Photo of Portie-Ascott

Phyllis Portie-Ascott

Acting Chair

Raised on a farm in Eastern North Carolina, I learned the value of hard work.  When we shared the butter beans, corn, and tomatoes we grew with neighbors; when my grandfather lent the farm equipment that had cost him dearly to those who had none; and when I used my first car to drive old folks without transportation to their doctor’s appointments, I learned the value of community.  I learned that one’s obligations extend beyond the self, even beyond one’s family, to those families a little less fortunate.  A bachelor’s degree in Social Work, a master’s degree in Divinity, and another master’s degree in Public Administration have given me valuable skills, but what lights my way is the desire to build a more inclusive community, one driven not by greed and self-interest but founded on mutual respect and the courage to begin to love thy neighbor as thyself.  The Democratic Party, like any human construct, is not perfect, but its big tent and its willingness to implement policies for the greater good get closer to that idea of community than any other party.