Thank you to Patsy Keever for completing the questionnaire created with the help of BlueNC readers. Her answers have been published without editing. All questions are included regardless of whether they were answered.
As chair, one of your main responsibilities will be to raise millions in order operate an effective state party. Lay out, in detail, how you can raise seven figures in the next eighteen months.
As a former candidate for congress, I have proven experience that I can raise over $1 million. As first vice chair, I have worked with NCDP staff to help raise money. The fundraising programs that the NCDP currently have include three annual banquets (Sanford Hunt Frye, Jefferson Jackson, and Western Gala) and two appeal programs through the ASDC (Dollars for Democrats) and DNC (Victory Fund). Not only will I work to improve on these programs, I will also incorporate an online/email fundraising program that will engage younger donors. Finally the most effective way to raise money through direct donor solicitation. I will call and meet with donors so I can personally ask for their financial support on behalf of our party.
How many hours of call time - dialing for dollars - are you willing to commit to per week.
I pledge to dial at least 20 hours per week in addition to cultivation meetings, and attending events where I can network and ask prospective donors for their support.
What is your pitch to potential donors?
Each donor is different and will require a different ask. Fortunately, I have great relationships with the majority of NCDP donors so I won’t have to spend too much time on introducing myself. I can get straight to the pitch when talking with donors; this will result in more calls and more pledges.
In general, my pitch would include: I have a solid plan that will help us build a new, modern Democratic Party that will strengthen all 100 county parties and will help elect Democrats up and down the ballot. With so many important North Carolina races in 2016, the NCDP needs to have the financial resources it will take to win. We’ve turned a corner and have entered a new era. We need your financial help to build our new Democratic Party.
Considering the track record of the NC Democratic Party in the past few years, why should average voters donate money to the party rather than giving it to organizations like the NAACP, the NC ACLU, and other organizations that are actively and visibly challenging Republican policies? What will give them any confidence that their dollars will make any difference?
The NCDP is a political organization, rather than a policy/issue based organization, which assists Democratic candidates. We are the only organization, by law, which allows coordinating efforts with other campaigns. With that said, organizations such as the NAACP and ACLU have dedicated members, and I would welcome conversations with these organizations’ leaders to discuss how we can assist one another.
There are things that the NCDP can do to restore donor confidence such as vocally opposing harmful GOP legislative measures, recruiting strong Democratic candidates, and participating in our communities.
What steps would you be willing to take to bring the Party back together?
I’ve already been taking steps that include meeting with elected officials, caucus leaders, district chairs, county chairs, and auxiliary presidents. The key to party unity is communications—and I pledge to allow everyone to have a seat at the table so they can share their ideas. We need to respect one another and work together toward our common goals.
Do you plan a 100 county strategy or will you concentrate efforts in only a few counties?
I believe in strengthening our counties and providing them with much needed resources. I have a 100 county plan that will assist every county in some capacity. The plan includes regional field directors who will work closely with county chairs and candidates to provide resources for electoral efforts, voter registration, volunteer recruitment, and training.
Have you ever served as a precinct chair or vice chair in the North Carolina Democratic Party?
What county level offices have you held in the Democratic Party in North Carolina?
Is there any information you would like to share about your work on the county party level?
Which district level offices have you held?
Which state level offices have you held?
1st vice chair
Have you been a member of or held any leadership positions in any of the auxiliary groups of the NCDP?
Tell us a little about your involvement.
Have you served as a delegate to a party convention?
Yes to both County and District
Have you run for public office? If so, tell us about your experience.
I served in the NC House of Representatives from 2010 to 2012 and was a Buncombe County Commissioner from 1992 to 2004. I was a candidate for Congress in 2004 and 2012.
These experiences have equipped me to serve as your Chair. I can raise money and my record proves it. During my Congressional races I raised nearly $2 million and assisted with NCDP fundraising events. I know how to organize; I have a 100 county plan that will assist county parties and candidates with resources for electoral efforts, voter registration, volunteer recruitment, and training.
Have you volunteered for or worked as paid staff for any political campaigns in North Carolina? If so, tell us about your experience.
I have been volunteering for Democratic candidates for thirty years.