Hanover County Democratic Committee

Moving Hanover Forward




1. Authority:

Pursuant to the authority provided by the Democratic Party of Virginia Democratic Party Plan, Hanover Democratic Committee (HDC) hereby calls a reorganization meeting. The caucus will convene at 10:00 am.  The "doors will open" at 9:45 a.m. and "will close" at 10:10. All those in line by 10:10 will be allowed to finish the registration process which includes filling out an application form and paying dues. (Anyone needing an exemption from the dues, please see the chair, Daniel McGraw.)

2. Incorporated Documents:

All appropriate provisions of the Virginia Democratic Party Plan (“State Party Plan”), as amended, and the Bylaws (“Bylaws”) of the HDC are incorporated into this Call.

3. Purpose:

The sole purpose of this reorganization shall be to elect members and officers of the HDC for a two-year term and adopt bylaws for 2022-23, in accordance with the State Party Plan and Bylaws.

4. Member Filing Deadline and Requirements:

All potential members must meet the requirements specified by the State Party Plan and the Bylaws and must submit a membership application form and $30.00 dues for two years. Application forms may be downloaded at the committee’s website, www.hvadems.com.

The application form and dues must be received by the opening of the Caucus on December 11.

(Individuals who cannot afford the filing fee may obtain a confidential waiver by contacting the Chair of the HDC, Daniel McGraw, 804-647-9958)

5. Notice Requirements:

It shall be the duty of the HDC officers to ensure that this call receives the widest possible dissemination through the HDC website and the newsletter.

6. Voting Eligibility and Requirements:

Any Democrat who is registered to vote in Hanover County may attend and vote in the reorganization Caucus, provided that he or she signs a declaration that he or she is a Democrat, is a registered voter in Hanover County, believes in the principles of the Democratic Party, and does not intend to support any candidate who is opposed to a Democratic nominee in the next ensuing election.

7. Outreach:

Participation in the Caucus is open to all registered voters who wish to participate as Democrats. Notification of the Caucus and the rules shall be published in the December newsletter, in individual notice by mail to current members, and on the HDC website. In addition, it has been announced at the November meeting and in the November newsletter.

8. Election of Hanover Democratic Committee Officers:

The officers of the Committee shall be elected by the newly organized Committee at the Caucus. Candidates will be nominated from the floor and may have a total of five minutes for themselves or others to advocate for their candidacy. Voting for unchallenged candidates shall be by acclaim; voting for challenged candidates shall be by written ballot of the members present. In the event of a tie, the vote shall be retaken. If there is still a tie, a coin shall be tossed to determine the winner.

Daniel McGraw, Chair

Coffee is Brewing

All Democratic women are Welcome!

Our December Democratic Women's Coffee will be held on Sunday afternoon, Dec. 5. Hostesses Sabena Moretz and her mother, Ginny Moretz will welcome us to Sabena's home at 10021 Studley Farms Drive, Mechanicsville, at 2 p.m.

Because Covid is still with us, we must require that all guests be fully vaccinated.

For more information or to RSVP, please contact Diane Neergaard at daneergaard@comcast.net or 804-304-1951.


We will hold our next HDC meeting at 10 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 11. The venue will be the Iron Horse,100 S Railroad Ave, Ashland, VA 23005. Parking is available in the Municipal Lot near the Caboose.

The reorganization, as required by the State Party Plan every two years, will be on the agenda, with nominations for officers for the 2022-2023 cycle.


As required by our bylaws, the Hanover County Democratic Committee must reorganize every two years in odd-numbered years, which includes:
1. Members are required to re-join for another two years with dues of $30 for the two-year membership. You should have received your renewal form in the mail already.
2. Elect new officers.

The Nominating Committee composed of Toni Radler, Diane Neergaard, Jamey Doran and Don Barth has made contact with and the following people have agreed to serve as the new officers:

Chair - Daniel McGraw
Vice Chair of Fund Raising - John Suddarth
Vice Chair of Technology - Steve Johnson
Vice Chair of Outreach - Toni Radler
Vice Chair of Political Strategy - Ashley Hall
Treasurer - Sandy Fellerman
Recording Secretary - Betsy Farley
Corresponding Secretary - Mary Anne Pugh

District Chairs
Ashland - Don Barth
Beaverdam - Karen Clay Winston
Chickahominy - June Bohrer
Cold Harbor - Wendy Brooks
Henry - Bill Butler
Mechanicsville - Rita Dowling
South Anna - Annette Sirica

These names will be presented and voted on at our reorganization meeting on Saturday, Dec. 11. Additional nominations from the floor will be asked for and are encouraged.


