The Elk County Democratic Committee is excited to host its first ever Spring mixer event, Derby Day with The Dems, on Saturday evening May 6th, 2023, at Maker’s Warehouse in St. Marys. The Kentucky Derby themed event will feature four statewide Democratic candidates along with local candidates for office and give everyone a chance to meet each other.
As a mixer event, Derby Day will feature appetizers, dessert tables, contests, door prizes, and local wine tasting along with a terrific opportunity to meet other area Democrats and speak with and hear from the candidates. Doors open at 5:30pm at the Warehouse located at 315 Brusselles St. in Downtown St. Marys. Everyone will be cheering on their favorites to win the Derby at post time of 6:45pm. Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased online at www.actblue.com/donate/Derby23 or by contacting the Committee by phone at (814) 636-1030.
The Committee is honored to have Pennsylvania State Representative Malcolm Kenyatta as the keynote speaker for the event. Kenyetta, the first LGBTQ person of color elected to the state’s General Assembly, has been an advocate for working families and workers’ rights, common-sense gun safety policies, and rooting out government corruption and waste. Last month, he announced his intentions to run for State Auditor General in 2024. Just this week, Joe Biden recognized Kenyetta’s work, naming him to the President’s Advisory Commission on Advancing Educational Equity, Excellence, and Economic Opportunity for Black Americans. Derby Day will be the Representative’s second visit to Elk County. Kenyetta helped kick off a Get Out the Vote event at the Committee’s Brusselles St. headquarters last fall just days before the General election.
In addition to Kenyetta, three Democratic candidates for statewide judicial office are also participating along with both Democratic Elk County Commissioner candidates, incumbent Commissioner Matt Quesenberry as well as local businessperson Ray Krise who is seeking the second position on the ballot. Quesenberry will also serve as Master of Ceremonies for the mixer.
Judge Debbie Kunselman who currently serves on the Pennsylvania Superior Court, is seeking the party’s nomination for the lone position of state Supreme Court justice. Kunselman, from Beaver County, has 17 years of experience as a judge, more than any other candidate in 2023 with experience in Civil, Family, Juvenile, and Criminal court cases. She received the rating of Highly Recommended by the PA Bar Association. An advocate for all our Commonwealth including rural counties, Debbie visited Elk County three times during her successful run for Superior Court in 2017 and is eager to return for this event.
A champion for fairness and justice for all Pennsylvanians, Jill Beck will also be visiting for Derby Day. Beck, an attorney from Allegheny County, is seeking one of two nominations on the primary ballot for state Superior Court judge. Her experience in criminal and civil law and her commitment to integrity, reflected in the PA Bar Associations’ Highly Recommended rating, makes her extremely qualified to serve on one of the state’s top courts. Beck has made repeated visits over the past few years to Elk County and rural Pennsylvania advocating for all our judicial candidates.
Rounding out the statewide candidates participating will be Attorney Bryan Neft from Allegheny County, candidate for Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court. This will be Neft’s second visit to Elk County so far in 2023 as he helped kick off the 2023 Grand Opening of the Committee’s headquarters earlier this year. With over 30 years’ experience, Bryan has dedicated his practice to fairness, equity, and a drive to make sure all his clients are represented with the highest level of service. His peers on the Allegheny County bar recognized that with a Highly Recommended rating to serve on Commonwealth Court.
The event in St. Marys is one of six events being held in Northwest Pennsylvania that weekend in what is being termed “Derby Weekend.” Kenyatta, Kunselman, Beck and Neft will be starting out Saturday Morning May 6th with a Breakfast event in Coudersport with the Potter County Democrats. They will follow that up with a luncheon in Port Allegany with the McKean County Democrats. The candidates will make a stop in Emporium in the afternoon to canvas doors with fellow Cameron County Democrats before making their way to Elk County for this capstone event of the day in Saint Marys. They will start out Sunday with a luncheon in Warren with their county’s Democrats followed by canvassing in Tionesta in Forest County. Local candidates from each county will also be participating in their specific events.
The Committee extends an invitation to attend Derby Day to all area Democrats as well as other registered voters that support the party’s work to protect workers, families, the environment, seniors, and children while ensuring that fairness, equity, and democracy prevail. For more information about the Committee, visit their Facebook page, www.facebook.com/ElkCoDC , their website www.elkdems.com or by reaching via email to email@example.com or phone/text to (814) 636-1030.