Report on January 30th Meeting

The first Club meeting of the year on January 30th got off to a resounding start with a full house and renewed enthusiasm.  We were joined by eleven candidates or their surrogates running for various offices this year.  It was a wonderful opportunity to meet the individuals who seek our votes.  We’ll continue to provide more information  about the important choices we have in the May primaries and November elections.

One of the critical votes we’ll cast in November is for the re-election of Senator Sherrod Brown.  A featured presenter was Cindy Demsey, Co-Leader of Sherrod Brown’s re-election campaign for Cuyahoga County. In attendance was Gabrielle Jackson, also a Co-Leader of the campaign.  Cindy highlighted Senator Brown’s progressive roots and concern for the welfare of workers.  He will need our help to win and nothing can be taken for granted.  A fundraiser for the Senator will be held on February 19th at the Market Garden Brewery on West 24th St.  Contributions range from $25 (student) to $500 (sponsor).  For more information contact Meg Yee at or 916-799-2898.

Last March, the Club addressed the opioid crisis that, unfortunately, impacts families right here in Rocky River.  A critical tool to prevent overdose deaths is the use of Narcan.  To provide an update on this important issue, we were joined by community activist Barbara Folds and RRDC Treasurer Rob McRae.  Rob provided an update on the use of Narcan in city schools and circulated a petition to make the life-saving drug available to school nurses.  Barbara shared her personal experience and provided resources for families seeking help.  She emphasized that no one is alone in dealing with this terrible disease.  Resources are numerous and include:    Alcohol, Drug Addiction & Mental Health Services of Cuyahoga County, Project Dawn, and Dial 2-1-1 Program.

This is an important year politically and City Leader Steve Dever addressed the need for precinct leaders in Rocky River.  We have openings in 2B, 2C, 4A and 4C.  To check your precinct, click here.  Precinct leaders play an important role in the community and have an official role with the Democratic Party of Cuyahoga County, including the endorsement of county-wide candidates.  To learn more or to indicate your interest, please email  The filing deadline is February 7th.

President Mike O’Neil addressed two items that are important to the Club.  He asked members of the community to consider becoming official dues-paying members of the Rocky River Democratic Club.  The modest, annual membership can be paid securely on the Club’s website or a form can be downloaded and mailed with your check.  Mike also asked members to review draft versions of the Club’s bylaws and constitution; the documents can be viewed here.  We’ll discuss them at the next meeting with the objective of finalizing them this quarter.

Thanks to all of the candidates, presenters, and members who attended the meeting.  Please save the date for our next meeting on Tuesday, February 27, 7 P.M. at the Rocky River Public Library, 1600 Hampton.

Report on January 30th Meeting Read More »

The Environment and Redistricting

The Rocky River Democratic Club meeting on May 30th focused primarily on the environment.  Rich Snyder, the city’s Chief Forester, provided an overview of efforts to maintain our local environment.  Dave Karpinski from LeedCo described the Icebreaker wind farm that will be installed off Cleveland’s shores next year that will generate 500 jobs and green power for 7,000 homes.  Representatives from the Sierra Club and the Alliance for the Great Lakes were available to provide information on their respective efforts.

Just two days after our meeting, the United States withdrew from the Paris climate accord; a decision that will weaken efforts to combat global climate change.  Government and business leaders from around the world, as well as the Pope, denounced this decision.


Let your thoughts about this breathtakingly wrong decision prompt you to take positive actions in our own community:

  • The City of Lakewood passed a resolution in support of the Icebreaker Wind Farm in Lake Erie.  Contact Mayor Bobst at 440-331-0600 or and ask that the City of Rocky River pass a similar resolution to support the wind farm.
  • The Ohio Power Siting Board (OPSB) regulates the siting of wind farms with a generating capacity of 5 or more megawatts.  Email the OPSB at to express your support of the Icebreaker Wind Farm in Lake Erie.  Include case #: 16-1871-EL-BGN Icebreaker Windpower in your message.
  • Support one or more of the campaigns by the Alliance of the Great Lakes.  They have a number of efforts to address pollution, invasive species, and more.  Consider supporting the Sierra Club or any number of other organizations that seek to protect the environment.
  • Call the White House at 855-980-5634 or 202-456-1111.  Let the one who made the decision know what you think!

Mayors, governors and corporations have vowed to pursue sound environmental policies without the support of the Federal Government.  Let’s join them by taking one of the actions above to preserve the environment for our families and future generations.


We also had two additional speakers at the meeting.  Lauren Walsh from Rocky River Meals on Wheels let us know that they need volunteers in food preparation and as drivers.  If interested, please call 440-333-6298.

