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BEN'S WORK

Committeeman, AD 66

Democratic State Committee

The members of the Democratic State Committee represent New York's registered Democratic voters to  their State's Democratic Party.

In his first two-year term as State Committeeman, Ben brings Lower Manhattan's voice to the Party. He's introduced resolutions to define the Democratic platform and reform its operation in the era of Trump and IDC.

Secretary

Manhattan Democratic Party

As Secretary of the local Manhattan Party, Ben continues his mission to open Party structures and add transparency to the Democratic Party.

In his second term, Ben has helped elect hundreds of new voices to the local County Committee, brought the Manhattan Party online and opened their meetings to the public with online video and social media.

Community Organizer

You Matter Nation

Ben started organizing in 2008 on the Obama campaign and has a passion for opening the political system to empower communities.

His most recent project, You Matter Nation, has trained over 2,000 people since the 2016 Election on civic and politics. It has also engaged hundreds in  targeted action to keep New York, New York in the age of Trump.

 
 

Growin' Up In The City

As a native of lower Manhattan and a young activist, I have lived the challenges facing our area. When I was 10, I moved from Brooklyn to Chelsea. I was lucky to have access to an excellent education, attending P.S. 234 and, later, Bronx Science. After going to college at the University of Michigan, I came home; holding jobs guided by my conscience, not my wallet.

 

Working To Make It Work

I started my career as a fundraiser and Digital Director for Barack Obama in 2008. After, I was recruited by the newly-elected Democratic State Senate to help revamp their IT infrastructure.

 

In 2009, the corruption in the Senate was profound. In the first year, my team saved the chamber $1.3M. I’m proud to say I personally uncovered $100,000 of savings annually. Unfortunately, while it was clear the Republicans had no right to govern, the Democrats proved to be just as bad. Our award-winning open government work ended with the infamous Coup that gave birth to the IDC and Aqueduct scandal.

 

Post Senate, I dedicated myself to better politics through empowering people. I joined Reinvent Albany, a good-government nonprofit invested in reforming New York State, invested in the Young Democrats, and founded a startup to empower citizens. Recently, I’ve started teaching kids to code.

 

Getting Involved

After Obama ‘08, I joined Manhattan Young Democrats. There, I ran the first Open Seat Project which educated people on, and elected them to, New York’s County Committee. At first, our actvity wasn’t appreciated by the County Party. But, over years of working with (and pushing against) our local institutions, we proved the value of transparency and engaging new people.

 

In the last eight years, I have served as an elected leader at every level of the Young Democrats - from local to National - and have been one of their strongest fundraisers and activists. Today, I also serve as Secretary of our local County Democratic Party. In this position, I have maintained my energy for organizing -  introducing new levels of transparency, including the County Party's  first website and educational videos.

A week after the 2016 Presidential Election, I held and organizing event with a few colleagues. Instead of the anticipated 80 participants, we had 800. Out of that, You Matter Nation was born. A community of organizers and activists which not only helps connect individuals with targeted political activities, but hosts the (Real) Politics 101 and Organizing 101 workshops I've developed in my years of activism. Today, I have personally trained over 2,000 New Yorkers and gotten hundreds of new people involved in politics and Party governance.

 

All of my experiences have taken me down a path of progressive issue advocacy and good government. In the last two years I have brought this mission to the New York County Democratic Party, the Democratic State Committee and New Yorkers around the city.

BEN'S STORY

 

© 2016 Ben Yee for State Committee

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