Hanover County Democratic Committee (bylaw link)


  • The name of this Organization shall be known as the "Hanover County Democratic Committee", hereinafter referred to as the “Hanover Democratic Committee” (HDC).
  • These Bylaws are adopted by the HDC under the authority of the Virginia Democratic Party Plan (hereinafter referred to as the “Party Plan”) and endorse the principles contained in the Charter of the Democratic Party of the United States of America, bound always by the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the Commonwealth of Virginia. These Bylaws shall continue in effect, subject to amendment as provided in Section 13.1.
  • The Hanover Democratic Committee will have entire charge and full control of all Party matters arising throughout the County of Hanover as accorded to the HDC under the Party Plan; the administrative duties of the Hanover Democratic Committee shall be delegated to and vested in the Executive Committee.
  • All activities of the HDC, including mass meetings, primaries, conventions and fundraising, shall be conducted in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Party Plan.


  • It shall be the responsibility of the HDC as well as each officer and member thereof:
  • To support the Party Plan and Democratic principles within the County;
    1. To promote the organization of the Democratic Party throughout the County;
    2. To actively participate in the nomination process;
    3. To do all within its power to support the election of the Democratic Party's nominees in all elections open to eligible voters in the County;
    4. To encourage the registration and voting by qualified residents of the County;
    5. To recruit and organize volunteers to create a Democratic presence outside the polls and when deemed necessary, provide observers inside the polls in general and special elections in the County in which there is a Democratic candidate.


  • The HDC will reorganize every two years in odd numbered years in accordance with the Party Plan.
  • Members shall be notified of membership expiration and reorganization through the HDC website, according to Article 14, at least two weeks in advance of the reorganization meeting in December of the odd-numbered years. Membership Application forms to rejoin the HDC will be sent to all active members in time for the reorganization meeting. The completed forms and payment of dues will be submitted online, by mail or in person to the Chair. Payment of dues will be made online, by check at membership meetings or mailed to the HDC, P.O. Box 22, Ashland, VA 23005.
  • The reorganization meeting will be held in odd numbered years on a Saturday in December, specified by the outgoing Executive Committee, in accordance with the rules defined in the Party Plan and the meeting information will be communicated to the Democratic Party of Virginia as required by the Party Plan.
  • The Executive Committee shall make public notice of this reorganization meeting no fewer than seven (7) days prior to the meeting in a Call to Caucus.
  • All prior received membership applications will be voted on at this reorganization Any registered Hanover voter who is a declared Democrat may also attend this meeting and apply for membership onsite.
  • Immediately following the election of the members, the newly constituted HDC shall elect the following officers for a term of two (2) years or until the officer's successor is elected: HDC Chair; Treasurer; Recording Secretary; Corresponding Secretary; District Chairs; Standing Committee Vice-Chairs for Outreach, Fundraising, Technology, and Political Strategy.


  • Membership will be open to any registered Hanover voter who is a declared Democrat who files a complete Membership Application.
  • A Membership Application for election to the Committee shall be filed with the Chair, along with accompanying dues as set by the Committee, prior to consideration of the applicant for membership. The fees may be waived by the Chair upon request of the applicant due to financial hardship.
  • The Hanover Democratic Committee shall consist of those members elected by Democratic voters of Hanover County at the biennial (occurring every two years) reorganization meeting, and those members subsequently elected by the HDC itself.
  • Eligibility for membership shall be open to any qualified voter registered to vote in the next general election in Hanover County and who supports the principles of the Democratic Party. No person shall participate in any way in a Democratic primary election, a convention or a caucus who intends to support any candidate opposed to a Democratic nominee in the next general election or special election.
  • In addition, Democratic members of the Hanover County Electoral Board, the elected members of the Democratic Party of Virginia Central Committee residing in Hanover County, and each elected Democrat representing any part of Hanover County and who maintains their voting residence in Hanover County, are ex-officio, at-large members with voice.
  • Individuals who desire to be involved with the committee, but are not eligible for full membership, may become supporting members upon submission of a complete Membership Application and election by the Committee. Supporting members shall receive notice of and shall have a voice in Committee meetings and are eligible to participate on committees and in events.
  • All HDC Members must be current on their membership dues as determined by the Executive Committee in Section 6.4 and be in good standing. The executive committee has the right to waive dues in cases of financial hardship.
  • Full Members will have voting privileges.
  • Caucus Chairs, including the Women’s Coffee Caucus, the Men’s Forum and the Black Caucus, must be Members of the HDC, and will keep the Executive Committee informed of their Caucus’ activities. They may request funding from the Executive Committee for specific purposes. Caucuses may develop their own policies and procedures that do not conflict with these Bylaws.


