Following 26 years of military service, Lynn Mari Slivka of Indian Trail got involved in politics primarily because of the health care debate. Last month, the Democratic Women of North Carolina honored the retired veteran at its 50th anniversary convention in Charlotte.
The Democratic Women of North Carolina sponsor the STARS banquet at the annual convention to honor men and women who have done outstanding things on behalf of Democrats across the state.
The STAR award goes to two people from each county. One nomination for the award comes from the Democratic Women and the other from the Democratic Party. Mayor Frank Deese of Marshville was this year’s nominee from the party.
The convention also honored one individual with the Democratic Woman of the Year award. This year’s recipient was Nancy Rory, last year’s president of Democratic Women of Union County.
Slivka, who was a licensed practical nurse in the U.S. Army, is humble about the honor.
“The honor means a great deal to me,” she said. “I am humbled by the award, but I don’t really want it to be about what I’m doing. There are about 40,000 Democrats in Union County and people should become physically engaged. If everybody stepped up and took a piece of something we could make our community a better place”
Each year the Democratic Women of North Carolina participate in several activities to get involved in political process.
“Women all across the state right now are writing letters to other women who might not feel like their vote matters,” Slivka said. “They identify women who are sporadic voters or first-time voters and write a personal letter to them and tell them why they should vote and why they should get involved.”
Slivka, who finds inspiration from the women in this group that have mentored her as well as Hillary Clinton’s efforts, says once you get involved in politics there is so much more that can be done.
“There are about 43 precincts in Union County and every person that lives in that precinct area has an opportunity to come to an annual meeting and get involved,” Slivka said. “More people need to show up for those precinct meetings, that’s critical whether they are Democrat or Republican because the people who show up are deciding everything.”