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Meet your Topsfield Democratic Town Committee members...

Heidi Fox, Chair

Heidi Fox

Heidi Fox registered as a NYC Democrat in 1977 and in PA in 1992. It wasn't until she moved to Topsfield in 1999 that she truly understood political engagement at the local level. Topsfield Town Meeting is one of the purest forms of democracy and she has enjoyed civic participation in local ballot question committees, as volunteer Treasurer of the Topsfield Elementary School PTO, and past chair of Master Plan and Town Hall Building Committees. Her first run for MA Convention delegate to support Robert Reich's bid for Governor in 2002 led to membership in Topsfield's DTC, serving as chairman since 2007.

Joel Hariton, Vice-Chair

Joel Hariton

Joel moved to Topsfield in 2002. He became a member of the Topsfield Democratic Committee soon afterwards.

A semi-retired international telecom executive, Joel has wound down most of his global work to focus on local action, not only in the Democratic Party, but with regional environmental engagement. He is on the Outreach Committee of the Ipswich River Watershed Association and also initiated the successful effort to eliminate distribution of single use plastic tote bags in Topsfield. Joel fought against the construction of a gas pipeline along 11 miles of the Ipswich River at a US Congressional level.

Joel believes that conservation of the beautiful open lands in Topsfield is a desire that most citizens of the town hold deeply, no matter what their general political persuasion. That is an opportunity to communicate our values and engage a wider audience.

Chris Ruggles, Treasurer

Jackie Cassiday, Secretary

Jackie Cassiday

Jackie has been a resident of Topsfield since 1990. A retired speech pathologist, she has for many years been active on boards of the Congregational Church of Topsfield and is currently involved in mental health advocacy via NAMI-MA Greater North Shore.

Jackie has continually supported and advocated for democratic values.

Deb Atwood

Diann Baylis

Diann Baylis

Diann Slavit Baylis is a lifelong Democrat who was on the staff of the Massachusetts Democratic State Committee for six years. She has worked on many Democratic campaigns, and volunteered on the communications team for the Democratic National Convention Committee.

Diann is an attorney in private practice and the mother/stepmother of four children.

Sara Beck

Sara Beck

Sara has lived in Topsfield since about 1965. She is a graduate of Proctor School, Masconomet, and Smith College where she received a degree in Physics and Astronomy. She is currently the webmaster for this site.

Sara has always had a deep interest in environmental causes and climate change. During one of the earliest Earth Days, Sara and a friend painted an oil drum, turning it into litter can for the downtown area. She has served on the Topsfield Energy Committee and is currently doing all she can to reduce the carbon footprint of her family home.

Sara has always been a Democrat and believes in democratic causes.

John Brown

John Brown

John Brown has been a resident of Topsfield since he moved here with his wife, Kathleen, and their two sons in 2004. He teaches education at The University of Massachusetts Lowell and is a life-long democrat.

Betty Masullo

Angus McQuilken

Angus McQuilken

Angus McQuilken is the co-founder of the Young Democrats of Massachusetts, and a former member of the Democratic State Committee. He served as Chief of Staff for Democratic State Senator Cheryl Jacques from 1993-2004, as VP for Public Affairs for Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts, and as Vice President of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, the agency charged with implementing former Governor Deval Patrick's Life Sciences Initiative.

McQuilken is also the co-founder of the Massachusetts Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence. He is currently a Democratic candidate for Congress in Massachusetts' 6th Congressional District.

Charise Rohm Nulsen

Charise Rohm Nulsen

Charise Rohm Nulsen is a freelance writer, mom to two elementary school students, and perpetual volunteer. She holds a B.A. from Boston College in English and Women's Studies and an M.A.T. from Boston University in English Education. She has worked in the corporate world in Manhattan, San Francisco, and Boston, as well as in education throughout MA.

Charise has been a member of the Topsfield School Committee since May 2018 and the Chair of the committee since May 2019. She is passionate about community involvement and has been very involved in local civic engagement in various ways including through GREEN Topsfield, the Board of Mission & Outreach at the Congregational Church of Topsfield, Topsfield's Intergenerational Leadership Team, as a leader of Girl Scout Troop #82333, as a Room Parent and volunteer in many capacities at the elementary schools, as a DASH volunteer (Disability Awareness Starts Here), and more. Charise co-founded local activist groups such as Action Together North Shore and Action Together Tri-Town. She is also a 2019 graduate of Emerge MA's signature training program, the state's premier organization that recruits, trains, and provides a powerful network for Democratic women.

Melissa Ogden

Melissa Ogden

A life long resident of the tri-town area, Melissa, a graduate of Masconomet, Salem State University and Suffolk Law School, settled in Topsfield with her family in 2006. Melissa has been a Democrat since she voted for the Mondale-Ferraro ticket in the Howe Manning mock election and has been engaged in politics at every stage of her life.

Most recently, Melissa is a member of the Topsfield Open Space Committee, and was elected to the Masconomet Regional School Committee in 2019. She is currently volunteering with the Belsito for Congress campaign.

Jeanne Pickering

Jeanne Pickering

A lifelong Democrat, Jeanne moved to Topsfield in 2002 with her husband, Joel Hariton, and two sons, Sam and Zachary. She ran an independent web design company for fifteen years.

Soon after moving to Topsfield, she joined the volunteer committee that developed the first Town of Topsfield website which she maintained for the next ten years. She serves on the Board of Directors of the Topsfield Historical Society, develops and maintains their website and produces a monthly e-newsletter sent out to over 400 contacts.

Jeanne believes in close community ties developed through cooperative work on preservation of Topsfield's local historical and natural resources.

Bambi Snodgrass

Dorothy Wass

Dorothy Wass

Dorothy grew up in a family where politics were a feature at the dining room table. She campaigned for Adlai Stevenson before she could vote. (The voting age was 21 back in those days.)

Dorothy moved to Topsfield in 1968. She joined the League of Woman Voters and served in various board positions there but got involved in Democratic politics soon after and went to state conventions supporting Dukakis (for Governor), John Kerry and many others over the years. She carried papers for Teddy Kennedy and was invited to a party in Hyannisport one summer.

Dorothy is also interested in the environment and, as outgrowth of a clean up party back in 1972, she was involved in starting the recycling program in Topsfield. Dorothy is a regular letter writer on environmental issues.

Herb Wass

Herb Wass

Herb was a Republican until he saw the light (probably in 1956). He and Dorothy moved to Topsfield in 1968 and went to work at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston after he had been teaching economics for 12 years. Herb served on the Topsfield Finance Committee for several years and then later was a Trustee of Trust Funds. He retired some 22 years ago but follows politics closely.