On Thursday, November 17, 2015, at the Morris County Democratic Committee's annual Holiday Party, Morris County Young Democrats Co-Chair Oliver "Ollie" M. Starnes II became the first recipient of the Morris County Young Democrat of the Year Award from the Morris County Democratic Committee & The Morris County Young Democrats. The Morris County Young Democrats voted on the recipient at their last general meeting with Ollie receiving an overwhelming majority of the votes.
A graduate of Trinity College, where he served as an outstanding running back on the school’s football team and as Legislative Aide to U.S. Senator Lieberman, Oliver has his Master’s Degree in Public Policy and currently resides in Roxbury. Oliver has shown exemplary leadership during the revitalization of the Morris County Young Democrats Caucus, with Oliver's fellow Co-Chairman Dan O'Brien remarking that "Ollie's contributions are invaluable..he has done so much to launch the Morris County Young Dems and get the organization off the ground."
This past election cycle, Oliver was the campaign manager for the Committee to elect Markworth, Kline & Champagne in Roxbury's Town Council race. By developing and implementing a strategically-targeted grassroots advocacy campaign, two of his candidates were able to come within striking distance of heavily entrenched opponents, and Oliver was able to defy all odds as Dan Kline was able to unseat a 12-year incumbent in a town where Republicans outnumber Democrats by a margin of more than 2:1. Dan, who will be the second-youngest elected official in the state when he is sworn in on January 4th, commented, “No one was able to appreciate all the hard work and time that Oliver put into the campaign. He was always working behind the scenes and this award is a recognition of all the effort he put in behind the scenes. Oliver's leadership has also sent a resounding message to the remaining Councilmen - as long as he's involved in campaigns, no seat is safe.”
For his remarkable contributions to the Morris County Young Democrats, his leadership on the successful campaign for Councilman-Elect Dan Kline, his valiant effort in the campaigns of Heather Champagne and Aaron Markworth, and for all of the intangible contributions that he’s too humble to take credit for, it is with a sense of overwhelming pride that the Morris County Young Democrats honor Oliver Starnes with the inaugural Young Democrat of the Year Award. May the future recipients of this award exhaust all measures living up to the standard of excellence which Oliver has set.
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