Sanpete Democrats discuss party philosophy, elect local officers
EPHRAIM—Sanpete County Democrats heard candidates for state party office describe the party as in step with Utah values and family values at their county convention last week.
At the gathering Saturday, May 20 at the Huntsman Library Auditorium at Snow College, local Democrats also chose their party leaders for the next two years.
Peter Carroon, former Salt Lake County mayor who has served two terms as party chair is stepping down, and more than a dozen candidates are running to replace him. Another half-dozen candidates are running for state vice chair. The races will be decided at the state party convention June 17 in Salt Lake City.
Carroon, eight candidates for state party offices and one candidate for U.S. Senate in 2018 were at the Sanpete meeting.
Several state party candidates said the Democratic Party’s stands on social justice and equal opportunity conform to what most Utahns believe.
“Our values are Utah’s core values. We are the party of family values,” declared Margarita Santini, a former Snow College student who is running for state vice chair.
Mitchell Vice, who has announced his candidacy for the U.S. Senate in 2018, said, “Most Utahns are Democrats. They just don’t know it yet.”
Although Sanpete is overwhelmingly Republican, there are 600 registered Democrats, party leaders noted.
Two tributes to long-time Sanpete Democratic leaders were presented.
Debra Fraser read a tribute to Avrin Brotherson, who has stepped down after more than 10 years as county party treasurer. Brotherson’s husband, Boyd, accepted a spray of flowers for her.
“She brought a steady voice to the table,” Fraser said.
Fraser recalled the first time Barak Obama ran for president. That year, Avrin and Boyd Brotherson loaded local and state Democratic candidates in their pontoon boat and pulled the boat in every parade in the county.
A tribute to Fraser, written by Jill Hansen, was also read. Fraser has been in county party leadership for more than 10 years.
“She got things done and done right,” Hansen wrote. “…She deserves our gratitude for many years of quiet, dedicated service.
Elected to fill county party offices for the next two years were Serenity Kimball, Hideaway Valley, chair; Lianne Hirst, Ephraim, first vice chair; Jill Hansen, Manti, second vice chair; Robert Buckner, Spring City, secretary; and Andy Hyer, Ephraim, treasurer.
Members of the central committee will be Debra Fraser, Ephraim; Deborah Woodbury, Manti; and Cliff Birrell Ephraim.