NewDEAL Selects Fall Class of Nation’s Top State and Local Leaders

News Category: News Posts

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                     

October 18, 2023

Contact: Jonathon Dworkin, 202-660-1340 x5

NewDEAL Selects Fall Class of Nation’s Top State and Local Leaders 

Diverse set of pro-growth progressive officials join network of innovative, rising Democrats who are spreading effective policies

Washington, D.C. - NewDEAL (Developing Exceptional American Leaders) has announced a new class of 19 forward-thinking elected officials to join its selective national network of state and local leaders who receive support and promotion in their efforts to develop and spread good policy and govern effectively.

At a moment when influence on issues ranging from climate change to reproductive rights to the strength of our democracy is increasingly shifting to states and localities, and with leaders outside Washington playing key roles in the implementation of major legislation approved during President Biden’s first term, these officials join NewDEALers who are helping each other to think big and share model initiatives, including through in-person and virtual convenings.

See a full list of the new class below.

Today’s announcement brings the total number of NewDEAL members – statewide officials, legislators, mayors, councilmembers, and other local leaders – to 206 leaders from 49 states who are working to enact pro-growth progressive solutions in a diverse array of communities. They have been chosen from among more than 2,000 nominations over the organization’s thirteen years. NewDEAL alumni have included Pete Buttigieg, Josh Shapiro, and Stacey Abrams, along with many members of Congress. More than 20 NewDEALers have risen to higher office since 2020, adding to the more than one in four members who have done so over the organization's history. NewDEAL's honorary co-chairs are U.S. Senator Chris Coons (DE) and U.S. Representative Marilyn Strickland (WA-10).

About 60 leaders, including many admitted today, will gather at the organization's next event in November. At the 13th Annual Leaders Conference, November 15-17 in Washington, DC, they will share solutions for building an America that works better for everyone, while learning from partners in the federal government and the private sector.

“We are in a moment of both unprecedented challenges and incredible opportunities for state and local officials, whose work will have a huge impact on our nation’s ability to fight the impacts of climate change, address racial injustice, adapt to the changing nature of work, and combat threats to the core values of our nation,” said NewDEAL CEO Debbie Cox Bultan. “Amid many headwinds, the public servants who are providing innovative, forward-thinking leadership give us so much reason for hope and they need our support to develop, implement, and share their ideas. Members of the new class of NewDEALers who we welcome today exemplify the thoughtful, results-oriented approach to governing that our nation needs, and we look forward to highlighting and spreading their work across the country."

Members of the diverse new class of leaders hail from 17 states and were chosen for their unwavering commitment to the equitable expansion of opportunity, as well as a pragmatic approach to governing. Their work aims to move their communities forward in the changing economy and offers solutions that are both practical and on the scale required to address the biggest challenges facing the country. Their leadership includes efforts to expand health care access in Iowa and Illinois, fight for voting rights in Arizona, advocate for working class families in Pennsylvania and Virginia, and improve resources for students in New Mexico.

These leaders’ work will also help build on policy recommendations that NewDEAL Leaders have developed, including aiding in the implementation of recommendations made by NewDEAL's sister organization, the NewDEAL Forum, through the Democracy Working Group, Education Policy Group, Broadband Policy Group, Climate Solutions Working Group, and Renewing America Task Force.

The new class of NewDEAL Leaders includes:

Alabama: Representative Phillip Ensler

Arizona: Representative Laura Terech

Colorado: Representative Meghan Lukens

Georgia: Representative Tanya Miller

Iowa: Representative Megan Srivinas

Illinois: Representative Bob Morgan

Louisiana: New Orleans School Board Member Ethan Ashley

Minnesota: Representative Zack Stephenson

Nebraska: Lincoln Councilmember Tom Beckius

New Jersey: Assemblymember Raj Mukherji

New Mexico: Albuquerque School Board Member Danielle Gonzales

Oklahoma: Representative Arturo Alonso

Oregon: Representative Ben Bowman

Oregon: Bend School Board Member Carrie Douglass

Pennsylvania: Lieutenant Governor Austin Davis

Pennsylvania: Speaker of the House Joanna McClinton

Texas: Representative Salman Bhojani

Virginia: Senator Aaron Rouse

Wisconsin: Milwaukee County Board Chairwoman Marcelia Nicholso

About NewDEAL

The NewDEAL brings together leaders focused on expanding opportunity, helping them develop and spread innovative ideas to spur economic growth that is equitable and sustainable. Most importantly, the organization facilitates the exchange of ideas among its members and connects them with other pro-growth progressive political, policy, and private sector leaders. Learn more about the NewDEAL and its members by visiting