I am an Overland Park native and proud product of our public schools, having graduated from the Blue Valley district. After college I became highly involved in our community. Through this activism I saw the importance and impact of local leadership, and that there aren’t enough young people with a voice at the table, which is why I am running for State Representative. I worked as a field organizer on Rep. Sharice Davids’ 2018 campaign and am currently the Volunteer Manager at Literacy KC.
Blue Valley Schools, K-12
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
I am a member and past Chair of the Johnson County Young Democrats, a 2018 Kansas Democratic Party fellow, and a former precinct committee person. I have volunteered on many city council and state legislature campaigns and was a field organizer on the first campaign to elect Congresswoman Sharice Davids. I am also a member of the Metro Kansas City Climate Action Coalition (MKCCAC).
8227 Santa Fe Dr.
Overland Park, KS 66204
Our first priority must be limiting the spread of COVID-19 in order to save lives and protect ourselves, our families, and our communities. Reviving the economy and providing a quality public education to our students are also essential, but must be done in ways that support this goal. Widespread adoption of common sense public health measures -- including wearing masks, social distancing and avoiding mass gatherings -- is essential. It is also essential that we pass Medicaid Expansion as part of these efforts, to ensure 150,000 more Kansans gain access to the critical health care services they need.
Yes. I support overturning the SAFE Act, which has made it harder for voters to practice their constitutionally-guaranteed right and civic duty. The documentary proof-of-citizenship requirement blocked a total of more than 35,000 Kansans from registering to vote between 2013-16.
All Kansans should be able to easily and legally exercise their right to vote. We need to make our elections accessible and secure by enacting same day voter registration, expanding opportunities for in-person early voting and advance voting, and increasing voter education efforts.
Expanding Medicaid and increasing access to affordable healthcare is one of my top priorities. Expansion would ensure that another 150,000 Kansans have access to critical healthcare services and would inject needed federal funds into our state economy. Medicaid expansion is also critical for helping rural hospitals stay open, because it significantly reduces uncompensated care costs. Four rural hospitals closed between 2016-2019 because of negative operating margins, and this likely could have been prevented if Medicaid Expansion had been passed.
In addition to offering critical services, rural hospitals also act as economic engines in rural communities, creating jobs and attracting and supporting businesses and residents; therefore, keeping their doors open should be priority number one. Other important steps for supporting rural healthcare include increasing the availability of telemedicine and promoting student loan forgiveness for doctors practicing in rural communities.
My generation has experienced the most mass gun violence of any generation, and I am committed to addressing this public health crisis. I believe we need to reform our firearm policy and gun safety laws to make owning a gun safer and to reduce the number of gun injuries and deaths. We can do this by implementing common-sense gun reforms, including required training, background checks, longer waiting periods and red-flag laws.
Currently the Speaker of the House and President of the Senate get to select all committee chairs, which means committee leadership is ultimately accountable to the Speaker or President and not their committee. These rules have allowed favoritism and special interests to have a disproportionate and undemocratic influence on committee work. This undermines the legislative process, which should be based on pluralism, good policy, and transparency. To change this, we need to allow committee members to elect their own chairs.
To further increase transparency and accountability in committees, we should also change committee rules to allow members to vote on bills they want to work. Currently, committee chairs choose all bills that go on their calendars. Allowing a majority of committee members to have a voice in what bills get heard and worked will further increase the balance of power.
Yes. Currently the Speaker of the House and President of the Senate get sole discretion in what bills are added to their chamber calendars to be heard, debated, and voted on. Similar to committee rules, this is undemocratic and gives too much power to the Speaker and President. To increase the balance of power we need to change the House and Senate rules to allow a simple majority of either chamber to pull a bill out of committee. We could further increase this balance by allowing any bills with a simple majority of cosponsors to automatically be put on the calendar.
DCF and the Departments of Labor and Education are currently underfunded, and our state’s most vulnerable children often suffer as a result. Fortunately, things are starting to turn around. The passage of Families First is especially exciting, as it will allow the state to use federal funds for family preservation services to hopefully prevent the need for foster care in the first place. I support Governor Kelly’s plan for fixing the child welfare system in Kansas. I also believe we should expand access to TANF and SNAP funds and implement the Child Welfare System Task Force’s top-priority recommendations, including overhauling our state government’s antiquated computer system, which is outdated, makes it harder for state departments to do their job, and puts our data security at risk.
As a society, we must commit to working together for racial justice and social change. Legislators can lead this effort by engaging communities of color and diverse groups to advocate for and support legislation that they prioritize. Examples of such legislation include: passing the CROWN Act; adding gender identity and sexual orientation protections to our state non-discrimination law; addressing policing inequities and increasing the effectiveness of citizen review boards for police misconduct; and reforming bail, civil asset forfeiture, and sentencing laws.
I also support Governor Kelly’s Commission on Racial Equity and Justice, which is tasked with holding listening sessions across Kansas and making recommendations on concrete and immediate steps that can be taken to increase racial equity and justice in our state. I look forward to seeing and supporting these recommendations.
Legislators can begin by building relationships and seeking common ground. Kansans share many goals, including living in safe and healthy communities that provide opportunities for their families to thrive. By focusing on our shared values, legislators can work toward compromise and begin moving forward. The bipartisan women’s caucus led the way in overturning the Brownback tax experiment and more recently, Gov. Kelly and Sen. Denning developed a compromise plan on Medicaid expansion. Going forward, legislators can use this strategy to address many other challenges facing our state.
Yes. A fair and nonpartisan redistricting process is essential for ensuring all Kansans are equitably represented at all levels of government. For too long partisan gerrymandering has been used as a tool to manipulate electoral districts for the benefit of political parties instead of voters. I support the formation of an impartial redistricting committee that creates truly representative districts based on Census data and geographic density. I believe every elected official should be accountable to the people they represent, which means having an impartial redistricting process.