  • The HDC Chair shall be the chief executive officer of the HDC and primary spokesperson to the public and the media.
  • The HDC Chair will undertake responsibilities identified in the Party Plan, preside at the meetings of the Committee, will oversee the work of the Candidate and Nominations Committee, and will oversee the work of all the Officers and, with the assistance of the Candidate and Nominations Committee, conduct the necessary procedures for nominating Democratic candidates to the pertinent public offices. The Chair shall make appointments to Standing Committees and may appoint ad-hoc and special committees. The Chair shall be an ex-officio member of all standing or special committees. The Chair will solicit the assistance of other members of the Executive Committee and the membership to fulfill the obligations of the Committee.
  • The Chair shall designate the second in command from the duly elected officers of the committee. This position shall be designated first Vice Chair. The Chair shall vacate his or her committee seat upon election to county or state office, and that seat shall be declared vacant. If the Chair is unable to serve, the first Vice Chair will assume the position until a new Chair is elected in a meeting of the Committee. If neither the Chair nor the first Vice Chair can serve, a temporary Chair will be selected from the duly elected officers of the committee to assume the position until a new Chair is elected.
  • The Magisterial District Chairs shall be elected for a term to expire with the elected officers or until the Magisterial District Chairs’ successors are elected. Magisterial District Chairs shall select Co-Chairs to help coordinate District activities and provide leadership assistance to the District Chairs.
  • The Treasurer shall maintain the financial records of the HDC and conduct all routine accounting functions. The Treasurer will coordinate with the Executive Committee in the preparation of budgets and policies. The Treasurer will also be responsible for preparing and submitting quarterly reports to the State Board of Elections.
  • The Recording Secretary shall record minutes of meetings of the Hanover Democratic Committee and the Executive Committee.
  • The Corresponding Secretary shall send and receive communications on behalf of the Hanover Democratic Committee as approved by the Executive Committee.
  • Officer vacancies shall be filled by election as soon as is practical at a regularly scheduled meeting of the HDC where a quorum is present.


  • The Executive Committee shall consist of the elected officers of the HDC, the immediate past chair of the HDC if he/she resides in Hanover County, the Chairperson of each Magisterial District in Hanover County, State Central Committee members who reside in Hanover County, and Chairs of the recognized standing committees and caucuses.
  • The Chairperson of the HDC shall be the Chair of the Executive Committee.
  • No person shall serve on the Executive Committee who is not a Member of the HDC and who does not reside within Hanover County, Virginia. Any change in residency that places that person outside these political boundaries or membership status shall result in a vacancy in that position.
  • Full and Supporting Membership dues of the HDC shall be determined by the Executive Committee.
  • The Executive Committee shall have full responsibility for maintaining all the administrative functions of the HDC.
  • The Executive Committee shall have full authority to act on behalf of the HDC on matters arising between meetings of the HDC. The Executive Committee may not amend the Bylaws of the HDC nor elect members to the HDC.
  • All actions taken by the Executive Committee shall be required to have the approval of a simple majority of the Executive Committee present subject to the quorum requirements in Section 10.4.
  • The Executive Committee shall make the minutes of its meetings available to members of the HDC upon request, according to Article 11.


  • The Executive Committee may remove from both HDC office and membership any person neglecting his/her duties, exhibiting unruly behavior at committee meetings or functions, or of any action construed to be opposed to the objectives of the HDC. Such action shall not be taken without at least ten (10) days written notice to the accused member and an opportunity for him or her to refute such charges in a hearing before the Executive Committee of the HDC.


