Uncategorized — April 24, 2013 at 6:53 am

Support a Michigan-born activist for a DFA scholarship. It costs you nothing but 2 minutes of your time.


Bonnie Duncan deserves your support

Last week, Alex Showerman from Democracy for America did a guest post here at Eclectablog about DFA’s scholarship program to the Netroots Nation conference every year.

In case you missed the first post, here’s what the DFA scholarship program is all about:

Every year, the Netroots Nation Convention has provided progressive activists and candidates a forum to strengthen the online community and grow the progressive movement while inspiring action and growing new ideas to affect change. Applicants for the DFA Netroots Nation scholarship must have a demonstrated commitment to growing the progressive movement whether through blogging, organizing, issue advocacy or electoral worth.

Any DFA Member or participant in the larger netroots or progressive movement may apply for the scholarship. Applicants are encouraged to solicit support for the application from their personal networks. Individuals may only vote for each applicant once. A select group of scholarships will be awarded solely on the basis of support gathered. The remaining scholarships will be awarded on merit at the discretion of the selection committee. The selection committee is comprised of DFA, Netroots Nation, and partner staff.

Scholars will be notified by May 14th and will be asked to commit to attending. The scholarship provides four nights of hotel and the conference fee. Scholars are responsible for their travel and food expenses.

Many esteemed activists have received DFA scholarships over the years and I typically promote the candidacy of one or two of them. This year, I’m asking you to give one of your votes to Bonnie Duncan. Bonnie is a former Michigander who now runs a health food store in Hyde Park, Vermont. At the tender age of 71, Bonnie is still a very active activist, fighting for those most in need. From her profile:

In the small Michigan town where I grew up, the town drunk and the high school political science teacher were the only two Democrats I knew. In Ann Arbor, the sixties were full of political activism and I campaigned to help end the Vietnam engagement, including doing press and forward work for the Senator Eugene McCarthy, presidential campaign. In Vermont, I have campaigned for Bernie [Sanders], Peter Welch and Pat Leahy, our fabulous members of Congress. My current mission is to help incorporate prevention into the national health care dialogue.

Health care costs have impacted many of us. I own a health food store and am studying how to help customers and my family maintain or re-gain health through diet and nutrition. Working with Vermont’s Green Mountain Care, I want to help encourage prevention in Vermont as a model for the rest of the country. There is a strong educational component to my work, and I’m working on a series of essays and a book on self care. At Netroots Nation, I would like to network with those interested in improving health through diet and nutrition. The health of our nation is important to me, and I think through networking with other activists, I can help raise awareness of how we can better care for ourselves and our families. This will save pain, suffering and money.

Swapping emails with Bonnie, a spitfire of a woman who I met at the 12th Netroots Nation conference in Rhode Island last year, she told me that her passion is for a single-payer health care system with a strong emphasis on preventive care. “I’m part of the Vermont Public Interest Group that is working on single payer,” she wrote. “Our governor is for it, and if he is able to stay in office long enough, I think Vermont will go that way. I also want to include a strong prevention component in that plan, because there is too much pain and suffering being caused by bad drugs and bad diets and bad medical care. My thesis is that we need to take responsibility for our health the way we must take primary responsibility for managing our financial resources.”

Bonnie recently helped a friend of mine, Mara (Marabout40) when she lost her home and was homeless for a time. She posted a piece at Daily Kos under her monicker “4freedom” that helped raise funds for Mara to get back on her feet.

Please click HERE and give Bonnie a vote. She’s exactly the type of activist who should be at Netroots Nation to recharge her activist batteries, get connected to other organizers so that she can continue to be the best organizer and activist in Hyde Park, Vermont. As she said in her email to me, “If the truth be told, Netroots Nation is a gathering of some of the best and brightest people I have ever encountered and I would miss the opportunity to hang out with them again.” Let’s give her that opportunity. Please give her a vote today.