More than 40 candidates and elected officials at the 10th District-wide Democratic Convention raised their voices in support of working families, inspiring more than 300 enthusiastic conventioneers Sunday, March 4, at Vernon Hills High School.
The convention was hosted by Tenth Congressional District Democrats, or Tenth Dems. Candidates running for election at all levels of government from all parts of the district were able to meet active and passionate Democrats and interested independents. The convention featured rousing music, sign-waving to support Democratic candidates, and more.
Tenth Dems members conducted a straw poll for their favorite congressional candidate in the March 20 primary. Ilya Sheyman won 73 percent of the votes; John Tree, 20 percent; Brad Schneider, 6 percent; and Vivek Bavda, 1 percent. Although the convention was open to the public, only Tenth Dems members were eligible to vote.
Fay Hartog-Levin, the 65th U.S. ambassador to the Netherlands, was keynote speaker. Ambassador Levin’s speech reminded everyone of the task at hand—getting out the vote and sending Democrats to Washington, to Springfield, and to the many local offices in the district. “The country needs Barack Obama,” Levin said. “But the world needs him even more.”
“There was a generation in the world that only saw America through George W. Bush’s eyes,” Levin added. “The international community needed to see America through President Obama’s eyes. The Dutch and the international community never understood, for example, how a country with the wealth and influence of the United States did not allow many of its citizens access to health care.”
Levin was a senior consultant at Res Publica Group from 2006 to 2009, vice president for external affairs at Chicago’s Field Museum from 1997 to 2005, and an attorney in private practice and at Seyfarth, Shaw, Fairweather and Geraldson. Her parents were Dutch citizens who left the Netherlands during World War II and immigrated to the U.S. thereafter.
Local speakers at the convention vowed to unify after the primary to change the direction of the country and the district and spoke in amazement at the number and the energy of the attendees. “The rally was a fun event and a great way to energize voters,” said Northfield Trustee Karen McCormick.
The chair of the event was John Hmurovic, a recognized expert in area politics. Hmurovic has been chair of Tenth Dems since 2006 after three years as vice-chair and served as a precinct committeeman in Libertyville. He was campaign manager for State Rep. Karen May in 2006, 2008, and 2010, and for Highland Park Mayor Nancy Rotering in 2009.
Tenth Congressional District Democrats, or Tenth Dems, is a group of grassroots political volunteers who formed the organization in late 2003 to help elect Democrats to all levels of government throughout the 10th District. For more information or to volunteer, go to www.tenthdems.org, email email@example.com, or call 847-266-VOTE (8683).