The GPUS Steering Committee (SC), along with the party’s staff, oversees and helps execute the day-to-day administration and operations of the party. The SC is made up of seven members plus the party’s Treasurer and Secretary, for a total of nine members. Steering Committee members must be National Committee delegates, alternate delegates, or former delegates/alternates from their state parties. They are elected by the National Committee for two-year terms, with a two-term limit.
Chris Blankenhorn, Co-Chair
Chris has lived in Central Illinois for most of his life, and has also spent time in Arizona and Southern Illinois. He has been involved intermittently in electoral politics and activism since the age of 17. He has identified as a Green before being old enough to vote.
In recent years, he became involved in the Occupy movement in Springfield, IL and served a variety of organizational roles, from media liaison and event planning to teachin organizer. During this time he graduated from the University of Illinois Springfield with a degree in Political Science, focusing on political philosophy. While a student, he cofounded the Radical Student Union on campus, which engaged in campus activism and organized a number of events on a variety of topics including student debt, the Israel-Palestine conflict, and advocating for Jill Stein on campus during the 2012 election cycle.
In early 2012, Chris took a job as a community organizer for a new, supposedly nonpartisan, community organization trying to get started up in Springfield and soon became Field Director of the Springfield office. This experience allowed him to knock on the doors of about 15,000 homes in Springfield (a town of 110,000) and instilled in him a belief that there was a real hunger for a new path in electoral politics. This work also included helping to organize community resistance to the closure of a manufacturing plant in Freeport, IL. As the 2012 election heated up, Chris left the organization because he couldn’t in good conscience be responsible for running a campaign that forced members to abandon organizing around local issues in favor of supporting President Obama’s reelection campaign and other Democratic candidates. After Chris left, he advocated locally for Jill Stein while trying to start a local Green Party Chapter. During this time, Chris also helped found a nonprofit in Springfield and after the organization changed locations, Chris served on its advisory board.
Chris has been involved in a wide range of other movements and organizations ranging from organizing a Haymarket Festival on May Day to participating in an antifracking sit-in outside the Illinois Governor’s Office, to recently serving as Springfield’s Team leader in Illinois’ Jill 2016 ballot access drive. Chris presently works at an Montessori school with students ranging from three to six years old and will soon begin working towards becoming a certified Montessori teacher. Chris is in the process of helping to turn a renewed energy about the Green Party in Springfield, following a recent visit from Jill, into a re-born local Green Party chapter. Chris is an alternate delegate to the National Committee from Illinois and a member of the Green Party Youth Caucus.
To email Chris, click here
Andrea Mérida Cuéllar, Co-Chair
Andrea Mérida Cuéllar is a Denver-based education and social justice activist, hailing originally from Rochester, NY but living in Denver, CO since the early 1970s. The daughter of Guatemalan immigrants with their own lifelong commitment to social justice, Andrea has served her community in many ways, from student leadership to service in the U.S. Army, to service as an elected member of the Denver Board of Education and now as a national co-chair of the Green Party of the United States and co-chair of the Green Party of Colorado. Until August 2016, she was the only Latinx person in national political party leadership today.
During her tenure as a member of the Denver school board, serving as Denver's first-ever Green elected official, she was the prime driver of a landmark civil rights ruling regarding English learners in the Denver Public Schools. As a result, now even charter school students in Denver must be provided with support to learn English in public schools, where previously charters were allowed to cherry-pick from among students by English proficiency level.
Andrea still lives in Denver, where her blended family lives in Denver's Westside, spending her time both in politics and in managing and singing in her husband's funk band, Gumbo le Funque. Andrea's musings can be found at her website and on her Huffington Post column.
Andrea is a member of the BRPP (Rules), Outreach, Media and Steering committees. She is a co-founder of the GPUS Latinx Caucus which gained accreditation in 2015. She is active in Denver's #BlackLivesMatter movement and steering committee member of 15Now Colorado. She is fluent in English and Spanish.
To email Andrea, click here
Darlene Elias, Co-Chair
Darlene first encountered the Green Party five years ago when she approached them asking for assistance in helping to prevent the demolition of Lyman Terrace, a low income housing complex located in Holyoke, MA where she grew up. The chair of the local chapter, the Pioneer Valley Green Rainbow Party, at the time was a lawyer and offered his services pro bono. His assistance, along with the zealous advocacy of Greens helped turn the tide for Lyman Terrace and its almost 500 tenants. Darlene is proud to say that on May 24, 2016, the City of Holyoke celebrated the ground breaking of a $35,000,000 project to renovate Lyman Terrace, which is fully supported by Governor Baker and his staff. Darlene strongly believes it is activism on causes we are passionate about that will continue to distinguish the Green Party from the rest and bring people to our party. Since her first encounter with the Green Party, Darlene has worked on many causes in her community, which have ranged from housing, education, discrimination, union and labor, to running for political office. Darlene now proudly tells others that she am a registered member of the Green Party, Co-Chair of the Massachusetts Green Rainbow Party, and Alternate Delegate for the Latinx Caucus.
On a national level, Darlene wants to focus on increasing membership and strengthening the infrastructure of the party. She believes that we can and have to do this to ensure the future of our party, and the time is now to do it. As many are aware, people are disenchanted more then ever with our government. They know the system is rigged, influenced by corporate dollars, and it does not have its priorities straight.
