July 21, 2024

Clarke County Democratic Central Committee to be honored as District 3 County of the Year

On Saturday, June 1, the Clarke County Democratic Central Committee will be honored in Des Moines as the 2024 County of the Year for the Iowa Third Congressional District Democratic Party.

The selection came after Sue Body submitted a nomination letter to the Third Congressional District, for the annual Hall of Fame awards.

The letter spoke of all the work that the Clarke County Democratic Central Committee had done over the past year, with the overarching theme being that of involvement and transparency.

Several of the examples Body wrote in the nomination letter were:

Hosting a Tuesday Night in the Park with several Democrat candidates in attendance to speak; helping Nicole Loew, candidate for Iowa Senator District 12, announce her candidacy and hosting a kickoff party; ordering t-shirts for the group to wear at events to signify their unification as a group; attended three legislative forums and spoke at them; participating in the Fourth of July parade and Osceola’s Latino Festival; hosting two of the district-wide quarterly meetings at the Osceola Municipal Golf Course; hosting a fundraising event for Loew at Revelton Distillery including candidates who are running against incumbent Congressman Zach Nunn - Lanon Baccam and Melissa Vine; holding a caucus in January; and holding a county convention.

Members of the Democrats also participate in the testing of election equipment at the auditor’s office and working polls, offer scholarship opportunities to Clarke and Murray seniors, and have worked to create more inclusivity for people to attend their meetings either in person or virtually. They also sent out a monthly newsletter to all registered Democrats in Clarke County, and have many volunteers for the various events they partake in.

“As the chair, it’s a big deal because it recognizes the effort my team has put forth…long hours, pulling together…[it’s] nice to be recognized at the district level,” said Clarke County Democratic chair, Vielka Wambold, of the honor.

Wambold said the honor would not have been possible without the community effort, and without the support of local establishments such as the Clarke County Fairgrounds and Revelton who have worked with the Democrats to host events. She hopes that everyone will realize that the Democrats are representing the county as a whole, in lieu of political affiliation. They are working to better everyone’s lives, living by their mantra, “people over politics.”

Wambold also wants that this shows other small, rural communities that their voices do matter, and the importance of getting out and about in one’s community.

In addition to the central committee’s recognition, Steve Waterman, former longtime Osceola resident, will be receiving the 2024 Hall of Fame Lifetime Volunteer Award for the Third Congressional District.

The event will be held at Plumbers & Steamfitters Local Union 33 in Des Moines. Tickets are $40, and reservations can be made for tables of six. Wambold estimates between 12 and 16 people are confirmed to be going, and welcomes more.

Those interested in purchasing tickets to the event or learning more can contact Wambold.

Candra Brooks

A native of rural Union County, Candra holds a Bachelor's Degree in English from Simpson College and an Associate's Degree in Accounting from SWCC. She has been at the Osceola newspaper since October 2013, working as office manager before transitioning to the newsroom in spring 2022.