  • The Executive Committee is responsible for oversight of all functions of the HDC, including but not limited to strategic planning, fundraising and donations, outreach, elections, publicity, and sponsorship of subcommittees and caucuses as needed. The Executive Committee shall appoint from the membership of the HDC such standing committees as the Executive Committee deems appropriate.
  • The Executive Committee shall oversee the finances of the HDC under the leadership of the Committee Treasurer. These duties shall:
    1. ensure that HDC finances are conducted in conformance with generally accepted accounting principles; and
    2. Ensure proper quarterly reporting to the State Board of Elections.
  • The Executive Committee shall appoint a Standing Committee for the Magisterial Districts comprised of the Magisterial District Chairs and Co-Chairs. The Magisterial Districts Committee shall:
    1. develop a district infrastructure to include a captain for each precinct and a list of volunteers from each precinct;
    2. keep voter information in the VAN current;
    3. maintain a record of all Hanover Democratic Committee Members; and
    4. communicate regularly to plan activities, share resources and support the efforts of each District Chair.
  • The Executive Committee shall appoint a Standing Committee for Outreach. The Outreach Vice-Chair shall chair the Outreach Committee. The Outreach Committee shall:
    1. conduct outreach operations to broaden community participation in Democratic activities and support Democratic candidates;
    2. seek volunteers to fill vacancies on state and local boards and commissions;
    3. staff local events such as the Strawberry Faire and the Tomato Festival with HDC volunteers; and
    4. maintain liaison with Hanover County community groups as appropriate.
  • The Executive Committee shall appoint a Standing Committee for Fundraising. The Fundraising Vice-Chair shall chair the Fundraising Committee. The Fundraising Committee shall:
    1. formulate plans, policies and procedures for raising funds for the Hanover Democratic Committee for approval by the Executive Committee; and
    2. raise funds for the Hanover Democratic Committee.
  • The Executive Committee shall appoint a Standing Committee for Technology. The Technology Vice-Chair shall chair the Technology Committee. The Technology Committee shall:
    1. formulate plans, policies and procedures for all technology services and social media activities required by the HDC, subject to approval by the Executive Committee;
    2. maintain the web site, membership database, and social media accounts; and
    3. administer other technology services as needed.
  • The Executive Committee shall appoint a Standing Committee for Political Strategy. The Political Strategy Vice-Chair shall chair the Political Strategy Committee. The Political Strategy Committee shall develop political strategy for the HDC for approval by the Executive Committee.
  • The Executive Committee shall appoint a Standing Committee for Local Government Liaison. The Local Government Liaison Vice-Chair shall ensure regular attendance (virtually or in person) at the Hanover County Board of Supervisors, School Board and Planning Commission meetings. Report out on actions taken and opportunities to advocate with our elected and appointed officials on matters they will be voting on. If appropriate, find folks to speak on issues during citizens’ time to ensure progressive voices in the county are heard. Attend the following committees and boards on a quarterly or bi-annual basis to keep up with what they are working on:
  1. Community Development Committee
  2. Economic Development Authority
  3. Joint Education Committee
  4. Legislative Committee
  5. Parks and Rec Advisory Commission
    1. As there are positions on these committees and boards that are filled by citizens, work to have progressive voices added to them. Work with the Vice Chair of Political Strategy to identify individuals to run for seats on the Board of Supervisors when those elections roll around. Additionally, identify individuals to be nominated for appointment to the School Board and Planning Commission when those come up.


  • There shall be at least four scheduled regular meetings during each year.
  • Special Meetings may be called in accordance with the Party Plan.
  • Notice of all regular and special meetings shall be provided to all HDC members.
  • All meetings of the HDC shall be public.

ARTICLE 10                  QUORUM AND VOTING

  • All resolutions will be adopted by a majority of those present at any meeting subject to the quorum requirements.
  • Only members in good standing with the HDC may cast a vote. Proxies are not permitted.
  • The presence of thirty percent (30%) of the members of the HDC shall constitute a quorum to conduct business at any regular HDC meeting.
  • The presence of fifty percent (50%) of the members of the Executive Committee shall constitute a quorum to conduct business at any Executive Committee meeting.


