Melissa Byrne

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Melissa Byrne is senior political and community organizer at the intersection of online and offline organizing. She splits her work between organizing to elect Democratic candidates and winning progressive policy. She’s a leader in the work to make college free and end student loans. She’s proud to have contributed to winning NH twice in 2016: first as Bernie’s digital director and then as MoveOn’s state director which Hillary and Sen. Maggie Hassan won by less than a 1000 votes. Melissa ran for DNC Vice Chair in 2016 and has stuck around to work together to build up a strong, progressive Democratic Party.[1]

Activism

Melissa Byrne is an activist's activist. The opposite of an insider political consultant, this Philly-based political organizer and strategist has been on the political frontlines for years, overseeing direct actions, electoral campaigns and protests. She is a familiar face in progressive political circles, and according to her recently published Op-Ed in the Washington Post is apparently becoming known amongst the United States Secret Service.

During the GOP Obamacare repeal effort earlier this year, Byrne organized peaceful sit-ins in front of congressional offices, rallies on Capitol Hill, and ensured protesters had food and water. Most recently she has been an active and visible opponent of the Trump administration. In July 2017, as part of her work with the women's advocacy group UltraViolet, she joined about a dozen people to protest President Trump at his Bedminster, NJ golf course, calling on the president to finally release his tax returns. She led protesters who wore t-shirts that said: Dump Sexist Trump.

Earlier this month, as part of her work with UltraViolet and the Working Families Party, and just hours before President Trump's notorious press conference about the "Unite the Right" events in Charlottesville, Byrne executed the unfurling of a giant banner that read "Women Resist White Supremacy" inside Trump Tower. It was shortly after this action that Byrne was put in handcuffs by the NYPD, and interrogated by the Secret Service. A few days later, she got word that her neighbors were being canvassed by law enforcement and being approached online for information about her.[2]

Old Occupiers for Bernie

Sanders' 2020 senior adviser Winnie Wong, national organizing director Claire Sandberg, California grassroots director Melissa Byrne, national field director Becca Rast, and deputy national field director Nick Martin were all on the ground for Occupy, in one city or another, in 2011.[3]

People for Bernie

In 2016 Melissa Byrne, Occupy DC-McPherson, Project Springboard, was a leader of People for Bernie.

References