Colorado Democratic Party bans vice-chair after harassment allegations

An image of Sheena Kadi on a Colfax Avenue electric box. March 19, 2024.
Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite
An image of Sheena Kadi on a Colfax Avenue electric box. March 19, 2024.

Colorado’s Democratic Party has banned State Party Vice-Chair Sheena Kadi from participating in party events and barred her from accessing party resources, after a committee of Democratic party officials determined she harassed other Democrats and violated party rules. 

The move also bans Kadi from meetings, assemblies and conventions and keeps her from accessing the voter file and email accounts.

She must also discontinue the “unauthorized use of any self-given title of 'spokesperson' for the (Colorado Democratic Party) or any of its affiliates, in any of Ms. Kadi's online or physical Biographies,” the state party committee said in a letter. 

“We recommend the following actions be taken immediately, and continue through April 30, 2027,” states the letter from members of the party’s controversy committee, tasked with investigating a complaint against Kadi. 

The committee is also asking the Democratic Party Central Committee to remove her as vice-chair of public relations and marketing. Kadi’s term as vice-chair ends next year. She’s currently the spokesperson for Democratic Treasurer Dave Young. The state party’s ban does not extend to other political events or rallies.

Four members of Colorado’s Democratic State Central Committee filed a formal complaint last month seeking her removal after CPR News reported that for over a year, Kadi publicly accused Democratic Rep. Leslie Herod of Denver of being a “sexual predator” and urged other Democrats to cut ties with her. In February, a court granted Herod a year-long no-contact protection order from Kadi. 

After a two-day hearing, the Denver County judge’s decision found Kadi’s claims of sexual assault and bullying by Herod to be “wholly unsubstantiated.”

“This is not something I took great enjoyment in,” said Samantha Walsh, a lobbyist and co-chair of Democrats’ House District 24 committee who filed the complaint. “We have an obligation to protect people, especially women of color and our members of the LGBTQ+ who unfortunately are more likely to be targeted for unchecked abuse in politics. I hope all parties involved get much needed space and time to reflect and heal.”

Herod said in a text message that she appreciates that the Colorado Democratic Party took clear and decisive action in the matter. 

“Sheena Kadi does not reflect the values of our party and her immediate removal from her party role is appropriate,” Herod said.

Kadi told CPR in a text message that she was disappointed to see the state party chair, Shad Murib,“[wield] his power in such an undemocratic way.” Murib requested the controversy  committee investigation and previously called on Kadi to resign. 

Kadi said she tried for 45 minutes to join a Zoom meeting of the committee with three different emails, on three different devices, on two different networks — to no avail.

“I even tried dialing in multiple times. I emailed and slacked several folks without success. I was not permitted to participate in the committee hearing to provide evidence or answer questions,” Kadi said.

Members of the controversy committee wrote in a letter that Kadi was able to access the waiting room on Zoom and was admitted at least three times but quickly exited the meeting each time. They said Rules Chair Josh Trupin read into the record a statement Kadi had previously submitted to the committee.

“Shortly after 5 p.m., Josh gave her the dial-in number, meeting ID and passcode and told her everyone was in the meeting with no issue using the Zoom link. He encouraged her to try again by phone. There was no indication that she tried,” the letter said.