PHL Dems

PARTY
LEADERSHIP

Robert A. Brady

Party Chairman

Congressman Bob Brady is the Chairman of the Philadelphia Democratic Party. He also serves as the Chairman of Philadelphia’s Democratic State Committee Delegation, Leader of West Philadelphia’s 34th Ward, a member of the USA 250th Anniversary Commission, a member of the Board of the ODUNDE Festival (the nation’s largest African American festival), a 22-year University of Pennsylvania graduate school professor, and a proud 52-year union carpenter. Chairman Brady started his political career as a 24-year old Young Democrat, when he was elected to be a 34th Ward Democratic Committeeman after defeating an absentee incumbent.

“The Mayor of Capitol Hill” previously served as Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Pennsylvania’s First Congressional District for over 20 years. In Congress he was the long-time Chair & Ranking Member of the Committee on House Administration.

Chairman Brady previously a Pennsylvania Turnpike Commissioner, Deputy Mayor of Philadelphia under Philadelphia’s first African American Mayor, Dr. Wilson Goode, Sergeant-At-Arms of Philadelphia City Council, and a multi-decade small business owner, real-estate broker, interior designer, and professional journeyman carpenter.

jannie-blackwell-edit-1

Jannie Blackwell

First Vice Chair

“Politics is an open-ended opportunity to make life better for others.”
– Councilwoman Jannie Blackwell

Councilwoman Jannie Blackwell serves as the First Vice Chair of the Philadelphia Democratic Party. The Councilwoman also serves as Chair of the United Democratic Ward Leaders of Color, and Leader of the 46th Ward.

Councilwoman Blackwell is a former educator, aide to the Governor, and State Legislature civil servant who served as a member of Philadelphia City Council for the West & Southwest Philadelphia’s 3rd District for 28 years.

The Councilwoman continues her life of service today, and continues her initiatives to support homeless Philadelphians, find employment for West Philly Youth, feed the hungry, and utilize the resources of the Party to give back to underserved and at-risk communities.

Angel Cruz 2022

Angel
Cruz

Second Vice Chair

State Representative Angel Cruz is Second Vice Chair of the Philadelphia Democratic Party, Leader of the 7th Ward, and is the City’s longest-serving member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives.

Formerly a Union Organizer and City Council aide, Rep. Cruz was first elected in 2001 to represent the Kensington, Juniata, Harrowgate, and Tioga Park neighborhoods. In Harrisburg he serves as Chair of the Latino Caucus and Democratic Chair of the Human Services Committee.

Rep. Cruz has drafted and had enacted several important pieces of legislation including Act 148 of 2014, which expanded newborn screening in Pennsylvania, and has secured grants for numerous non-profit organizations and projects in his district.

Cindy
Bass

Vice Chair

Councilwoman Cindy Bass serves as one of the Philadelphia Democratic Party’s Vice Chairs. The Councilwoman also serves as Leader of the 22nd Ward, a Member of the Pennsylvania Democratic State Committee, and a Member of the Democratic National Committee.

Councilwoman Bass started her political career as a member of the Philadelphia Young Democrats. Bass has worked as a senior policy advisor to former Congressman Chaka Fattah, and was a special assistant to Allyson Schwartz during her time in the State Senate.  She has worked as a campaign manager for former Philadelphia City Councilwoman Blondell Reynolds Brown and as an aide to former Councilwoman Donna Reed Miller.

Councilwoman Bass now serves as on Philadelphia’s City Council representing the 8th District.

Bill
Dolbow

Vice Chair

William “Bill” Dolbow serves as one of the Philadelphia Democratic Party’s Vice Chairs and Leader of Mayfair’s 35th Ward.

Mr. Dolbow served as South Eastern Pennsylvania Director of the Office of the Auditor General for decades before his retirement in 2020. And has been a Democratic Committeeperson since age 18. 

He is now a sought after political strategist and campaign manager, and volunteers his time as the Party’s Operations Director. In that role he runs the Philadelphia Democratic Party’s Petition Program for endorsed candidates, and distributes literature and signs for GOTV efforts. 

Bill Dolbow also serves on the Party’s Policy, Finance, and Contest Committees.

Jonathan Saidel

Treasurer

The Honorable Jonathan Saidel, Esquire, CPA., former Philadelphia City Controller, serves as the Treasurer of the Philadelphia Democratic Party. Mr. Saidel also serves as a Member of the Pennsylvania Democratic State Committee, and a Member of the Democratic National Committee, where he serves as a leading Member on its Finance Committee.

