About

DC4D members prepare to march in the April 2017 People's Climate March with the U.S. Capitol in the background.
DC4D members prepare to march in the April 2017 People’s Climate March with the U.S. Capitol in the background.

Mission

DC for Democracy wants a world where every person has a voice and plays an active part in making our community more inclusive, democratic, and just. We organize, educate, advocate, and campaign so that ordinary people are empowered to take meaningful action to build that world.


History

DC for Democracy (DC4D) began as DC for Dean – a grassroots organization supporting the inspirational Howard Dean campaign in 2004. Ever since, the organization has taken the same, people-powered approach to focus on issues and campaigns that impact our community the most. DC4D has mobilized its member base to support progressive victories in elections, issue campaigns, and other community based activities.

In the ensuing years, DC4D has participated in nearly 100 distinct campaigns. We have knocked on doors and given small contributions to dozens of candidates running for office in DC, Virginia, and Maryland for local, state, and federal office. We have also campaigned for a fair budget, affordable housing, paid family leave, $15 minimum wage, paid sick days, a public health approach to crime, public financing of campaigns and campaign finance reform, DC Statehood, the DC Public Bank, the Large Retailer Accountability Act (LRAA / Walmart bill), the Anacostia Bag bill, reducing gun violence, marriage equality, and more. We also protested the Iraq War, and fought to reject the DC United soccer stadium subsidy and the Ivy City bus depot.

We’ve had major successes and heartbreaking losses, but uniting all of our activities is a desire to bring real progressive change to our community.


Activities

DC4D organizes and participates in dozens of events and actions throughout the year. We hold monthly meetups at local venues throughout the city where we share updates on ongoing campaigns, feature special guests, and enjoy lively discussions about issues of concern to our members. There’s also plenty of time to socialize, make friends, and get to know your community. We also participate in many local events and actions, working with partners to advance our priorities in a number of different ways.

Find out about about upcoming events and learn more about our current campaigns.


Members

DC4D has more than 600 members, ranging from native Washingtonians and long-time residents to people who are brand new to DC. We are black and white, Latinx and Asian, immigrants and American-born, LGBTQ and straight, from all eight wards in DC as well as the wider metro area, from all income levels, and have a broad array of interests and skills.

Want to join us? Check out how to read our bylaws and become a member!


Leadership

DC for Democracy bylaws call for the election of five officers each year. Elections generally take place in February.

Current Officers:

  • Keshini Ladduwahetty, Chair
  • Andra Wicks, Treasurer
  • Dan Wedderburn, Assistant Treasurer
  • Noah Van Gilder, Secretary
  • Roy Harrison, Ombudsman (Acting)

These officers, along with other key positions filled by the Chair via appointment, constitute the DC4D Steering Committee. The Steering Committee is responsible for both governance and day-to-day management of the organization’s affairs.

Other current Steering Committee members:

  • Keith Ivey, Political Director
  • Roy Harrison, Fundraising Chair
  • Jeremy Koulish, IT Chair
  • Andrea Rosen, At-Large Member
  • Zach Schalk, Communications Chair
  • Jonathan Silverman, Membership Chair

Past DC4D Chairs:

  • Keith Ivey (2013-2016)
  • Jerry Clark (2010-2013)
  • Keshini Ladduwahetty (2007-2010)
  • John Nowicki (2006-2007)
  • Charles Allen (2005-2006)