Heather Macalla from Fair Districts Ohio discussed the very important issue of gerrymandering, its affect on our elections, and the critical need to reform our congressional districts.  Volunteers are needed to obtain signatures to get the measure on the ballot.  Liz Gerstenhaber will be the point person for our Club.  To support this important effort, please email Liz at:

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Icebreaker Wind

Next year, Cleveland will be the first city in North America to install a freshwater wind farm off its shores in Lake Erie.  In addition to helping to protect our climate, Icebreaker Wind has the potential to create jobs and spur economic activity in Northeast Ohio.

Please join us for our featured presentation:

Building an Offshore Wind Industry in Lake Erie

David Karpinski, VP of Operations

Lake Erie Energy Development Corporation (LEEDCo)

Dave will address how LEEDCo and Fred Olsen Renewables are turning a decade old vision of a vibrant offshore wind industry in the Great Lakes into a reality.  Icebreaker Wind is a 6 turbine demonstration wind farm 8-10 miles off Cleveland’s shore that will produce enough power for about 7,000 homes.  He will discuss the status of Icebreaker Wind and what it takes to put the steel for North America’s first freshwater offshore wind project in Lake Erie and build a new offshore wind industry in Northeast Ohio.

Arrive early and meet representatives from:

The Sierra Club

Alliance for the Great Lakes

When: Tuesday, May 30, 6:45 pm

Where: Don Umerley Civic Center, 21016 Hilliard Blvd., Rocky River, OH

The meeting is free and open to the public.

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Rocky River Democratic Club Meeting

Tuesday, April 25th, 7 p.m.
Rocky River Public Library
While we achieved a recent victory with healthcare, we must remain vigilant across a number of important issues.   Nick Turner, Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur’s Congressional Assistant, will show us how and where to focus our opposition to Trump’s cuts in key areas of the budget.  He will share strategies on how to effectively talk to members of Congress, and we will learn how to take action right away.

Also featured during the meeting is Cynthia Demsey, Chair, Cuyahoga Democratic Women’s Caucus (CDWC).  The goals of the CDWC are: participate in the selection and development of strong local, county, and state Democratic Party strategists, leaders, and candidates — especially women — to win at all levels of government; help formulate a winning Democratic agenda for Ohio; and advocate and promote Democratic positions, issues, and values by forming coalitions with other local, state, and national organizations.  Learn what is new from the CDWC during a discussion with Cynthia Demsey.

Next week’s dynamic and informative meeting will also examine Rocky River’s Master Plan that will have long-term effects on the city; we’ll receive an update on Democratic Club activity on the Westside; and have Sam Gifford of the Rocky River City School District available to answer any questions you might have about Issue 13.  We are also delighted to officially unveil the Club’s new website during the meeting!

The complete agenda for our meeting next week is below.

Read More »

Push Alert Notifications and Digital Activism

Knowing who to call and when may seem overwhelming.  The following organizations help provide focus by pushing alerts to you about timely issues while providing simple ways to contact your representatives or take action.  Please consider adding one or more to your personal commitment to activism.

Fair Districts Ohio is focused on reforming Ohio’s Congressional districts.  Sign-up to receive text or email updates and help make fair districts a reality.

5 Calls gives you the option of receiving weekly texts or emails with links to details on specific issues about which you can call, as well as links for easily contacting representatives.

Daily Action sends users an alert every weekday with a simple action to take to push back on government stances with which they disagree.

Call Them In focuses on tax reform and protecting healthcare, and provides email alerts with scripts for calling.

We are the 65 has facebook and twitter alerts that you can follow, and provides scripts for calling legislators.

Resistbot turns your text messages into daily letters to Congress (faxes, actually!).  Visit the site or simply text “resist” to 50409 to be walked through a few quick steps.

Ultraviolet provides links to specific boycotting and petition campaigns to protest gender inequality.

Calling Legislators is more effective than emailing them.  Learn more here.

Helpful tips for making calls can be viewed here.

Push Alert Notifications and Digital Activism Read More »

Contact Your Representatives Often! Our Combined Voices Make a Difference.

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As a resident of Rocky River, Ohio, your elected Executive and Legislative Representatives are:

  • Mayor: Pamela Bobst (R)
  • City Council: Thomas Hunt (R), James Moran (R), Michael McDonnell (R), John Sheperd (R), David Furry (R), Christina Morris (D), Christopher Klym (R)
  • President: Donald Trump (R)
  • Vice President: Mike Pence (R)
  • United States Senate: Sherrod Brown (D) and Rob Portman (R)
  • United States Congress: Marcy Kaptur (D), 9th District or Anthony Gonzalez (R), 16th District
  • Ohio Governor: John Kasich (R)
  • Ohio Senate: Matt Dolan  (R), 24th District
  • Ohio House of Representatives: Dave Greenspan (R), 16th District

Contact information for your Ohio Representatives

Did you notice? – There are a lot of “Rs” above.

Did you know? – Hillary Clinton won in Rocky River.

Print a copy of your state Representatives here as a handy reference guide.


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