Mr. Saidel is an attorney and certified public accountant, specializing in class action litigation, real estate consulting, and represents individuals and corporations with large tax liabilities before cities, states, and the federal government. 

Mr. Saidel served as Philadelphia’s City Controller for sixteen years (1990–2006), where he won national plaudits for reforming and professionalizing the office. His work culminated in the publication of the widely praised book, “Philadelphia: A New Urban Direction” which is still used as a guidepost for effective government and corporate governance, and is required reading in many colleges and universities.

Shirley Gregory

Assistant Treasurer
&
Dean of the PArty

Mrs. Shirley Gregory serves as the Assistant Treasurer of the Philadelphia Democratic Party, and as Leader of Upper North Philadelphia’s “Mighty 49th” Ward.

Mrs. Gregory holds the admirable title of “Party Dean”, as the Party’s longest-serving and eldest Ward Leader. A position she has selflessly devoted herself to since first being elected in the mid-1970s.

Mrs. Gregory has been a dynamic pillar of the North Philly/Logan Neighborhood community, and a mentor to many North Philadelphia Politicians, for over fifty years.  Mrs. Gregory serves on the board of Albert Einstein Hospital and Bebashi, one of the nation’s oldest HIV/AIDS organizations which serves low-income people of color with HIV disease.

Previously Mrs. Gregory had a distinguished career as an advisor and aide in Washington DC to Congressman and Ambassador to Italy Thomas Foglietta, and later as a senior Capitol Hill staffer and District Director to Congressman Bob Brady.

 

John F. Street

Campaigns Committee Chair

The Honorable John F. Street, Esquire, legendary 97th Mayor of Philadelphia, is the Philadelphia Democratic Party’s Campaigns Committee Chair and advisor to Chairman Brady.

During his re-election campaign for Mayor, Mr. Street was responsible for the largest-ever voter registration effort in Pennsylvania history. Now he is back volunteering his time to recreate that effort and close Philadelphia’s registration gap.

Mayor Street currently works as a bankruptcy attorney and Temple University Professor, where he also serves on the University’s Board. 

The Mayor is a prolific Democrat organizer who grew up on a livestock farm and worked as a hotdog vendor before becoming an attorney and City Councilman. Mayor Street was elected to the office of Mayor after having served 19 years in the Philadelphia City Council, including seven years as its Council President.

Alan Butkovitz

Finance committee Chair

The Honorable Alan Butkovitz, Esquire, Former Philadelphia City Controller and State Representative, is the Philadelphia Democratic Party’s Finance Chair and Leader of the 54th Ward.

As the Party’s Director of Development, Mr. Butkovitz has overseen the creation of the Finance Committee and works to grow and sustain Party fundraising and organizing efforts. 

Mr. Butkovitz is an attorney handling civil rights, criminal, and environmental coverage cases. Known for his successful first amendment case in U.S. District Court Third Circuit that opened up the Mummers Parade to women, minorities, and new entrants. 

Mr. Butkovitz served for 12 years as a notably diligent and fiscally responsible City Controller, and for 15 years as a notoriously dogged and unyielding progressive and good government watchdog in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, representing Northeast Philadelphia’s 174th legislative district.

Party Staff

Anthony "Bo" Amen

Chief Financial Officer

Anthony “Bo” Amen is the Philadelphia Democratic Party’s Chief Financial Officer.

Mr. Amen was born and raised in the Overbrook section of West Philadelphia. He is a Master Plumber, and a longtime small business owner who spends his “retirement” managing the finances of the Philadelphia Democratic Party.

John
Brady

PA DEMS PHILADELPHIA DIRECTOR
&
President of the Philadelphia Young Democrats

John Brady is the Pennsylvania Democratic Party’s Philadelphia Director, Assistant to Party Chairman Bob Brady (no relation), and President of the Philadelphia Young Democrats.

Mr. Brady started his political career at 19 years old, as an elected 21st Ward Committeeperson in his home neighborhood of Manayunk. He now serves as Vice Chair of that Ward. Brady is one of the youngest members of the Pennsylvania Democratic State Committee, where he serves as Secretary of the Philadelphia Delegation. 

He also serves as Pennsylvania’s National Committeeman for the Young Democrats of America, the Finance Chair of the Pennsylvania Young Democrats, a Board Member of the Liberty City Democratic Club, a Keeper Fellow with Leadership Philadelphia, and a proud Trustee of Roman Catholic High School.

