By: Walter Varda, ADBA Executive Board Member
Our “sold out” Christmas dinner turned out to be a real success on all counts.
We started the day, setting up the dining room, tables and chairs, covers and flowers, ornaments and baubles, biscuits and bites. Within minutes, the SCCDP headquarters had turned into a festive Christmas venue.
The diversity of our guests with varying political backgrounds made the event warm, inclusive and an informative Christmas Dinner. Our guests appeared at ease and recognized our warm hospitality in true Assyrian style.
The ADBA members had an opportunity to meet up in person in a relaxed environment and listen to speeches.
The evening was a good balance of formal political speeches and informal conversations between guests and the ADBA members. This was a solid step towards getting the Assyrian Democrats of the Bay Area recognized. While a few of us took part in helping setup and cleanup, our main thanks go to Ninva Saada for overseeing the arrangements, and Roussana Nazari for the amazing catering. Last but not least, kudos to Tony Khoshaba for organizing and planning the event, including reaching out to other local Democratic clubs and active politicians which include the following:
Senator Dave Cortese, Represents State Senate District 15 which encompasses much of Santa Clara County in the heart of Silicon Valley.
Bill James, Chair at The Santa Clara County Democratic Party (SCCDP)
Susan Ellenberg, Santa Clara County Supervisor representing District 4. This district includes the unincorporated communities of Burbank and Cambrian as well as the cities of Campbell and Santa Clara, and much of west San José.
Cindy Chavez, Santa Clara County Supervisor representing District 2. This district includes the area of Central, East and South San Jose.
Dorene Kastelman, President of Jewish Democratic Club of Silicon Valley (JDCSV)
Aisha Wahab, Hayward City councilmember (Running for State Senate)
Sousan Manteghi-Safakish, Officer and E-Board Member at Large of The Bay Area Iranian-American Democrats (BAIAD)
Yvonne Martínez Beltrán, Morgan Hill Councilwoman
At the dinner, Supervisor Cindy Chavez emphasized that Santa Clara County has one of the most diverse populations in the country and how Democratic clubs like ours could help marry public policies with our values. She also announced her intent to run for Mayor of San Jose in the next election.
Supervisor Susan Ellenberg described how the county government works and what services it provides. In future we hope to have more one on one direct communication with her and other county supervisors creating more awareness about local issues at grassroots levels.
Senator Dave Cortese also touched upon how California State government works and gave the good news that despite COVID–19 pandemic and fear of loss of revenue of the State government, we had a budget surplus.
Our guests touched upon other issues including the fact that we will explore more collaborations with other communities on a variety of issues.