Pierce County Democrats have chosen a new leader, county Republicans have re-elected theirs and both parties have chosen slates of officers.
Democrats elected Rose Ehart of University Place to a two-year term as chairwoman.
She takes the gavel from Nathe Lawver, who served two terms and says he succeeded in his goal to increase participation in party politics. The county party in 2008 held the largest presidential caucuses in its history with 17,000 people participating, he said. Many have stayed active.
“It’s a great opportunity right now for Rose to take the reins and really help foster and grow those opportunities,” Lawver said. “She’s got the energy and the motivation to do that.”
Ehart has made a couple of unsuccessful bids for UPlace City Council, including a squeaker of a loss to the sitting mayor in 2007. In what Lawver described as a friendly contest, she outpolled Whitney Rhodes for chairwoman.
Joining Ehart on the board is vice-chairman Jonathan Johnson of Tacoma, who lost a bid for state House in the August primary. Both Ehart and Johnson are African-Americans. “It’s the most diverse executive board that Pierce County’s ever seen,” Lawver said, including two Native Americans.
The same day Democrats elected their members, Dec. 11, county Republicans had their own decisions to make. They re-elected Chairman Bob Lawrence of Lakewood, who defeated Marty McClendon for the job.
Republicans elected Edgewood’s Colleen Wise to the vacant post of vice chairwoman in an unopposed contest. The rest of the Republican officers are Andrea Innes, Jean Miller, Mark Stewart, Deryl McCarty and Glenda Ahrens.
The rest of the Democratic officers are John Laakso, Clare Bungay, Carolyn Merrival, Marianne Lincoln and Robert Satiacum.
UPDATED 4:07 p.m.