Democratic activist Josie Valdez was elected Utah Democratic Party vice chairwoman and will replace Jim Judd, who died in August after a motorcycle crash. A party committee elected Valdez on a second ballot after the first round of voting narrowed the field to her and openly lesbian Jane Marquardt.
“We were blessed with a great field of candidates,” said Jim Dabakis, the openly gay state party chair. “Josie Valdez will be a fantastic representative for the state of Utah, both as vice chair of the Utah Democratic Party and as a member of the Democratic National Committee in Washington.”
Valdez said she was excited to work with state party leaders to help grow the Democrats’ influence in Utah politics.
“We are one party. We are one Democratic family,” she said in a statement. “We are going to grow this party in ways we’ve never even imagined.”
Valdez ran for the Utah Senate District 8 but was defeated by Republican Brian Shiozawa.