In 1999, Pam Byrnes, recent Representative of the 52nd State House District,
founded the Western Washtenaw Democratic Club over coffee at what was once
Cousins Heritage Inn. Attendees of that initial meeting eagerly embraced
Democratic political involvement in what was once an overwhelmingly
Republican-dominated area of the County. Those individuals were ready to
work in support of fellow Democrats seeking office throughout the western
part of Washtenaw County.
Western Washtenaw County residents Pam Byrnes (Lyndon Township),
David and Stephanie Pyne (Webster Township), Michael Williams (Sylvan Township),
Frank Grohnert (Lyndon Township), Roy Schmidt (Sylvan Township), and Adam Zemke,
and Frank Parkinson each served as chairpersons of what is now known as the
Western Washtenaw Democrats.
Since its earliest conception, the group has served as a vehicle for
organizing and energizing Democrats in western Washtenaw County.
John Hansen (Dexter) was voted the initial treasurer and was succeeded by
David Brooks (Sylvan Township). David was instrumental in securing meeting locations
ranging from Cousin’s, Baxter’s, Metzger’s, and even the basement of Key Bank
in Chelsea. Our current meeting location is at the IBEW Hall on Jackson Road.
In less than 15 years of existence, the Western Washtenaw Democrats have
established remarkable success. As the population of the western section of Washtenaw
County has developed, more individuals are now Democrats. In fact,
in the 2004 election several former officers were elected to formal
political positions. In 2008 we were a major force in helping elect President Obama
and Representative Mark Schauer. Again in 2012, Democrat political successes were achieved
due to strong membership support and efforts along the campaign trail.