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Berlon runs for state Democratic Party chair

Mike Berlon may be running an uphill battle in conservative Gwinnett County, but the Duluth attorney wants to take the helm of the state Democratic Party.

Berlon, who heads the local party, sent out a press release this week, saying he would lay out a 10-point plan for returning Democrats to prominence in Georgia. He wants to foster a renewed emphasis on statewide grassroots organizing and local and national coalition building. He wants to open satellite offices in north, central and south

Georgia.

"Encouraged by the results of the recent national elections, Berlon is confident that with the right preparation, Georgia will follow the National trend toward Democrats in 2007 and beyond," the press release reads.

Berlon describes himself as a "centrist Democrat," and he ran for Congress against John Linder two years ago.

State committee members will hold elections for officers Jan. 27 in Atlanta.

Gwinnettian gets

leadership role

In case you missed the news earlier this week, a Gwinnett House member has taken a major leadership role in the GOP caucus while another came up short on a bid to do the same with the other party.

Donna Sheldon was elected by House Republicans as the caucus's vice chairwoman. The Dacula woman represents District 105.

Rep. Brian Thomas, D-Lilburn, was defeated by Rep. Nikki Randall, D-Macon, in the only contested race among six positions filled by House Democrats at a post-election reorganizational meeting.

As is customary, the vote was by secret ballot and Randall's margin of victory was not announced.

"I thought it would be helpful to have some new voices ... for Gwinnett County to have a voice in leadership," Thomas said after the election.

Staff Writer Dave Williams contributed to this report.

Political Notebook appears in the Thursday and Sunday editions of the Gwinnett Daily Post.

Camie Young can be reached via e-mail at camie.young@gwinnettdailypost.com.