MEET ABENA 

Proven Leadership Delivering Results for Our Community

Abena is a New York native, and lifelong Democrat. Abena has lived in Charles County more than 11 years with her husband and college sweetheart Willie, a native of the area. Abena earned her Bachelors degree with cum laude honors from Nyack College, a Christian liberal arts school in 2007. While in college, Abena learned the importance of being a servant leader, and served low- income communities on several missions’ trips to South America, Europe, and Africa. Her passion for serving and advocating for others compelled her to pursue a legal education. While earning her Juris Doctorate from the David A. Clarke School of Law, Abena advocated for disabled children and their parents in special education matters. Abena further served the community while working in the Office of Councilwoman Yvette Alexander where she drafted the Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and Automated External Defibrillator Requirements Act of 2013. The Act initiated a CPR and AED program across schools in the District of Columbia, which establishes procedures for responding to medical emergencies.

Abena is no stranger to community advocacy or representing the ideals of the Democratic Party. Her Democratic Party involvement includes service as the current Chair of the Charles County Democratic Central Committee, Deputy- Secretary of The Maryland Democratic Party, and Co-Chair of the Ethics and Sexual Harassment committee of the Maryland Democratic Party. In an effort to encourage more Democrats to run for office in Charles County, Abena hosted the county’s first candidate training workshop and campaign finance workshop. As Chair, Abena made a commitment to do more fundraising for the party and as a result the Charles County Democratic Central Committee had its highest grossing Truman Kennedy Obama Dinner of all time. Under Abena’s leadership, the Charles County Democratic Central Committee had a record number of canvasses for the 2017-2018 Gubernatorial election season and the committee exceeded their target voter turn out numbers for the election by 49% with more than 42 thousand Democrats turned out to vote in our county. Abena has supported dozens of Democratic campaigns at the local, state and national level, including Barak Obama’s 2012 Presidential re-election campaign, Congressman Anthony Brown’s 2014 campaign for Governor of Maryland, and Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign to name a few. In December of 2018, Abena was elected to one of the seven executive officer seats on the Maryland Democratic Party’s executive board. Abena currently serves Maryland as the Deputy Secretary of the Maryland Democratic Party, and is the first resident of Charles County Maryland to serve as on the State Executive board. Abena is also the Co- Chair of the Maryland Democratic Party’s Ethics and Sexual Harassment committee.

 

Abena’s civic involvement is also extensive, as she has never been one to sit on the sidelines. When a cause is important, she rolls up her sleeves, joins the team, and does what it takes. In the wake of the growing discontent with Law enforcement in our nation, in December of 2014, Abena organized a countywide panel discussion with several community leaders, local politicians, and the newly elected Sherriff, to discuss community relations, racial tension, policing practices, accountability issues, and how to build a stronger relationship between the Charles County Sheriff’s Department and citizens. In 2017, Abena helped women from the Southern MD area to organize a bus for Charles County residents to attend the Women’s March on Washington. Following the march, Abena founded Women of Action Charles County (WOACC). Women of Action Charles County MD (WOACC) is a large diverse network of local women dedicated to empowering and supporting women and all people by mentoring, performing community service and offering educational opportunities to further the common good and general welfare of residents in the community. In 2018, WOACC organized a bus to take residents from the tri-county area to the March for Our Lives. Since it’s inception, WOACC has given back to the community in countless ways. Some of our initiatives include;

  • WOACC’s Teachers Supply Closet-  The program provides school supplies for Teachers in Title 1 schools and continues to support them throughout the school year!! This program has helped lower some of our teachers out of pocket costs.

  • WOACC hosts annual Food , Boot & Coat drives.

  • The organization organized a Free Wills for heroes’ workshop for Charles County first responders and their spouses. More than 200 men and women from various first responders units received Wills, Health derivatives and more free of charge

  • We organized a Veterans Health & Wellness Fair

  • Held a Prom Dress drive to support The Body of Christ Church’s (Waldorf) annual prom dress giveaway to local area teens in need.

  •    Hosted a private screening of Marvel’s critically acclaimed Black Panther (and Q&A session) for local high school students and.

  • We organized an Informational Town Hall Forum - brought specialist in the community together to provide parents & residents knowledge on how to identify issues and get children help when needed...

  • WOACC has an ongoing partnership with social services, to give support to foster children in Charles County

  • WOACC has an ongoing partnership with Farming for Hunger. We help the organization harvest food for the Maryland food bank and we partner with Ambitious Women on a mission to host an annual thanksgiving luncheon for the incarcerated men that come to the farm to change the direction of their lives.

  • Raised funds to support Hurricane Harvey relief efforts.

WOACC has been featured on Good Morning Washington, Fox 5 news and Channel 9 news. To learn more about the organization visit www.woacc.org

 

As you can see, Abena is a hard worker and truly dedicated to serving the community. She attributes her strength and love of service to her faith and family. She currently resides in Waldorf Maryland with her husband Willie, their 2yr old daughter Reagan, and their two dogs.

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