faces of the WDP

The Wyoming Democratic Party is represented by two groups; elected party leadership, and executive staff members who perform the day-to-day functions of the party. Please direct media inquiries to nina @ wyodems.org

party leadership

joe barbuto

Party Chairman
joe @ wyodems.org

A fifth generation Wyoming native, Joe has long been active in Democratic politics in the Equality State. Before he was old enough to register to vote, Joe was knocking on doors for local Democratic candidates in his hometown of Rock Springs, a union and Democratic stronghold. In 2002, he received his first statewide campaign experience working as an intern for Ron Akin, the Democratic candidate for Wyoming’s at-large congressional district.
Throughout college, he continued to volunteer for numerous campaigns and progressive causes .In 2008, with support from family and friends, Joe made the decision to seek election to Wyoming House District 48. That November he was elected as the youngest member of the state legislature. During his legislative tenure, he was chosen by his colleagues to serve as House Minority Caucus Chairman and was twice named “Legislator of the Year” by the Wyoming Highway Patrol Association.
After leaving the legislature, Joe was elected to serve as Chairman of the Sweetwater County Democratic Party in 2015, and in 2016 was hired as the Operations Director of Greene for Congress. Joe lives in Rock Springs, Wyoming with his wife, Erin, their two rescue dogs, Chapter and Molly, and Henry the Yellow Cat. When he’s not immersed in politics, you can find him fishing, enjoying public lands, or playing jazz piano.

ERIN O'DOHERTY

Vice Chair
erin @ wyodems.org

Erin O'Doherty came home to Wyoming more than 27 years ago to work as a wildlife ecologist. She is a lifelong activist who cares deeply about providing a healthy, prosperous future for all people for generations to come. Since retiring from her science career she has been applying her database skills to help non-profit organizations and electoral politics.

mandy weaver

Secretary

Mandy is a crazed stay-at-home mom of three badass daughters & is married to the man who makes her heart sing, Kyle. She's in her second term as Chair of the Washakie County Democratic Party, which she is so grateful to be a part of.

Mandy was born and raised in beautiful Ten Sleep and is a fifth-generation Wyomingite. She won Prom Queen in high school, which isn’t important, but one doesn’t often get to brag about that. To be fair, there were only six girls in her class, but it still counts because *crown*!

Mandy lived in Laramie for 5 years after high school; she fell in love with the town and made amazing life-long friends and semi-hazy memories that she treasures forever.

Mandy and Kyle got tired of dragging the kids 5 hours to visit the grandparents, so they moved back home in 2007. After a brief stay in Ten Sleep, they decided they're city folk now & moved 20 minutes away to Worland.

Though always interested in politics, Mandy never dreamed she would be personally involved. After the 2016 election, complacency wasn’t an option anymore, and she decided to go to a meeting of the local Democratic party. There wasn’t one, as Washakie County was a “dark county.” Smash cut to her being appointed and then elected Chair and tossed into the deep end of local and state politics. She attended her first State Central Committee meeting with her three kids in tow, the youngest of whom was 18 months old and crawling around getting into everyone’s purses.

This crazy, unexpected turn of events has been one of the greatest blessings of her life. In 2018, Mandy received the Nellie Tayloe Ross Award, which is probably the first thing she has won since that crown back in 1998. She loves it even if it isn’t covered in rhinestones.

When Mandy isn’t working on Washakie Dems projects or dragging her children to canvass for candidates, she is barely managing the chaos of three girls, a husband, a pitbull, and a chiweenie. In her spare time she is an open mic comedian who started Worland Comedy, which hosts monthly open mic nights & brings talented comedians from all over to perform in Worland.

jeff dockter

Treasurer
treasurer @ wyodems.org

Bio coming soon!

JESSICA SELL CHAMBERS

National Committeewoman
jessica @ wyodems.org

Jessica Sell Chambers, B.A. International Studies; M.A. Education, is a reporter for Planet Jackson Hole, an education consultant, and associate of Jackson Hole United, a social justice advocacy non-profit providing a forum and tools for open dialogue affecting the community. Jessica is married to Reed, a fifth-grade teacher, and they are parents of her 17-year-old brother, Luke, and two-year-old son, McCrae - who can be seen driving toy dump trucks through Dem executive committee meetings or snoozing in a backpack while she participates.

