It is an honor to represent our shared progressive values in the Washington State House of Representatives. As Vice Chair of the Labor & Workplace Standards Committee and Member of the Environment & Energy and Transportation Committees, I’m a passionate advocate for working families, combating climate change, and building vital infrastructure that is safe, equitable, and green. I am proud of the work we have accomplished together in just my first term to expand Washington’s Paid Family & Medical Leave program, implement carbon pricing to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and prioritize an equitable COVID recovery for all.
I grew up in Arizona where my father fought for justice in the courtroom and my mother fought for public education in the classroom. I answered phones and filed paperwork at my dad’s law practice, a small business that advocated for working people.
I got my first introduction into politics when my mom ran and won a seat on the local school board in 1988. I was five years old and my sister, Page, was three. I still remember knocking on doors, stuffing envelopes and putting up yard signs. My parents taught me the values of fairness, justice and standing up for those who have no voice.
I was determined to make a positive change in people’s lives through public service and applied to study at American University in Washington, DC. My junior year, I went abroad to Namibia, South Africa and Belgium. I interned for the first woman Mayor of Cape Town and worked the political desk at the U.S. Embassy in Brussels. After college, I took a job working for a newly elected Congresswoman named Gabby Giffords. I worked for Gabby throughout her tenure in Congress, lastly as her Legislative Director.
And then the unthinkable happened. On Jan. 8, 2011, the nation watched in horror as a gunman shot Gabby, our staff and constituents. My friend and colleague Gabe Zimmerman was killed. Five others died that day. This experience touched my life in a profound way. Watching Gabby fight for her recovery and to prevent the escalation of gun violence taught me about resilience, hard work, and grit.
Throughout my life, I have always been moved to stand up for what I believe. As a lifelong champion for women in leadership and reproductive justice, I served as president of the National Women’s Political Caucus of Washington and on the board of Pro-Choice Washington where I fought to protect abortion access. I previously led the region’s largest civil justice advocacy organization dedicated to standing up for the rights of patients, consumers, and injured workers against Big Pharma, Big Insurance, and unscrupulous corporations.
In January 2017, I was spurred to action by attending the Women’s March after I became a mother with the birth of my son George. When I became a parent, I instantly understood the stakes of our future at a personal level. And a few years later, we welcomed our daughter Eleanor into the world.
In 2020, the voters of the 36th legislative district elected me to the State House, and I was sworn into office in January 2021. I’m running for reelection to continue the fight for fairness, elevate working families and children, and bring affordability back to our region. I will stand up for the progressive values that have guided me my whole life as a working mom, nonprofit leader, and champion for creating pathways for marginalized communities to have a seat at the table. I am proud to represent you in Olympia.