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.
Anita Rios, Co-Chair
Whenever I seek to provide a political context for myself I always start with the fact that I was born into “the American Third World”. That is, I was born and raised in deep poverty. I know what it feels like to be a hungry child in this wealthy nation and I know what it feels like to be discarded by society. I will always share this not for myself but for the many millions of Americans trapped in some variation of “the American Third World” who are the focus of my political activity.
My parents, both born in Texas, came to the Midwest as migrant farmworkers. I have six sisters and a brother, half of us did not graduate from high-school. All of us who dropped out of high-school graduated from University. While this is an a-typical story it is not unheard of among Latinx raised in poverty in this country. The American educational system routinely discards youth of color.
As a young person I worked many difficult demeaning jobs, but eventually graduated from the University of Toledo. Afterwards I worked in several social service jobs, monitoring child care providers, finding non-agricultural jobs for migrant farmworkers, and in case management for the severely mentally ill. As a case manager I was both honored and challenged to be of assistance to people who were struggling with some of life’s most difficult issues, abuse, homelessness, substance abuse, and poverty, along with severe and persistent mental illness. I was elected shop steward/ executive delegate for SEIU/1199 and was appointed as a delegate representing SEIU/1199 on the Regional Labor Council of the AFL-CIO.
What these experiences taught me was that all the good works we do in communities is important but if our government does not provide an adequate infrastructure for education, health care, criminal justice, housing, mass transit, nutrition, and energy there will always be people who fall through the cracks. Government determines the quality of our infrastructure and politics determines the quality of our government. Throughout my lifetime neither democrat nor republican governments addressed the needs of my community so I started seeking alternative political parties and came to the Green Party.
I joined the GP in 2000 and worked to get Nader on the ballot in Ohio. In 2001 I was elected one of three co-chairs of the entity that would become the Green Party National Committee. I was part of the leadership team that obtained National Committee status for the Green Party.
Building the Green Party and in particular the Ohio Green Party has been an almost full-time job for me since 2000. Since that time I have been on the central committee of the Ohio Green Party and have served as Co-Chair for several years. I was recently elected to a another two year term as Co-chair. In 2004 I helped with the Ohio recount and was the lead plaintiff in a lawsuit against the Ohio Secretary of State to prevent the certification of that election. In 2008 I participated in the legal action that gained Party status for the Ohio GP. In 2014 I ran for Governor of Ohio and by receiving over 3% (over 100,000 votes) of the votes maintained political party status for the Ohio Green Party for four years. I was the Green Party candidate for Toledo city council in 2011 got over 30% of the vote. In 2006 and 2010 I was the GP candidate for Lieutenant Governor of Ohio.
I have been married for 37 years to Robert Hannon who is a letter carrier. We have two grown sons. I decided to retire last year due the difficulty in finding a job. I lost my part time job as a patient advocate in 2013 when Ohio's “TRAP” laws caused the closure of the abortion clinic where I was working. I continue to work as an activist on numerous issues including serving as the President of the Agnes Reynolds Jackson Fund which raises money to pay for abortions for low income women.
Poverty is not a lifestyle choice it is imposed by an economic system that picks winners and losers and by a society that has failed its most vulnerable members. Poverty is a global man-made disaster. Despite the tremendous wealth of this nation we are not immune because our government is indifferent to the needs of poor people and of the working class, and continues to squander a tremendous amount of tax dollars on relentless war. The same greed that is behind America's ability to accept poverty as inevitable is also behind our indifference to climate change and the destruction of the natural world. It is my belief that with an Eco-Socialist focus the Green Party is the right tool for fighting both socio-economic and ecological injustice
Gloria Mattera, Co-Chair
Gloria Mattera has been a member of the Green Party since 2001. Coming to the Green Party through the Nader campaign, Gloria has been involved in building a left, political independent movement since the mid 90's as a leader in the Labor Party New York Metro Chapter. She has served as a coordinating member of System Change Not Climate Change and is a founding member of Left Elect.
Gloria Mattera has a master's degree in special education from Bank Street College of Education in Manhattan. After teaching special needs preschoolers, she moved into the field of child life, working primarily with poor immigrant children and families in hospitals. Working in the New York City public hospital system over the years, Gloria experienced firsthand how unjust and inhumane this country's healthcare system is and got involved in the single-payer healthcare movement. She has been a board member of the Physicians for a National Health Program NY Metro Chapter for many years. Gloria soon realized that the two corporate parties in power would never bring a national health program to the U.S. and turned toward independent political party building, initially as a founding member of the Labor Party under Tony Mazzocchi, then NYC coordinator of Labor for Nader in 2000, and finally the Green Party.
Gloria has been a groundbreaking Green Party candidate on four occasions. Her initial run for NYC City Council in 2001 was as an independent socialist who sought and received the Green Party ballot line. Running on a slogan of "People's Needs, Not Corporate Greed," Gloria championed a platform that addressed the disparity between the 1% in the richest city in the world and the 99% of those trying to get by.