Jessica was raised on picket lines by a local Teamster and a nurse and understands the value of taking care of working people, the backbone of our state and country. As a newly elected committeewoman to the DNC, she is working hard to get Wyoming the attention it deserves.

Her favorite quote: "A rising tide lifts all boats; when everyone has enough, all of us are more secure, prosperous, and healthy."

lucas fralick

National Committeeman
lucas @ wyodems.org

Lucas Fralick is currently a Graduate Student at the University of Wyoming studying Cold War law and politics in the History Department. Previously served as the Parliamentarian of the Wyoming Democratic Party and currently a card holding member of the National Association of Parliamentarians.

Lucas is from Gillette, WY and grew up on a small ranch in Campbell County, where he learned the values of working for the common good. He earned a B.S. in Political Science and History at Black Hills State University in Spearfish, SD. Moving back to Gillette to substitute teach and get involved with local politics and the Gillette Historical Preservation Commission.

Lucas enjoys playing chess with friends and colleagues along with birding and hiking anywhere birds are to be found. He lives in Laramie, WY.

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executive staff

sarah hunt

Executive Director

Sarah is a Wyoming native from a family of plumbers, oil field workers, and small business owners. She became interested in politics at a young age while sitting around and talking with family and friends about the issues surrounding life in a small town in Sublette County, Wyoming. Sarah has a love of travel and culture that led her to a BA in Intercultural Studies and an MA in Intercultural and International Communications for Conflict Zone. Her life has led her all over the world, from living in Cairo to serving a term with Peace Corps Romania, but she keeps coming back to Wyoming.

sarah @ wyodems.org

erin o'doherty

Data Director

Erin manages the voter database and provides county parties, candidates, and candidate committees with access and support. She provides database training and analyses as requested.

erin @ wyodems.org

nina hebert

Communications & Digital Director

A Louisiana native, Nina grew up hunting, fishing, and boating throughout Louisiana's public lands, and learned early that there's some lines we don't cross--picket lines, that is. Nina's grandfather headed a fire fighter union, and watching him organize workers inspired in her a lifetime commitment to never cross a picket line, or do business with a company whose workers were striking. Nina received her B.A. in Communication Studies and Political Science from LSU in 2006, and is studying towards a M.A. in Political Communication from Johns Hopkins University. She moved to Wyoming in 2010, and lives in Cheyenne with her husband and three children.

nina @ wyodems.org

dean ferguson

Senior Advisor

Dean was raised on a small horse ranch in northern Idaho. His love for public lands, where everyone can hunt, fish, or just roam, drew him to Democratic politics. Simply, Republicans will sell those lands if given half a chance. Dean has worked blue collar jobs as a cowboy, gold prospecting, tree thinning, and harvest truck driving, and some indoor jobs as well: teaching, retail sales, and journalism. His political experience includes managing a U.S. Senate campaign, Communication Director for a U.S. Representative, Communication Director for the Idaho Democratic Party, and Interim Executive Director for Idaho Democratic Party. Dean has a B.S. in Education from the University of Idaho and an MFA in Creative Writing from University of Alaska-Fairbanks.

Dean was drawn to the Wyoming Democratic Party because it is in the West, which he loves, and because the challenges facing Wyoming mirror his Idaho experience. In short: Wyoming Democrats can win and will win--we simply need to be strategic, realistic, financially supportive, and we need to show our neighbors that Wyoming Democrats fight for true freedom.

dean @ wyodems.org

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a note from our executive director

Hello and welcome from the WyoDems!

People often ask me what it's like being a Democrat in Wyoming, and my answer is always the same: it's like being part of a strong and vibrant community that stretches across the state and beyond.

WyoDems fight to keep our communities healthy and strong. We work to make sure that our neighbors don’t lose their home because their child gets sick.

We fight to keep our public lands open to all and to keep our wild spaces full of life. We want to keep our kids in the state and have a place for them no matter how they identify. It's an inclusive party full of people who truly care.

In short, being a WyoDem is great! I invite you to join us at one of our events, on social media, as a volunteer, and of course, at the polls. Thank you for visiting our site and we hope you come again!

-Sarah Hunt, Executive Director