The Coordinating Committee is YDS's leadership body. YDS-CC members are elected every summer at our summer leadership retreats, which all active, dues-paying YDS members are invited to participate in. The YDS-CC works alongside DSA staff to develop programming for the organization's student body throughout the year.
2016-2017 YDS-Coordinating Committee
Co-Chairs then At-large members, alphabetical by last name.
Kayla Pace, Co-Chair
The past two years I have been actively involved with Young Democratic Socialists. During my first year as a YDS member I was the Secretary and later Vice President of the UC Davis chapter. The following summer I was encouraged to run for the coordinating committee. I won, and was also voted in as the President of our local chapter in 2016. Through working with the coordinating committee, my knowledge and passion for democratic socialism grew. I became well known in the California local’s to be a tuition activist. Outside of lowering tuition, I have also fought for homeless rights, worked on the Bernie Sanders campaign, and am currently starting a local in Visalia, CA as well as a chapter at the local community college. The United States Constitution states, “For the People, By the People” and I have a sincere belief the only way that can be achieved is through democratic socialism. The Bernie Sanders Campaign grabbed America’s attention, with “Democratic Socialism” being the number 1 searched term after the first Democratic debate. The education of our ideologies has begun to take place in mainstream society, but now it is time to take the educated members of society and turn them into YDS members of action. There are many issues the United States is facing that will effect generations to come if we do not act now. It is important that the issues we face in the world today are not the next generation's problem. Always, in solidarity!
Spencer Brown, Co-Chair
My name is Spencer. I have been a member of DSA/YDS for a few years now where I’ve developed my organizing skills helping to build a YDS chapter at my school, Wesleyan University, and to rebuild the Boston DSA local where I am from. I also have experience with the labor movement from being an organizer on the Fight for $15 campaign. I am running for the Coordinating Committee because I believe that the current moment is such a critical and important time for the socialist left. With the rise (and suspension?) of the Bernie movement, an opportunity of unique proportions to organize around socialist ideas and principles has appeared, and I believe that this is also time to build up YDS organizationally. By running for the CC, I am hoping to put my time and energy into continuing to make YDS a loud and critical voice of the student left, particularly around issues of labor, environmentalism, and police brutality.
Meghan Brophy At-large Member
Since my sophomore year of high school, I have worked on and/or volunteered with a wide variety of progressive electoral and issue-based campaigns and organizations. From working to raise the minimum wage in my home state with 15 Now NJ, to building support for striking workers with the Verizon Strike Solidarity Committee, to phone banking and door knocking for several campaigns, I have demonstrated a commitment to organizing and empowering people to fight for their interests. Most recently, I served as an intern with New Jersey Peace Action and as a Fellow with the Digital Organizing Project of Organizing 2.0. Since joining YDS, I participated in The People’s Summit and wrote a report back for The Activist on our work there, joined the DSA and YDS Social Media Teams, attended meetings in my area, and was invited to speak on a panel at our conference “From Sanders to the Grassroots.” I believe we need a solid analysis and serious strategy to build a pluralistic, international left in the 21st century. I am proud to be apart of DSA/YDS and I will work hard to build our organization during this critical political period.
Jack Suria Linares, At-Large Member
I joined DSA in 2014 as a student interested in issues of student debt and anti-racism. Since then, I have engaged both in organizing at the local level and publicly stating my belief in democratic socialism. I plan on committing myself to DSA for its loyalty to issues and grassroots organizing. I founded a YDS chapter at my alma mater, Hamilton College, where we held weekly meetings and bimonthly events despite the difficulty of student life. We coordinated an event with the Feminists of Color Collective celebrating the anniversary of Roe v Wade, while trying to understand the need for universal health care and a support of women’s rights. I helped campus activists learn logistical and tactical methods necessary to create a successful protest and campaign. As a result, over 300 Hamilton students held the largest protest in the history of the schools’ foundation and even sent two busloads of students and faculty to the Millions March in NYC. I have personally been committed to the Labor Movement in dire need of ideas to increase in strength. It is my belief that YDS/DSA will gain attention and membership in the years to come. As a member of the YDS-CC I will be able to better provide support to members and incoming youth.
Andrew Shelton, At-Large Member
When I joined the DSA at the age of 18, it seemed unimaginable that "socialism" would cease being a dirty word in American politics. However, canvassing this past year, speaking to my neighbors in Dorchester, MA and my family in rural Oklahoma, it has been staggering to see how the ideas of our political movement resonate with such a broad array of people. This is a special time in the movement, and a great responsibility falls to us, the Young Democratic Socialists, to become a new generation of activists, political candidates, and policy advocates, in all corners of every state and territory. I am a recent graduate of UMass Boston, and was recently elected as a member of the City of Boston Ward 15 Democratic Committee. In the past, I have volunteered with the campaigns of Senators Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders. I'm proud to fight against white supremacy, to speak out about injustices against the Palestinian and Kurdish people, and to work toward the acceptance of refugees and undocumented persons into our society. Especially close to my heart is solidarity and recognition for our Indigenous brothers and sisters, as I myself am a tribal citizen of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma.
Hannah Zimmerman, At-large Member
My name is Hannah Zimmerman and last weekend I came back from the Democratic National Convention. I was appointed by Bernie Sanders’ campaign to serve on the DNC’s Credentials Committee, making me the youngest member of the National Delegation. Amongst Sanders’ dedicated supporters was a tremendous enthusiasm for socialist ideas and a desire to continue the political revolution that Blew me away. That is why I want to run for the Coordinating Committee of YDS, to take all of this energy and channel it into YDS work. I believe, especially now that socialism isn’t a “bad word” anymore, we can use YDS as a vehicle to educate the newly politicized Bernie Supporters and give them a voice. This past year, I served as the Director of High School Outreach for the Bernie Sanders grassroots organization Team Bernie New York. Later, I founded the national organization High Schoolers for Bernie. We registered thousands of students to vote, fundraised for the campaign, and conducted thousands of hours of volunteer work. When the national campaign came to New York, they brought me on to handle all of their high school outreach. However, the campaign is over and we are entering the next phase of the political revolution. This is what I would like to achieve on the Coordinating Committee of YDS. As ‘Generation Z’ went overwhelmingly for Bernie Sanders, these students are going to need a new place to put their political voices, and as I have said above, I believe this place is YDS. We have a huge opportunity to continue organizing these students and building a powerful socialist movement in the next few years. I want to continue to play a leading role in organizing the next generation of fighters for a better world.
PREVIOUS YDS-CC MEMBERS
2015-2016 YDS-Coordinating Committee
Jack Suria Linares, Co-Chair
Shelby Murphy, Co-Chair
Kayla Pace, At-Large Member
Noelle Nieves Flynn, At-Large Member
Hadi Katebi, At-Large Member
Louie Messina, At-Large Member
2014-2015 YDS-Coordinating Committee
At the 2014 Socialist Organizing Weekend, the YDS-CC added an amendment to the YDS constitution resizing the number of members from 12 to 6.
2013-2014 YDS-Coordinating Committee
Alexandra Deane, Co-Chair
Matt Porter, Co-Chair
Daniel Santiago, Coalitions Coordinator
James Besse, Corresponding Secretary
Liz Wright, Working-class Caucus Chair
Tom DiNardo, LGBTQ Caucus Chair
Ian Lee, Western Regional Organizer
Bryan Kovalick, Great Lakes Regional Organizer