leading meeting

Chair Kathy Rhem leads the virtual meeting on January 13.

The Omicron surge put the hybrid model on hold, limiting the 30 participants to Zoom. But there was nothing virtual about their resolve to fight back against a Republican-controlled Virginia and begin the hard work now of returning Democrats to power.

“I’m energized, I’m motivated, and I’m hopeful,” said Kathy Rhem, who was elected chair at December’s reorganization meeting.

Her enthusiasm was echoed by the night’s other speakers, including Debra Linick and Diego Scharifker, new members who are now vice chairs for membership and outreach.

“I’m extremely excited about this new responsibility,” Scharifker said. “We have established three starting goals: Recruiting more volunteers, increasing voter registration in high-density Latino population areas, and outreach through events.”

From growing the voter base, to events for fun and fundraising, precinct operations, communications, and more, the inaugural 2022 meeting made clear that there’s no end of opportunities to be involved — no matter how much or little time members can spare.

One especially busy person who pledged to be more active is Lee District Supervisor Rodney Lusk, who talked about redistricting, renaming the district, and other official business.

He also offered his full support to Rhem and the committee, saying he plans to attend more meetings and wants to help membership and revenues grow.

“It’s going to be a win-win for both of us,” Lusk said. “This is going to be a collective effort.”

Collaboration was the refrain throughout, as Rhem stressed grassroots values and urged everyone to speak up, ask questions and share ideas. Adjourning the meeting, she had one parting request: “I’m looking forward to a great year,” she said. ““I’ll always leave it with, ‘Bring your friends!’”


The committee charged with recommending new names for several Fairfax County magisterial districts — including Lee District — will hold a virtual meeting on Tuesday, January 18, at 6 pm. Click here to join the meeting.


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