A Glimpse into a Blue Future: Young Dem Attends Leadership Blue

Melissa Leon Pons, a May 2019 graduate of Port Charlotte High School and one of this year’s winners of the DWC’s Betty Gissendanner Scholarship, reports on her experience at Leadership Blue, June 8, 2019.

Melissa Leon Pons with DEC Secretary Jane Merriam

As a true blue Democrat, I can proudly say attending my first Leadership Blue Convention was an eye opening opportunity. As I repeated several times throughout the weekend to anyone who bothered to listen, I knew older generations are much more likely to vote than younger generations, but it was a relief to see so many passionate Democrats who were not just of collegiate age. Being surrounded by so many wise individuals who have experience with the political campaigning process provided me with a fresh perspective on everything I thought I knew and a renewed sense of hope for 2020.


From attending a VAN training session to a Planned Parenthood information session, the chances to collect more pins never stopped! Taking a picture with Andrew Gillum was definitely the highlight of my weekend, but I think I became truly committed to playing a role in turning Charlotte County blue during the Women’s Caucus. Watching so many women gather together to discuss how they were going to reform our communities’ educational programs and ensure the passing of the ERA was truly inspirational, and I decided I wanted to play a role in having Charlotte County be an active member of what drives these changes.