  • Any member of the HDC may request to inspect the records of the HDC upon written notice to the Recording Secretary. The Recording Secretary will make those records available as soon as feasible.
  • Records available for inspections are:
    1. minutes of meetings of the HDC and the Executive Committee;
    2. records and statements of the financial affairs of the HDC; and
    3. Bylaws of the HDC.

ARTICLE 12                  RULES

  • The rules governing the HDC and Executive Committee shall be Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised (current edition) in all cases that those rules are applicable and do not conflict with these Bylaws, the Party Plan and the Code of Virginia.

ARTICLE 13                  AMENDMENTS

  • These Bylaws may be amended by a majority vote at any meeting of the HDC at which a quorum as specified in Section 10.3 is present, provided the members of the HDC are notified of the proposed changes in accordance with 14.1.

ARTICLE 14                  NOTICES

  • All notices shall be published, through electronic mail, paid advertisements, press releases, website notice or other reasonable methods, no fewer than seven (7) days before any meeting date, to all interested persons.
  1. HDC Bylaws adopted by a majority of the full committee on December 11, 2021.
  2. Addenda:
  3. Democratic Party of Virginia
  4. http://vademocrats.org/
  5. Democratic Party of Virginia – Party Plan
  6. http://vademocrats.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/DPVA-Party-Plan-Dec-5.pdf
  7. HDC Standing Committees:
  8. Magisterial Districts
  9. Outreach
  10. Fundraising
  11. Technology
  12. Political Strategy
  13. Local Government Liaison
  14. HDC Recognized Caucuses:
  15. Hanover Democratic Women's Coffee Caucus 
  16. Men’s Forum Caucus
  17. Black Caucus of the Hanover Democratic Committee

Stand Up For Democracy

by Larry Fellerman

As a retired high school teacher, I have been stunned by the decision of the Republican Party to embrace the critical race theory put forth by extremists who wish to destroy democracy within the United States.

Their attempt to rewrite history so that young white children don’t feel “uncomfortable” about confronting the tragic racial transgressions against minorities (race, gender, place of origin, etc.) which permeate American history, is simply an attempt to base the study of our past upon a foundation of lies.

Republican opponents of critical race theory deny that massacres of African American citizens by white mobs in Tulsa, unarmed Native Americans by white soldiers at Wounded Knee, innocent Chinese-Americans in California and thousands of other incidents throughout this nation ever really happened. Many of these same Republicans deny that the Holocaust in Europe during the 1940s really occurred.

The same Americans who believe that these events are fictitious also deny that what millions of us witnessed on TV on January 6 was not really an insurrection against the U.S. Constitution, but rather was merely “tourists” who were taking a peaceful tour of the Capitol.

Let’s be honest. The insurrection on 1/6 was an attempt to destroy our democracy and to set up an authoritarian regime in its place. It is frightening that the extremists in our nation are willing to destroy the glue that has held our country together for 245 years. The basis for America’s greatness is its acceptance of the following principles:

1) Respect for the laws passed by “We, the People.”
2) An abiding faith that all people have unalienable rights.
3) Respect for truth and the laws of nature.
4) Belief in the golden rule (treat others as you wish to be treated).
5) Belief in majority rule with the protection of minority rights.
6) No person or political party is above the law.
7) Belief in governmental checks and balances.
8) Tolerance of all people’s views, even if different from your own.
9) Kindness is a virtue and not a sign of weakness.
10) Compromise is a way to resolve divisive issues and find common ground.

These are the political 10 Commandments that have united our people for nearly two-and-a-half centuries. It is wise to think about them in light of today’s descent into tribalism and authoritarianism. Democracy is a fragile thing and it has served us well for many years, We need to assure ourselves and the world that, in the words of Abraham Lincoln in his Gettysburg Address, our constitutional republic, established by the people and for the people shall not perish from the Earth.

This is the time for ALL Americans to stand up for freedom. This is the time for ALL Americans to stand up for democracy. This is the time for all Americans to get involved in our effort to preserve our values. Join the Hanover Democratic Committee today and fight for your future and the futures of your children and grandchildren.


Due to the pandemic, we're going to take a temporary break for the popular Men's Forum. With so many Zoom calls going on and people moving into fall tasks, it seems prudent and more productive to wait until we can meet face to face. Watch this space for more information and we hope to be back on the ball soon.