Our Leadership

STATE-WIDE

Susan Yarbrough Smith, President
Susan was born into a Republican family and credits a chance encounter with two men sharing a grate to keep warm on a cold Washington, DC night for helping her change her world view and party affiliation. She walked by like so many others, but something about them caught her attention. They held a sign that read “Please help the homeless”, and she was certain one of those men looked like Martin Sheen. It was–Mr. Sheen was engaging in grassroots activism to draw attention to the plight of the homeless, many of whom were tossed into the streets when President Reagan de-institutionalized the mentally ill. It was a real example of ‘faith in action.’ In 1988, she voted for Sen. Al Gore in the Democratic Presidential primary — and never looked back.

She has served the Democratic party in a variety of roles but the title she wears most proudly is that of a grassroots activist. Susan has served on the SC State Executive Committee, the State Executive Council, and was a Delegate to the Democratic National Convention in 2005 and 2012. Susan has a BA history from Columbia College where she served as College Democrats president, and was selected as a Fellow for the Center of the Study of the Presidency, Honors Program, presidential scholar. She interned at the SC Commission on Women (now defunct). While living in Pittsburgh, Susan worked at the ACLU. Click here to read a letter from our President.

ORGANIZATIONAL

Ann Burch Smith, Secretary
Ann became active in politics during the fall of 2007 after she retired from teaching. She became very interested in Barack Obama and his ideas for the country, and volunteered for the Presidential Primary. She had found her place in politics, and was even named a “Super Volunteer” by the Obama staff. She continued as a volunteer for the South Carolina Democratic Party, where she was asked to serve as Regional Field Director. Ann moved to the Spartanburg area of the state. After the 2008 election, Ann returned to work and volunteer for the state party.

In 2009, Ann had an opportunity to work on two State Senate special elections in Kentucky. She was in charge of organizing voter contact and all the GOTV work for the first campaign, and served as Field Director for the second race. Ann returned to SC in December of 2009, where she worked on the 2010 campaign as the Deputy Executive Director of the SC Democratic Party. She continued in this role until May of 2011. Ann now works for Don Fowler, President of Fowler Communications. She still enjoys political work in her spare time, and looks forward to working with SCDWC and becoming involved in future elections.

Pat Calkins, Treasurer
Pat Calkins been active in the South Carolina Democratic Woman’s Council since 2008. She is the current Chairperson of the York County Democratic Party and she has served on the Executive Committee and on the Executive Council of the South Carolina Democratic Party. Pat has served on the campaign staff of John Spratt and more recently on the campaign staff of Joyce Knott.

Cherie Anne Mabrey, Immediate Past President
Cherie was raised in NC in a very progressive family—both her parents were Democratic activists. She has worked on Democratic campaigns since childhood and remembers watching President Kennedy’s inauguration on her birthday. Cherie believes that our country is a republic built upon taking responsibility for each other.

Cherie was vice president of the YDC during her college years and when she first moved to SC.  She helped create the York County Democratic Forum, which began as a revival of the York County Women’s Forum, and successfully directed fundraisers for the YCDP.  She is the YCDP executive committee woman and immediate past president for the SC Democratic Women’s Council.  She was proud to serve as a SC elector for Al Gore in 2000, and continues to be an activist and an integral member of the SC Democratic Women’s Council.

Angela Y. Douglas, Parliamentarian
Angela is a native and resident of Chester SC. She serves as a Lecturer of political science and public administration as well as the Program Coordinator for the Master of Public Administration program at the University of North Carolina Wilmington. Angela teaches graduate and undergrad courses in American National Government, Campaign Politics, American Political Culture, Public Administration, Urban Government, and Social Policy and researches rural politicking in the south, social capital, women’s and children’s health policy, and social welfare policy-making in the American states. Angela has worked and volunteered as a political strategist in several campaigns including recruiting, training, informing and advising progressive candidates, voters, and those who want to be more involved in the political process. She has served as the Executive Committeewoman of the Chester County Democratic Party (2008-2012).

Prior to joining UNCW, Angela worked as the Program Coordinator of Health Professions Data for the SC Office of Research and Statistics and as a Labor Market Analyst for the SC Employment Security Commission. She has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and History from the UNC at Charlotte, a Master of Public Administration degree in Transportation Systems Analysis and Public Management from Georgia State University, and is currently completing her Ph.D. in Political Science at USC. In 2008, she co-founded a nonprofit organization, The Rosa M. Douglas Scholarship Foundation, which focuses on increasing awareness and capacity for women’s health along the I-77 corridor between Charlotte NC and Columbia SC.

CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICTS

Dr. Jane Pulling, Vice President 1st Congressional District
Jane is a lifelong SC Democrat and retired educator. She still has her ‘All the Way with LBJ’ campaign button. Mom of 5; Grandmom of 6 grandsons, she is active with the Guardian ad Litem program, the Children’s Trust of SC, and the League of Women Voters. Her passion is children and making a better world for them to inherit. High school voter registration is the highlight of her year. She and her husband Verne live in Pinopolis where they are active members of Trinity Episcopal Church. Her goal is to ‘grow’ the SCDWC in the 1st district and statewide. Click here to read more about the 1st Congressional District.