James Harrity

PA Dems
Political Director

James Harrity is the Senior Advisor of the Pennsylvania Democratic Party, the Philadelphia Democratic Party’s Executive Director, a Member of the Pennsylvania Democratic State Committee, and is a proud 33rd Ward Democrat.

Mr. Harrity has been deeply active in Philadelphia politics since his teens. A former President of the Philadelphia Young Democrats, he started his political career as an aide to South Philadelphia Senator Buddy Cianfrani, a prolific Ward Leader and Democratic organizer. He later became one of the youngest-ever Deputy Managing Directors of the City of Philadelphia,  a later a Philadelphia Deputy Sheriff.

In addition to his service to the Party, Mr. Harrity also currently serves as Executive Director of the Office of  Senator Sharif Street, and Political Director of the Laborers’ International Union Local 57.

Yolanda "Lonnie" Richardson

Office Manager

Yolanda Richardson is the Philadelphia Democratic Party’s Office Manager and Bursar, and a proud 40th Ward Democrat.

Formerly a highly respected political consultant for many successful Democratic candidates, Mrs. Richardson is now celebrating her 32nd Year working for the Philadelphia Democratic Party.

Anna
Brown

Constituent Service Director
&
Vice Chair Emeritus

Mrs. Anna Brown is a Member of the Pennsylvania Democratic State Committee, Vice Chair Emeritus of the Philadelphia Democratic Party, and Ward Leader Emeritus of South West Philadelphia’s 40th Ward.

Mrs. Brown is a retired Congressional aide and senior City Council staffer who currently works in the Party office. There she helps run Party Constituent Services, helps out-of-work Philadelphians find employment, and helps Philadelphians who cannot afford legal representation find pro bono attorneys. 

Mrs. Brown has served as a Democratic Committeewoman since 1982, and lead her diverse, working-class community as Ward Leader from 1996 to 2022.

Judge James DeLeon

Chair of the
Legal Committee
&
the Charles Bernard Pro Bono Initiative

Judge James DeLeon (Ret.) is the Chair of the Philadelphia Democratic Party’s 30-attorney-strong Legal Committee.

In this position, Judge DeLeon volunteers his time to administer the “Charles Bernard Pro-Bono Initiative”. This program provides free (aka “Pro Bono”) legal representation to several hundred under-privileged Philadelphians every year. The Initiative was founded by and named in honor of the Hon. Charles Bernard, the 40-year Political Director of PHL Dems; who passed, too soon, in 2021 at the young age of 92.

Judge DeLeon is a newly retired Court of Common Pleas and Municipal Court Judge.

 

Gianni
Hill

Information
&
Data Director

Gianni Hill is the Philadelphia Democratic Party’s Information and Data Director, the youngest Member of the Pennsylvania Democratic State Committee, and a proud 8th Ward Committeeman.

Aside from his service at the Party Office, Mr. Hill works in Washington DC as a aide on Congress’ Committee on House Administration.

Mr. Hill is also Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Young Democrats, Political Coordinator for State Senator Sharif Street, and a professional political/data consultant. He is an active Philadelphia Young Democrat, and a full-time University of Pennsylvania rising senior.

August
Williams

Communications Advisor
&
Assistant to the Chair

August Williams is the Philadelphia Democratic Party’s Communications Advisor and Assistant to the Chair.

A native of the great State of Washington, Mr. Williams is the newest member of our team and comes to the Party from the world of beverage promotions. 

Mr. Williams is an active Philadelphia Young Democrat, a proud Haverford College rising senior, and captain of Haverford College’s baseball team. And as a recently-turned 21 year old is also the youngest member of the Philly Dems team.

THE DEMOCRATIC CITY COMMITTEE

Every 4 years, the City of Philadelphia elects 3,406 neighborhood advocates and political organizers as Democratic Committeepeople. They are an organizing force and the backbone of the Party. Together they and their chosen volunteer Ward Leaders are known as the Democratic City Committee.

Philadelphia is geographically divided into 66 wards. Each ward is further divided into 10-50 divisions based on population. Every four years, during the primary election of the Governor’s race, registered Democratic voters in each division elect two of their neighbors to serve as the division’s Democratic Committeepeople. The elected Committeepeople make up each party’s Ward Committee, and vote for a Ward Leader shortly after the election at a meeting of the Ward committee.