Craig Thorsen, 2009 SC Candidate

Steering Committee Member, 2009 – present

Committee Portfolios:
Accreditation, ANM, Apportionment, BRPP

I became a Green Party member in 1999. Prior to 1992, I was a member of the Democratic / Farmer Labor Party (the MN affiliate of the Democratic Party).  In 1992, I became involved with the Reform Party and worked to get Jesse Ventura elected as Governor of Minnesota.  I moved to California in August of 1999 and with Pat Buchanan’s takeover of the Reform Party I sought out and found “soul mates” in the Green Party of the United States. I was relatively inactive as a GP member from 1999 until 2006.

I have been a member of the GPUS Bylaws, Rules, Policies and Procedures Committee since 2006.

I am a member of the Lavender Caucus.

After a few months as an Alternate, in April of 2008, I asked to move from Alternate to Delegate and was approved.

In February of 2008, I petitioned in Arizona for 9 days. That was followed by a month of petitioning in Virginia (3 days per week) in May of 2008. CA approved me to be a member of the National Ballot Access Committee in July 2008. Subsequently, I traveled to Vermont and worked for about twelve days petitioning, which included 4 days outside the Vermont State Fair in Rutland. I have spoken with Richard Winger (owner / editor of the Ballot Access News) and am subscribed to his monthly newsletter. I was one of the plaintiffs in the AZ Ballot Access Law Suit, that had a hearing on January 11, 2010, which AZ GP won (Yeah AZ!).

I spent the month of May 2008 in Arlington, VA. During that time I spent 2 days per week at the National Office, doing whatever project or task was assigned. That included envelope stuffing for Fund Raising mailings, calling individual Green Party delegates in states without Ballot Access for a survey to update where the petitioning stood. About 4 weeks before the Annual National Meeting of 2008 in Chicago, I worked with and for the Meeting Coordinator. I stayed in Chicago; running errands for the Coordinator, and assisting with the Registration for the event.

In March of 2006, I collected signatures in order to qualify to be appointed to an open seat on the LA County Council.  The individuals who were Co-Chairs in 2006 until 2008 refused to follow the Bylaws which required them to verify my signatures and vote on whether to appoint me to an open seat; and I attended many meetings sitting in and representing individuals who had been elected but who were not able to attend those meetings.  Jul 2008 to Dec 2009: In June 2008, while working in Chicago on the ANM, I won election in a contested race for the Green Party of Los Angeles County Council (7 people for 6 seats) and came in with the second highest number of votes for my District. I have subsequently moved out of that CA Senatorial District and so resigned the seat effective on my last day of residency there, Dec 31, 2009.

Winning election in July 2008 has resulted in a large amount of time spent addressing National Green Party concerns. I serve CA as a delegate to the National Committee.  I have also been approved as a member of BRPP, Ballot Access, Merchandise and Presidential Campaign Support Committees. I serve GPUS as Portfolio Manager of the Accreditation, Annual National Meeting, Apportionment Standing, Ballot Access, and BRPP Committees as one of my assigned duties as a Co-Chair of the Steering Committee. I also observe on the Finance, Fund Raising and Media Committees; primarily for background knowledge and to keep up with the current situation, to assist in doing a good job as Co-Chair on the Steering Committee.

My degree is in Speech / Theater / Communication, so it involved quite a bit of Public Speaking. I have spent the majority of my life in different fields, rarely being in any starting position for more than 6 months before being promoted to a supervisory or management position. I have supervised between 6 and 136 people at different times.

I am subscribed to the GPUS Votes List, the CA Delegation List, the Lists for each of the Committee to which I am a member or observer, and participate in as many votes as possible on the lists where I am a member. I attend every monthly teleconference possible.

In California, I attended the Plenarys in Moor Park (Jun ’06), South Lake Tahoe (Sep ’06), in Venice, CA (last year). I attended the ANM in Tucson in 2006, Reading in 2007, Chicago 2008 and in Durham 2009. I have been active in at least one Committee of the GPUS since 2006.

I see the National Committee as the decision-making body of the Green Party of the United States and my role of Delegate from California as an important one.  I take part in discussions and read the views of others in regard to each Proposal in order to make the best decision that I can, in the interests of the Green Party of California and the people of California and the United States.

I believe that individuals need to be Pro-active. Rosa Parks on the bus in Selma, and the people in New York who protested the raiding of the Stonewall Bar; showed us that if we don’t make our protests heard that many find it easy to ignore us.  It is not often that Civil Liberties are given to individuals and groups who do not “ask” for them.

There are many battles available.  We cannot be everywhere, and we cannot do everything.  But together, we can find the times and places to most effectively speak out and have our voices heard.