Darlene believes that the Green Party must be the voice of the 99%, and work to ensure the fair and equitable treatment of the disenfranchised and marginalized by creating a fair and more just democracy. If we are to address the major crisis of our times, such as climate change, terrorism, xenophobia, racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, and social and economic inequalities to name a few, we must run candidates and change the electoral system.
She believes that now is the time to make the move. The youth of America are protesting in the streets and showing up at the polls in record numbers demanding change. It will behoove us not to believe that youth are the future of our party and will change the landscape of our country. They have the power to make a difference as leaders and it is our responsibility to usher them into the Green Party with open and welcoming arms, provide refuge, encouragement, and guidance as much as we can.
To email Darlene, click here
Sanda Everette, Co-Chair
Sanda has been a Green Party member since the Democrats gave us NAFTA.
A past member of the Steering Committee, Sanda is a member of the Media Committee and the International Committee. She’s attended meetings with international Greens in Paris, Canada, Cancun, Chile, Bolivia and Peru.
Sanda has put her environmentalism front and center in her life as a permaculture designer and co-founder of the San Mateo Ecovillage.
To email Sanda, click here
Darryl! Moch, Co-Chair
Darryl! L.C. Moch currently serves as Chair of the DC Statehood Green Party in Washington, DC. He previously served as both a delegate to GPUS NC from DC and as a national Co-chair of the US Green Party on the GPUS Steering Committee member for several terms. Darryl!, in his last years of service as a SC member he was also selected to serve as spokesperson for the party via the SC. He is a member of the GPUS Black & Lavender Caucuses. He has served on the Platform Com, Media Committee, Dispute Resolution Committee, Coordinated Campaign Committee, Bylaws, Rules and Procedures Committee, Diversity Committee, and served as advisor on the Strategic Planning Working Group. He had been liaison to these GPUS committees: Coordinated Campaign Committee, Credentials, Diversity, Green Pages Ed Board, House (GHCC), Senate (GSCC), Bylaws, Rules, Policies, and Procedures Committee. Darryl!, ran for DC City Council in the 2010 DCSGP primary and is looking towards another run in the near future. He has served as an adviser to campaigns and candidates in various parts of the country, locally, regionally, and nationally. He is also currently on the board of Green Horizons. He is also the director of the Charm City Labor Chorus.
Darryl! is a leader and has developed and trained leaders as well as become partners with and worked with community leaders on local, regional, national, and international levels. A native of Los Angeles, California who proudly makes his home in Washington, DC, Darryl! serves as a consultant, activist, advocate, performance artist, psychotherapist/life coach, and minister. His work as an organizer has spanned the country. His passion, and current work, include arts and culture of the progressive community; creating opportunities that will empower, expose, and enlighten individuals and our collective communities. His art, activism and advocacy work is rooted in social justice, equality, and quality of life issues for African-American/People of Color and minority communities, children, youth, families, LGBTQ constituencies, people living with mental and physical challenges, the homeless, as well as HIV/AIDS and other issues facing communities most disenfranchised by local, regional, and national political policies and laws.
To email Darryl!, click here
Tamar Yager, Co-Chair
Tamar Yager, who is originally from Kentucky, became involved in the Green Party in Virginia in 2003. She considers herself a lifelong progressive. She recently concluded a long stint on the Board of Directors of Call to Action (CTA), a Catholic reform group, and has long been involved in the peace movement.
She serves as Staff Supervisor for GPUS. She is also co-chair of the Annual National Meeting (ANM) Committee. In that position, she established and implemented a stipend program for travel/lodging for low-income ANM/PNC attendees. She also worked with Greens in Kentucky to help establish a state party there.
Some of her goals on the Steering Committee are to have every Green be a donor at some level, to have affiliated parties in all states and to be on the ballot in all states, and to have more active and empowered committees.
To email Tamar: click here
Bahram Zandi, Co-Chair
Originally from Iran, Bahram has been active in the Maryland Green Party since Ralph Nader ran for President in 2000.
He has worked with the Green Alliance, Secular Greens and the Green Party Diversity Caucus and has been a representative to the International Committee of GPUS since its start. Currently Bahram is co-chair of the International Committee and a delegate to the Federation of the Green Parties of the Americas.
Bahram has attended conferences in Ukraine, Austria, Brasil, Spain, Venezuela, Greece, Spain, Bolivia, Croatia along with appearances throughout the United States.
To email Bahram: click here
Jan Martell, Secretary
Jan Martell is a semi-retired graphic designer in Durham, North Carolina and have been a Green for 15 years.
Currently Jan is Secretary of the Triangle Greens of Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill NC. She helped coordinate the 2009 GPUS Annual National Meeting held in Durham. She has served for 10 years as a National Committee delegate from North Carolina, as well as Membership Chair and Ballot Access Chair for NCGP.
Jan is a member of the National Women's Caucus, co-chair of the Platform Committee, and Production Editor for Green Pages.
I have two grown children, and one grandchild. When I'm not working on GPUS business, I'm trying to get the NCGP on the ballot in one of the toughest states in the country.
To email Jan: click here
Brian Bittner, Treasurer
Brian Bittner has been a member of the Green Party since 2005.
Brian served on the Green Party's national staff for eight years and has chaired both the Maryland Green Party and the Baltimore Green Party. He has managed Green campaigns for local and state offices, U.S. House and U.S. Senate.
Brian was born in Baltimore, where he lives today. He works for an LGBTQ-serving mental health practice and is building a culinary career. He is dedicated to fighting disparities in access to healthy food, health care and all other human rights.
To email Brian: click here