Receiving 10% of the vote as a first-time candidate, Gloria also was one of the first Green Party candidates to receive NYC campaign finance matching funds, which enabled her campaign to open a district office and hire campaign staff. She ran again for the same city council seat in 2003, almost doubling her vote percentage, which pushed the Green Party into second place above the Republican candidate, and she again received NYC matching funds.
Striving to increase the visibility of the Green Party in Brooklyn, Gloria ran for borough president in 2005 on an anti-eminent-domain platform, focusing on the mega-development of a professional basketball arena and high-rise luxury housing in the Atlantic Yards. Scores of volunteers from community groups fighting the development project made it possible for Gloria's campaign to collect over 5,000 signatures for ballot access and raise $50,000 to meet the higher bracket of NYC campaign finance matching funds. Gloria received 7% of the vote in a borough of 1.5 million voters.
Her last campaign was in 2010 as the running mate to Howie Hawkins in his first Green Party candidacy for governor of New York. Their campaign garnered over 60,000 votes to grant the Green Party back its ballot status.
In addtion to her new role as GPUS Steering Committee Gloria is currently the co-chair of the Green Party of New York and a delegate to the National Committee.
Kristin Combs, Co-Chair
Kristin Combs is the chair of the Philadelphia Green Party and previously served as chair of the Green Party of Pennsylvania. As chair of her state party, she tripled the annual budget, did a full review of the bylaws, and reworked the party structure to make sure it reflects Green Party values.
She is on the Green Party of the U.S. Apportionment Review and Accreditation Committees.
Margaret Elisabeth, Co-Chair
I was born in Knoxville, TN and was put up for adoption when I was 2. I was adopted by a couple who worked for Esso (Exxon) and we moved to Libya when I was 6. I was raised there until I moved back to the United States during the summer I turned 16. I am grateful for that experience in more ways than I can possibly count yet it was trying and very difficult as well. I grew up without access to television, print media or radio, with only the school library available as any form of diversion and, as boredom will do, I ended up reading every book in the library including the dictionary, twice. Some topics of education were not permissible such as astronomy and human biology and it was against the law to have a telescope so I read a book, took apart a microscope and built my own so I could study the moon for myself. Because of that experience growing up, as an adult I highly value science and the scientific method for acquiring useful knowledge about our world and the universe we find ourselves drifting through.
I've been involved in Green activism for the last 25 years with specific focus upon Leave-No-Trace camping/festivals and non-monetary barter based economies with community policing. My friends and I created an event called Playa del Fuego (Beach of Fire) based off the Burning Man ethos in 1998 and it's been going ever since. I've voted Green ever since Nadar ran and I formally joined the National Party in 2016 to help run the 'Washington State for Jill Stein' and 'Jill Stein Dank Meme Stash' pages on Facebook. I've been honored and grateful to receive the support and trust of my peers in the Lavender Caucus, initially representing the Caucus as a National Delegate and, currently, as a Co-Chair and Media Spokesperson. I believe that the Green Party is the best chance we have of making real, substantial change in the United States and I'm proud to be a part of it.
I'm grateful to have been given a chance to earn the honor and trust of my colleagues and comrades and I hope to prove worthy of their faith.
Tony Ndege, Co-Chair
Tony Ndege (the ending of his last name sounds a lot like reggae), presently also serves as Co-chair of North Carolina Green Party. For over two decades, Tony has organized from the local to international level for social justice, labor justice, the rights of immigrants and the undocumented, against war and military intervention, against the US embargo on Cuba, and against water contamination from coal ash and pollution. He has worked as a lead organizer for a wide range of major movements and events locally and nationally: from organizing #BlackLivesMatter actions events to Occupy Wall Street, from co-organizing the largest-ever protests against Duke Energy (one of the largest polluters in the nation), to uplifting the demand to make energy publicly owned, and from organizing protests and events standing up to Bank of America and Wells Fargo's criminal malfeasance to the largest statewide and national actions against the second Iraq War.
Tony has led or co-organized several hundred events including rallies, marches, teach-ins, debates, films, concerts, speaker tours, campaigns, immigration defense, political theater, etc. Just a few organizations he has collaborated with include FLOC (Farm Labor Organizing Committee), NC Against Corporate Power, Industrial Workers of the World, NCWARN, NC NAACP, Rainforest Action Network, Campus Antiwar Network, Black Alliance for Peace, Healthcare for All NC, UE150, and Southern Workers Assembly among others. Professionally and artistically, Tony has organized, assisted with, and performed in hundreds of events including auditions, interviews, concerts, plays, short films, operas, etc.