Teresa Harper, Vice President 2nd Congressional District
Teresa Harper is the Vice President of the 2nd Congressional District and is the 1st Vice Chair & Labor Outreach Chair of the Aiken County Democratic Party. She graduated in 1994 Magna Cum Laude from Illinois State University with a B.S. in History. She became a Democrat in mid-1990 after union organizing at her workplace. Teresa was Vice President and Chief Steward of AFSCME Local 3236 Illinois State University Clerical. In 2001, Teresa and her family moved to Oxford, Ohio where she was a clerical employee at Miami University (Ohio) until moving again in 2007 to Aiken, SC for her husband’s employment.

Teresa is working with local democratic party members to be more engaged this upcoming election cycle emphasizing the importance to activate Democratic voters to vote in each and every election. Click here to read more about the 2nd Congressional District.

Toni Vitanza, Vice President 3rd Congressional District
Toni Vitanza is a writer. She is a Texas native who has volunteered there and in California as well as in SC, where she is an officer with the Pickens County Democratic Party. She worked on Ann Richards’ campaigns and volunteered for Walter Mondale, Martin Frost, Bill Clinton and Al Gore. In addition to her volunteer efforts, Toni has had careers in both newspaper journalism and as a flight attendant. She is a proud member of her union — the Association of Flight Attendants. She has also been a substitute teacher since 1986. Her husband is the founding director of Clemson University’s doctoral program in Rhetoric, Communications and Information Design. Toni’s son, an officer with the Pickens County Democrats, is a student at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, SC. Click here to read more about the 3rd Congressional District.

Deb Morrow, Vice President 4th Congressional District
Deb Morrow retired from IT work for small and large businesses, is a lifelong Democrat and activist for children and human rights. She organized the first Occupy Wall St demonstration to take place in SC, and unsuccessfully challenged the freshman Tea Party Congressman in her district in 2012, as both the Democratic and Working Families Party candidate, focusing on economic fairness and women’s issues. She hopes to empower and involve more ‘regular’ liberal women and men in South Carolina politics and policy. Deb and her husband (proud grandparents) enjoy life on a lake just outside Spartanburg, where she is District 38 Chair for the county Party; participates in groups including the League of Women Voters, NAACP and Upstate Forever; and serves on the Board of her church, Central United Methodist. Click here to read more about the 4th Congressional District.

Hattie Ross, Vice President 5th Congressional District
Hattie is very active with local Democratic Party, Organizer and President of the York County Democratic Women’s Council. She is also a writer and greatly enjoys grassroots efforts and networking. She believes that the efforts to organize women’s groups in District 5 are vital, and that the season is right for democratic women to come together in solidarity. There can be a lack of understanding about policies and issues, which is why the community needs people to bring the word to them and encourage them to get out and vote. By voting we can change things. Hattie attended Friendship Jr. College and Winthrop University. She is a retired mother of 4 sons, and has 19 grandchildren and 2 great grand children. Click here to read more about the 5th Congressional District.

Joyce Rose Harris, Vice President 6th Congressional District
Joyce M. Rose-Harris, Vice President for 6th Congressional District on South Carolina Democratic Women’s Council (SCDWC) – first became interested in the Presidential election process in 1976 while in the 5th grade when President Jimmy Carter was elected. She is a native of Chicago, Illinois where she earned a Bachelors of Science in Mathematics from University of Illinois at Chicago.

Joyce has been active in the Obama for America campaign and Organizing for America-South Carolina since May 2007 first working as a Neighborhood Team Leader primarily with data entry and volunteer recruitment. Most recently she served as South Carolina Digital Medial Lead managing Facebook, Twitter, and the state blog. In addition to volunteering and supporting President Obama’s agenda, she assists with local and state campaigns. Joyce was elected as a Delegate to the 2012 Democratic National Convention. She is a 2011 recipient of the SCDWC Unsung Heroine Award and the 2012 Manning Branch NAACP Humanitarian Award. Joyce engages her passion for social activism as a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. Click here to read more about the 6th Congressional District.

Amie Haynes Jordan, Vice President 7th Congressional District

Amie’s first partisan office was President of the South Carolina Young Democrats in 1996.  As a political novice, she rebuilt the organization and cultivated it from 3 scattered clubs to 47 organized county and college cubs that provided an army of volunteers for campaigns across the state in 1996.  Since her first political position with the Elliott Close for Senate campaign, Amie has been fortunate enough to work with some of South Carolina’s greatest Democrats including the legendary Congressman James Clyburn, Governor Jim Hodges, Superintendent Jim Rex, SC Senator Gerald Malloy, Democratic National Committee Chairman Don Fowler, and State Democratic Chairwoman Carol Fowler just to name a few. 

Staying true to her Democratic values, Amie is an advocate for worthwhile causes and organizations across the Pee Dee.  She is currently Vice Chair of the School Improvement Council at Pate Elementary, engaged in the PTA, and stewards public education in Darlington County as a member of the Superintendant’s Cabinet.  With the help of other tireless volunteers, Amie annually organizes the Lucky Dog Ball to benefit the Darlington County Humane Society and serves as Secretary for the Darlington County League of Women Voters.  As a founding member of Kylie’s Eyes, she raised money for Kylie Porchea’s retinoblastoma treatments and travel expenses. 

A lifelong resident of the Pee Dee area, Amie is proud to represent the 7th Congressional District as Vice President of the SC DWC.  She served as a Delegate to the 2012 National Convention in Charlotte, NC.  In addition, Amie is also First Vice-Chair of the Darlington County Democratic party where she lives with her family.

Click here to read more about the 7th Congressional District.

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