Ray Buckley

President, Association of State Democratic Chairs

Raymond Buckley was elected President of the Association of State Democratic Chairs on January 21, 2009. He is the first openly gay politician to serve in that position. Buckley, a New Hampshire native, has been active in politics since the age of eight when he volunteered for his first campaign. Since then he has worked for numerous local, state and national campaigns, in addition to serving eight terms in the New Hampshire House of Representatives. Buckley began his official political career as an organizer for Jimmy Carter’s 1976 presidential campaign, and went on to serve in high-ranking positions – both in New Hampshire and nationally – for the presidential campaigns of Mike Dukakis, Bill Clinton, Al Gore, Joe Lieberman, John Kerry and Barack Obama. He has worked as a campaign manager for virtually every local and state office in New Hampshire, including Governor, U.S. Senate and Congress. Early in his career, Buckley served several years on the staff of the New Hampshire House Democratic Leadership and has been a lead recruiter and trainer of New Hampshire legislative candidates for over two decades. In January of 2005, Buckley was hired as the Director of the New Hampshire Senate Democratic Caucus, where his efforts led to largest Democratic Senate majority in over 150 years. Buckley was elected Chair of the New Hampshire Democratic Party in March 2007, and oversaw the dramatic Democratic victories in New Hampshire in November 2008. Prior to his election as State Chair he served four terms as a Vice Chair of the New Hampshire Democratic Party. He has held several staff positions at the New Hampshire Democratic Party office, including four years as Executive Director and two cycles as New Hampshire Coordinated Campaign Director. Buckley was first elected to the New Hampshire House of Representatives in 1986, and served eight terms representing the south end of the city of Manchester, New Hampshire. While in the House, he served as House Democratic Whip and the Deputy House Democratic Leader. He also served four terms on the Election Law Committee, five terms on House Rules Committee, and as ranking Democrat on the House Redistricting, Election Law, and Commerce Committees. As a Manchester, New Hampshire Alderman, Buckley chaired the Administration Committee. During his tenure as an Alderman, the New Hampshire Union Leader newspaper named him “The Aldermanic Workhorse” for his tireless service. Since March of 1999, Buckley has been a member of the Democratic National Committee. He has been elected to two four-year terms as Chair of the DNC Eastern Region, and is a member of the DNC Gay and Lesbian Caucus. He served four terms as a member of the Executive Committee of the Association of State Democratic Chairs, three terms as a Vice President of the ASDC, and also served as Co-Chair of the ASDC Committee on the Help America Vote Act. Buckley was an active participant in the DNC Voting Rights Hearings in Newark, New Jersey and Detroit, Michigan. Since 2001, he has served on Board of the National Stonewall Democrats and on their Executive Committee. In 2004 Buckley was the Chair of the Stonewall Democrats National Convention. Buckley was a founding member of the New Hampshire Citizens for Gay and Lesbian Rights and served two terms on the Board of the New Hampshire Gay Pride Committee. He has also been involved with the Human Rights Campaign and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force. In 2005, New Hampshire Governor John Lynch named Buckley as his representative on the New Hampshire Commission to Study Same Sex Marriage. Buckley has appeared on numerous New Hampshire and national television and radio programs, and hosted a long-running political talk show in Manchester.