Tony's experience with the Green Party US began as an Occupy Wall Street activist and co-organizer of the DNC protests in Charlotte in 2012, where he first met 2012 Presidential candidate Jill Stein. Subsequently, he participated in Global Climate Convergence as a lead co-organizer for two events in his state. In fall 2015, in cooperation with Bruce Dixon and the North Carolina GP leadership, he co-organized a four-city cross-state tour for Dr. Jill Stein. Tony eventually became the North Carolina Ballot Access Coordinator and later the State Volunteer Coordinator for the Stein/Baraka campaign. Later, he had the honor to serve as Mid-Atlantic regional coordinator for the Stein/Baraka campaign, where he had the opportunity to meet and collaborate with thousands of Greens and supporters across the region. Subsequently in 2016, Tony was elected co-chair of the NC Green Party. Tony also serves on the GPUS Ballot Access Committee as the Southeast Regional coordinator, and he is a member of the Green Party Black Caucus and Lavender Caucus.
When serving as North Carolina Volunteer Coordinator for Jill 2016, NC Greens achieves historic election results for Stein/Baraka as write-in candidates, including the highest number of write-in votes for a Presidential candidate in North Carolina history. They accomplished this success via meetings with supporters in every major city in NC, and thanks to fantastic volunteer organization and personal motivation of so many NC supporters! This write-in campaign results were a major factor in passing legislation in fall 2017 that dramatically lowered our ballot access signature requirements from over 94,000 to about 12,000 signatures. As a result of these new laws, the North Carolina Green Party was able to achieve ballot access for the first time ever. It has become the first progressive or left party to achieve North Carolina ballot access in over 37 years! In less than three months after winning ballot access, NCGP interviewed several prospects and successfully recruited 4 strong candidates for the 2018 Elections ranging from US Congress to Soil and Water Supervisor and intends to build upon this success next year.
During Tony's tenure as state co-chair, NCGP has grown from one functioning local to five region-wide locals, with plans to add more over the next year. NCGP has successfully restructured the state party into a dues-paying organization while significantly increasing membership. NCGP has co-organized several events, such as helping coordinate a statewide tour of Dr. Margaret Flowers and a presentation by Ajamu Baraka for its 2017 Spring Gathering. As a founding member of his new regional local, Triad Area Greens, Tony worked on its first electoral campaign, (CJ Brinson for Greensboro City Council), where he served as a fundraiser and assistant campaign coordinator
Tony presently resides in Winston-Salem NC, works in the public school system and will be heading back into the IT field. He also has experience in music, film production, and directing. Tony holds degrees and diplomas from UNC Greensboro and North Carolina School of the Arts conservatory.
Tony is extremely humbled to serve on the GP US Steering Committee where he hopes to increase the party's profile to new communities, improve workflow and volunteer participation, improve state ballot access retention, and foster radical political education for the public.
Trahern Crews, Co-Chair
Trahern Crews is co-chair of the Green Party of Minnesota and chairs the party’s politics committee. He is co-chair of the Green Party of the U.S. Reparations Working Group and plans to make reparations for the American descendants of slavery an issue in the 2020 Presidential election.
From 2014 to 2015, he served as spokesperson for the Saint Paul Green Party (4th Congressional District). He organized the July 2019 Minnesota forum for candidates seeking the Green Party presidential nomination
Tamar Yager, Co-Chair
My professional work background is in development, meeting planning and non-profit marketing/administration. I’ve had some great jobs over the past 30 years – I was a community organizer for the Coalition of Immokalee Workers. I worked for many years at Actors Theatre in the marketing department. I was a federal grants writer for the Louisville Metro Government and most recently I was the Community Manager for my housing cooperative until it was bought out by a developer.
My work, volunteer and political experience is broad. I was chosen by our town council to serve on the Board of Zoning Appeals, which is a constitutional office.
I also serve on the board of our local United Way. I have served in roles on various candidate and issue campaigns since I joined the party in 2006. I feel I can bring a balanced view to the Steering Committee and as a liaison to other committees at GPUS.
Some have said I am a voice of reason because I listen to all sides and try to reach compromise. I try to find common ground on issues while still maintaining the letter and spirit of our rules.
David Gerry, Secretary
David Gerry was a co-chair of the Green Rainbow Party of Massachusetts from 2015 to 2017 and is a founding member of the Greater Boston Chapter. He has been a member of the Green Party of the U.S. Lavender Caucus since 2012 and is a member of the national party’s Diversity and International Committees, and serves as co-chair of the Bylaws, Rules Policies and Procedures Committee.
Hillary Kane, Treasurer
Hillary Kane is the proud parent of Jeremy, 9, and Lailah, 7. Her day job is the Director of a nonprofit organization that supports and promotes campus-community partnership in the Philadelphia region.
Hillary has been active in the Green Party since 2000, when she became active in Ralph Nader’s Presidential campaign. She has held numerous leadership positions at all levels of the party since that time including secretary, treasurer, and chair of both her local (Philadelphia) and state (Pennsylvania) parties, as well as various roles on candidate campaigns.
Currently, Hillary is the co-chair of the GPUS Coordinated Campaign Committee. Ms. Kane is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania where she received a Bachelor of Arts in Urban Studies.