Report on Convention 2004

The Green Party of Oklahoma held its third annual convention on Saturday, March 27, 2004, at the Senior Citizen’s Center in Newcastle.

Convention packet (PDF).

It was a rainy day and attendance was light, but those present were dedicated to the work at hand. We considered an amendment to the by-laws regarding length of membership and partipation in the convention, which passed.

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The 2004 convention took place at the Newcastle Senior Citizens Center, where colorful murals and other decor had a decidedly Oklahoma theme.
Reports from local chapters presented us with some challenges for the coming year: a need for more commitment to locals, and program activities to engage members and the general public alike. A number of good ideas were suggested, and it was generally agreed that we need to avoid having our work be too focused online, and should be visibly active in our communities as Greens.

We approved the addition of a plank to the party platform endorsing the independent media movement — and the Oklahoma Independent Media Center in particular — to empower citizens to be media producers instead of just media consumers.

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Reports from local chapters showed the need for sustaining grassroots work in the party.
We also discussed two resolutions (on the recent execution by the state of Hung Thanh Le and the proposed state lottery) but referred those to the Executive Committee for more work.

Our status with the national Green Party was addressed. We will soon be sending a letter to the national GPUS requesting accredidation as an official state Green Party with full voting rights. Once approved, our co-chairs will have a good deal more responsibility to partcipate in, rather than just observe, national party organizing and development.

We had a good meal — Soft Tacos (made with mostly grass-fed beef from the Oklahoma Food cooperative) with all of the fixings, humus with pita bread, all kinds of tasty salads and side items made by Belinda Silverstar, our state secretary.

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Ed Romo of LULAC was the guest speaker.
After lunch, we had an excellent presentation by Ed Romo from the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) on the issues facing Latin Americans in Oklahoma and how Greens might work with that community on issues of common concern. Mr. Romo was actually present for the entire day, generously giving his time and ideas to our discussions.

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Ben Alpers, outgoing Executive Committee Co-Chair, took minutes of our sessions.
We then turned to the matter of the GPUS Presidential nomination. We watched videotaped debates of the various candidates as well as the Ralph Nader interview on Meet the Press. This led to a lively discussion on what course of action we should take. In the end, we reached consensus that Oklahoma’s four national convention delegates would be uncommitted and would be free to decide individually who they should vote for at the national convention.

We also elected four convention delegates and four alternates.

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Alice Anderton, Exec. Committee Member at Large, introduced our guest speaker.
Lastly, we elected new officers to to our state Executive Committee.
Those elected were: James Branum, Co-Chair; Doug Vincent, Treasurer (re-elected); Alice Anderton, Exec. Committee Member at Large (re-elected); Micah Gamino, Exec. Commmitee Member at Large.

Those remaining in office who were elected last year are: Rachel Jackson, Co-Chair and Belinda Silverstar, Secretary.

04conv6.jpgThanks to all who helped organize the convention. And thanks to James for the tomato plants given to attendees!

Updates to the by-laws and platform to be posted soon.

– Notes by James Branum, State Party Co-Chair, and Serena Blaiz, Web Committee Chair