Young Greens committee members, clockwise from left, Rosie Rawle, Robert Nixon, Kelsey Trevett, Billy Wassell, Jane Robb, Annabelle Van Dort, Nick Humberstone and Jane Baston

Members of the Young Greens of England and Wales have throughout August been voting to elect members of various internal committees – including the Young Greens executive committee. And today the results are in, with turnout up significantly on last year’s election.

Young Greens executive committee

The executive committee is responsible for the overall strategic direction of the Young Greens. It is made up of two co-chairs, six non-portfolio officers and a treasurer. The positions are elected through a proportional system of voting – the single transferable vote.

Incumbent Young Greens co-chair Rosie Rawle was re-elected in the first round of counting, receiving 233 first preference votes. Rawle has been co-chair since 2018 and is a Green Party candidate for Oxford City Council’s 2021 elections. Speaking on her re-election, Rawle told Bright Green:

I’m absolutely thrilled to have been re-elected as Young Greens co-chair. In the past two years, I’ve had the privilege of being part of an incredible team of dedicated, passionate, talented organisers who have taken the Young Greens to the next level.

Now it’s time to build on that. Over the next year, we’re going to build the biggest, most radical youth wing of any political party in the country.

With a health crisis, an economic crisis and a climate crisis – we need a movement of radical young people pushing for a different world more than ever. The Young Greens will be a key part of that – and it’s an honour to be leading them for another year.

Rawle will be joined in the co-chair position by Bristol based climate activist Lily Fitzgibbon, who was elected in the second round of counting after receiving 96 first preference votes.

Elsewhere in the executive committee elections, Kelsey Trevett, Annabelle Van Dort and Sarah Sharp were all elected as non-portfolio officers in the first round of counting. All three were members of this year’s 30 under 30 programme – a training scheme run by the Young Greens.

Speaking on being elected, Kelsey Trevett highlighted that he wanted to emphasise equality and diversity issues in the Young Greens. Trevett told Bright Green:

I’m really excited to have been elected to [the executive comittee]: more than ever before, equality and diversity have to be at the heart of the radical Young Greens movement, in our fight for social and climate justice — I’m looking forward to getting stuck in. I’m also honoured to be working alongside such talented [and] motivated activists. Bring on the year ahead!

These sentiments were echoed by Van Dort – who told Bright Green that making green politics “inclusive” was top of her agenda:

I’m delighted and honoured to be elected to the Young Greens executive committee and look forward to the hard work ahead. We need to make green politics an inclusive and vibrant space for people of all backgrounds and I’m determined to help bring about change with my campaigns work over the next year.

Fay Whitfield, Robert Nixon and Jane Robb were also elected as non-portfolio officers.

Speaking on the election results, Robb told Bright Green:

I am honoured to have been elected onto this year’s Exec Committee – what an exciting time to be here! I look forward to working with the new committee to promote a fresh and progressive leadership for the Young Greens, and to developing the political education portfolio.

Nixon thanked people who had voted for him in the elections. Speaking to Bright Green, Nixon said:

Thank you to everyone that supported my campaign! I’m looking forward to working with a fantastic team during the coming year to take the Young Greens to the next level. My thanks also to the outgoing [executive committee] who’ve left the organisation in an incredibly strong position.

Whitfield told Bright Green she was “ecstatic” to have been elected:

I’m ecstatic to be elected to the Young Greens Executive Committee, they have given my the confidence and the tools to project my voice and I’m looking forward to giving back. This last decade, this last year, has made me angry and hungry for change. There has never been a better time to join the Young Greens to make a difference.

In the contest for the treasurer position, Rajiv Sinha was elected unopposed.

Green students committee

Alongside the executive committee election, members were also able to vote to elect new co-conveners of the Green students committee. The Green students committee is responsible for developing the relationship between the Young Greens and the wider student movement.

Billy Wassell and Jane Baston were both elected as co-conveners. Speaking to Bright Green, Baston said that she intended to fight for “accessible education”:

I’m so excited to have been elected as the co-convenor for the Young Green Student Campaign Committee. Students have been betrayed by this Government in so many ways, from A-level results to constant attacks on University and Students’ Unions. I’m committed to fighting for and alongside students to create a fair, accessible education sector and wider society.

Wassell told Bright Green:

I am beyond grateful for all the love, support and votes that the Young Green members have shown me. I’m incredibly excited to start working with the Young Greens who have been such a positive influence on my political engagement. The student population have been ignored, exploited and taken advantage of for far too long. It is a privilege to represent them in my new role.

Democracy and accountability committee

The other major committee elected in the Young Greens annual ballot is the (newly renamed) democracy and accountability committee. This is the body responsible for managing internal processes within the Young Greens.

Incumbent democracy and accountability committee members Isaac Searle and Nick Humberstone were both re-elected. They’ll be joined on the body by Ria Patel and Heloise Hunter.

Speaking to Bright Green on his re-election, Nick Humberstone said:

I’m really grateful to the membership for re-electing me. It’s great to have three other people to work with from day one (unlike in the past two years). Really hoping to convert the energy from Convention and get started on planning for some much needed changes to the Constitution and Standing Orders, and implementing lots of changes that have come out of Convention 2020.

Alongside these elections, members of liberation groups – including Young Greens women, LGBTIQA+ Young Greens and Young Greens of Colour – elected members of their own committees. These have been announced to members of those liberation groups.

A co-chair departing

With the results all counted, outgoing Young Greens co-chair Thomas Hazell who decided not to stand for re-election wished the future committees luck. He also spoke of the work he had done as co-chair to build movements to “tackle neoliberalism”. He told Bright Green:

I’ve had a great year as co-chair as we’ve built the movement we need to tackle neoliberalism and a build a youth consensus for climate and social justice.

I’m so excited by the new committees that have been elected to lead the Young Greens and the motions we passed at convention setting our priorities for the year.

In particular, Rosie and Lily deserve huge congratulations and I know they’ll do great work. I know that Macsen, despite not being elected, has so much to offer our movement and I hope he’ll continue to fight with us.