My very first memory is of my graduation from the Head Start preschool program for low-income children in Chicago. I proudly stood on stage, a great gap-toothed smile on my face and a gold paper crown on my head. My hair was in tight braids and I was wearing a scratchy polyester dress my mother had sewn on her used Singer sewing machine. At that moment, even though so many obstacles were in my way, I thought I could be anything I wanted…

Success in life requires access to education, to resources, and, most importantly, to systems that will support us in getting there.

This is why I am tossing my scarf into the ring for Illinois State Representative of the 5th District.

Build A Life

In this great country, success should be possible for every man and woman. But in today’s America, too many hardworking residents are constantly faced with new taxes, don’t have access to quality healthcare, daycare, or elder care, can’t make ends meet, don’t feel safe…and they just don’t see how they ever get out from behind the eight ball. We’ve got to change that, and we’ve got to change that NOW.

We are told to play by the rules, to work hard, and to be persistent. But I want to make sure the rules are fair and work for all of us. I will support laws that develop a system where each of us can Build a Life  – in a safe neighborhood, near a great school, down the street from a park, across the way from many places to eat and shop, and with purposeful jobs and careers.

Be A Bridge

There are two ways we can Be a Bridge

First, when we Build a Life, we must then Be a Bridge for others. I could not have made it without Head Start, or without the Pell Grants I received so I could attend college. Social safety nets are our collective insurance – they help us get by with a little help from our friends. They should not be abused AND they should not be reduced.

The second way to Be a Bridge is to strengthen relationships between diverse people. In this diverse country, we should have each other’s back. But actually, some people are trying to divide us and keep us apart. They say I don’t belong, you are no good, and he is scary. But we know we are stronger when we knock on doors side-by-side, and speak truth to power – together.

Join me – and Be a Bridge between communities.  Our District is incredibly diverse and runs through 11 miles of Chicago neighborhoods- from South Side Englewood, Washington Park, Bronzeville – all the way through South Loop – and north to the Magnificent Mile.

Our skin color may not be the same tone, we may not do the same type of work, and we may not live the same way, but our core values of honesty, equity, a strong work ethic, and the chance to achieve should not be a Dream, it should be the American Promise. 

Build a Life, Be A Bridge – this is why I am tossing my scarf into the ring for Illinois State Representative from the 5th District.

Build A Life, Be A Bridge – Join Us