Here are the founding principles of the Athens Progressive Canvassing Corps:
Tim Denson has worked as a community organizer in Athens since 2011. Tim co-founded the grassroots organization Athens for Everyone in 2014, and served as President and Organization Coordinator for many years.. Tim has served on the Athens-Clarke County Democratic Committee since 2016, and is the current Chair-Elect. Tim has done organizing work with United Campus Workers of Georgia, Occupy Athens, Moral Monday GA, Athens Anti-Discrimination Movement, Athens Immigrant Rights Coalition, NAACP and others to advance social, racial, and economic justice. Tim currently serves as District 5 Commissioner for Athens-Clarke County Unified Government.
Mariah Parker is Commissioner for Athens-Clarke County, District 2. She is a graduate teaching assistant in the department of language and literacy education at the University of Georgia, where she teaches classes on reading and writing pedagogy for early childhood educators. She is formerly a research assistant in the linguistics department, where she assisted with Portuguese-English translations, facilitated language acquisition research studies, and edited manuscripts on systemic functional linguistics. Parker has previously taught and tutored English in a variety of contexts. She has also toured internationally as a performing artist.
Russell Edwards has been active in NE Georgia progressive politics for 13 years, since he moved to Athens, GA, to attend UGA Law School. Russell has served on the Athens Democratic Committee for that long. He was as a field director for President Obama’s 2008 campaign, Treasurer of the Democratic Party of Georgia, campaign manager for Jonathan Wallace’s successful run for the GA State House, and was the Democratic Nominee for the U.S. House (GA-10) in 2010. Russell has knocked thousands of doors over the years and believes no tactic beats canvassing. He currently serves as Mayor Pro-Tempore of the Athens-Clarke County Unified Government, winning over 50% of the vote and avoiding a runoff against two opponents.
Spencer Frye was first elected to the Georgia House of Representatives in 2012, representing House District 118, which includes portions of Athens and Winterville, and currently serves as the executive director for Athens Habitat for Humanity. He’s also been a small business owner and a construction manager, has helped to export American ambulances overseas, and co-founded an environmental company.
Native of Athens, GA and graduate of Clarke Central High, Omar Reid has worked with the Clarke County School District for 16 years. Outside of work, Reid has served in volunteer leadership roles with the Clarke County School District Leadership Team, the Athens-Clarke County Unified Government, Athens Housing Authority, University of Georgia President, Athens Technical College President, and as Director of the Athens Model Cities Program. He is currently the Northeast Georgia Youth Football Commissioner and Vice President of the Clarke County School District Parent Advisory Board where he works to bridge the divide between sports and academics by partnering with local organizations to unearth the untapped potential of student athletes.
Ben Gerstein has been involved in progressive politics over the last several years—including senatorial races and issue-based campaigns in Michigan and South Carolina. He is a current senior at the University of Michigan majoring in Public Policy with a human rights focus. He is also earning a minor in Afroamerican and African studies. At Michigan, Ben served as Student Body President, where he worked with student activists and organizers to enhance programs for campus accessibility and affordability, while also pushing the university’s administration towards fossil fuel divestment. He is from Highland Park, IL.
Luke Boggs is a lifelong Georgian and has worked in Georgia politics since 2012. He is currently finishing up his Law Degree and Master of Public Administration at the University of Georgia. Luke also co-hosts PeachPod: a Georgia Politics Podcast. Luke has worked on numerous state campaigns, mostly recently he was the Chief Strategist for Jonathan Wallace State House 119 campaign.