About Us

Our Background

Our mission is to recruit and/or support qualified, ethical candidates for all elective offices representing Schuyler County. 

The Committee is made up of a wide range of representatives who work to encourage and help qualified people run for office to increase our participation in the political process and further the values of the Democratic Party.

We firmly believe change starts at the local level.  Only by the involvement of committed citizens does our government become the best it can be.  

The committee will strengthen the community by connecting citizens to the political process through voter outreach and education. This committee strives to be open, inclusive, and accessible to all individuals who share the Democratic foundation of values.


Our Committee

Get to Know Us


Carolyn Elkins

Party Chair

After a 13 year career as Democratic Deputy Commissioner at the Schuyler County Board of Elections, long time committee member Carolyn was elected as Party Chair. Her exceptional skill set, true passion and creativity has inspired the community and the committee as well!


Raina Elkins

1st Vice Chair

Raina Elkins is an essential part of the team, and has been with Schuyler County Democratic Committee since she took a position as the Deputy Commissioner at the Schuyler County Board of Elections in 2017.


Stephenie Monroe

2nd Vice Chair

Stephenie Monroe is the current Second Vice Chair for the Committee, originally joining during the 2016 electoral season. Stephenie takes an avid interest in outreach and has worked to promote more efficient communications between the Committee and the Schuyler County Community.  As a Global Security professional Stephenie has worked in various communities both domestically and abroad, though has now relocated back to upstate New York. Stephenie has worked on several campaigns in the last year, including the Mitrano for Congress Campaign, and is hoping to translate those skills in support of local community groups. Stephenie enjoys far too many British crime and period dramas, and is a writer in her free time.


John Vona


John Vona is the current Treasurer for the Committee, and a former Committee Chair from 1986 - 2000. John has spent 46 years supporting the party, it's platform, and ideals in Schuyler County. Throughout this time he has been a candidate for a variety of county and village offices and has supported numerous other candidates as they navigate the sometimes complex world of petitions, caucuses, and canvassing. John was the Democratic Commissioner of Elections for Schuyler County from 2002 - 2016 and prior to this taught shop class for 35 years at Watkins Glen Middle School. Outside of politics John has an interest in sports and contracting work, taking a specific interest in woodworking.


Michael Lausell


Michael Lausell is currently the Secretary for the Committee, and is also a County Legislator for Schuyler's 3rd Legislative District. Michael was recently an integral part in the opposition to Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG) storage under Seneca Lake, and worked within the Schuyler Legislature to protect the lake and community and oppose the storage plan. Michael was born and raised in Puerto Rico, and relocated to upstate New York when he was 19. Eventually, Michael went to work for Legal Assistance of the Finger Lakes in Geneva where he provided broad based legal services for low-income clients. Now, Michael raises beef cattle on his farm in Hector, taking pride in supporting and selling at local farmer's markets. Michael still travels home to Puerto Rico, and in his spare time enjoys visiting friends and family.


Committee Members

The Best Dems Around

 Our Committee is made up of hard working dedicated volunteers from all over the county. They spend tireless hours working events, educating and informing the public, getting signatures, planting lawn signs and helping qualified candidates get elected!


Current Committee Members

Brian Eslinger

David Hertel

Shirley Barton

Bob Barton

Joan Harriss

Kay Friedlander

Jeanne Fudala

Charlotte Dickens

Richard Paige

Stacy Gray

Diane Ballard

Richard Ballard

Maggie Coffey

Interested in joining the committee, volunteering, just helping out sometimes, and/or coming to meetings... just let us know!